big boned17 Mar 2004
A recent study shows that a large percentage of parents with obese children don’t even realize it:
“A third of the mothers and 57 percent of dads actually saw their obese child as normal,” said Alison Jeffery, a member of the research team at the medical school.
“Quite a few parents are not recognizing it as a problem. They are not recognizing the health risks either,” she added in an interview.
But Jeffery said it isn’t a case of denial.
“We are all used to seeing people who are bigger than they used to be 20 years ago and we just see people who are overweight as normal.”
Jeffery, who presented her findings to the Diabetes UK medical conference in Birmingham, England, questioned 300 seven-year old children and their parents about their perceptions of body size.
One third of mothers and half of fathers who were either overweight or obese rated themselves as “about right.”
When the child was a normal weight, according to an internationally recognized measurement of obesity in children, most of their parents, regardless of their own size, knew there was no problem.
When the child was overweight but not obese, only a quarter of the parents knew it. But when the youngsters were obese, 40 percent of parents were not concerned about their child’s weight.
Talk about fighting an uphill battle.