'Michelin Baby' Weighs 44 Pounds at 10 Months: Can It Be the Breast Milk?


Michelin BabyI love chubby babies and their chompable rolls and dimples, but a 10-month-old baby in China has so many that he's been dubbed the "Michelin Baby." And it's not so cute.

The boy, Lei Lei, weighs 44 pounds, which is the size of an average 6-year-old.

His mother, a very thin, small woman, said her boy just likes to eat.

"No matter whatever he grabs he unconsciously puts it in his mouth," she told the Daily Mail. "His most favorite thing is to eat."

But can a baby really get that big, just from eating too much? Especially when the mother claims he's only ever been fed breast milk. Has Lei Lei figured out how to raid the refrigerator, or is there something else going on?

Lei Lei is currently in the hospital to determine just that and if there's a medical explanation for his early obesity. Possibly a thyroid problem? Or exposure to be BPA, which has been linked to obesity in infants?

I certainly hope there is a reason -- a treatable reason -- because if it's just a case of a parent not being able to say no, then it's one of the saddest and scariest things I've heard.

I admit it's hard to say no to children when it comes to food, especially a breastfeeding baby. If he's hungry, he must need to eat, right? No mother wants her baby to be hungry, but there also have to be limits.

And honestly, I find it hard to believe that this baby has ONLY been fed breast milk. He would have to be attached to her breasts 24/7 to grow like that, and even then I find it suspect.

Either there's a serious problem with the baby or the mother's milk, or someone is sneaking this baby some food. But regardless, someone needs to help Lei Lei because he is doomed to a life filled with health and emotional issues if he doesn't get it.

Do you think a baby could get this fat off of breast milk alone?


Image via dailymail.co.uk 

baby development, baby first year, baby health, breastfeeding


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Phils... PhilsBabyMama

Breastfed babies ARE supposed to be fed on demand. I have a very hard time believing this kiddo is this big because of breast milk though.  Either the mom is lying or there's a medical problem going on.

Lynette Lynette

yes breastfed babies are supposed to be fed on demand, u don't say no with that.  I choose to believe this mom.  And I think there is an underlying medical problem here

Julie... Julieryanevans

yes, agreed, but if your baby started looking like this wouldn't rethink the whole on demand thing?

Mary Shomon

These cases come up periodically, and in the past, they've even hospitalized the infants or children, and determined that they were NOT taking in huge quantities of food/calories. It's very likely the same for Lei. It's probably that there is something metabolically going on with this baby -- something may be amiss with his hypothalamic/pituitary/thyroid that is causing him to be extremely effective at storing fat from everything he eats. He needs medical help, and his mother needs advice and support.

jeann... jeannesager

There's a difference between feeding a baby "on demand," and feeding a baby to shut them up. EVEN with breastfeeding.

Unfortunately, there are parents who allow their baby to use the breast as a pacifier. Just like formula feeding parents who use the bottle as a soothing mechanism.

This isn't a breast vs. formula thing -- it's a parent who can't differentiate between hunger and the simple need to cry!

hotic... hoticedcoffee

I can't believe this issue is from being overfed - I think there's some metabolic condition at play. And if it is because he's eating too much, he must be ignoring, or not receiving, fullness signals from his stomach that tells the brain to stop eating.  I'm glad he's been hospitalized to find a cause - he'll be headed for a heart attack before he's 2!

mommypip mommypip

I think it's a medical issue. She could feed him night and day breastmilk and he wouldn't get that way. I believe her.

RanaA... RanaAurora

You CANNOT overfeed a breastfed baby unless there is a medical issue.\

My son had GERD and would eat 24/7 to the point of vomiting, then KEEP eating until he vomited again if we let him.  It's because nursing soothed his throat -- even if it made him puke, then he'd nurse to soothe it some more.

We got him on medication which fixed the issue, but he was a 5 pounder at birth, and 28 pounds at 8 months... I can certainly see how something like that, untreated, could result in an overweight child.  You're not going to have this happen in a healthy baby.


RanaA... RanaAurora

Jeanne, this apparently isn't a widely known fact but the difference between soothing nursing and a pacifier is the baby has the ability to comfort-suck and NOT eat.  So no, comfort nursing doesn't overfeed baby like shoving a bottle in their face everytime they cry would.  A baby can nurse for food and get food -- or nurse for comfort without getting milk.

The majority of countries actually use breastfeeding not only as nutrition but also as comfort, so if it overfed babies, we'd see a lot more cases like this. :)

Fortunately, that's NOT the case, so nurse away!

If a baby ends up with a weight issue when they're EBF, it's due to a medical issue.


Wow that is a BIG baby!  I really do wonder if he is being only breast fed, or given something else too.  I would be more inclined to think he has some kind of health issue.  I will be interested to see a follow up about ths.

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