Health Care System Failing Obese Children – Here’s a Solution

obese-kid-650x432

Here’s an opinion piece in a Swedish morning paper, highlighting the fact that many hospitals have chosen not to offer any help to obese children:

DN Opinion: “Hospital Closes the Door on Obese Children” (Google translated from Swedish).

Prof. Claude Marcus and others are right that it’s terrible that hospitals fail children with serious medical problems. This is not acceptable. But the problem is even greater: The outcome in hospitals treating childhood obesity is woefully bad. Very few children are treated successfully.

In hospitals that do treat obese children, the treatment is usually based on the outdated idea “eat less, run more”. They seriously advise parents to limit their child’s food intake, dismissing the kids from the table still hungry. They’re then advised to try to make the kids run outside, despite not having had enough to eat.

At the same time they ignore study after study showing that children who eat their fill on a low-carb diet will lose more weight.

Because health care workers ignore inconvenient new knowledge, obese children and their parents are given advice that lead to worse outcomes and unnecessary suffering.

Today’s treatment for childhood obesity isn’t just child abuse. It’s family abuse.

Here’s a suggestion that may improve the situation within the health care system: Let go of the old dogmas about low-fat products and the oversimplified advice on energy balance. When childhood obesity treatment works this poorly, it’s time to wake up.

Here’s what might work better: Give the dietary advice that’s been proven best in scientific studies. Shouldn’t this be obvious?

More

A Low-Carb Diet Superior for Overweight Children Once Again

Kids Drinking Low-Fat Milk Gain More Weight – Again!

A Happy Little Meat Eater

A Diet Book for Kids (!) and What it Can Teach Us

22 comments

Top comments

  1. LW
    I have been on LCHF for 1 year (on and off) lost 13kg so far. But the benefits I feel when eating LCHF far outweighs how I feel when I have a cheat holiday. I have so much more energy, don't have pain in my legs anymore. I used to leave a shop if I do not find parking close to the entrance as I was too tired to walk. Now it doesn't matter. I find that I wish I can go for a walk with my dog. The last time I drunk any sodas was 31 Dec 2012. My extremely painful acid reflux and heart burn from GERD disappeared. Use to drink lanzor for the pain. Nothing, no pain for nearly 11 months. - I still have to change my paradigm everyday - I have been taught for my whole live that FAT makes FAT.... Now I KNOW that it is NOT true. I have seen the truth in my own life, but the mind still brings it up, and when I am with other people I tend to conform to there way and NOT eat all the FAT that I am suppose to. I am still so much overweight and I have felt their judgement when they see that I eat FAT. They do not have a problem that I cut carbs and sugar, but oh... the FAT... it will take so long to change peoples minds. We'll have to have it on TV and in the media everyday for 40 years to start make a difference in the average population. I Read up about it everyday to keep my focus, and not turn back to the old thinking of fat makes you fat... NO, FAT makes me HEALTHY and THIN!!!
    Read more →
  2. Marcy
    LCHF is the only thing my mother didn't try to get me to lose weight and the only thing that would have worked. I was born heavy in 1951, when most babies and children were not heavy, and was on my first of thousands of diets by the third grade. All I remember is being so hungry all the time, sneaking food and still being fat. Only when I discovered eating meat, eggs and cottage cheese in about 1970 when I was at University did I successfully lose weight. Doctors never helped me, even the ones that prescribed tons of diet pills to me when I was just 13. My mom even took me to a psychologist. If only they had tried the only thing that will work, LCHF, my life could/would have been so much different. Not to mention the money my mom and later on, I, would have saved.
    Reply: #17
    Read more →

All comments

  1. Jackie
    I'm confused, because I have been lead to believe that the Swedish government are now encouraging the nation to eat HFLC and that they are the only nation in Europe to be following this procedure, does it not apply to their hospitals? I have been eating HFLC for seven weeks, done so much research and showing benefits, I don't want to be disillusioned now.
    Replies: #2, #6
  2. FrankG
    I wish it were so Jackie but I think all that Sweden has officially done so far is have an influential body recognise LCHF as an effective, viable and safe alternative to the current advice. This is an huge step but is still far from having widespread acceptance among the "establishment", who tend to change direction at a snail's pace... if at all. Sometimes science only moves ahead, one retirement at a time...

    That is not to say the people of Sweden are not embracing the LCHF approach in ever increasing numbers (or so I understand). So it may well be this grass-roots acceptance and patients demanding this of their health-care providers, which will drive the change forwards.

