When your daughter starts gaining weight - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 33 Old 08-08-2013, 08:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
mamazee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: US midwest
Posts: 7,500
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
My daughters are both quite thin, but my 11-year-old's friend's mom was asking me how to handle talking about weight to her 11-year-old daughter, who is putting on a bit. She doesn't want to make her daughter feel bad about her weight and she doesn't want to create body issues, but at the same time she knows it will be easily corrected now and will be harder the longer she ignores it, and looking back as an adult she feels like she wishes she had thought to start watching how much she ate earlier.

My feeling is that there is no good way to have this conversation, and all you can do is have more active family time - like play tennis instead of go to a movie - and buy better food to keep in the house.

Is there a good way to have a conversation like this?
JenVose likes this.
mamazee is offline  
#2 of 33 Old 08-08-2013, 10:09 AM
 
whatsnextmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 1,930
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 13 Post(s)

Well, it can be tricky at this age. Many girls gain weight around puberty. They start to look a little thick and then suddenly they are curvy. My DD grew 4 inches and started to need a bra around her 12th birthday. Both my kids sport a belly before a major growth spurt. So, I resist making any changes until I know. I admit, I got a little nervous with DS 12 who gained a lot this school year. Still within normal range but more girth than I've every seen on my typical rail of a kid. However, I held off and sure enough, he's hit a massive growth spurt and the belly is disappearing.

 

I don't know what the case is with your friend. The girl might be thickening up because she's in for some growth or body changes. It never hurts to add some family activity and stock the house with healthy food options. I'd certainly do that over talking to her about the weight right now. You'd hate to pick at her only to discover that the weight is a natural part of her development.


Married mom of two, DD 17 and DS 13.
whatsnextmom is online now  
#3 of 33 Old 08-08-2013, 01:06 PM
 
meemee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Norther California
Posts: 12,761
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)

ugh. body weight has become such a big issue that we are losing sight of normality in this case.

 

absolutely as pp said there tends to be weight gain during puberty and even the teens esp. around the waist for girls. wheat belly.

 

its so hard to figure out the right foods too, as one goes thru different hormones one binges, or eats one thing a lot. so restricting or forcing food issues is not a good thing.

 

i would say a good way to take care of this - if its even any issues - is to have afterschool activities and keep our kids busy. not necessarily sports or music, but something enjoyable - a hobby.

 

i definitely would NOT have any conversation with her. 

 

i would check and see does she have a full life. if anything i'd be afraid more of depression than anything else. of boredom. 

 

does she have friends, does she have challenges, does she have a variety of activities or things to choose from.

 

in other words does she live an enriching life. 


 treehugger.gif Co-parent, joy.gifcold.gifbrand new homeschooling middle schoolerjoy.gif, and an attackcat.gif 
meemee is online now  
#4 of 33 Old 08-08-2013, 01:29 PM
 
mammal_mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Urban Midwestern USA
Posts: 6,772
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

DD2 -- at 8 -- is a little younger than this girl, but I have lately seen more of a tendency toward being sedentary that, coupled with her natural love of eating A LOT, seems to have caused her to put on a few extra pounds. I agree with what pp's said about not having a "talk" but just getting more active together.

 

With dd2, I've noticed that she won't always ask for a high-protein snack like salmon, but will tend toward eating large amounts of starchy foods -- and yet, if I anticipate her hunger a few minutes before she gets her mind set on a particular thing, and just bring her a dish of, say, salmon, cheese, tomato, and carrots, she'll literally scarf it all down and she seems much more satisfied after that. So I do talk with both my girls about protein, and about focusing on nutritious food FIRST before snacking on high sugar or starchy stuff.

 

About activity, as a very tall 8yo, dd2 is in the phase where playground activities are only fun when there's someone to play and run around with, whether that someone else is me or other kids. She's not longer in that stage of just running out the door and embracing the outdoors and running wild in it. She now needs outdoor activities that are fun and interesting for her, or else she'd rather sit indoors and play computer games. This means that I need to get out there with her and help her transition into finding ways to love the outdoors NOW.

 

My 13yo dd has already made this transition and now goes out for 6-mile walks most days with our big Lab. I feel confident that dd2 will find her own "thing," but for the moment, she needs my help with it.


Susan -- married unschoolin' WAHMomma to two lovely girls (born 2000 and 2005).
mammal_mama is offline  
#5 of 33 Old 08-10-2013, 03:40 PM
 
amandak's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 66
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I would think about the motives.  My guess is that the mom's motive isn't to make her kid look "better" but just to be as healthy as possible.  In that case, I wouldn't worry about weight (the outcome.)  I would focus on what they do rather than what they see.  So start a family health initiative.  Invite the kids to make decisions about healthy foods and activities.  

