or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › The Childhood Years › Chubby toddlers growing into normal weight children?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Chubby toddlers growing into normal weight children? - Page 2

post #21 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Youngfrankenstein View Post

 

I don't see anything wrong with being 90%.  Someone has to be or it wouldn't exist.  



It doesn't exist any more.  BMI cutoffs for overweight and obese are based on the percentiles pre-obesity epidemic.  They're based on a previous generation of kids.

 

My state has 24% of third graders measuring in an obese BMI.  24% of kids fit in the curve where 5% of kids used to.  It's the new normal.

 

At some point as a society we have to become "obsessed" with this [what I would term "have a normal reaction to this"] for the sake of the kids.  It's very messed up.  Whether it's the BPA or the current paranoia about kids walking and biking to school and activities and playing outside unsupervised, the rediculous stuff that passes for school lunches, or whatever, it's not something to poo poo. 

 

This has nothing to do with the OPs kid, who is not obese.  But look, the idea that being overfat is OK because "someone has to be" isn't good for our kids.  There are times that it's the best a family can do, but there are times when perhaps a family can make some changes, and the rest of us can start providing fruit and cut veggies for our snack turn at Scout meetings, instead of chips and cookies. 

 

This is a video out in our state because of the high levels of childhood obesity here that parents are facilitating.  http://strong4life.com/stopthecycle/

 

post #22 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by pigpokey View Post



It doesn't exist any more.  BMI cutoffs for overweight and obese are based on the percentiles pre-obesity epidemic.  They're based on a previous generation of kids.

 

 


BMI is NOT a good or accurate measure for a single person.  Please show me where it's evidence-based to use BMI to measure the health or proper weight for an individual.

 

My children are allowed to eat as many fruits and vegetables as they like with no limits.  

 

post #23 of 45
My kids can eat as much healthy food as they want. The only restrictions are on unhealthy food, which they only get small amounts of,and only very occasionally. But I'd never restrict bananas.

I think a big cause of obesity is parents being afraid to send their kids outside to play, so kids sit inside and play video games and watch TV, and both of those activities go well with snacking. Running around burns calories and doesn't work well with snacking.
post #24 of 45
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pigpokey View Post

I would consider giving your son and daughter both appropriate serving sizes and not giving seconds.  I am not aware of the evidence that we should let kids determine how much to eat.  MANY CAN, but there's nothing wrong with modeling "we eat appropriate servings to satisfy real hunger and then we stop."  Also, obviously your son should gain weight, because he is going to be growing up.  But it's rare that a child will undereat.  Perhaps you are confusing your son eating just right, with your son not eating enough.



That's something I've never thought about, and worth considering. 

I really don't want to refuse food. What I've been doing the past couple of days is serve dd smaller portions and allow her a second helping. That way, she's satisfied I'm giving her "more" and I'm happy with the amount she eats.

 

Also, I think that ds eats ok, but he's pretty slim, 48 lbs at 7 y/o. So it's not something I'm imagining.



Quote:
Originally Posted by NiteNicole View Post



Every single book I've read on the topic says the same thing - the parents decide when and what, the kids decide what and how much. So you provide healthy choices at regular times and let your kids decide which things they'll eat and how much.  If you're providing cake as part of your meals, this is probably a spectacularly bad method to use but I doubt the OP is doing that.

 

 



 

I also read the recommendations for children that the parent decides what to feed the children, while the child decides how much they eat. I used to be so proud of myself when ds ate appropriate amounts of food and preferred fruit and veggies over carbs, for example. Now I have a kid who wouldn't touch raw veggies and would eat only meat all day long if I let her.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by serenbat View Post

 

 

 

 

I completely disagree with small children deciding on WHAT & HOW much- we do not allow three bananas or 2 whole avocados at a single meal as an example of what my young child would pick to eat

 

we limit and we do this with several things in our child's life - we limit toys, clothing and food is no different- we talk about why we don't need 6 of the SAME toy car or 4 of the same shirts the same way we talk from a young age about size and type of food- a small child WANTS many things and food (healthy one too in large amounts) as well as a material objects, and I feel it is good to start the conversation early and very often! This same conversation of portion size and type leads into alcohol consumption talks down the road. We talk about why we start with a small serving size and why we try lot of different things and when it is and isn't appropriate to have a second serving.

