The number overweight people at swimming today

(353 Posts)
pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 18:40:05

I went swimming today with my 3 children. I am not exagerating to say that well over half the children and teenagers were overweight; some were seriously obese.

It really was noticable. Girls as well as boys. Anything from age 4 to 14.

Okay - at least they were exercising but I was really shocked.

ReluctantMother Tue 19-Feb-13 18:41:32

I hate people like you. People like you are the reason I won't go swimming.

slatternlymother Tue 19-Feb-13 18:41:35

Yes, you're right. At least they're exercising.

There are overweight people everywhere OP, I don't really understand the shock? I certainly had quite a few overweight children at my school, I don't think it's a new problem.

FloatyFlo Tue 19-Feb-13 18:43:04

Live and let live??

StuntGirl Tue 19-Feb-13 18:43:31

Is it Bash-a-Fatty day here ffs?

Overweight people doing exercise?! Surely not!

Rewrite your post but replace the word 'overweight' with disabled or black or Muslim. Is it still an acceptable attitude to have towards others?

ChewinTheFat Tue 19-Feb-13 18:44:12

Was going to say exactly what reluctantmother said.

MrsLouisTheroux Tue 19-Feb-13 18:44:42

Wow, how disgusting OP. Did all the water splash out when they jumped in?
Here's a tip for next time : STOP STARING AND WIND YOUR NECK IN

YouTheCat Tue 19-Feb-13 18:44:43

Pingu, you, and people like you, are the reason I don't go swimming/go to the gym etc. I have enough self-esteem issues without being judged.

Yep thanks Pingu. You with your little shocked face keeps me out of the pool too. Still, at least there'll be more water for you if I'm not there to displace it hmm

Trazzletoes Tue 19-Feb-13 18:44:59

What's the problem? I could maybe understand a little bit no, I'm lying if you were complaining about the number of overweight people at McDonalds, but seriously, people are allowed to have fun and exercise even if they're fat! How else are they going to achieve a healthy weight?!

Some of them have probably taken ages to pluck up the courage to get in a swimming pool for fear of judgemental looks or comments.

SugarPasteGreyhound Tue 19-Feb-13 18:45:12

I think op is maybe commenting on the number of kids who are overweight these days - an issue currently in the news - rather than a "Look! There's a fat kid - how disgusting" kind of comment.

Op there's a legacy to a lack of sport, increased TV and gaming time and school playing fields being sold off.

PickleSarnie Tue 19-Feb-13 18:45:26

Lovely. It's judgey panted people like you that stop people exercising. Why the hell does it matter to you since I'm assuming you have the perfect body?

Sparklingbrook Tue 19-Feb-13 18:45:38


specialsubject Tue 19-Feb-13 18:45:48

so you'd rather they did nothing about their health problem?

not good they get fat in the first place, but we all make mistakes. They are trying to correct theirs. What are you doing to be a better person?

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 18:45:50

ReluctantMother, sorry if I offend you. I wasn't thinking about them as individuals and personally thinking they are 'bad' or anything. I was more shocked that as a society we are so much bigger than I had remembered the last time I went swimming (possibly over 10 years ago!)

I know it is in all the news etc. But I was saddened so see so many children so very overweight. If as an adult you are overweight then that is up to you, but the children were huge. It is really sad for them.

Eebahgum Tue 19-Feb-13 18:45:57

As an overweight adult who loves swimming I think YABU. You clearly have no idea how much confidence it takes to put a swimming costume on & venture out in public when you don't look like a supermodel. Surely overweight children swimming is a good thing?

BreadForMyBREADGUN Tue 19-Feb-13 18:46:13

People like you are why I don't go swimming, even though it would be a really good form of exercise for me because of my fucked knees.

cookielove Tue 19-Feb-13 18:46:22


i have no words hmm

usualsuspect Tue 19-Feb-13 18:46:39


MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Feb-13 18:46:45

Did you enjoy your swim?

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 19-Feb-13 18:46:48

I'm a thin person. Been thin all my life. And even I am offended by the OP.

It's not fucking news that British people are gaining weight, on average.

And, you know what? I don't think there is an easy answer. I don't think anyone has a definite idea of why people are getting fatter and I don't think there's a known way to lose weight and keep it off.

If you're thin, it's likely down to genetics, ie luck. That's how I am. I fucking eat like Elvis and I'm thin. My husband eats less food than I do and he's obese. I have witnessed his struggles first-hand and I am sick of fatty-bashing.

ReluctantMother is right. It is attitudes like this that make me so self conscious when I exercise - well, whenever I step out of the house, in fact. sad

Walk a mile in my shoes and then see if you can be a bit less judgemental.

