Should parents lose custody of severely obese kids?

A controversial new editorial is firing up the debate about what to do about kids who have become severely overweight, suggesting that some of them should be placed into foster care.

In an opinion piece in Wednesday’s Journal of the American Medical Association, an obesity specialist and his co-author discuss the ethics and legal considerations of taking severely overweight children away from their parents.

The piece is written by Dr. David Ludwig, an obesity specialist at Children’s Hospital Boston and Lindsey Murtagh, a lawyer and a researcher at Harvard’s School of Public Health.

They say the children they’re thinking about aren’t those who are a little overweight. They’re referring to those who are severely obese, who are on the brink of developing health problems, like type 2 diabetes or liver disease.

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