 

I raise one into her 20's so far without an eating issue (with great BMI and healthy attitude towards food and alcohol) doing it this way (and it was the way I was raised and others I know as well- all without eating issues) and I have seen many get eating issues and many of those same not learning self regulation in their early years and struggle later because of it.


Thanks for sharing your experience. Ds has become aware of food portions and what is good food and junk food, not because of our discussions, but because they teach nutrition in his school. So he sometimes says: mom, we don't have all food groups for dinner today!

We should keep these kind of discussions open.

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by Youngfrankenstein View Post


BMI is NOT a good or accurate measure for a single person.  Please show me where it's evidence-based to use BMI to measure the health or proper weight for an individual.

 

My children are allowed to eat as many fruits and vegetables as they like with no limits.  

 



I think that the key words here are fruits and vegetables. Cheese, bread, meat are also healthy, but I should try to limit those.

I also started the habit of offering dd fruit or veggies if she asks for more. If she refuses, I know she's not hungry any more.

post #25 of 45

It's also important to remember calories in DOES NOT mean calories out and certain calories are vastly different. While most fruits are great, some are filled with sugars and empty calories, you might want to look into more then just "food groups" and the role certain so-called healthy things really play in diet. Tons of fruits and veggies is not always a balanced approach to optimal nutrition. You might want to learn more and set limits if that only means selection of what you serve and increase good fats in your children's diet. 

 

OP you might want to look into the "food" section and post there as well. 

 

Quote:
What I've been doing the past couple of days is serve dd smaller portions and allow her a second helping. That way, she's satisfied I'm giving her "more" and I'm happy with the amount she eats.

You seem to be making so good choices! 

 

 

 

Quote:
This has nothing to do with the OPs kid, who is not obese.  But look, the idea that being overfat is OK because "someone has to be" isn't good for our kids.

yeahthat.gif

 

to simply dismiss that obesity is not happening in children is IMO crazy! while many things factor in it definitely is on the rise and doctors are seeing correlations from small children later on in adolescents- sadly lots do not grow out of the chubby stage-with girls they are seeing a direct correlation to pre-puberty not to mention other things   

 

 

 

 

Quote:
My state has 24% of third graders measuring in an obese BMI.  24% of kids fit in the curve where 5% of kids used to.  It's the new normal.

 

a size 5 clothing (for example) in 1980's or even 1960's is not what a size 5 looks like today!

 

when we see so many SOOOOOOOOOO much bigger some seem to think their children are not having weight issues when we forget what normal should be----------It's the NEW normal greensad.gif

post #26 of 45

I think it is worth being aware and making some modest changes to her diet. I'd dump all the juice which is just empty calories. If she has enough calcium and protein, no need for milk with meals. Water is fine and actually better. I'd return to appropriate portion sizes. If she needs more, she will ask.You might also take a close look at the bowls and plates that you are using. Portion size looks really different depending on what you are serving it on. For instance, I'd prefer my son to use the "kids bowls" because those like the right size. He wants an adult bowl. It took me a little while to figure out how to portion a bigger bowl.

 

My four year old is very tall and I have no problems with 90% or whatever but I've really noticed that he keeps getting taller, he also keeps getting a little heavier. I've really started to rethink how we do portion sizes and also have cracked down on my MIL force-feeding him. There isn't a huge difference between obese and chubby and some kids don't self-regulate well. It is a mistake to think that just because you serve healthy foods, you DD will eat the right amount of them.

post #27 of 45

 

 

Quote:
 For instance, I'd prefer my son to use the "kids bowls" because those like the right size. He wants an adult bowl. 

