A mum has been left furious and upset after her two-year-old son was told he's "obese" and needs to be referred to a health and fitness programme.

Kerry Kinsella's son Kean was taken along to his two-year health check-up, a UK government incentive to keep tabs on the health of the country's youth.

Everything appeared to go well until the Manchester toddler stepped on the scales.

Weighing 16.4kg and 90cm tall, the doctor told Kinsella her son was obese.


The two-year-old was then referred to a six-week health and fitness course, leaving his mother bewildered and "fuming".

Kean, 2, was labelled as obese by doctors and told to go on a six-week fitness diet. Photo / Facebook
Kean, 2, was labelled as obese by doctors and told to go on a six-week fitness diet. Photo / Facebook

"When she told me [about Kean being deemed obese] I could feel my temperature rising as I was fuming with what was being said," Kinsella told the Manchester Evening News.

"My son is not obese. Yes he might have chunky thighs and arms but there isn't a bit of fat on his belly.

"I stopped her before she even told me more about this fitness course because it was just so ridiculous. I refused to take away any paperwork as we won't be doing the course."

Despite Kinsella's rage, a council spokesperson said the health checks are not in place to criticise parents or fat shame children but are there to find any potential health problems.

Kinsella revealed that her son doesn't eat crisps or chocolate and enjoys eating apples, bananas, and often eats lots of vegetables as well as fish and chicken.

According Kean's mum, the two-year-old is constantly "on the move" and lives an "active lifestyle".

Now the 27-year-old mother is worried about the message health checks are sending to children, who are increasingly becoming more anxious over their body image.

"My 12-year-old stepdaughter is very self-conscious about the way she looks and the fact that they are starting to tell children at such a young age that they are obese is a disgrace.

"There are children starving, people homeless and all sorts of problems going on and they [the Government] are bothered about a child's BMI, it's pathetic."

The incident occurred around the same time controversial blogger Ashy Bines launched a fitness programme aimed at babies and young children.

Obesity in New Zealand is rising. This video outlines the statistics around obesity in NZ and where we rank in the world.

The Gold Coast personal trainer and Instagram star launched an "edu-tainment programme" that is aimed at children as young as 12 months old.

"Ashy and Friends" is an animated DVD series described as "a fun-packed music, fitness and education show for 1 to 6-year-olds".

Experts expressed their concerns over the content of the new programme and how it can impact the targeted audience.

"I'm concerned about messaging of dieting that has behind it 'lose weight, lose weight, lose weight'," Christine Morgan, CEO of The Butterfly Foundation, told Kidspot.com.au.

Ashy Bines' new programme is already causing controversy. Photo / Instagram
Ashy Bines' new programme is already causing controversy. Photo / Instagram

"People call it health management or healthy eating but the messaging behind it is 'don't let yourself put on weight'. So there's an immediate subjectivity that if someone puts on weight that's bad and if they lose weight, that's good.

"Now, when you're a little person, you think in black and white. You don't think in shades of grey. You're starting to buy into a whole message that fat is bad and skinny is good and that's absolutely problematic because you can't interpret it at that age."