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Old 02-09-2011, 10:51 AM   #1
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I was reading another thread over in the 100lb club about where it all started and it really got me thinking about the things we do as parents that can affect how our children see themselves and I wanted to ask you guys for some advice. I have six children, ages 9, 7, 6, 4, 2 and 9 months. One of them (the 7 year old) is slightly overweight, and one of them (the 4 year old) is underweight. The kids will often ask for seconds or thirds after meals, and I'll often tell my 7 year old "no" when she asks for seconds and there are times when I will feed my four year old extra meals or snacks in between that the other children don't get (because they don't need them.) I've tried very hard not to make this a personal thing for any of them, they all understand what metabolism is and I've explained to them that the 4yo has a higher metabolism than the rest, and the 7yo has a lower metabolism and that's why they need to eat more and less, respectively. We're also VERY diligent about NEVER making a child eat everything on their plate, and teaching them to stop eating when they're full - which they do! I've had kids stop eating cake before, because their tummies were full (that's unreal to me!)

Anyway, I just wanted to get some opinions about how I'm handling this - or if I should be doing anything differently. The children all play outside (we don't watch television), they're all active, they all eat really well (we rarely give desserts or high sugary foods), I just have one child who burns everything up super fast and another one who burns everything much, much more slowly.

What do you guys think?

Thanks!

Rina

Start weight: 250
Goal 1: 199lbs (current: 212)
Goal 2: 180
Goal 3: 150
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Old 02-09-2011, 10:55 AM   #2
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First of all...god bless you having 6 children! I have one and will probably have another soon but 6...you need a medal for that one! I think you are doing the right thing. My daughter goes through growth spurts and if she is still hungry, we usually just give her more fruit, veggies, cottage cheese or yogurt. So anything that you can give them that has good nutrition and will fill them up should be fine since they are active and playing all the time anyways. You can also do a piece of toast with peanut butter and a banana on there since it will have the protein and fiber to fill them up and give them a little sweet treat from the banana. As long as they get exercise and are eating healthy, I wouldn't worry about them too much. You are doing a great job mama!
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Old 02-09-2011, 11:21 AM   #3
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Thank you, Mitza24. I just want to be sure that I'm not setting them up for emotional problems later (the whole "mom always told me I was fat" thing!) I appreciate your support, and your suggestions! I'm always looking for something else I can give them that will either give them more calories (the 4 year old) or less (the 7yo) but still fill them up!
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Old 02-09-2011, 11:48 AM   #4
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I have 3 children and when my heavier one ( but still pretty normal weight) wants more food i just offer more vegetables instead of bread or juice etc. I always try to keep them satisfied. As long as you dont say hey you can't eat that because you're fat they should be fine and they will thank you later when they are not overweight . You're doing great and keep up the good work on your weight loss . Cheers!!
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Old 02-09-2011, 02:22 PM   #5
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Also the site weelicious.com has great kid recipes that are healthy so that may be a site you check out for some ideas
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Height: 5' 6"
Starting weight: 180 lbs
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Goal #3: 140 by 11/26/11
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Old 02-09-2011, 02:28 PM   #6
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We have the same problem and I was a child with a sibling who had a faster metabolism, so I sensitive to it. My grandmother handled it the wrong way. She'd give my brother a Sundae and hand me an apple. I don't know what my mom did, but should probably ask because she must have handled it correctly as I don't recall it from her at all.

With mine, I allow the snacks my younger-thinner son manages to snag when his brother isn't around. If, however, he's snagging one right in front of his brother I have to say things I don't mean like, "You're going to ruin your dinner" or "You don't need that." I keep it fair as much as I can and I do my best not to draw attention to it. Believe me, I'd hear about it if they ever noticed. I only do this with healthier snacks though, for two reasons. If my younger son grabs an extra apple, he's not going to go bragging about it to his brother. If he grabs an ice cream sandwich, he's definitely going to run and tell his brother. So if the younger one gets a real treat, I always offer it to my older son too.
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Old 02-10-2011, 10:55 PM   #7
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Eliana, thanks for your input, I had a situation yesterday with one of my little ones who wanted the snack her brother got, I think she was a little jealous. Ach!!! Not sure I handled it correctly, but I'll keep working on it.

BTW, one of my daughters is named Eliana.
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Old 02-12-2011, 11:41 PM   #8
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I think you're handling it fine.

My 7yo is slightly overweight & has a medical problem, and my 4yo is underweight. While the 7yo is at school, I let the 4yo have extra snacks if he wants them. When his older sister is home, he knows not to ask for extras that his sister can't have.

Fortunately the extra snacks are prohibited by her health more than her weight, so it's not a big deal. They both can have certain snacks (lowfat string cheese, fruits, veggies) in the evenings and they're just used to those being the only choices.

I also keep some protein shakes (Boost or the kid versions) on hand and let my 4yo have those as his drink with meals sometimes. They add some extra calories and he thinks they're just chocolate milk.
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Old 02-13-2011, 08:38 PM   #9
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Oh wow, I've been on both sides of the isle with one child! My daughter was born a big girl (9lbs, 3 oz) but she was also long, etc. But soon we realized there were issues with her formula and eating- she was eventually diagnosed with GERD and had to not only take baby Zantac, but I had to put two tablespoons of cereal in EVERY bottle (in order to keep the food down). Well, she ballooned up. She was wearing a 3T by the time she turned one.

My original Pediatrician didn't think anything of it- she knew what caused the weight gain and also felt confident that once Ayleigh started walking, the weight would come off.

But soon I changed doctors. The first doctor was too far away, she was leaving the practice anyway- I wasn't attached to any of the other doctors, and I was having issues with Ayleigh's ears, asthma, etc. When I switched to my own personal doctor's pediatrician, (With the most horrible bedside manner in the world- but he's a good ped!) One of the first things he asked me was "What the **** are you feeding your daughter!. Because of course, he looked at me, and then saw her, and automatically assumed I was feeding her junk!

My daughter is now 4 and if 3T was long enough, she could still wear that size! 4T is too short too (She's tall for her age) but 5T and XS fall off her butt. I've been stuck in the middle with her for atleast a year.

My brother has the opposite going on. His daughter- a year older than mine- started out like a little fairy, and now is considered overweight. We often have fights with the girls about what they are eating. He'll give his daughter two bowls of cereal in the morning if she wants it... (really? she's 5.) I have to hover over my daughter in the morning to eat her little half cup of cereal. But then my daughter gets mad when she sees her cousin getting so much food. If Ayleigh is still hungry after dinner, she is allowed to have more. But her cousin will chime in that she's still hungry, - it really is a mess. And honestly, my brother has *JUST* started on trying to restrict his daughter's diet and explain that her and her cousin are different and need different foods, etc.

But I've never really been able to talk to my brother about his daughter's eating habits. It's too touchy.. and of course, I'm fat. That means there is no ounce of credibility in what I'm saying

LR
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