 

 

eyes are bigger than your stomach idiom eat.gif

 

they just don't get it at their age-that's why parents need to step in

post #28 of 45

This conversation has taken a strange turn.  Do we really think that fruits and vegetables can make people unhealthy?  While we all know juice isn't health food, will it really be bad for a child to have it 3 times a week?  This mom is concerned about her dd being too big and we're basically telling her "well you might be doing things right but you may need to micromanage this or she will be obese next week".

 

There are very, very, very few "clean eaters" in this world and it's so very easy to look at another family's menu and pick apart how bad it is:  too much juice, 3 bananas is too many, make sure you watch her portions like a hawk!

 

At some point it becomes dog-piling.   

post #29 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Youngfrankenstein View Post


BMI is NOT a good or accurate measure for a single person.  Please show me where it's evidence-based to use BMI to measure the health or proper weight for an individual.

 

My children are allowed to eat as many fruits and vegetables as they like with no limits.  

 



Of course it's not but it's a darn good starting point.  It doesn't work well for highly trained muscular athletes.  It's a screening tool.  I think people are aware of whether their kid has a high BMI and is overfat, or has a high BMI because they're rock hard gymnasts.  My husband knows that at 6' and 250lbs, he's probably got an obese range BMI, and also that he packs on muscle like crazy, and bike rides at 20+mph for 10-12 hours a week, and is not at risk for obesity health consequences.

 

post #30 of 45

BMI might be a reasonable tool for an adult to use as a starting point in determining health, but I would question how applicable it is to a toddler. Kids grow so rapidly and in such unique ways.

 

The OP isn't asking how to solve the childhood obesity epidemic. She's looking at her own child and trying to understand what's best for her. I think she has the right idea by feeding her child real food that is prepared at home, limiting desserts & juice, and taking the long view (i.e. realizing that where her daughter is now doesn't necessarily represent where she will be for the rest of her life). I think that reasonable people can disagree about whether or not it's necessary or beneficial to restrict portion sizes of healthy foods for a toddler.

post #31 of 45

OP- there are many threads in the "Nutrition and Good Eating" that directly address why so many here do not give juice and the relationship with empty calories.

 

To insinuate that a parent who is observant enough to care (watch) the portion size their child eats when they are around is being a hawk is frankly insulting!

 

While a child is young and growing it its the parents JOB to do just that- studies have shown that families that eat together (where you watch or at least should be viewing the portion size your child is eating) are far more healthier. It's the parents JOB to model good eating habits and if you don't know what your child's portions are perhaps you have more problems than just eating issues-IMO

 

Understanding and learning good eating habits are viewed by many as very crucial for proper development and for some- it does last a lifetime.

 

 

 

Quote:
 She's looking at her own child and trying to understand what's best for her. I think she has the right idea by feeding her child real food that is prepared at home, limiting desserts & juice, and taking the long view (i.e. realizing that where her daughter is now doesn't necessarily represent where she will be for the rest of her life). I think that reasonable people can disagree about whether or not it's necessary or beneficial to restrict portion sizes of healthy foods for a toddler.

YEA!

post #32 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by transylvania_mom View Post

She doesn't have a lot of juice, maybe one cup every other day. I really don't want to make it the "forbidden fruit" by taking it out of the kids' diet completely.


No, it's not a lot--but if you are looking for something that could be changed (sugar, extra calories), that's something.

 

Just not having something in the house doesn't make it forbidden fruit. I don't keep juice in the house specifically for the children (I usually have OJ in the fridge or freezer but they're not interested in it), but when we eat out or they are at someone's house they can have itshrug.gif ; though for us this is in response to their dental issues when they were younger, not their weight.

 

post #33 of 45

YES! 

 

Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by transylvania_mom View Post

She doesn't have a lot of juice, maybe one cup every other day. I really don't want to make it the "forbidden fruit" by taking it out of the kids' diet completely.


No, it's not a lot--but if you are looking for something that could be changed (sugar, extra calories), that's something.