YouTheCat Tue 19-Feb-13 18:47:29

What is sad is that these poor kids are being stared at and judged whilst they have fun and exercise.

Juustanothermnetter Tue 19-Feb-13 18:47:35

This is why I'm too embarrassed to take my baby swimming sad I know I need to lose the weight firm 2 babies in less than 2 years but I've not yet found the energy (lack of sleep).

Please don't judge. Some people are slim, skinny, fat, obese. If they are your own children you can do something about it, but they aren't. God forbid you or your children end up overweight sad

SugarPasteGreyhound Tue 19-Feb-13 18:47:39

However I think the op could've been phrased better so as not to cause offence.

I am currently 2 stone into a 5 stone weight loss programme that will hopefully get me to a bmi of 24.

Do you know what I find noticeable on this thread OP?

The one person determined to make other people feel disgusted.

For me, that's easier to spot than overweight (in your opinion) swimming.

I mean, how dare they come out in public and offend you eh?

If as an adult you are overweight then that is up to you

I'd give up now if I were you OP.

howdoyouknowjenny Tue 19-Feb-13 18:48:23

Don't be ridiculous! Of course we would be shocked by the number of overweight children in this country. It is appalling, we shouldn't be normalising it.

The OP is saying she pointed and laughed, for gods sake... Just that she was shocked. The number of children in this country being set up for a lifetime of health problems by parents that aren't shocked or think that what is actually obese is an acceptable weight for a child.

MrsLouisTheroux Tue 19-Feb-13 18:48:33

Agree Katy

Fluffy1234 Tue 19-Feb-13 18:48:33

I used to have a skinny DC. A few months on and my DC has gained quite a bit of weight thanks to his epilepsy medication. I hate people like you OP.

And attitudes like yours will drive overweight people away from exercise. Well done. hmm

crashdoll Tue 19-Feb-13 18:48:44

Another one who just wants to say thank you for reminding me that theswimming pool is indeed fully of judgey bitches people.

CoffeeMum Tue 19-Feb-13 18:49:16

pingu - you're getting a bashing already, but if it's any consolation, I took DS swimming today and thought exactly the same thing. Nobody was hugely obese, but I did notice that most of the swimmers seemed to be carrying a few extra pounds [and i absolutely count MYSELF among them, and made a mental note to come back without DS and do some serious exercise!]
You are right, it's great that anyone is exercising, and I don't think it's unfair to note something like this - it seems to reflect a societal trend. Hasn't some highflying Head of Obesity just annouced an initiative to give overweight teenagers surgery as it's such a massive problem?
PuddleJumper - not sure it's exactly the same as noting Muslims or disabled people at the pool? Isn't it more pertinent to mention seeing someone overweight at a place of exercise as opposed to a place of religious worship?

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 18:49:59

I have been very overweight for years myself. However, I try really really hard to ensure that my children are not overweight. I haul my ass to the park when I don't want to and stand getting cold, wet and muddy to ensure they exercise.

I just am really shocked that there were so many children who were very overweight.

VoldemortsNipple Tue 19-Feb-13 18:50:24

Maybe you would prefare it if their parents locked them indoors out of sight, hmm

On the other hand, my underweight Ds has spent the day indoors on the xbox and had MacDonald's for lunch. Maybe you could judge me instead!

slatternlymother Tue 19-Feb-13 18:50:36

I don't think the OP meant to offend people; I think her OP was badly worded, but she was just noticing a trend and commenting on it.

I'm not fat, but I'm not thin either. I do worry about how I look in my bathers sometimes. But people don't have to look at me if they don't like what they see. They have self control, they can look away.

Unless, of course I'm just too gorgeous for them to contain themselves....

<seductively eats curry>

twinklesparkles Tue 19-Feb-13 18:50:38


Although the lesiure centre here do days/sessions for overweight people .. So maybe that's why it seemed like there were a lot of people there today

At least they were exercising

howdoyouknowjenny Tue 19-Feb-13 18:50:55

Isn't saying

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TuftyFinch Tue 19-Feb-13 18:51:24

I hope you did lots of tutting then left promptly. What on earth were these overweight people thinking! Going swimming in half term. Tut. I bet they were having fun until you turned up judging and tutting.
There must be a swimming pool that only allows slim people. Must be. Try Google.
I'd also suggest ringing the Daily Mail.

CheerfulYank Tue 19-Feb-13 18:51:30

I don't go swimming either, for this reason. And I love it. sad

MsNobodyAgain Tue 19-Feb-13 18:51:31

Horrible post.

I have twins who eat the same thing. One is skinny as a rake, one is overweight. Don't be so quick to judge.

Howdoyouknowjenny - I can promise you that, as an overweight child and as an overweight adult, I knew when people were staring and judging. I know these attitudes exist, and they make daily life a misery, as well as making it very difficult to trust anyone who says they like me.

