Eight-year-Old Jake Vella is a triathlete. In fact, his last triathlon was in Malta, an archipelago in the central eastern basin of the Mediterranean, just south of the Italian island of Sicily. That’s quite a feat for any kid. But Jake’s efforts are extraordinary, considering he has an extremely rare condition known as Rapid-onset Obesity with Hypothalamic dysfunction (ROHHAD). The condition causes Jake to continually gain weight. It is an extremely rare condition—only 75 people in the world are known to have it.
Jake and his parents didn’t realize he had ROHHA because the first five years of his life gave no indication that anything was wrong. he was an active and healthy child. When, at five-years-old, Jake gained more than 20 pounds in six months, his parents knew that something had to be wrong. Even after adjusting his diet to mostly salads, Jake was still putting on weight. “One day, I found this story of a girl who suffered from an extremely rare condition called ROHHAD,” explained Jake’s mom, “and as I read more about it, I got a sinking feeling that Jake was suffering from the earliest symptoms of the exact same thing.” She was right.
Jake is doing all he can to keep the disease at bay, which some say is not possible. Luckily, Jake takes after his father, who is also a triathlete, and he loves being fit and active, which is what his parents are hoping will save him. However, nobody living with the condition has reached the age of 30. Despite the odds, the Vella family remains hopeful, and they are doing all they can to help their incredible son. “We live life day-by-day, and try to as much as possible make sure that he leads a normal life,” Jakes father said.
Jake’s dream, according to his mom, is to meet world renowned British triathletes, Alistair and Johnny Brownlee, who made headlines after one of the brothers forfeited his chance to win a race to in order to assist his injured brother across the finish line. The brothers sent Jake a t-shirt after learning of his admiration for them. Jake, however, is unable to meet them due to his condition.
Source: Meet Jake Vella, The Most Inspiring Kid In The World by Lovin Malta and Boy, Eight, Does Triathlons Just To Stay Alive Because Rare Condition by Isabelle Mitchell on YouTube. Also, Tiene una grave enfermedad que lo hace engordar, morirá en pocos años by NoticiaFull on YouTube