 

Just not having something in the house doesn't make it forbidden fruit. I don't keep juice in the house specifically for the children (I usually have OJ in the fridge or freezer but they're not interested in it), but when we eat out or they are at someone's house they can have itshrug.gif ; though for us this is in response to their dental issues when they were younger, not their weight.

AND it means the difference between good and bad calories

 

while something may be good, often there are things that might be better (more protein less "junky") and it does not make it forbidden like the PP said- treats can be just that "treats" - not weekly---------years ago, oranges were just that...."treats" for most who did not get them year round

 

"treats" can also be healthy and not daily or weekly

post #34 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by serenbat View Post

 

To insinuate that a parent who is observant enough to care (watch) the portion size their child eats when they are around is being a hawk is frankly insulting!

 

While a child is young and growing it its the parents JOB to do just that- studies have shown that families that eat together (where you watch or at least should be viewing the portion size your child is eating) are far more healthier. It's the parents JOB to model good eating habits and if you don't know what your child's portions are perhaps you have more problems than just eating issues-IMO

 

 


Lovely....I sit down with my family to serve dinner 95% of the time and I pack their lunches and feed them their breakfasts so I do understand the situation.  I am saying that there needn't be WORRY attached to watching every morsel your healthy toddler eats.  I can give my toddler 2 eggs, milk, and fruit and if she really is still hungry, I'd give her more food. You're right, that doesn't mean I should have given her 6 eggs and no other food.  

 

Kids need to learn to feel for themselves how to regulate, not just have someone always doing it for them.  It was a hard lesson for me when my oldest was a toddler and he'd eat a few bites of ice cream and want to throw the rest away.  A few times I tried to encourage him to eat a few more bites.  Then it dawned on me that it was good that he could recognize he had had enough ice cream and stopped eating.  I really think that's a valuable skill.

 

I think if they're presented with balanced meals, and you start them with a portion, I don't see why they can't have more and even leave some on their plate.  

 

I think if you have a very heavy child who eats many processed foods, sweets, and junk food, you should change their diet...that isn't close to what the OP said so I hate that her question has led to a debate picking apart her parenting skills.

post #35 of 45

Ha, this is an interesting one.  My experience, I was a hefer as a kid, my little one is too, boo me all you want for calling her that.  She's an eater.  A slow methodical eater.  And she plays hard.  She's not a snacker at all.  Just likes her three square meals.  This past year she has become a skinny little thing.  Just around the time I did.  My oldest is and has always been a stick.  She's literally one muscle.  She snacks non stop. 

 

I think it's best to look at what kind of food you're providing and how much they get out and play.  If you feel that your kid is getting too much unecessary food outside of the meals you're providing then cut back on that.  If you feel they're getting a little too chubby and you can pin point why, like a lack of exercise.  Then get out and play with them.  Hike, bike ride, play a sport.  Our kids learn how to eat and how to live a healthy life through us. 

 

OP your concerns are valid, people here just love to pick each other apart.

post #36 of 45

I haven't read all the responses here, but my eldest DS sounds much like your child.  He just wasn't a really big mover, so we suspected his "mellowness" was contributing to his chubbiness.  Shortly after he turned three, we made a conscious decision to up his physcial activity and cut out most of the processed food (which kind of seemed like a big deal because he wasn't eating that much to begin with).  We also cut back on the dairy. 

 

By the time he was five he wasn't chubby at all.  He's now eight and weighs 65 pounds (and his height and weight are much more proportionate).  He's starting to outgrow size eight clothing and move into size ten.  This is quite remarkable, as he was wearing 2T clothing on his first birthday, and I was afraid he'd be wearing adult clothing by his eighth birthday!

 

I personally wouldn't restrict portion sizes, but I would cut out juice and make sure snack choices are things like fresh fruit smoothies instead of crackers or granola bars.  Also, some kids quickly adapt when switched from dairy milk to almond or rice milk.  If you're worried about good fats, then avacadoes, bananas, and olive oil are good choices for brain development.