 

I've always struggled myself with this area, and I know that when the focus is on weight, I eat way too much out of stress.  The only chance I ever have for change is to focus on gaining a positive (health) rather than losing a negative (weight.)  Plus from what I've heard, kids aren't really supposed to lose weight (unless there is a huge problem.)  Instead if they are overweight, they should just maintain as their height goes up.

 

Plus, if you focus on the outcome (weight loss or management) you only have so much control because hormones and many other factors play a part.  If you focus on your activity and food, you get to make choices and have control, and can feel empowered by that even if puberty hormones are wrecking havoc on the outcome.

 

And if the reason isn't health and is instead so her daughter looks better...  well then the attitude will carry over and perhaps it doesn't matter what conversation is had.  The daughter will get the message.  

 

But like I said, I'm sure the mom is concerned more with health and lifestyle.


Amanda

amandak is offline  
#6 of 33 Old 08-10-2013, 05:38 PM
 
pt33333's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 31
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My 9yo daughter has recently started to look a little thicker around the middle. But this has also happened before right before a growth spurt.

I've been making an effort to be sure we're more active regularly. During the school year, she's already pretty active between dance class twice a week, gym class, running around at recess and often an after school sport club. During the summer I've had to be more proactive about making sure she's moving.

As far as eating, when we do discuss it its always as what's healthy and better for your body and energy, never use the word fattening. Since she's getting ready to grow she has been hungry often. And when she's picking something that's going to be mostly starchy and not that great for her, I remind her about including some kind if protein or something that will actually satisfy her hunger. Not something that will leave her hungry again in 20 minutes.
pt33333 is offline  
#7 of 33 Old 08-10-2013, 06:00 PM
 
justmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: beginning anew
Posts: 5,806
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)

Yeah I wouldn't have that conversation.  I would just make sure that healthy snacks are available at all times and a lack of sugary or unhealthy fatty snacks available.  I would also make sure that as a family, you are all active.  Suggest a family game of soccer or go for a hike or chase them around the pool.  Mentioning weight is only going to make them think about it and possibly create food issues you don't want.  But making sure the entire family is active and eating well is NEVER a bad choice.  By the natural method of things, the entire family might see a few lbs drop off.


treehugger.gifjog.gifgreenthumb.gifknit.gifnamaste.gif

justmama is offline  
#8 of 33 Old 08-10-2013, 08:50 PM
 
meemee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Norther California
Posts: 12,761
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by AmandaK View Post

I I eat way too much out of stress.  

THIS is the reason why teens need to have an enriching life. or else stress makes them eat and feel depressed and before soon its a vicious circle. life is HARD on teens. emotions all over the place. forgetful. hungry at odd times. cant get enough food to eat. constantly eating. 

 

absolutely make sure not too much junk food i the house. reduce it, dont completely take it away. but keep stuff you know the friends over will eat. we have soda and pizza for dd's friends. dd barely eats any and has maybe half a can of soda. she'd rather eat sushi or pho but she doesnt want to be the weird one. 

 

really the time to pay attention to weight is in your early twenties when suddenly you realise if you keep up how you eat you put on that does not leave. 


 treehugger.gif Co-parent, joy.gifcold.gifbrand new homeschooling middle schoolerjoy.gif, and an attackcat.gif 
meemee is online now  
#9 of 33 Old 08-10-2013, 09:23 PM
 
LLQ1011's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1,008
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This is normal. Growth spurts on the way.
cynthia mosher likes this.
LLQ1011 is offline  
#10 of 33 Old 08-11-2013, 05:32 AM
 
jade in tn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 10
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Tell that mom to have supper on the table when she gets home from school.  Even if it's 3pm.  She can have a snack later if she gets hungry.  Keeping all meals on a tight schedule will prevent overeating and excessive snacking.  

cynthia mosher and tropicana like this.
jade in tn is offline  
#11 of 33 Old 08-11-2013, 08:36 AM
 
meemee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Norther California
Posts: 12,761
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)

i would like to know what is overeating for a teen? does such a thing exist? 

 

looking back i can see woah how much i ate. i remember the giant meals i COULD eat which by the time i was in my early 20s i could not do any more. 

 

when dd is on her growth spurt she easily out eats me. easily. she has been like that since she was 4 years old. right before her birthday - woah. my food budget goes sky high. i will never hold back food from dd. 

 

instead i do what my mother did. keep healthy food at home so she eats nutritious food - even if its a lot. 10 apples instead of poptart. 


 treehugger.gif Co-parent, joy.gifcold.gifbrand new homeschooling middle schoolerjoy.gif, and an attackcat.gif 
meemee is online now  
#12 of 33 Old 08-11-2013, 08:58 AM
 
mammal_mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Urban Midwestern USA
Posts: 6,772
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

I really don't think there's such a thing as overeating for children and teens -- but there is such a thing as eating too many empty calories that don't really satisfy you and getting to an unhealthy weight-for-height because of that.

