Should Parents Be Charged With Neglect for Having Overweight Children?

Did you know nearly one-third of American children are currently obese or overweight? These kids are more likely to suffer from heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, or even certain cancers as they grow up, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But these risks are totally avoidable with a healthy lifestyle and diet, the CDC adds.

I'm sure you've heard these facts before, since Let's Move, Michelle Obama's campaign to raise healthier children, and the great school lunch debate, have been making headlines for years. But do you know who's to blame for these rising childhood obesity rates? According to the UK government, it's parents.

Under the Children and Young Persons Act of 1933, parents are considered neglectful if they fail "to provide adequate food, clothing, medical aid, or lodging" for their child.  Since it's understood by health professionals that children become obese because of poor dietary and lifestyle choices, parents of obese children have been arrested under this law.

Should arrests be made in the United States as well? We want to know, Do you think U.S. parents should be charged with child neglect or cruelty for having overweight children? Take our poll, and then share a comment below — it could appear in a future issue of Parents.

[polldaddy poll=8427372]

Image via Shutterstock

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