 

Daily outside play for an hour or more can make a huge difference, if you aren't already doing that.

 

Edited to add that my eldest DS also began refusing most fruits and veggies at age 2 (texture issues) and still won't eat most in their regular form.  Smoothies and items from the Sneaky Chef cookbook are my salvation.  For example, he loves a chocolate smoothie consisting of a banana, half an avocado, and a tsp of unsweetened cocoa powder. 

 

post #37 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by CI Mama View Post

BMI might be a reasonable tool for an adult to use as a starting point in determining health, but I would question how applicable it is to a toddler. Kids grow so rapidly and in such unique ways.

 

The OP isn't asking how to solve the childhood obesity epidemic. She's looking at her own child and trying to understand what's best for her. I think she has the right idea by feeding her child real food that is prepared at home, limiting desserts & juice, and taking the long view (i.e. realizing that where her daughter is now doesn't necessarily represent where she will be for the rest of her life). I think that reasonable people can disagree about whether or not it's necessary or beneficial to restrict portion sizes of healthy foods for a toddler.


Totally agree, especially the bolded part.  My DD plumps up a lot right before a major growth spurt.  I was incredibly worried about it when it first started happening and now I have actually come to expect it, because it is the way her body works.  We've always been very conscientious about what we all eat and we are all very active.  It has taken me decades, though, to get it into my thick skull that  all of us are different in terms of how our bodies grow and process food/nutrients.  DD has a different body type than my own, and I totally had to re-evaluate both my attitudes and the food that is best for her for her growth, especially in these early years.

 

post #38 of 45
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pigpokey View Post

A quick look with a BMI calculator and she is probably in a  BMI range that they'd call overweight but not obese at 90th percentile for BMI (assuming 30 months, heigh 3'2" which is about 90%, weight 37).   If you see she's storing fat, I'd just stop giving seconds and start distracting at the end of meals until that habit is broken (Hey, guess what!  We're going to the park!  No we have to go right now!).  Certainly a child can be that weight and not be overfat, but you see fat and are concerned. 

 



Yes, she's exactly 3'2''. Yesterday we went to a library program for toddlers and she was the tallest one (out of 15 kids). I'm not sure I see fat though.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JudiAU View Post

I think it is worth being aware and making some modest changes to her diet. I'd dump all the juice which is just empty calories. If she has enough calcium and protein, no need for milk with meals. Water is fine and actually better. I'd return to appropriate portion sizes. If she needs more, she will ask.You might also take a close look at the bowls and plates that you are using. Portion size looks really different depending on what you are serving it on. For instance, I'd prefer my son to use the "kids bowls" because those like the right size. He wants an adult bowl. It took me a little while to figure out how to portion a bigger bowl.

 

My four year old is very tall and I have no problems with 90% or whatever but I've really noticed that he keeps getting taller, he also keeps getting a little heavier. I've really started to rethink how we do portion sizes and also have cracked down on my MIL force-feeding him. There isn't a huge difference between obese and chubby and some kids don't self-regulate well. It is a mistake to think that just because you serve healthy foods, you DD will eat the right amount of them.


 

By "milk with meals" I meant to say "milk with meals only". Sorry for the confusion. She doesn't have milk or juice between meals. Many times she has water with her meals.

Thanks for replying.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Imakcerka View Post

Ha, this is an interesting one.  My experience, I was a hefer as a kid, my little one is too, boo me all you want for calling her that.  She's an eater.  A slow methodical eater.  And she plays hard.  She's not a snacker at all.  Just likes her three square meals.  This past year she has become a skinny little thing.  Just around the time I did.  My oldest is and has always been a stick.  She's literally one muscle.  She snacks non stop. 

 

I think it's best to look at what kind of food you're providing and how much they get out and play.  If you feel that your kid is getting too much unecessary food outside of the meals you're providing then cut back on that.  If you feel they're getting a little too chubby and you can pin point why, like a lack of exercise.  Then get out and play with them.  Hike, bike ride, play a sport.  Our kids learn how to eat and how to live a healthy life through us. 