 

I was quite slender as a teen, and my best friend and I would often go to Quicktrip after school and buy a large bag of chips a piece, plus large softdrinks, and gulp it all down while chatting in her car, and I don't know about her, but I think I still went home hungry and ate a full dinner. It didn't seem to affect me then, but it sure started to pack on the pounds later. I remember my shock at learning how small an amount of Funyuns or Doritos really constitutes a serving.

 

I've also noticed that I'm always hungry after eating a McDonalds meal, in spite of the fact that a meal consisting of something like a Big Mac, large fry, and large drink provides close to a day's worth of calories.But I feel quite satisfied after eating a bowl of cooked broccoli with a little butter and cheese melted into it. Waaay fewer calories but waaay more of other nutrients that my body needs. For breakfast when I'm in a hurry, I'll often grab a large bite of salmon since I usually have an open can in the fridge, and maybe a raw carrot or some celery. This is much more filling than a donut, though I will occasionally binge on something like that.

 

So rather than urging my child to eat less, I'd urge an "always hungry" child or teen to eat more protein and more food that is dense in other nutrients before snacking on something like chips or cookies.

cynthia mosher and meemee like this.

Susan -- married unschoolin' WAHMomma to two lovely girls (born 2000 and 2005).
mammal_mama is offline  
#13 of 33 Old 08-11-2013, 09:54 AM
 
GarysWife's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 25
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

With my two older ones I've tried to focus more on eating healthy than how much they weigh.  With teens it's a real difficult balance. 

cynthia mosher and mamazee like this.
GarysWife is offline  
#14 of 33 Old 08-12-2013, 01:29 PM
 
bazil323's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Rice Lake, WI area
Posts: 36
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

If anything, focus on healthy eating & exercise. I would not ever bring up the way the child looks or how much she or he weighs. When they are growing, they will go through lots of changes, and as others have said, many kids go through a chubby phase especially right before a growth spurt. It's funny because my coworkers were just talking about this at lunch time. Their kids had gone through chubby phases around 9-12 and then suddenly hit a growth spurt and were thin as rails with no changes in diet; it's just the way the hormones kick in at that age. Making sure that kids have healthy options available at all times and rarely have access to junk food/drinks and make sure that they don't spend all their time sitting around (even if it's reading, that was my vice as a kid even more than TV) and get active. She doesn't even have to make a big deal out of it but start dropping comments like, "It's been so hard to stick to healthy choices with all this stress at work, but it's so worth it when I don't feel terrible afterwards." Or "I'm so glad you are making good food choices instead of unhealthy ones. You'll feel stronger and healthier a lot longer that way."

 

Be a good role model as much as you can, show them how an adult is supposed to eat, drink, & exercise. Yes, they will eat huge amounts of food as teenagers, but they learn how to adjust their portions by seeing how you eat. If they see their parents eating huge teenager-style portions all the time, they will think they can just continue after they are adults regardless that they are not growing any more and instead packing it into fat.

 

The focus in America (and many other industrialized, technological-heavy countries) is far too much on looks and far less on health.

bazil323 is offline  
#15 of 33 Old 08-13-2013, 08:00 AM
 
lovebeingamomma's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: RI
Posts: 1,549
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I talk about the opposite: "You have a growing body it's so important that you eat a lot of good healthy food!".  You are just handing your daughter an eating disorder if you talk about food in a negative way.  So she's a little overweight, so what?  Does she feel good about herself?  Are you providing her healthy foods and providing plenty of outdoor time to run and play?  That's all she needs. 
 

Full disclosure: I struggle with an eating disorder.


Christian SAHM & birth doula.
lovebeingamomma is offline  
#16 of 33 Old 08-14-2013, 05:27 PM
 
journeymom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Having a Gilly Water with McGonagall
Posts: 9,804
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by lovebeingamomma View Post

I talk about the opposite: "You have a growing body it's so important that you eat a lot of good healthy food!".  You are just handing your daughter an eating disorder if you talk about food in a negative way.  So she's a little overweight, so what?  Does she feel good about herself?  Are you providing her healthy foods and providing plenty of outdoor time to run and play?  That's all she needs. 
 

Full disclosure: I struggle with an eating disorder.

 

I like that!

cynthia mosher likes this.

