2023 Author: Adelina Croftoon | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-24 12:05
The head of a poor Indian family from Gujarat is willing to sell his kidney to provide the necessary treatment for his three obese children. His two daughters - Yogita (5 years), Anisha (3 years old) and youngest son Harsh (1, 5 years old) - are among the fattest children in the world.
Yogita (34 kg), Anisha (48 kg) and the youngest son Harsh (15 kg) eat three of them a week as much food as two families can eat for two months. Their father, Rameshbhai Nandwana, plans to donate his kidney for a transplant in order to receive the money needed to consult leading specialists.
“If my children continue to grow at this rate, they will face serious problems. We are terrified, they will die, - Rameshbhai shared his experiences. - Their hunger does not stop. They want to eat all the time, cry and scream if they are not fed."
The couple have an eldest daughter, Bhavika (6 years old), who has a normal weight of 16 kg, so they do not understand why the other three children faced such problems. They were born weak, underweight. However, during the first year of life, they accumulated enormous amounts of fat.
Yogita weighed 12 kg a year after birth, the third daughter Anisha gained weight in the same way. At the age of one, she weighed 15 kg. The parents realized that the children were suffering from some kind of eating disorder (dystrophy) when their son also began to gain weight rapidly.
Chapatis (tortillas), bananas, crisps, vegetable soup and biscuits are the usual food for his children. They eat six times a day, and Rameshbhai's wife is forced to constantly be in the kitchen.
“We started to seek medical help and consulted with many doctors, but they just referred us to large hospitals that I could not afford,” Rameshbhai explains.
He only earns Rs 3,000 (£ 35) a month, most of which is spent on food. He is a salaried worker and receives 100 rupees a day if he has a job. Digs wells and does any dirty work.
Despite his paltry income, Nandwana has spent about Rs 50,000 (£ 540) over the past three years on medical consultations and diagnostics. However, this did not bear any fruit.
Local doctors believe that Nandwan's children suffer from Prader-Willi syndrome, a rare genetic disorder that is based on the lack of a paternal copy of the 15q11-13 chromosome region. The syndrome manifests itself in a variety of symptoms, including persistent hunger, obesity, decreased muscle tone, decreased bone density, sexual underdevelopment, and learning difficulties.
The incidence of the disease is very low, approximately one case in 12,000 to 15,000 infants. There is currently no specific treatment for this syndrome.
Depending on the manifestation of symptoms in patients, appropriate therapy is prescribed. Prader-Willi syndrome often presents with increased appetite associated with high concentrations of the hormone ghrelin.
To combat obesity, parents are advised to deliberately limit the diet of their children, focus on foods that are low in calories, and prohibit sweets and fatty foods. Teaching a child to stick to a meal plan is almost impossible, so parents usually have to lock the food. The child should also be encouraged to move as much as possible, if his condition allows.
“No one in the family had such weight problems. Only my children are overweight. It hurts us, as parents, when we see that they are unable to move independently. Selling a kidney is a desperate step,”adds Rameshbhai Nandwana.
Rameshbhai's wife cannot lift the children, so she has to watch them roll on the floor or use a cart. Children cannot go to the toilet on their own or go to school. All day long they eat, play with each other and laugh.