View Full Version : DS needs to lose weight...

04-17-2009, 08:43 PM
DS11 went to the Dr. yesterday for a physical and the dr. claimed he needs to lose 15 pounds. Then he proceeded to tell him everything he couldn't eat... I understand he has a little pooch on the tummy and I am all for eating healthy, but I have found in my weight loss ventures that if you are not permitted to have something, it is grounds for failure. I know he does need to eat better and because of our schedule, I have grabbed easy (fattening) snacks for after school. So I've gone shopping and picked up lots of fruits and veggies. I have started talking to him about portions and how to be aware of the size. And our weather has finally begun to cooperate that we are getting out to play and take walks (which I know this winter has not been good for any of us).

So, to my question...I was on WW a few years ago and lost 50 pounds on the points system. I really think this would work for him to actually see what he eats in a day and to try and keep it in check. Has anyone ever had their kids on WW? If so, what are the specific requirements about it? I told him I would go to meetings, but he says he doesn't want to go with a "bunch of women." Any advice you all can give would be greatly appreciated! My big thing is I don't want him to become self-conscious about it or (heaven forbid) develop an eating disorder.

04-17-2009, 09:19 PM
I don't think it is healthy (emotionally) to put an 11yo on a "diet" if they only need to lose 15 lbs. I think that an 11yo would be at risk for developing self esteem problems, feeling singled out, sneaking food etc. Going to WW might be seen as punishment to him.

11yo's are growing. Replacing junk food w/ healthy alternatives (there are alot of 100 calorie sized snacks etc), and INCREASING physical activity, is the key to becoming slimmer and healthier.

Limiting the # of hours of TV per day/week is also crucial. Same goes for video games/computer.

In our area, there is a Personal Training Class for kids 8-12, where they go 1 hour twice per week and work on improving their athleticism. They do alot of sprinting, sit ups, push ups, and other drills that really get them fit. My son really slimmed down over the past 9 months---he got fit and also grew taller. Maybe something like that would work.

04-17-2009, 09:21 PM
At his age, 15 pounds is a two inch growth spurt. Watch his portion sizes and cut soda and processed sweets to a minimum. Weight Watchers is overkill for a pre-teen with minimal weight loss goals.

04-17-2009, 10:02 PM
From what I remember, WW won't accept a child under age 12 without a doctor's order and 15 lbs won't qualify him. Limiting but not eliminating sugary snacks, limiting portion sizes, and increasing activity should be all it takes. I have found it's good to divide up the snacks into proper portions in baggies instead of just eating out of the packages - you eat much less that way. Also, encourage him to chew slowly and thoroughly, drink water while he's eating, and don't eat in front of the tv. Another suggestion I've heard is to eat a small snack - a small apple or a couple of crackers about 20 - 30 min before a meal and the stomach will be fooled into feeling full much sooner.

04-18-2009, 01:06 AM
Just my opinion, but I think maybe your son will be like my older daughters. They were pudgy for a few years, then around ages 13-15 they suddenly shot up. They got taller and thinner.

But they are involved in a martial art (Aikido), and they go almost everyday- so that probably helped too. FInd some kind of sport or exercise that is FUN for your son. If it isn't fun, it won't last!!

And lastly, don't sweat this weight issue too much. For a teen, I think eating healthy and being physically active is much more important than being a certain weight!

04-18-2009, 09:03 AM
I don't think it is healthy (emotionally) to put an 11yo on a "diet" if they only need to lose 15 lbs. I think that an 11yo would be at risk for developing self esteem problems, feeling singled out, sneaking food etc.

This is the first thing I thought. At this age, when kids are so self conscious to begin with, you have to be so careful about how you approach it. Of course, the doctor himself probably went overboard with all details.

One of my friends right now is dealing with a 16-old-son whose doctor told him pretty much what your son's doctor told him about six months ago. Now he's obsessed with food and exercise. He's lost 30 pounds and is determined to lose a lot more, even though he probably only needed to shed about 10 pounds at the most. The kids in my daughter's fourth grade class are already obsessed with weight! I hate that. My daughter, who was an early maturer, has been called "fat" countless times! She's got issues with her body now and I hate that....there's nothing wrong with her!