Someone moved my effing cheese.
journeymom is offline  
#17 of 33 Old 08-15-2013, 01:15 AM
 
Jumpingjack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 2
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I agree with some of the others. I would talk about health, and try and put a variety of food in front of them before they are craving high GI carbs.
 

cynthia mosher likes this.
Jumpingjack is offline  
#18 of 33 Old 08-16-2013, 10:44 PM
 
Linda on the move's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: basking in the sunshine
Posts: 10,563
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post

....at the same time she knows it will be easily corrected now and will be harder the longer she ignores it, and looking back as an adult she feels like she wishes she had thought to start watching how much she ate earlier.

My feeling is that there is no good way to have this conversation, and all you can do is have more active family time - like play tennis instead of go to a movie - and buy better food to keep in the house.

 

 

I think that the advice to not have a conversation is misguided. Obesity is an growing concern -- 18% of teens are obese, and 30% are overweight. The stats just get higher with age, and they increase every year. I think while the potential for this conversation to go terribly wrong is huge, that we as mothers have an obligation to figure out how to talk to our children. All of our children are at risk for becoming obese because the rates just keep going up and up (if the rates of obesity continue to increase they way they currently are,  all Americans will be overweight by 2048) http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/08/28/will-all-americans-be-fat-in-40-years.aspx

 

The notion that we shouldn't talk to our children/teens because it is difficult to figure out how to do so seems like a cop out when this is, for most of our kids, this is the most likely cause of health problems for many, many years for them.

 

I talk to my daughters about weight, food, theories about obesity, body image, etc.  It's a topic I'm interested in and I share with my children what I learn. We talk about what kind of nutrients are in different foods, and what kinds us foods leave us feeling hungry sooner (carbs) and what foods help us stay full longer (protein and fat). I don't believe the food pyramid is a healthy way to eat, and my kids know why. (Basing a diet on grains is a recipe to get fat and have blood sugar problems).

 

I think the big thing to avoid in a mother/daughter conversation is any notion that one should have a particular body type to be attractive, acceptable, or loved. None of that is true. However, we need to eat right so we can be healthy and feel good, and the way we treat our bodies - even in our teens -- has an impact on our adult bodies. I also think it is helpful to find ways to be active that we all truly enjoy -- not exercising to look at certain way, but enjoying being in our bodies and using them to do fun things. I personally find it helpful to stay away from talking about what you should do, and instead focus on overall trends in the US and around the world. Making it less personal, staying away from "should", and moving toward looking at the actual studies keeps things low key.
 

I think that the line that to loose weight one should "eat less and move more" is bogus because there is so, so, so much evidence that it does not work. Eating less causes people to be hungry and eat more later, and moving move causes people to be hungry and eat more later. Most people who loose weight on reduced calorie diets regain it.  We need to eat *differently.*

 

I think there is far more pressure on teens to eat junk food than there is on adults, and I therefore feel it is very important to make it extremely easy to eat healthy at home. I don't think the burden should be on an 11 year old to "watch what they eat," but rather on the parents to watch what they bring home, what they prepare, what habits they model. I also think that "watch what you eat" is very, very vague and therefore not helpful. The daughter won't get anything helpful from that, but may start feeling self conscious about eating in front of others, especially her mother.

 

There is no consensus of what is "healthy," and the FDA recommendations we've been taught were designed to be helpful to farmers, not to our health.

 

On the other hand, learning about the changes in our food supply (wheat belly is a fascinating book) and learning what recent studies show (there are several interesting lectures on YouTube, such as this one on "why we get fat"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lDneyrETR2o

 

BTW, we eat Paleo at home, but my kids eat all kinds of stuff when they are out of the house, which I am fine with. I don't have any desire to be controlling with the kids about food, but I do feel the need to balance the pizza and sodas they have out of the house with grass-raised meats, deep green leafy vegies, and healthy fats at home.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

Linda on the move is online now  
#19 of 33 Old 08-17-2013, 06:03 AM
 
Sphinxy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 614
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Oh, this just makes me sad...

 

It's not about weight. All the recent studies are showing that our "war on obesity" completely misses the mark, and is just fueling the food manufacturers sales of crappy empty calorie diet foods and the drug manufacturers sales of diet pills and "supplements". It should be a war (though I hate that term) on inactivity and crappy choices. BUT being active and making better food choices is not always going to make you skinny, nor should it. People come in all shapes and sizes - we need to get over it and stop judging each other (and ourselves) for how we look. The research clearly shows that an active overweight person is more healthy and will live longer than an inactive skinny person. So, No - we should not be talking to our kids about weight. We should be talking to them about lifestyle and loving their bodies. It sounds like the OP's friend wants to talk about lifestyle, but is overly fixated on the weight as the impetus for the conversation. If she is concerned about her daughter's lifestyle and feels that she should be doing more to help her daughter lead a healthy life, then I hope she tackles it as such, and spares her daughter the trauma of making this about weight.

