‘First in UK’: Junk food diet left teen deaf and blind

A teenager from Bristol has been left blind and deaf after a decade-long unhealthy diet comprising solely of junk food.

According to reports, the 17-year-old teen is believed to be the first in the UK to suffer this because of his unhealthy eating habits. 

His diet comprising solely of junk food includes a portion of chips, crisps, white bread, pringles, sausages, processed ham. 

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Suffers From NON

His poor diet, resulted in a number of vitamin deficiencies and his lack of nutrition severely damaged his optic nerve, eventually leading to a condition called nutritional optic neuropathy (NON).

What The Doctor Says

Dr Denize Atan, of University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust and treated the teenager told The Daily Telegraph:

“What’s unusual about this case is the extreme picky eating and the fact it had gone on for quite some time, that the diagnosis had been missed and the visual loss had become permanent.”

“The link between poor nutrition and vision has been known about for quite some time, at least among specialists in neuro-ophthalmology. The problem is that awareness among other health professionals isn’t quite so high.”

He added: “When this behaviour starts as a child it tends to continue as an adult.

“The processed food was not the problem per se. It was he was only eating that type of food and nothing else.

Nutrients are extremely important for vision and hearing – but a lot of people are not aware of that.”

No Social Life

The boy’s mother, who did not want to be named, said that since his primary school, he suffers from a rare eating disorder known as ARFID (avoidant-restrictive food intake disorder).

The unnamed patient began to lose his hearing at the age of 14 and also his eyesight quickly deteriorated and if untreated, even blindness. He also develops bone weakness.

“His sight went downhill very fast – to the point where he is now legally blind. He has no social life to speak of now,” the mother said.

Case Reported In Journal

Atan, co-authored the report published in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine to raise awareness of ARFID and the importance of nutrition for good eye and ear health.

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