 

OP your concerns are valid, people here just love to pick each other apart.



Dd also eats very well at her meals, she doesn't snack much.

 

 

We also made some other changes: more snacks, so she doesn't get too hungry for the main meals, more playtime outside now that it's getting warmer.

 

I'm not going to limit fruits and vegetables though, because I know she's not likely to overeat those.

 

Thanks to all who suggested other websites and forums, I'll check them as soon as I can!

post #39 of 45

Others have said it, but straight weight means little without height for context.  There are weight-for-height percentiles, and those are the ones you need to check.

 

I posted above that my daughter was born at 10pounds and grew quickly.   I just did some digging in old blog posts to find better stats.   She was 36 pounds and 36 inches at her 2-year checkup.   By 2.5, she was 38 pounds and had outgrown her convertible carseat.  

 

But she was active and muscular, and only got more so.

 

I think you might benefit from reading some of the Ellyn Satter books ("How to get your child to eat - but not too much") but in conjunction with that, I'd recommend "The End of Overeating."   And possibly "Mindless Eating."

 

 It really is true that kids are very self-regulating about food when they're young (under 3 yo or so).  From day to day, they will eat about the same average number of calories  when offered a selection of foods.

 

HOWEVER:  "End of Overeating" presents some really interesting research.  Because those preset self-regulation points get overridden by very very very fatty or sweet foods.  Kids in these studies did *not* self-regulate on very, very rich foods, and too much of those foods seems to turn off regulation. 

 

Those studies that show that kids self-regulate?  Are changing. In the 1980s, kids aged 2-4 compensated for 90% of calories added to their diets.  By the 1990s, they were only compensating for 45% of added calories.  (Compensating means that when fed a high-calorie food in the middle of the day, they adjust their intake later to make up for it, resulting in a total intake close to their usual average). 

 

The theory he presents is that a lot of modern food is processed to be "super desirable." It is *designed* to make you want to eat it and eat lots of it.  And we are instinctively driven to  load up on fat and sugar and salt when we find it, because in nature they are rare treats that are vital to growth and health.   So manufacturers layer on fat-sugar-salt into everything, and in the process we are all resetting our regulatory systems -- in some cases we are turning them off.

 

It's not the "processing" of processed foods, per se that does this.  They could "process" food into something that wouldn't trigger this.  And you could theoretically accomplish this turning-off of the regulatory systems with unprocessed foods -- lots of organic honey and free-range butter would do the same damn thing.  But realistically, many  processed and restaurant foods are being specifically designed to be ultra-appealing, because they are also products.

 

So:  Kids are self-regulating -- with healthy food.  Free access to overly sweet/fat foods (especially manufactured foods) makes that not necessarily true.   But bananas are not one of the hyperdesirable foods that are going to break the bank, either.

 

(Side note:  Calories consumed as liquid, other than milk, seem to also do weird things to our self-regulation.  We don't compensate for them in quite the same way.  It's one of the many reasons drinking lots of juice isn't good either.)

 

post #40 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by transylvania_mom View Post



Yes, she's exactly 3'2''. Yesterday we went to a library program for toddlers and she was the tallest one (out of 15 kids). I'm not sure I see fat though.


I know boys and girls are different on the charts but my ds was always 50% for both height and weight, and he was a pound an inch until he was about 5 yo. So he was 36 pounds when he was 3 feet tall. Your dd is 37 pounds and 38 inches. Sounds perfect. Girls clothes are cut slimmer than boys clothes so that may be why you are running into tight pants. I think it's the style trickling down to toddler clothes. Many moms of slim boys look to plain girl's clothes for a better fit for their ds. You could try boys clothes on her. If they work and you are crafty or sew, you could even add embellishments.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: The Childhood Years
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › The Childhood Years › Chubby toddlers growing into normal weight children?