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A healthy life should start when we are young. When a child has a weight problem

Updated on October 9, 2008

"Heee Moby Dick, fatso, jelly pudding!!" Yes I heard those words when I was little too. And I hated it and even started to hate myself. I started eating even more. Just because I felt miserable and when I was sixteen my weight was around a 196 pounds. I've tried a hundred diets back then, had a doctor who laughed at me when I came to his practice and teased me about my weight. He thought it would help. My parents, they just let me. They were too busy fighting each other.

Overweight is becoming more and more a problem for children. The number of children who are overweight is increasing every year. But something can be done. For children it is easier to lose weight than for the adults. If there is just a little overweight, the general advice is not to let them lose weight just because they are growing. If there are more than a few pounds to many, help them. If we don't help and teach our children, overweight will start to kill more people in the future.

The weight for boys and girls. How it should be.

These are averages. Some kids are taller or have a different build compared to others. When their weight is higher than showed here, it doesn't always mean they are overweighed


Reward the child when it's doing its best to eat healthy instead of eating snacks. A child will get motivated, feel better about it and will get motivated to maintain the habit of eating healthy food. When the weight goes down and you give them a compliment it will make them feel more self secured and more motivated.

At the dinner table

When you're having a family meal, it's important that as much as possible family members sit by the table. Not in front of the TV. This will prevent eating out of habit when they feel like it, without thinking about it.

Eating meals at the same time every day is important too. Most of the time we have three meals a day. But with overweight it's better to have six small meals instead of three large meals. In between meals you don't have to eat than. Except maybe a piece of fruit. Food products with a lot of fibers work too. It will make a child eat less but is healthy

Eat slowly

Teach your child to eat slowly. Not just putting it in the mouth and swallow. When you eat slower, you will notice you eat less so you won't over eat. And when a child is full, it's full. Don't force them too much to finish their plates.


Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Your body needs to start up its metabolism in order to be able to burn calories. When skip breakfast, chances of getting overweighed are bigger. When your child isn't used to having breakfast, start with small portions until you reached the right amount.

Breakfast isn't just healthy; it's also good to be able to concentrate in school.

Watch the in between meals

Don't tempt the child to eat the wrong things. Don't get candy or chips at the supermarket. Those in betweens are too fat or contain too much sugar. Once a week is more than enough to eat something like that. And drinks? No cola please. What about a simple cup of thee?

Maintain the weight

Because a child will still grow it's more important to maintain the weight than to lose weight. If they have an overweight problem when they are young it's possible they will lose it while growing and especially when they eat normal and healthy. A crash diet will have a so called jo-jo effect. The body is maintaining some sort of resting period while it gets a too low amount of calories. They will have the weight back very soon too and it will be even harder to lose weight again. It's important that a child learns how to eat healthy without feeling hungry.

Don't put your child on the scale more than once a week. Be conscious that your child will still grow and so he or she will become heavier. It's also good when your child maintains a certain weight for a while.

Try to find the causes of eating too much

When a child eats too much too often, there may be another cause for the eating habit. Like eating to comfort, insecurity, low self esteem depression or fear. Try to talk about it or when this doesn't work, find some help. As long as you don't know the reason it's hard to teach a child to eat healthy.

Not too much TV (or PC)

Children seem to be hanging in front of the TV more and more these days. Playing games on their play station, watching movies or surfing the I-Net. This is also a cause of overweight. They hardly move and still they eat chips, chocolate, drink cola. It isn't a problem if they do this for just a few hours a day, but some children do it all day.

Exercise with your children

Make sure your child exercises enough. Take the bike or walk together, go swimming, play football or tennis. Not only does your child need the exercise, but you too. Be an example for your child. In exercising and healthy eating habits. When you don't have too much time to do this yourself, let them join a club. It's good for their confidence and at the same time a great opportunity to make new friends.

What does a child need

*)The smallest amounts are for the youngest children. For children who are older, it's 450ml for the girls and 600 ml for the boys.

Just prevent that a child needs to go on a diet. Let us teach them by being the example for them and show them about healthy foods. They are the adults of the future and they don't need to die at a young age.

Read the other hubs about living a healthy life for more advice.


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    • Jonathan Vallejo profile image


      6 years ago from DuPont, Washington

      I've always been a believer that diet and exercise is a lifestyle choice and can be greatly influenced by parents or those who we see growing up. Sometimes we want to emulate them and at times we see they lead such an unhealthy lifestyle that we try to do the opposite. I try to play with my boys as often as I can. I'll make steak or chicken, but I prefer they eat vegetables with as little processed food as possible. That's one of the reasons for the obesity epidemic in this country. We can all get our protein from nuts and seeds and it would be a better protein than that which comes from meat. But I don't stress too much one way or the other. My boys don't have to be vegetarians or vegans, red meat and chicken are ok. So long as it is cooked in a healthy way and they still eat their greens, fruits and cut way down on PROCESSED foods. I recently changed my diet. I made salad my main meal instead of a side dish. Spinach, green peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce, cabbage and pine nuts or soy nuts add some much needed protein. A teaspoons of ranch for flavor and some natural lemon juice make for some great taste. I also juice or extract my fruits and veggies along with other nuts or seeds. Has helped with weight loss and maintaining and I've never felt better. And, of course its ok to have a cheat day or 2 during the month. That way you won't binge eat if you have ever had that experience or have that personality. Thanks for the article and the links to other hubs. Great info.

    • lovepearls profile image


      6 years ago from Athens, Greece

      Great hub, I am going to use a lot of your tips with my kids. Thanks for all the information and charts

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Netherlands

      Thank you talented:) It's not only the little kids that are mean if you ask me. I heard the 'words' when I was in highschool and I heard it from adults too. But I guess they didn't know how to communicate:D

    • talented_ink profile image


      10 years ago from USA

      Good hub Lazur and it's terrible just how mean little kids can be. I agree with meal time should be at the dinner table, and it's something that I never really thought about. We are basically creatures of habit so sitting on the couch to eat is only inviting us to eat even we're not hungry. Less t.v. time and more time outside being active is something I wish every parent would take the time to do with their kids.

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Netherlands

      Thank you:D

    • Ryan Hupfer profile image

      Ryan Hupfer 

      10 years ago from San Francisco, CA

      Great HubMob of the best reads that I've seen this week...awesome!

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Netherlands

      You are certainly right G-Ma:) The parents are having control . At least they should have:)

      Thanks for reading the hub and commenting*hug*

    • G-Ma Johnson profile image

      Merle Ann Johnson 

      10 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

      Great hub...How I remember "clean your plate there are starving children in this world"..."eat what you want...but eat what you take" and "Diet" since I was 5 yrs old. Lost the chubbiness naturally which many children do at adolesence but is smart to watch out for them especially if being overweight runs in the family.....and today the rules change everytime one turns around...and cable T.V. sure doesn't help...but again is a parents duty to my opinion...

      Thanks for a great informative..enlightening hub.....G-Ma :o) hugs

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Thumbs up :)

    • Lazur profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Netherlands

      Thank you:)I don't have any pictures left of myself when I was 196 pounds.But  I trew out my jeans not too long ago that I had on back then.:) Made me smile:)

    • hot dorkage profile image

      hot dorkage 

      10 years ago from Oregon, USA

      good 4 u if you won the weight problem. That girl in the picture is hardly 196 pounds.


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