    This type of "blame the patient" move really angers me... "sorry we can't stitch up your head after falling off your bike... it's your own fault for not wearing an helmet"

  3. Takeda
    I really hope the delusion we've all been subjected to is finally dispelled ... but with so much money invested and applied to keep us fat and ignorant I just don't know when it's going to happen.

    Keep telling everyone you know ... even if 5% of the people you tell look into it it's another person off the path of destruction!

  4. CH
    My family eats HFLC as much as possible. We do make exceptions for the holidays and parties, which are infrequent. My 18 month old daughter is in the 25th percentile for weight and 90th for height. No complaints from the pediatrician, and she doesn't look emaciated or too skinny. She looks like the perfect sized, if not slightly taller, todder. People remark on her quiet and laid-back demeanor, and how well she'll eat anything when she's hungry. We don't feed her cheerios, cookies or chicken *urp* nuggets. Her snacks are fresh fruit and cheese, and since 6 months old, she's eaten the same food my spouse and I eat at each meal. If she doesn't want to eat what we have, it's because she's not hungry and we don't force her to finish her plate. Overall, our household is healthy and extremely happy!
  5. Galina L.
    It was said in the article that the issue was actually a discrimination against poor families because fat children were mostly from the families of poor immigrants.
    Is it not ironic how often the people who come to live in a modern society from the areas where everybody eats low fat starch-based traditional diets , get immediately trapped into western-style nutritional problems? I am sure mothers in such families have no problem to cook everything from a scratch, but as soon as foods stopped being scarce, starch-based diets stop keeping people thin, and children are first victims. Still many are interested why most people in China or Afghanistan are thin.
  6. Zepp
    Frank got it right.. its SBU a part of our healt department that investigated diets for obesety and for diabetes!

    SLV how is a kind of FDA is part of our agricultural department and handels diet recomendations for healty population.. they goes for WHOs and Nordic Nutrition Comitees advice!

    There aim is to promote agricultural and food industry and supervise those!

    SBU is our healt departments expert comitee and there aim is to find out whats best science and practise for healt care!

    There was a poll about LCHF for some year ago.. 25% liked the ide of LCHF.. but only 3% said that they practise this way them self!

    And one of the experts in the comitte said, now we know but it still years to educate a lot of healt care person in many years in front of us!

  7. Robin Nixon
    And at the same time in America statins are now to be prescribed regardless of LDL levels:

    "The new guidelines encourage doctors to consider age, weight, blood pressure and other factors, such as whether patients smoke or have diabetes. If a person appears to have even a moderate risk of a heart attack or stroke, he or she should be prescribed statins, regardless of LDL score."

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/new-guidelines-...

    Not only is a useless and potentially harmful drug going to be prescribed to people who don't need it, the correct solutions (such as the right dietary changes) are not going to be suggested to these patients.

    Replies: #10, #11
  8. Paul the rat
    I just received this link from someone - just passing on, no personal comments. (just one comment - interesting introduction, first 20 minutes)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWLrfNJICeM

  9. Damocles
    Publicly "accedpted" advices might lack behind science for 5 years.
    So you you want advice from 2013 or 2018?

    ;) (ok thats a bit hypothetical)

    Here a nice documentary from CBC (Canada) on Sweeteners

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDaYa0AB8TQ

    "The Secrets of Sugar - the fifth estate - CBC News"

  10. sten
    Awful, but the pharma companies also by now must know that there is no real science to back up their sales and what hasn't been trashed totally yet (anything ?) will soon be. In the meantime "milk the last drops" I guess the tune must be.

    The totally crazy new recommendations will make more people question the whole thing quicker, either on face value or after experiencing the side effects, or getting sick like I did.

    To make health service personnel more conscious about low carb high fat diet it could be a good idea to ask if they know any doctor nearby that is familiar with dietary and testing support for LCHF. I believe the result will be negative in the beginning. Later ask about the blood tests that are really valid, like fasting insulin and ApoB/ApoA. Search Interheart study to get informed about the largest worldwide study on heartattacks ever made. Then rarely referred to, why we can just guess!

    The highest 1/5 values on apoB/apoA gave a 3.25 higher risk for heart attack versus the lowest 1/5th, while "currently smoking" gave a slightly smaller (2.87 x) risk increase versus never ever smoked. That is not 100x more thanhigh LDL, because high LDL LOWERS risk for some groups and raises it for others ! Totall ambigous, only "useful" to let unwitting doctors and nurses act as statin salesmen.