AuntLucyInPeru Tue 19-Feb-13 18:52:53

When I took my 4yr old DS swimming to the public pool I was terrified he was going to ask loud questions about the overweight people around us. He'd just done his 'healthy eating' module in school and was newly interested in the range of body sizes. Not a conversation I wanted to have with him in public!

Floggingmolly Tue 19-Feb-13 18:53:09

as a society we are so much bigger than I had remembered the last time I went swimming. What a bizarre comment confused
The 50 odd people in a swimming pool at any given time doesn't really reflect society as a whole, you know. Maybe all the larger people stayed home last time you were there.

And this is why I won't go swimming.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Tue 19-Feb-13 18:54:06

I took was pretty shocked when there was a school in swimming at the same time as me. When I was wee, there was maybe a couple of fat kids in the year (who were in reality slightly overweight).

In this classic of maybe 20 more than half of them were visibly overweight and three or four were well into the obese category.

It is shocking and we should be shocked. These are children FGS, children who may well die before there parents. People need to stop being so coy about fat people, unlike being black or Muslim it is a health issues which affects us all and is getting much much worse.

OP perhaps you should start a new thread and think more carefully how you word it. Then you might get the discussion you want.

Bonemachine Tue 19-Feb-13 18:54:16

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penelopepissstop Tue 19-Feb-13 18:54:16

Oh it's OK - I judge you for not being able to spell.
Did you go and stand next to all these fat people to show how good you look OP?

StuntGirl Tue 19-Feb-13 18:55:21

I can promise you that, as an overweight child and as an overweight adult, I knew when people were staring and judging. I know these attitudes exist, and they make daily life a misery


Sparklingbrook Tue 19-Feb-13 18:55:23

I think you were maybe ok to think it but unreasonable to start a thread about it?

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 18:56:21

I really really didn't think 'yuck they look horrible', that really wasn't what went through my mind. It was more of a social wake up call. It is a really huge problem for society. It was well over 50% of the children in the pool; and these are the childre who are exercising. How many children are not exercising and are even bigger than the ones in the pool?

pigletmania Tue 19-Feb-13 18:56:31

Well op you would be complaining if they were sitting on their arses watching Jeremy vile. They can't win can they! Yes at least they are making an effort to,exercise, op yabvvvvvvvvu. Let's see how you look so we can have a good gawp

Tweasels Tue 19-Feb-13 18:56:33

Ah, another joyful thread.

Not Goady at all.

Overweight people exercising? Well I've heard it all now. How dare they. shock

YouTheCat Tue 19-Feb-13 18:56:38

So staring at them and making them feel self-concious is the thing to do then? May be if judgey little buggers hadn't poked fun at me for being very slightly over-weight as a child, I might have not had the massive body image problems I had as an adult?

How about teaching our children to be bloody kind to each other?

MyHeadWasInTheSandNowNot Tue 19-Feb-13 18:56:52

I think the OP is making an observation about how, in general, our children are getting fatter. She isn't pointing the finger at indiviuals and mocking them. There is a difference.

I agree with her, as a society, we have a problem... how it should be addressed I don't know - but the current 'tax on soft drinks' isn't the way. The govt should not be allowed to decide what is and what isn't good for us to run - they can't even run the bloody country, they shouldn't be getting a say in our food shopping.

Anyway, that's a different rant blush

Oh & FWIW & if it matters - I am seriously overweight and sadly hate wearing a swimming costume because of the judgy pants around, I just don't feel the OP is one of them.

RugBugs Tue 19-Feb-13 18:57:14

I think OP you would be more shocked had you gone to my local leisure centre today. It was almost deserted sad at least in term time the local junior school is usually in attendance when we go.

TidyDancer Tue 19-Feb-13 18:57:26

OP I believe you have been intentionally inflammatory. You have posted this on the most high traffic board, without even asking an AIBU! I am sick of attitudes like yours, you are the reason, as evidenced on this thread, why so many overweight people are too shy to exercise publicly.

To anyone who the OP has upset, I would like to tell you that when I started exercising I weighed nearly 19 stone. No one at my gym or swimming pool stared at me. I started a thread when my overweight friend was scared to come to the gym with me. Have a look here if you want to check it out.

Booyhoo Tue 19-Feb-13 18:57:52

OP do you comment on the number of over weight people you see in asda or on the bus or in work? why do you feel the need to be shocked at seeing over weight people in a place where excercise is the purpose for being there?

i dont understand the reason for your post really.

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 19-Feb-13 18:59:23

I feel a bit bad about Pingu being piled on. I don't think she meant to offend and it is a fact that if you go to a swimming pool in Britain, you may see more jiggling than you would have twenty years ago.