Personally, I think that instead of making it seem so directed to your son, make some healthy changes for your entire family. You're already headed in the right direction...making some diet changes and getting out for more exercise.

04-18-2009, 09:11 AM
I don't think putting him on a "diet" will be good for him or his self esteem. I would do as you are doing now and provide plenty of fruits, veggies, healthy meals and snacks, limit soda (that is a huge problem for kids) also fruit juices are high in calories, increase his water intake. Getting him away from the tv, video games etc and outside or into something active is also a great idea. I notice a big difference in my youngest DD's weight when she is into a sport or outside more often. I limit her tv time and game boy time. They have a certain amount of what we call "electronic time" tv, game boys, playstation and computer. They can spend it doing what they want but when it is all used up they have to find something else to do. This seems to work for us. I never make any of it about weight, it is always about keeping healthy not thin!

04-18-2009, 09:30 AM
When DS was in 7th grade the doctor suggested he drop twenty pounds. When DS decided he was ready to try he did WW online and lost them in about 3 months. He had no problem staying within the points and never really was deprived. He even saved points to go to Planet Smoothie with his friends on the weekend.

I believe a big part of the loss was attributed to bringing lunch (turkey sandwiches) instead of buying it. I think school lunches are packed with carbs and some people just don't do well with them.

As far as exercising, he is very athletic and was playing on the school teams with practices everyday.

Feel free to pm or email me. I've been there and will be more than happy to help.

04-18-2009, 10:03 AM
For Drs this day and age, there is a real concern for children at a younger and younger age are becomming obese. I worked in Peds and saw many kids with this issue. Many cases the parents just did not care, and fed what the kids wanted, which was junk. For you at this age of your child is right before the change is going to happen and they are going to spurt up and thin out. Just have healthy snacks, increase physical activity, limit intake of junk food, and know that 15 lbs will change and they will grow taller and get thinner in no time.

04-18-2009, 10:22 AM
I tend to agree with above. As a "pudgy" child going on a diet probably would have only made me more self conscious then I already was.

Have you thought about joining some sort of summer sport league? Check into a local YMCA or youth group. Joinging a sports team is a nice way to get him active without having to put the emphasis on losing weight. With the combination of becoming more active and cutting back a bit on snacking you should be able to make your DR happy.

04-18-2009, 11:47 AM
:number1:I agree with many of the posters and I'm a nurse educator. In many children what they drink is the main culprit. They can chug down 3 juice boxes or Capri Suns in a blink of an eye. Switch to water bottles and limit the boxes to 1 or 2 a day. Children don't play outside any more, check your Y for programs and activities. Portion s are a huge problem, most kids consume far too much. Don't restrict food but limit portion sizes. Take mayo off of everything! Go for a walk or hike with him you'll both feel better. BTW I have 5 boys and 2 girls so I am very familar with this age!!:D

04-18-2009, 11:59 AM
Don't stress. I agree that when he gains some height, he may lose the paunch. But until then, just focus on providing better food choices (not necessarily harping to him on better food choices) and giving opportunities to exercise. Try to fit in a family walk after dinner or think about activities he enjoys that will get him moving. Replace sugary drinks with water and if he's not a water fan, they have those flavor packets you can add to water. My kids love the Propel ones.

I definitely understand your concerns. I was slightly overweight at age 11, and my mother inadvertently made me so self-conscious while just trying to help me be healthier.

04-18-2009, 12:09 PM
I go to a personal trainer right now and he has been telling me that just cutting our the soda and sugary foods that I love to eat will help me to lost the weight I need to. He also told me that if I do drink a soda then I need to drink a glass of water afterwards, to help flush it out.

I have a DD 8 that is sometimes concerned with what she eats and says she is fat, because of what some kids at school said to her. You have to be very careful how you approach it, as you don't want to create a child that is obsessed with their weight.

I totally understand that when you are a family on the go (ours is too) it is really easy to grab some unhealthy snacks on your way out the door. I am guilty of doing this myself, but I find now that since I am trying to lose weight, I make better choices for my kiddos snacks.