 


My wife (30) and I (32) have been legally married since 2006. We are proud queer mamas to baby W, born 10/10/2013.
Sphinxy is offline  
#20 of 33 Old 08-17-2013, 06:34 AM
 
sparklefairy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,948
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sphinxy View Post

Oh, this just makes me sad...

 

It's not about weight. All the recent studies are showing that our "war on obesity" completely misses the mark, and is just fueling the food manufacturers sales of crappy empty calorie diet foods and the drug manufacturers sales of diet pills and "supplements". It should be a war (though I hate that term) on inactivity and crappy choices. BUT being active and making better food choices is not always going to make you skinny, nor should it. People come in all shapes and sizes - we need to get over it and stop judging each other (and ourselves) for how we look. The research clearly shows that an active overweight person is more healthy and will live longer than an inactive skinny person. So, No - we should not be talking to our kids about weight. We should be talking to them about lifestyle and loving their bodies. It sounds like the OP's friend wants to talk about lifestyle, but is overly fixated on the weight as the impetus for the conversation. If she is concerned about her daughter's lifestyle and feels that she should be doing more to help her daughter lead a healthy life, then I hope she tackles it as such, and spares her daughter the trauma of making this about weight.

 

Just clicking the "thumbs up" dealie wasn't enough. Great post!

cynthia mosher likes this.
sparklefairy is offline  
#21 of 33 Old 08-17-2013, 10:01 AM
 
meemee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Norther California
Posts: 12,761
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post

 

 

I think that the advice to not have a conversation is misguided. Obesity is an growing concern -- 18% of teens are obese, and 30% are overweight. The stats just get higher with age, and they increase every year. I think while the potential for this conversation to go terribly wrong is huge, that we as mothers have an obligation to figure out how to talk to our children. All of our children are at risk for becoming obese because the rates just keep going up and up (if the rates of obesity continue to increase they way they currently are,  all Americans will be overweight by 2048) http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/08/28/will-all-americans-be-fat-in-40-years.aspx

this is where i disagree with ya :) sorta

 

our children are getting bombarded with weight all around us. as parents we dont need to add any of that. there are tooo many children in my dd's 5th grade class who are fixated on weight (without their parents talking about it). in fact i even ran across a first grader who felt that way. however she wants to be a film actress, is a performer so because of her interest i guess the obesity concern is worse.

 

i wonder if we did a poll how many children on our board is obese. i dont think we should see all families with the same lens. obesity is a problem with some families - not all. though in my books, being obese and fat are two different things. i think these days obese and fat are becoming synonymous which is not right. 

 

obviously the government doesnt care. if they did at least they would have some afterschool sports programs available for free. the corporations dont care. look at the junk in the guise of food. 

 

i think 80% of our problem can be solved by food. by food i mean the amount of sugar, fat and salt in our system. the 3 biggest items in processed food. if we havent got our children's attention by the teens its already late. not too late, but late and its HARD for anyone to change their food habits. 

 

if your child is brought up with the right nutrition. the concept of nutrition, of balanced diet and then add taste to it then by the teens they are able to do that on their own. not something parent guided but child directed. 

 

and honestly one thing that frustrates me is the notion children are inactive. children are NEVER inactive unless their lifestyle forces them to be and then it becomes a habit. all a child needs is another good friend in the neighborhood and a parent to supervise and gosh they are active all over.  but they DO need a friend. that is the key. so if you dont have that you sign them up for an activity. not as a teen, but as a child so that by teens for your child activity is a habit. however if you are poor and or working all the time then you are pretty much screwed. i hate this idea that because u have a backyard, add a few toys and let ur child loose there and they should have a grand time. no that is wrong. they are BORED by themselves (mostly not all kids). instead let them free there with a good friend and THEN they'll have a ball. 

 

at this point of time with OPs child one has to be supersensitive. she is at a very sensitive age. perhaps instead of talking she should focus on doing. together as a family. keep an eye on is the child down, depressed? is she already aware of her belly and feels horrible. if the mom doesnt brign up the conversation sensitively - a no mean task to achieve - she can make things worse. 

 

dd and i have talks on weight and food. not because its the teens, but its something we have always talked about. it is just as much as our conversation as talking about the latest movie we saw. 

 

dd just started middle school. i see what a huge impact it has on her life. 

 

i understand where you are coming from Linda. i get what you are trying to say. recently dd went through allergies which restricted her diet. it had such a HUGE social and thus psychological impact on dd. THAT made me aware of how important it is HOW we talk to our children. and thus i feel instead of talking first ACT. make the changes. dont bring crap in teh house (that is non food packaged in the form of food) and as a family get active if you are not. 