I just hate to think that people are judged for their weight. I really don't think people understand obesity or what to do about it. Why do so few people lose weight and keep it off? It really can't be because they're stupid or lazy. Very, very few people lose weight and keep it off for any length of time. Those who do tend to have extremely hard regimes of diet, exercise, and constant calorie counting. I, for one, couldn't live like that. I seriously doubt that the vast majority of thin people live like that.

slatternlymother Tue 19-Feb-13 18:59:29

OP but what do you suggest is done about is problem? Because it has been going on for a loooooong time, you know.

EstherRancid Tue 19-Feb-13 19:01:18

OP, are you reading many of the replies you're getting or just enjoying the fact you've managed to rile so many people?

kerala Tue 19-Feb-13 19:01:32

I dont read the post in an insulting way OP is stating a fact. Its true - the population now is an entirely different shape to when I was a teenager. A bigger proportion of people are now overweight. It is a problem are we not allowed to comment on it? There are many factors leading to where we are now /marketing/availability of high fat and sugar foods/eating habits. That thread about crisp eating was illuminating.

TuftyFinch Tue 19-Feb-13 19:01:47

I'm like Katy, I'm 7.5 stone but eat like a horse. I walk a lot but if I did nothing it wouldn't change my weight. It's genes. Pure and simple.
We all know that obesity is on the rise.

slatternlymother Tue 19-Feb-13 19:01:57

I'm afraid I feel like your OP is a bit like going:

OMG there's this HUGE HUGE problem in Africa; people are starving, what shall we do??

Where have you been?

SuckingDiesel Tue 19-Feb-13 19:02:09

Tell me, OP, do your wear your judgy pants under your swimming costume? Or over it, superhero style hmm

I'm overweight. I go swimming and to the gym. Thankfully the people around me seem to have more to worry about than my dress size.

kerala Tue 19-Feb-13 19:03:11

slatternly I dont agree. I think it has got much much worse over the last 10 years or so - it seems the government does too hence all these initiatives and handwringing. It used to be an occasional person was overweight now in some areas it is the norm. Slamming the OP for stating the obvious isn't helpful.

Dawndonna Tue 19-Feb-13 19:03:59

Pingu My oldest ds had periods of being overweight. It was due to the steriods he needed to keep him alive. So, next time you're shocked because you think it's the fault of the parents, think again.

McPheetStink Tue 19-Feb-13 19:04:12

Oh dear


I'm going swimming next week with the baby, if you fancy coming to see my fat butt wink

youmeatsix Tue 19-Feb-13 19:04:21

do SO many people seriously not go swimming because someone else thinks they are fat? really? i cant feasibly see someone elses's opinion stop me doing something i liked. People are becoming larger, across the age ranges, the OP merely stated she was staggard at how much. SOME people cannot help being over weight, for various reasons, but a lot can help it, so i cant compare that like someone else did, the same as being muslim, disabled or black
I am a recovering anorexic, people had NO qualms voicing their opinion on my weight and how i looked, yet its offensive to say it about fat people?

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 19:04:53

I have no issues with overweight people exercising. I have no issues with overweight children coming to the pool to have fun and not even realise they are also exercising at the same time. That is not what I originally posted for. I am not offended by overweight children being in the pool as so many of you think I am. That is not what I was so shocked by.

I was shocked because 20 years ago if there were 35 children in the pool, perhaps 8 of them would have been overweight, and of those 8 about 2 of them would have been obese.

Today of the 35 children in the pool, around 20 of them were overweight, and of those 20 at least 12 of them were obese.

It was very obvious to me today because I was in a pool and they had hardly any clothes on. Just like adults, children can look a lot less overweight if they have clothes on. With their costumes/trunks on, there was no where to hide the weight.

It is not bad to make a comment that this is a terrible thing for our society. This is really worrying.

Bluelightsandsirens Tue 19-Feb-13 19:07:09

Pingu you must have known your thread would offend lots of people for very many reasons.

What did you think you would gain from posting? <head tilt>

Theicingontop Tue 19-Feb-13 19:08:28

Yep, cheers for confirming what I thought people think when they see me at the pool. What a lovely post.

littlemisssarcastic Tue 19-Feb-13 19:10:28

Agree with ReluctantMother.

People who are overweight can feel too embarrassed to go swimming and threads like yours could put someone who was overweight off of going swimming. Did you think of that before you posted OP?

I thought not.

Someone who was summoning up the courage to take their DC's swimming this half term could now read this and decide not to go, all because there are people with your fattist attitude around.