    The ApoB is lowered when the number of LDL particles reduce. On LCHF the number reduces because fewer LDLs get "large and fluffy" meaning fewer dangerous small LDL particles.
    (Small LDL one gets when triglycerides are high which stems from excess carbs in the foods.)

    I don't know what Apo A/B I had when I suffered from angina. But normal is 0.7-0-9 and elevated risk is over 0.9 while low is below 0.7 . 15 months after starting on LCHF I had 0.63. Before angina resolved I had often trouble walking more than 30 meters, problem that resolved after 6 weeks on LCHF. Amazing after having been told that stenting, bypass or life long medication were the only options I had, as my cardiologist then told me.
    It took me 6 years before I found and tried cutting the carbs to next to nothing. I did it as a last resort when I started to wake up with chest pians in the middle of the nights.

    Sorry about the excursion !

  11. FrankG
    Dr Malcolm Kendrick in this recent blog post, gives us an heads up about another class of drugs (PCSK9 monoclonal antibodies) soon to hit the pharmacies, to help "lower cholesterol"...

    http://drmalcolmkendrick.org/2013/11/05/believing-in-impossible-thing...

  12. Jan
    Yes, we do still need to spread the word on the health benefits that a low carb high fat lifestyle can bring to all age groups. This is not easy, has never been easy. As with all you meet some people do actually open their eyes and ears to hear how improvements can be made but of course they need to almost take a leap of faith and go against the main stream.

    We can only do what we are all doing and that is spreading the word to all who will listen.

    I also believe that exercise is important, and question the lack of exercise both in schools and at home. Children do seem to spend more time on tech/video games etc. We and they need a balance in lifestyle, we need to look closely at diet/exercise/sleep patterns.

    If we could only get the balance right wouldn't that be an achievement.

    Onwards and upwards ... lots more word spreading to do for us all !

    All the best Jan

    Reply: #13
  13. FrankG
    I agree about a balanced, holistic approach Jan and that we can best lead by example and by sharing our own experiences with those around us who are open to listen. But instead of "exercise", I'd rather aim to build physical activity into each day. Exercise seems to me to be an unnatural, imposition on the body; kinda like trying to enforce 8 hours of sleep every night... perhaps a good habit to allow naturally -- reduce or avoid stimulants such as caffeine later in the day, bed at a reasonable time, in a dark, quiet room etc... but I don't think it need be (or works long-term as) a daily "chore" :-)

    Unlike the decades when I was working against my body to "lose weight" with CICO/ELMM... dragging my sorry butt down to the gym for hours on end, when the last thing I felt like doing was "exercising"; nowadays I feel motivated to be physically active most days... taking the stairs, parking at the far end of the parking lot, going for day-long hikes with my DSLR to photograph nature etc...

    Sure some folks enjoy spending their leisure time at the gym or on a bike... good for them. I just don't think that being physically active necessarily means an expensive gym membership with special clothes and shoes :-)

  14. Murray
    There is a silver lining to the cloudy new statin recommendations from the American Heart Association.

    The LDL level for statin prescription has been increased from 100 mg/dL (2.6 mmol/L) to 190 mg/dL (4.94 mmol/L)—almost double. That indicates how weak the evidence was for LDL correlating to cardiovascular mortality. They had to restore the market for statins through other factors—history of heart disease, diabetes and higher risk on Framington. Framington subtracts two points from risk for high HDL and adds 2 for high total cholesterol—so cholesterol is neutral if HDL is raised (by saturated fats). So, just rough calculating (lumping IDL and VLDL in with LDL) if one has a typical 3:1 ratio of Total to HDL and LDL at 5 mmol/L, then total would be 7.5 mmol/L. Some studies indicate all-cause mortality is minimized with total cholesterol between 5.0 and 7.5 mmol/L, so the new guidelines no longer force otherwise healthy people with cholesterol in the optimal range to take statins. So it is a major improvement in that respect.

