British Teenager Turns Blind Due to Poor Diet of Only Fries and Chips

Being a fussy eater may be worse for you than you think.

You may not always like the consistency of a type of food, so sometimes you choose not to eat it. Perhaps you don't think that it would make a huge or negative effect on your health. This next piece of information may make you change your mind.

A teenager in the U.K. has become blind due to his fussy eating habits.

Living off of chips, French fries, and white bread as his staple diet, the 17-year old sometimes ate some processed ham or sausage as well. 

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What happened to this British teenager?

The young teen, who remains anonymous, has been eating his limited diet since he left primary school. His reasons? He doesn't like the consistency of most types of foods. 

Due to this specific diet, he lacks in vitamins and has suffered the severe effects of malnutrition. 

The teenager first visited a doctor aged 14, as he was feeling tired and sick. At the time, it was recommended he take vitamin supplements, as he lacked in vitamin B12. However, upon leaving, he did not follow the doctor's orders and stuck to his previous diet, without adding fruits and vegetables or taking any supplements. 

Upon returning three years later, he was brought to the Bristol Eye Hospital because of his severely deteriorated eyesight. 

British Teenager Turns Blind Due to Poor Diet of Only Fries and Chips
Pringles. Source: The Delicious Life/Flickr

 

Dr. Denize Atan, a doctor at the hospital, said, "His diet was essentially a portion of chips from the local fish and chip shop every day. He also used to snack on crisps - Pringles - and sometimes slices of white bread and occasional slices of ham, and not really any fruit and vegetables."

The team at the hospital carried further checks, and they discovered that he also lacked in copper, selenium, and vitamin D. 

What has happened to the boy since his diagnosis?

His illness falls under avoidant-restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID), as he was not over or underweight, but he was as malnourished as a child growing up in poverty. 

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Dr. Atan said, "He had lost minerals from his bone, which was really quite shocking for a boy of his age."

He is now registered blind, as he is unable to see directly in front of him, although his peripheral vision remains. 

The team of doctors have placed him under the care of a dietician and a mental health care specialist, as well as put him on vitamin supplements. 

The condition of his vision is called nutritional optic neuropathy and is treatable if caught early on. Unfortunately, in this case, it was not caught early enough. 

Furthermore, as it a very rare condition, not many people suffer from it. 

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Dr. Atan advised parents to be aware of fussy-eating children, however, but not to overly worry. She recommends, "It's best not to be anxious about picky eating, and instead calmly introduce one or two new foods with every meal."

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