I am lost for words at the insensitivity behind your thread OP. sad

DizzyHoneyBee Tue 19-Feb-13 19:10:58

Don't be so judgemental. I am overweight but I can get in the pool and swim two miles straight off, no stopping in in about 1 hr 40 minutes. Can you?

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 19:13:23

I personally think that ONE of the major reasons for the massive weight gain is that processed food is very cheap and very quick and easy. Rather than cook from scratch, which takes up time and costs a lot of money; more and more people are buying ready made up meals or/and sauces. More people buy jars of bolognese sauce or packets of casserole mix or just pure ready made lasagna etc.

They are filled with salt and sugar and fat. They ready meals are cheaper and quicker but are also ADDICTIVE. We are cooking food for our children which makes them want more salt, sugar and fat. We are teaching their taste buds to crave salty, sugary and fatty foods.

Our children (and adults) are ADDICTIVE.

When I was a child, quick and easy processed food was canned baked beans. Today baked beans are often seen as a vegetable/food group.

ambercat Tue 19-Feb-13 19:14:03

I agree Pingu i went swimming last week and was shocked by the amount of overweight children, alot were accompanied by an overweight parent. Cant all be down to genes.

undercoverhousewife Tue 19-Feb-13 19:15:13

Posters are wrongly bashing the OP: she didn't phrase her first post elegantly but since then has gone out of her way to explain that she was exclaiming at a lightbulb moment of hers on realising that a "media" scare story was actually true - LOADS of kids are overweight. That doesn't mean she thinks fat people are disgusting, or shouldn't be swimming, or offend her in any way - just that she has realised that we as a society have a ticking time bomb of a problem and that adults should take more responsibility to ensure that their DC are not so fat. Overweight children are a problem because the chances are they will become obese adults with all the health issues (not to mention lack of self esteem) that go with being obese, and most people wouldn't wish that on their children.

If posters jump on anyone who ventures an opinion that having an obesity epidemic in our society is a problem and not a GOOD thing, then we cannot begin to sensibly address the issue and actually do something constructive about it.

Hey OP let me know next time you're going and I'll come too. Give you another overweight person to gawp at. Sadly my dc are all normal weight. Sorry to disappoint.

Btw - overweight people are not necessarily 'sad' - though keep judging them like you are and you might make them that way.

slatternlymother Tue 19-Feb-13 19:16:08

pingu you're right; but this is obvious. We all know this; you should exercise, and eat fresh foods. But people don't. There are a large variety of reasons as to why.

I just... Don't really see the point here. There's nothing you've said here that hasn't been said a million times before. And I'm not saying that in a nasty way either.

Have you apologised for offending and upsetting people here, Pingu?

redrubyshoes Tue 19-Feb-13 19:17:48

I go swimming twice a week with an 'overweight' friend. She was a large child, a large teenager and is now a large adult.

I literally had to hold her hand when we started exercising together as she was terrified of the stares and comments she would get.

We started off with light jogging as she couldn't swim, then she got a bike and we cycled together.

Yep she got nasty comments from twats as we jogged around the park but stuck with it. Then she got swimming lessons at the age of 34.

We now swim 2kms a week and the weight is slowly going and she is toning up. I am so fucking proud of my friend.

I was always a very athletic child and I believe in 'muscle memory' my friend was not and not encouraged to be so by her parents.

She also does boxercise and spin classes now. Down from 19 stone to 14.

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 19:18:17

I really think that to veto people's freedom of speech is sweeping a MASSIVE social problem under the carpet.

Oh dear, oh no, nobody can upset the increasingly overweight British society!!!

It is nieve and quite frankly stupid to think we can't mention it or make comment on it for fear of upsetting people.

I am not a MP. I am not looking for votes. I can say what is a scary and increasing fact in our society.

For those who get all shirty and upset because I have mentioned we have a huge problem in society, because they take it personally because their or their children's weight is a problem is just putting their head in the sand.

This is too big and serious a problem to worry about offending.

WilsonFrickett Tue 19-Feb-13 19:18:34

Stop piling on! If you haven't been around children or indeed visited a pool in the school holidays for a while you probably will be shocked at the number of obese children there. OK fair enough, I'm not sure what the OP hoped to gain by her post but I do agree with a pp that she has had a 'lightbulb' moment.

Kids are getting fatter. And I know I am not BU in thinking that's a bad thing.

littlemisssarcastic Tue 19-Feb-13 19:21:23

Your friend is an inspiration redrubyshoes.

I have to say that the people who have posted on this thread to say they are overweight and go swimming have given me hope. I would love to take DD swimming but feel so exposed in a swimming costume that I have never taken DD swimming on my own. sad
I want to change this, and reading this thread has made me realise I wont be the only overweight mum there.

Thank you.