 

i think if you begin with talking - its pointing a finger at the child and saying she is wrong. irresponsible. doesnt know anything. not the right way to start. you gotta first break the habit and then talk. 

cynthia mosher likes this.

 treehugger.gif Co-parent, joy.gifcold.gifbrand new homeschooling middle schoolerjoy.gif, and an attackcat.gif 
meemee is online now  
#22 of 33 Old 08-17-2013, 02:26 PM
 
journeymom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Having a Gilly Water with McGonagall
Posts: 9,804
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)

Excellent post, Linda.

cynthia mosher likes this.

Someone moved my effing cheese.
journeymom is offline  
#23 of 33 Old 08-17-2013, 04:17 PM
 
Linda on the move's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: basking in the sunshine
Posts: 10,563
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sphinxy View Post

 

 All the recent studies are showing that our "war on obesity" completely misses the mark, and is just fueling the food manufacturers sales of crappy empty calorie diet foods and the drug manufacturers sales of diet pills and "supplements".

 

I agree with you completely.

 

It should be a war (though I hate that term) on inactivity and crappy choices. BUT being active and making better food choices is not always going to make you skinny, nor should it. People come in all shapes and sizes - we need to get over it and stop judging each other (and ourselves) for how we look. The research clearly shows that an active overweight person is more healthy and will live longer than an inactive skinny person.

 

 

There is a difference between between "skinny" and being at a healthy weight. Healthy weight is a range for the very reasons that you mention -- people come in different sizes and that is OK.

 

However, being overweight or obese IS  a problem. It is heavily linked to a verity of health problems. We live in a country that changed the name of a disease from "adult onset diabetes" to "type II diabetes" because now so many pre-adults are diagnosed with it. In ability to control one's weight in a healthy range is a public health issue.

 

It isn't healthy to be fat. It really isn't.

 

And while an active person who is overweight is healthier than a thin person who isn't, it is more difficult to be active when one is overweight. It is harder on one's joints. Teen girls, especially, feel self conscious about being active, wearing a swimsuit, etc when they are overweight.

 

The healthiest  option is to figure out what your body needs in the way of food to maintain a healthy weight, and also be active.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

this is where i disagree with ya :) sorta

 

our children are getting bombarded with weight all around us. as parents we dont need to add any of that.

....

 

dd and i have talks on weight and food. not because its the teens, but its something we have always talked about. it is just as much as our conversation as talking about the latest movie we saw. 

 

dd just started middle school. i see what a huge impact it has on her life. 

 

i understand where you are coming from Linda. i get what you are trying to say. recently dd went through allergies which restricted her diet. it had such a HUGE social and thus psychological impact on dd. THAT made me aware of how important it is HOW we talk to our children. and thus i feel instead of talking first ACT. make the changes. dont bring crap in teh house (that is non food packaged in the form of food) and as a family get active if you are not. 

 

 

 

I think we agree more than we disagree. We both have frank conversations with our kids, and we both feel that the primary responsibility lays with us.

 

Of course our children and teens hear about this topic from a variety of sources, but we all know that much of what they hear will be complete BS. I'm just saying that we need to have our voices in there too.

cynthia mosher likes this.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

Linda on the move is online now  
#24 of 33 Old 08-18-2013, 12:38 AM
 
Sphinxy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 614
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
duplicate post

My wife (30) and I (32) have been legally married since 2006. We are proud queer mamas to baby W, born 10/10/2013.
Sphinxy is offline  
#25 of 33 Old 08-18-2013, 12:41 AM
 
Sphinxy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 614
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post

 

There is a difference between between "skinny" and being at a healthy weight. Healthy weight is a range for the very reasons that you mention -- people come in different sizes and that is OK.

 

However, being overweight or obese IS  a problem. It is heavily linked to a verity of health problems. We live in a country that changed the name of a disease from "adult onset diabetes" to "type II diabetes" because now so many pre-adults are diagnosed with it. In ability to control one's weight in a healthy range is a public health issue.

 

It isn't healthy to be fat. It really isn't.

 

And while an active person who is overweight is healthier than a thin person who isn't, it is more difficult to be active when one is overweight. It is harder on one's joints. Teen girls, especially, feel self conscious about being active, wearing a swimsuit, etc when they are overweight.

 

The healthiest  option is to figure out what your body needs in the way of food to maintain a healthy weight, and also be active.

 

Yeah, I just disagree. I get that we are both trying to come at this from a perspective of health, but I will not be convinced that size is a useful characteristic to focus on. Some people's joints were built to carry more, and a young girl's self consciousness is an emotional concern, not a physical one. I think the more we focus on weight the more we lose sight of the real issues in health. Calling it "healthy weight" as opposed to "skinny" doesn't really make it any less about size and shape, which I don't find helpful. I find "healthy weight" (along with "fit", "trim", etc) to just be the current politically correct way of saying that someone is of a socially desirable size. The more we say "fat = unhealthy", the more we perpetuate a culture based on size (which is the real reason why that young girl feels like crap). We have no way of knowing what someone's fat/muscle ratio, blood pressure, or cholesterol is underneath their clothing, even if it is "plus size" clothing. 
 
