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Old 08-16-2004, 01:29 PM
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HELP, overweight 7 yr old!!!

My dd hasn't had these clothes 2 months and she's already outgrowing them. She already had a stomach but now its hanging over her waistline. I am dead worried about her. I didn't gain weight until I was 14 and when I did it came on fast. She's already been tested negative for thyroid problems and I try to get her to be active, it doesn't always work, but I try. Yesterday she broke the swing seat off the swing. The swing seat was plastic and already cracked from before we moved here. But, she broke it off the chain, it was rusted but wasn't THAT rusted. What do I do? I don't want to put her on a diet or to make her feel self concious but I have to stop this now before it gets out of hand.

She wants to sign up for soccer but she is overweight and barely is able to run now. I'm afraid she won't want to go to soccer because of all the running. What should I do???
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Old 08-18-2004, 11:50 AM
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While my children are not overweight, I do worry about it because I am overweight and don't want them to follow in my footsteps too closely. I've been trying to set a good example by not picking on what they're/we're eating or not eating. But by only offering reasonable choices. Generally if it's not there they don't really think of it much.

I don't buy sugar free or diet foods for the kids or myself. But I do offer them things like fruits, popcorn, yogurt, cheese and soda crackers, etc. You didn't mention your daughter's diet at all. What does she eat? Looking at it honestly, is it high fat sugar laden foods? Does she drink soda or juice? Lotsa calories in that that people don't really think about. I've recently cracked down and the kids can have milk, water and occasionally juice. (I'm a tightwad so juice is watered down and not an everyday thing.) They only have soda on special nights, like going out for pizza or a movie.

If she wants to do soccer that's a great thing! Don't discourage the activity or undermine her ability. (My daughter did this one summer. She's average size, but not very coordinated, so she doesn't participate anymore. ) There's the goalie position and even they get a workout. Would she enjoy swimming though? If you have a public pool or hotel that will let you buy a family pass for pool use that's another good option and doesn't require any running but still gives a great workout. I think if she doesn't hear you mention the activities as exercise or a workout she will believe it is strictly play and you won't have to worry about her poopin out.

Have you talked to her pediatrician and gotten some suggestions?

Good luck to you.
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Old 08-18-2004, 12:04 PM
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Leasmom, is it possible her medication is causing her to gain weight?
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Old 08-18-2004, 12:28 PM
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Hi,
I have a similar problem. I have a daughter that is almost 7 and weighs 79 pounds. She is very tall for her age and her shoe size is 2 1/2 so she is big girl to begin with but I have to buy her 10/12 clothes to fit all around.
It worries my and at times I know I am grumpy with her when she asks to eat. She focuses on food alot. Eats breakfast and asks what is for lunch, eats that and wants to know what is for dinner and of course what snacks she can have in between.
I have put her on portion control and am very particular that she eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner and she get two snacks.
I try to offer healthy alternatives but she is not deprived by no means.
I have her in ballet and tap once a week for a two hour practice and she loves that. I do try to keep her busy but I worry about her and how others treat her.
We are not an overly overweight family but we do enjoy the junk food...who doesn't
Anyway, I would encourage her to get involved in some sort of activity for sure and try to monitor her eating habits. It might mean changing yours which I have found is happening in our house.
It is definitely a touch thing to watch...
Good luck to you and keep us posted on her progress!
Kim
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Old 08-18-2004, 01:13 PM
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My goddaughter leans toward heavy also. I myself am overweight and I don't like how her family is picking on her weight.
Her mother has started insisting the children (6 alltogether) have fruits instead of junk food when they want a snack (adults too!). She has become known as the "fruit nazi"!
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Old 08-18-2004, 01:46 PM
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Look for books written by Ellen Satter such as Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family. She has good ideas that give the child control over eating rather than having a power struggle. Children should be offered good choices as mentioned above, but realize it is better for them to grow to their weight than trying to lose. In many cases, if diet is improved with a reduction in fats and sugars, weight loss does occur as a result. A variety of foods and a good role model are the best things you can offer your child. Change your food selections, get out and walk or play with her daily, and you will find positive things happening for you! Start reading labels (did you realize that most apple juices have as many or more calories than a Coke and some have very little nutritional value?) and get her involved with this. This can even help school skills. Contact your local Extension Service office or do an Extension Service search to find more information on making wise decisions, reading labels, etc.
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Old 08-18-2004, 01:49 PM
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What about letting her get involved in an exercise program. Many park districts have special classes for overweight children....even health clubs have classes for children now. Encourage her, don't discourage her by letting stigmas get in the way....adult stigmas....anything can help at this point.
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Old 08-18-2004, 02:04 PM
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Overweight 7 year old

Leasmom, I can only speak for myself about recent weight loss and I wanted to offer some encouragement. Last September I started the PRISM weight loss program. My 17-year-old daughter wanted to do it with me (she had maybe 15-20 extra pounds to spare) but I wouldn't let her because she was currently involved in marching band which is very strenuous and the program requires you to be over 18. However, I did tell her that she could use the same guidelines for food which are basically 1) no processed sugar and 2) only 100% WHOLE GRAIN bread products. I lost 60 pounds in 8 months with these basic guidelines (with a 1200 calorie a day limit). She watched what she ate (and I told her to eat whatever quantities she felt she needed--no limits for her) and she lost 10 pounds in a few weeks.