I agree with you OP. it IS shocking the amount of overweight people and even more shocking at the amount of overweight children.

Why everyone has to pussy foot around the issue i'll never know, I find it very sad when you see overweight children, yes some children and adults are overweight due to medication etc but the majority of people are overweight because they are greedy and lazy.

I have been overweight in the past, but I did something about it, I now exercise regularly and we all eat a good diet. I was lazy and greedy and have no qualms about admitting that.

I couldn't care less if people disagree with me, it is MY opinion, if anyone chooses not to exercise because they care what people think clearly do not want to lose weight.

AuntieMaggie Tue 19-Feb-13 19:27:53

Exactly why me and most of my female friends won't go swimming either including those that aren't overweight.

I would say most (80-90%) of the overweight adults I know have various health problems that contribute to their weight one way or another which is why I'm not shocked when I see overweight adults or children. Infact it doesn't even cross my mind.

dawndonna I hope your ds is ok.

redrubyshoes Tue 19-Feb-13 19:29:28


I am doubly proud of my friend as she is literally terrified of water and I tried to teach her to swim when she was 19 but she hated the water and being seen in a swim suit in public.

I used to beat her at the pool by at least 4 lengths but now she is right behind me!

YouTheCat Tue 19-Feb-13 19:30:01

I'd rather be lazy and greedy than self-righteous.

Sparklingbrook Tue 19-Feb-13 19:30:13

So is thread like a 'raise awareness' thing? A public service announcement?

Really? I'd rather not have obesity related illnesses, which will most likely happen

FanFuckingTastic Tue 19-Feb-13 19:31:04

I don't find overweight people shocking, given the nature of society and the way things have very much changed from low food supply and hard physical work, to massive over abundance of foods and very sedentary lifestyles.

I think it takes considerable effort to avoid the fat trap as you get older, obviously for kids it's easier to keep them slimmer while they are young, but even then there is a point where you lose complete control over what they might eat.

YouTheCat Tue 19-Feb-13 19:31:53

Yes, really.

littlemisssarcastic Tue 19-Feb-13 19:33:50

smile Well done to you and your friend redrubyshoes.

Sometimes, all it takes is a little kindness to help someone to help themselves to make changes for the better in their lives.

I really wish more people showed kindness, instead of being concerned by a persons weight.

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 19:35:21

FunFuckingTastic - these are children from age 4. There is no way the amount of primary aged children who were overweight were due to ill health. It is due to uneducated parenting.

ChestyNut Tue 19-Feb-13 19:35:33

Fuck me......fat people.....exercising?!

Whatever next! They'll be eating vegetables next hmm

Here you are OP biscuit

Low fat, just for you.

DizzyHoneyBee Tue 19-Feb-13 19:35:48

For the record, it is me that is overweight, my kids are as slender as can be.

redrubyshoes Tue 19-Feb-13 19:36:00

I do have to agree to a certain extent with the OP.

My friend was 9 stone at 9 years old because her parents could not cook and fed her fast food and junk and ignored the fact she couldn't even run up he stairs. A bad diet was ingrained from day one.

Her wake up call was when she fell down TWO steps and shattered her ankle. The surgeon told her very firmly that had she been a standard weight for her height she would have walked away or had a slight sprain.

The extra seven stone she was carrying was more than the bones could bear.

piprabbit Tue 19-Feb-13 19:37:18

I'm a fat swimmer. I was a fat swimmer 20 years ago too.
And I pretty sure I could out swim the OP then and now [fatsmug emoticon].

FanFuckingTastic Tue 19-Feb-13 19:39:37

Of all the children in the school my daughter attends there are barely any who I would consider obese, so it must be a local phenomenon.

FanFuckingTastic Tue 19-Feb-13 19:40:45

And yes, I am a fat swimmer.

gimmecakeandcandy Tue 19-Feb-13 19:44:03

Overweight children is not 'normal' or a good thing at all. It is sad that parents are letting their children get fat - and unhealthy - and giving them a lifetime of eating and health problems. I don't think the op worded things well but I see what she is saying.

motherinferior Tue 19-Feb-13 19:44:34

I went through our local gym on the way to have my eyebrows threaded the other day (ahem, I do go swimming as well, honestly).

There was a quite seriously obese woman on the treadmill, all among the buff young blokes.

And I thought "wow, go for it, girl". I was so impressed.

AuntieMaggie Tue 19-Feb-13 19:45:06

You would stare at my 6 year old niece as she is overweight. What you don't know is that she has an eating disorder and doesn't eat enough to feed a bird most days.

AllYoursBabooshka Tue 19-Feb-13 19:45:42

I would rather be a little more positive about these kids.

They are out swimming and getting some exercise rather than sat in a fast food place or in front of the television.