Type II diabetes is a serious problem, and yes, especially for children it is a new problem. But it isn't about weight. It's about blood sugar and putting a very high volume of very awful, very modern calories into your body. There have been overweight people throughout time, but Type II diabetes is relatively new. It's not the size of the people that is the problem, it is the foods they are eating. Size may be an additional repurcussion of eating those foods, but to focus on the symptom rather than the cause is unhelpful.

My wife (30) and I (32) have been legally married since 2006. We are proud queer mamas to baby W, born 10/10/2013.
Sphinxy is offline  
#26 of 33 Old 08-18-2013, 12:06 PM
 
lovebeingamomma's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: RI
Posts: 1,549
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sphinxy View Post

 

Yeah, I just disagree. I get that we are both trying to come at this from a perspective of health, but I will not be convinced that size is a useful characteristic to focus on. Some people's joints were built to carry more, and a young girl's self consciousness is an emotional concern, not a physical one. I think the more we focus on weight the more we lose sight of the real issues in health. Calling it "healthy weight" as opposed to "skinny" doesn't really make it any less about size and shape, which I don't find helpful. I find "healthy weight" (along with "fit", "trim", etc) to just be the current politically correct way of saying that someone is of a socially desirable size. The more we say "fat = unhealthy", the more we perpetuate a culture based on size (which is the real reason why that young girl feels like crap). We have no way of knowing what someone's fat/muscle ratio, blood pressure, or cholesterol is underneath their clothing, even if it is "plus size" clothing. 
 
Type II diabetes is a serious problem, and yes, especially for children it is a new problem. But it isn't about weight. It's about blood sugar and putting a very high volume of very awful, very modern calories into your body. There have been overweight people throughout time, but Type II diabetes is relatively new. It's not the size of the people that is the problem, it is the foods they are eating. Size may be an additional repurcussion of eating those foods, but to focus on the symptom rather than the cause is unhelpful.

So true!  Emotional health and how it relates to physical health is often overlooked as well.  A girl with high self-esteem & slightly overweight may actually be healthier than the next kid with the perfect diet.  If you suffer emotionally, your body will not be healthy no matter what you feed yourself.  Nurturing the whole self is what we need to teach our girls!  Emotionally, physically, mentally, spiritually. 
 

cynthia mosher and One_Girl like this.

Christian SAHM & birth doula.
lovebeingamomma is offline  
#27 of 33 Old 08-27-2013, 08:35 AM
 
JenVose's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 185
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I think it first comes down to the overall family lifestyle. Has the girl just been “lucky” so far and is now putting on weight as puberty approaches, but has overall had unhealthy eating habits? Is a girl who has already established healthy eating/exercise habits now putting on weight as a possible indication of a growth spurt? I think first one has to approach this question by putting it into a full family perspective.

 

If it is an issue of unhealthy eating/sedentary lifestyle, and it is a habit amongst the whole family, the mother needs to understand that while the daughter may be the only one who is undergoing a visible change/gain right now, it is something the whole family needs to work on together. Planning family hikes, incorporating healthy foods into the diet (making it fun – trying new foods and new recipes), taking up a new hobby that will give them family time together, etc., is a great way to approach it. In this case, I’d say bring the whole family in on lifestyle changes and make no mention of the girl’s weight. Instead, do make a point of explaining why these new foods are healthier choices than some of their older choices, so that the whole family can get educated on choosing healthier foods.

 

If this is an otherwise healthy/active family and the daughter has made no serious changes (other than quite possibly increased portion size), then I would assume growth spurt, especially considering age. In that case, I would also not mention the weight issue at all, but would wait and make myself available if my daughter wanted to talk or had any questions about her body image, etc. Then it just needs to be approached by letting her daughter know that when our bodies are changing, sometimes the weight may distribute in a way we don’t like right then, but as long as we continue to maintain healthy habits, we will be healthy and learn to love our new bodies, regardless of how they may differ.

