Overweight Mom Started Daughter on Diet When Girl Was Just 2

Filed under: In The News

A British mom has tongues wagging over the fact that she restricts her 8-year-old daughter's caloric intake -- to the tune of 700 calories per day.

That's 1,000 calories less than a typical child that age should consume on a daily basis. Mom's reasoning? She doesn't want her daughter to be overweight, like she is.

London's The Daily Mail reports that Aly Gilardon's daughter, Corleigh, began a restricted eating regimen when the girl was just 2 years old.

"I don't want a fat child. I'm obsessed with how she looks," Gilardon tells the Mail. "I want her to be pretty and popular and she wouldn't be if she was bigger."

Gilardon, who weighs 17 stone -- about 238 pounds -- admits that Corleigh is now afraid to be fat, and also cops to her own eating disorder. She tells the Mail she began "eating for comfort" at the age of 13, and was a size 20 by the time she was 16. She now wears size 22.

While her 8-year-old typically eats wheat cereal for breakfast, salad and half of a roll for lunch, and a baked potato for dinner, Mum serves herself chips, fries, pizza and cheesecake. After Corleigh goes to bed, Gilardon says she stuffs herself with junk food.

As if that wasn't enough, Gilardon also says she'd rather see the child develop an eating disorder than get fat, and that she's glad that she "trained" the girl early.

"Getting an eating disorder like anorexia would be preferable (to being fat)," she tells the newspaper. "I feel some guilt about having treats, but Corleigh's not bothered. I'm glad I've trained her. I want her to grow up happy and do things I never did."

Gilardon tells the Mail she doesn't want the girl to be "fat for life" and adds, "Corleigh's not so underweight that she's going to die next week."

A recent home visit by a nurse revealed the child is five pounds underweight, but is otherwise healthy, the Mail reports.

Experts are aghast and say restricting the calorie intake of children with normal body types is dangerous, both physically and mentally.

"Her immune system will suffer, her growth may be affected, puberty will be delayed and there will be a risk of osteoporosis as well as mineral and vitamin deficiency," Christian Jessen, a doctor on Channel 4's Embarrassing Bodies, tells the Mail. "More worryingly, from a psychological point of view, this could trigger severe anorexia that could ultimately kill her."

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.