If you are truly concerned about the health of British children then by all means start a thread about it, you will no doubt get a lot of posters who share your worry.

But you shouldn't come on MN and post about how shocked you were by all the fat people you saw swimming today and expect people to not to be offended.

ChairmanWow Tue 19-Feb-13 19:46:03

Jesus, obesity on the rise? Why did nobody say anything, or, like, report it on the news accompanied by a a surreptitious shot of a large person walking down the road but only their body or something. I'm shocked to the core at this news.

Please be more thoughtful about peoples body image. For some being in public in swimwear is a huge, huge deal and now as many PP have said there is the added thought of judgy pants folk inwardly tutting at them. Personally it took me a lot of years and counselling to overcome bad body image issues.

There are ways of discussing this without making others feel inadequate.

babyfirefly1980 Tue 19-Feb-13 19:47:34

Rewrite your post but replace the word 'overweight' with disabled or black or Muslim. Is it still an acceptable attitude to have towards others?

Agree with this poster.

WilsonFrickett Tue 19-Feb-13 19:50:19

Rewrite your post but replace the word 'overweight' with disabled or black or Muslim. Is it still an acceptable attitude to have towards others?

Agree with this poster.

^^ I don't, sorry. Although I do think the OP is badly worded, there is nothing negative about being black or Muslim. There are negative consequences to being obese though.

thistlelicker Tue 19-Feb-13 19:52:33

I'm fat! I like swimming and as a \/ to op just ate a kit Kat while I typed this! Stereotypical! God forbid none of your kids are obese and end up with a complex because of people like u ! Arse !

FanFuckingTastic Tue 19-Feb-13 19:53:20

Yeah, one of which is that people judge the fuck out of you.

lljkk Tue 19-Feb-13 19:53:36

YANBU Pingu. Sorry you're getting a hard time.

Annakin31 Tue 19-Feb-13 19:55:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsDeVere Tue 19-Feb-13 19:58:58

There are more overweight children and young people now.
It was pretty rare when i was a kid to see a young woman who looked pregnant e.g. carried a lot of weight around her belly. Now it is very common.

There are loads of reasons why. I think the main one is the availability and quality of food. When I was young you ate at home. There was a chippie that opened at tea time.

Now people have access to food at any time and most of that food is crap.
The food that is sold is full of hidden sugar and fat. Its a bloody minefield to work out what is what.

It is very easy to become overweight and if it was so simple to lose it why would anyone be fat?

I have never had an issue with my weight. I am glad I don't have to put up with people staring at me and making assumptions about me, how lazy or greedy I am, just because of my size.

I am lazy and I am greedy btw. But I can go swimming without anyone making tutting noises.

My DS1 is tall and slim. When he was about 8 he ballooned in size and looked chubby. I had no idea why. His shape just changed as he hit puberty. He could have quite easily have stayed that way. Its not like he is the sporty type! But he is not a big foodie either so he has not ended up an obese teenager.

It would have only taken a few too many calories a week, adding up over a couple of years to get him there though.

We are all only a few too many calories a week away from being overweight

MrsDeVere Tue 19-Feb-13 20:00:41

The black and muslim comparison puzzles me too.

Being overweight is not anything like being black confused

maddening Tue 19-Feb-13 20:03:16

They are in the right place.

I hope you didn't make your distaste at the sight of them obvious. Nothing like making someone shy away from exercise because they feel more awkward than they do already.

everything bad is like being black MrsD

Did you not know that?

I'm joking btw. Joke. I'm not suggesting black = bad.

motherinferior Tue 19-Feb-13 20:05:01

The analogy, I think, is with discrimination: that it's a group of people being singled out and effectively criminalised.

Personally I feel v ambiguous about it as being labelled fat as a child by my family has left me with lifelong Issues.

countrykitten Tue 19-Feb-13 20:05:19

Think that people have unfairly jumped on the OP (en masse as per usual) for a poorly worded post - I think that there is a bit of wilful misunderstanding going on so that people can be outraged. Child obesity is a very worrying phenomenon and imo the OP was trying to say this albeit a little clumsily.

I too am rather confused at the very misguided black and Muslim comparison. Some posters are truly very confused....

nellyjelly Tue 19-Feb-13 20:06:25

Ffs OP making an observation not a judgement.

countrykitten Tue 19-Feb-13 20:07:06

And who on earth has 'criminalised' black, Muslim or overweight people? WTF?

moosemama Tue 19-Feb-13 20:09:10

Well, I am one of those dreadful overweight people, but you won't catch me in the swimming baths, precisely because of people like you.

What you wouldn't know from looking at me is that less than a year ago I was two stone lighter, very fit and did circuit training 6 days a week. Since then I have had an injury which immobilised me for several months and a sudden decline in a health problem which means I am unable to exercise.