You can make minor adjustments in your diet with small sacrifices here and there. It is doubtful that she would even notice the difference in some things. I switched over everything in my household and forced everyone to eat like me. But it is very important to read all labels carefully. Even things we think are healthy for our kids are loaded with bad stuff like high fructose corn syrup--a big no no. It's in Capri Sun and some wheat breads. The concept of PRISM is that the food plan was in place when God created man, and if we stay close to what He provided for us, we'll be okay. Our culture has gone crazy with sugar and it is killing us. A word about bread: several decades ago, the process to make white flour/bread nice and fluffy was invented for the everyday person (up until then it was expensive and only the wealthy had white bread). In the process, they remove 40 nutrients and put back 5 and call it enriched.

These small steps will make your family healthier, and with a little activity (like going for a walk with her mom every day or every other day--special one-on-one time) she will slim down.

I'd be happy to share more with you if you're interested. All I know is it makes sense and it worked for me.

God bless.
Marcy
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Old 08-18-2004, 02:51 PM
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Leasmom -

This will sound totally radical, but it is *healthy* and your daughter may even enjoy it!

No simple carbs (no pasta, no white bread, no biscuits, no sugar, no candy, no sweets of any kind) - not even the "fruit only" spreads
No added fats (boil or broil rather than fry) - forget peanut butter
Only fresh or frozen veggies and fruits - not canned
No "boxed" foods (no hamburger helper kind of stuff, no "rice-a-roni," etc)
Only fresh or frozen meats that you have personally trimmed of *all* fat
2 half cup servings of fresh (or frozen) fruit each day - no fruit juice of any kind
No "fast" foods - not even once a week - for at least 3 months. Then, stick with places like Arby's or Burger King (less fat, Burger King grills, not fries their meat) and don't order the fries or soft drinks - get water (saves money) - no super-sizing - get salads, too.

Disconnect the TV except for homework assignments - and that requires a note from school. Disconnect computer games, put away all the software for them.

Put your DD to "work" around the house after school - vacuuming, sweeping, dusting, mopping, scrubbing, also weeding, trimming bushes, mowing grass (with a pushme-pullyou mower if possible) if you have a yard - working *hard* and sweating. She's going to complain - a lot at first - but this is the routine our grandparents maintained from early on in their lives - they were too busy to "nosh" all the time, and didn't sit around watching TV. They had chores and were held to doing a good job each time! Once she trims down a little, put her in soccer.

You aren't going for much weight loss - she's going to grow shortly. You want to maintain her weight until her height catches up. Just clearing up the "junk" food issues will do most of it.

My kids were about 6, 9 and 10 when we instituted this regimen. At one point, because the youngest was "sneaking" food, we actually put a chain and padlock on the refrigerator and freezer! They were only allowed what we gave them to eat. Interestingly, their grades went up, they had more energy, became less grumpy, and the 2 ADHD boys required much less medication during school and none during vacations. To this day, they are relatively lean and all three are very active.

Didn't go the whole "organic" route, just saw to it we only used whole grains (brown rice, whole wheat bread, made biscuits with whole wheat flour, etc).

This kind of stuff makes a difference. This is the kind of diet we were "created" to have. Not all this processed stuff we eat now. And we were "created" to be very active our entire lives - hunting, gathering, farming, etc. It is only in the past 100 years that we have become more urbanized. Interestingly enough, it is mainly (but not only) the urbanized societies that have had overweight people in them (look at the Rubens paintings of the female form - these were city ladies).

We were made to gain weight during periods of plenty in order to survive during periods of famine. We have had over 100 years of increasingly rich living and decreasing need to be active and really work our bodies. It's no wonder so many of us are getting heavier and heavier! So we need to get more active and decrease calories without decreasing our vitamins, minerals, and protein intake! Yes, we need some carbs, but not the super-refined stuff. And we don't need the highly processed "instant" foods! We need to get back to doing "real" cooking instead of all this microwave stuff.

Sorry - don't mean to offend, but this is obviously one of my soapboxes!! Just use what you want and toss the rest away.

Cheerio!
Elizabeth
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Old 08-18-2004, 03:09 PM
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Wow, did ya'll give me alot to think about!

Dd does drink soda! I didn't even think about that. I do give her lots of fruit and veggies, although the last few weeks I've slipped on that. Man, I see where I need to improve...whole wheat breads, less pasta etc. I am low carb so I should take a page from that. I am going to make a list of the things I didn't even realize I was buying for her as normal foods while I had low carb foods.

Dd does have a play area outside, I am trying to force her to play. Sometimes that works at others it doesn't. In the past two days she has gone outside and played for short periods. It gets hot here so that could be apart of it. She does have gym at school and I think I definately will sign her up for the soccer now!!!

CBBBluver, my dd is like that, even more so. She eats and then less than an hour later she wants more food. It's driving me crazy!

I am not sure if it's her meds. I would like to know. Her doctor isn't too together, unfortunately. That's another story. I can find out on a Bipolar website I get on.

And yes I can sign her up for swim lessons. I am not sure if they're starting now...being in the South, we can get away with the weather being warm well into December and they have swimming all year long indoors here, so I can find out about that.
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