  15. LW
    I have been on LCHF for 1 year (on and off) lost 13kg so far. But the benefits I feel when eating LCHF far outweighs how I feel when I have a cheat holiday. I have so much more energy, don't have pain in my legs anymore. I used to leave a shop if I do not find parking close to the entrance as I was too tired to walk. Now it doesn't matter. I find that I wish I can go for a walk with my dog. The last time I drunk any sodas was 31 Dec 2012. My extremely painful acid reflux and heart burn from GERD disappeared. Use to drink lanzor for the pain. Nothing, no pain for nearly 11 months. - I still have to change my paradigm everyday - I have been taught for my whole live that FAT makes FAT.... Now I KNOW that it is NOT true. I have seen the truth in my own life, but the mind still brings it up, and when I am with other people I tend to conform to there way and NOT eat all the FAT that I am suppose to. I am still so much overweight and I have felt their judgement when they see that I eat FAT. They do not have a problem that I cut carbs and sugar, but oh... the FAT... it will take so long to change peoples minds. We'll have to have it on TV and in the media everyday for 40 years to start make a difference in the average population. I Read up about it everyday to keep my focus, and not turn back to the old thinking of fat makes you fat... NO, FAT makes me HEALTHY and THIN!!!
  16. Marcy
    LCHF is the only thing my mother didn't try to get me to lose weight and the only thing that would have worked. I was born heavy in 1951, when most babies and children were not heavy, and was on my first of thousands of diets by the third grade. All I remember is being so hungry all the time, sneaking food and still being fat. Only when I discovered eating meat, eggs and cottage cheese in about 1970 when I was at University did I successfully lose weight. Doctors never helped me, even the ones that prescribed tons of diet pills to me when I was just 13. My mom even took me to a psychologist. If only they had tried the only thing that will work, LCHF, my life could/would have been so much different. Not to mention the money my mom and later on, I, would have saved.
    Reply: #17
  17. Galina L.
    I had been that always hungry person who was sneaking food. I think only eating traditional food saved me from being obese, but not from being overweight. My mom is like that. I am finally free from my food obsession , and my mom is free too after I persuade her to try a LC diet.
  18. Jan C
    That picture just makes me very sad. Those poor children, blamed for being fat and not helped in any useful way. It's a tragedy - these are just little children and should be shown love and care, not labelled as lazy and greedy.
  19. Jan
    Hi FrankG in reply to comment 13. I like the idea of "taking the stairs, parking at the far end of the parking lot, going for day-long hikes with my DSLR to photograph nature etc..."

    For me a low carb high fat lifestyle is all about balance. I think we need to balance the food we eat, together with regular exercise and good sleep patterns. This balance is not always easy but we should try. With regard to exercise I'm not necessarily talking of pounding the treadmills or running the streets, but if people want to do that, it's fine by me.We all know what we can do and what we want to do. I'm like you and enjoy walking. I also try to do little things like climb the stairs and not take a lift.Walk to the local shop and not get in the car, sometimes it's the small things that can help too.

    Of course one other thing to take account of is any underlying health issues, allergies etc and whatever balance you the individual decide this balance always remains a personal choice.

    I just hope that today's children do have the opportunity to be able to find a balance in life that will take them through to a good 'old age'

    All the best Jan

  20. Eric Anderson
    The diet helps.
    Animals will become lathargeic and gain weight even on low calorie diets high in sugars and carbs.

    An aid to the diet is the Cool Glove developed at Stanford University.

    The glove creates a partial vacumme and cools the circulation.
    This reverses the chemical reaction associated with muscle fatigue.

    Great results in 6 weeks

    http://news.stanford.edu/news/2012/august/cooling-glove-research-0829...
    http://cnettv.cnet.com/stanford-cooling-glove-future-exercise/9742-1_...

    (Note I have no financial interest or ties other than the general health and benifit of the world)

  21. JohnnyD.
    The word just has to get out and be recognized as the truth Cabs make you fat!
  22. Lez king
    The LCHF eating plan is the easiest way I have used and the most effective. In 30 days I have lost 9.750 kgs

    Averaging 325gms per day..almost 2/3 lb of fat coming off me every 24hrs- no excercise as I have a desk job plus I am booked in for a Knee replacement...

    I used to go to the Gym 3 times per week before the knee issue and never ever lost more weight. I have gone in 30mm in my waist....
    fell sharp and my blood cholesterol is unchanged (never was high)

    I saw my doctor yesterday they weighed me and as was a month since last visit commented on my weight loss- I explained how the LCHF works-to her- yet she ignored it- when I live in a place with very obese people, many of whom are her patients....talk about blind!

    Every obese person reading this should TRY IT before knocking the LCHF way !

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