 

The one instance where I see a need to have a discussion on the issue if this is an otherwise healthy/active family and the daughter has made serious changes – eating less of healthy foods and more junk; spending greater amounts of time inside and in sedentary activities than in the past. Then the talk needs to be not about weight, but about overall lifestyle. And also about emotional health. The mother should find out if there is an underlying emotional reason that the daughter has changed her lifestyle – is she feeling overwhelmed with school work or expectation, is she being teased or bullied about her appearance, etc. If she feels she has less time for exercise and active sports/play, then perhaps her mother could help her come up with a schedule to make sure that this time is always allotted for during the day, giving her a break from the work. I’m sure that if this is the case, she will see that by taking a break for an activity she enjoys, she will better be able to concentrate and not be so overwhelmed with the work and will soon find that she’s probably finishing the work a little faster and easier, too. If it’s video games/computer/social time that is keeping her sedentary, then it’s time to put a limit on those times (I feel these interests can still be allowed, but make sure that she’s aware of a healthy balance). If it’s teasing/bullying, find out if this is “normal” or “excessive” and take appropriate measures. And if it’s more unhealthy foods, stress the importance of maintaining healthy foods in the diet. I’m all for “sometimes” foods myself – I don’t deprive myself of anything at all, but just work to have an awareness of whether the food I am eating is healthy or not and keep the scales tipped toward the healthy foods.

cynthia mosher likes this.
JenVose is offline  
#28 of 33 Old 08-27-2013, 08:59 AM
 
rainbowasylum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Boreal Handbasket
Posts: 566
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

My daughter gained about 50 lbs in a year.  She went from being a string-bean of a little kid, to a tall and healthy preteen- seemingly overnight.  I'm sure I could have panicked, had a discussion about food and exercise, and generally scarred her for life, but I just left the door open for her to talk if she wanted to.  She's still fairly slim, but not the string bean skinny she was.  She is more aware of her body now, and taking her shopping in the women's department showed her exactly how much her body had grown. I think that a direct conversation with her would have gone badly, but a conversation about turning into an adult and being responsible for the care and feeding of her own body worked pretty well.  I emphasized that she has to care for her body as purposefully as she does a pet or anything else she is responsible for.  The biggest problem we face as a society is complacency.  We forget that how we eat, and how we exercise- is part of nurturing ourselves, and for too many of us nurturing ourselves is somewhere at the bottom of the list of priorities.   

On the whole, we make diet and exercise a family issue at home, when she is on her own,she's going to have to find her own way.  As for our home though, it's healthy fats, healthy meals, healthy treats- with the occasional really bad for you treat.  We go for walks as a family every day, the kids are out running in the yard all the time, in the summer we swim and hike, in the winter we cross country ski.  We bike around town. We make it a point for everyone to move their bodies every day.  Even video games around here are pretty active - Just Dance is a favorite, for example. 

That said, I have PCOS, and I really struggle with my weight.  Even when I eat right, I tend to carry more weight than I would like.  I am healthy, but I would love to lose some weight to 'look' better.  My daughter is aware of how I feel, but she is also aware that I am proud of keeping my body active, flexible, and strong, and that those things are bigger issues to me that the numbers on a scale or the tag in my clothing.  I want her to know that it is about health, so I had to make it about health for me, too.  Our daughters, in particular, can be our mirrors, and they often reflect back to us our greatest hopes alongside our greatest insecurities. 

Springshowers and Sphinxy like this.
rainbowasylum is offline  
#29 of 33 Old 08-27-2013, 02:00 PM
 
onyxfire's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: TX
Posts: 59
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I went from a kids size 12 to a women's 6 practically overnight, and I felt a LOT of body shame because I was bigger and more developed than my peers, though I have never been overweight in my life. Chances are good that your DD has already noticed she's gaining a lot of weight, and doesn't need anyone telling her. I was always a lanky, skinny kid... Until I got my period. My DD is almost 13 and hasn't started hers yet, and she is in the bottom 4% for BMI for her age/height. Even though I want her to gain weight, I still emphasize the importance of good food and not junk. I feel like this is a major problem in Western culture, these issues tend to only become addressed after bad eating habits are already established. While DD will likely never be overweight, no matter what she eats, I make sure she is educated about food, whether or not it's full of empty carbs, or if it offers fiber/calcium/whole grains so she grows up knowing the difference between healthy food and junk... That's the most important thing. I also have her get a bowl anytime she wants a snack from a larger container so she is aware of portion size, another thing that's important to establish early.
onyxfire is offline  
#30 of 33 Old 08-28-2013, 05:49 AM
 
GarysWife's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 25
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Even as much as I talk about good health and weight not being important, I still see issues with teenagers.  I found out over the weekend that my 13 year old has been smoking with her bff all summer.  When I asked her why, her response was it calmed her and helped with her weight ughhhhh. So as a mom who has never focused on weight and constantly talked about exercize and healthy eating, it still didn't sink in with my 13 year old. 

GarysWife is offline  
Reply

Tags
Teens , Pre Teens , Weight Management , Ending The Food Fight Guide Your Child To A Healthy Weight In A Fast Food Fake Food World , Johnnys Journey With His Junk Food , Pre Teen Good Health Guides Checkerbee , Child Health Guide Holistic Pediatrics For Parents

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off