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4st baby who just can’t stop feeling hungry

Strict diet:
Chahat’s
parents fed
her enough
for a child of
ten but have
now cut her
portions
PICTURE: CATERS

SHE weighed less than 7lb at birth but in just 16 months Chahat Kumar has ballooned to nearly 4st.

The toddler, who can only drag herself around because her weight puts so much pressure on her limbs, has a rare medical condition that keeps her perpetually hungry.

Her parents used to feed her portions of chapati and vegetable curry that would suit a ten-year-old to satisfy her constant demands for food.

But they have now put her on a diet — three meals a day each consisting of a chapati and a bowl of lentil soup — to try to stop her growing even fatter.

Dad Suraj, 24, said: ‘She is so fat she cannot stand for more than 20 seconds. We cannot take her anywhere. Her mother has to be home always.

‘It is impossible to walk with her even for a few metres.

‘We have to borrow a motorcycle to take her to hospitals.’

Chahat, from Amristar in Punjab, India, started gaining weight rapidly at four months and is now 3st 9lb.

Labourer Mr Kumar, whose first-born child, a son, died at birth, said ‘alarm bells rang’ for him and wife Reena, 22, when she hit 2st 5lb at six months.

‘We took her to several local doctors who couldn’t understand why she was fat,’ he said. ‘Although they all concluded she was unusual.’

After Chahat’s story made the local press, the state government offered her free treatment at a medical institute in Chandigarh. She was found to have leptin deficiency disease, which restricts the brain signals that give the feeling of being full.

It can be treated with hormones but doctors are unable to obtain them and are trying to find a supplier from abroad.

Dr Devi Dayal said: ‘It can be injected like insulin but it is expensive.’