Swimming, or at least movement in water would be a good way for me to restart exercising, but I am so distressed by my weight-gain and unhappy with the way I look that I simply don't have the confidence to put a swimsuit on.

Fwiw, I am vegetarian, don't eat processed food and have 3 dcs and a dh who are all built like whippets!

Perhaps you didn't mean your OP to sound like you judge every single overweight person you see, but it doesn't help people like me to think that others are looking them up and down and thinking about how fat I am.

If you have a point to make about your concern for the rise on obesity, there are lots of other ways you could have raised the subject for debate without targetting overweight people who are trying to do the right thing and get some exercise.

maddening Tue 19-Feb-13 20:09:48

And it is fine to discuss the issues and possible solutions to help people - just as you would help an person with anorexia but sometimes the language banded around is less than sensitive to what is a big issue to lots of people for many many different reasons - it is not simple for all.

wonderingsoul Tue 19-Feb-13 20:10:57

your right all us fattys should be In a zoo where people with perfect bodies. like your self of course and point and laugh.

don't forget the doughnuts to throw at us!!!

crashdoll Tue 19-Feb-13 20:11:18

Not only poorly worded but was there even a point?! It's hardly a revelation that we, as a nation, are getting bigger and unhealthier!!

twentythirteen Tue 19-Feb-13 20:11:22

Reluctant mother, your concise eloquence has made my day, thank you.

Rooneyisalwaysmoaning Tue 19-Feb-13 20:11:24

I haven't noticed anything like this proportion of people being overweight when I've gone swimming...or out to the shops....or to a wildlife park, etc etc.

It isn't like people only show up as overweight when they wear swimming costumes. How come you're not noticing them everywhere? That's what puzzles me. And why so many in your swimming pool and not everyone's, if it's a huge social problem?

Tweasels Tue 19-Feb-13 20:13:54

An observation, would be to observe it and think in your head "Oh, I'm surprised by how many overweight children there are in this pool"

To then think "Ooh, I'll post that on Mumsnet", is where the problem arises.

This is AIBU. I don't think the OP is unreasonable for noticing/worrying about childhood weight issues, but she is unreasonable for starting a badly worded, ill thought out thread about it.

We all notice lots of things daily, but here is not necessarily the right place to mention them.

Rooneyisalwaysmoaning Tue 19-Feb-13 20:13:56

Oh and also, I eat a lot of junk food OP - and I'm not overweight, nor are my children. Your premise is wrong. Cheap bad food isn't why people are overweight.

carlywurly Tue 19-Feb-13 20:15:55

Totally agree with country kitten -

We're talking about children here, not adults. Presumably adults are enabling eating patterns which have led to obesity in the majority of cases for young children, medical conditions clearly excepted.

I live in a very non posh outdoorsy, rural area and its very unusual to see an overweight child here. I can't think of any at all at my dc's school. I'm regularly shocked when I visit our nearest big city though, and I don't think there's anything wrong with saying that it's dismaying to see overweight children. it really is, especially when it causes them visible mobility issues and I'm sorry if that touches nerves for some.

Maybe83 Tue 19-Feb-13 20:16:50

Sorry it's not the same as race or disability comparison at all.

it is truly shocking to see so many children so over weight it has a devasting effect on their health and sorry I don't think it's acceptable. yes some children are overweight due to health conditions but realistically many aren't. I read so many threads tearing apart different types of parenting and mention weight and people are up in arms! It's most down to unbalanced diets lack of excersise. As are most people s weight problems I piled on weight because of the rubbish I was eating and because I was to lazy to get up of my ass. Change that and guess what lost weight hardly rocket science. Children's diets are largely in parents control so ultimately bucks stops with us I think.

MrsDeVere Tue 19-Feb-13 20:17:28

Overweight people might well have to deal with a lot of crap but its unlikely they will be stopped and searched whilst walking down the street minding their own...
or pulled over and asked 'whose car are you driving sir?'
or have people clutch their handbags a little bit closer when they walk past..

Lizzylou Tue 19-Feb-13 20:18:15

I think the OP has a valid (albeit badly worded) point, there very obviously are more overweight/obese children now than when I was younger (as a podgy 12 year old I certainly felt very alone).

Diet and lack of exercise are obviously a concern. Here for a family of 4, it costs almost £10 to go for a swim, which is out of reach for a lot of families to do one a regular basis. Of course there are other ways to exercise but our weather is not that condusive to outdoor exercise and it is dark by 4/5pm a lot of the year.

I agree with MrsDV's post. It is all too easy to gain weight and all too hard to lose.

exoticfruits Tue 19-Feb-13 20:19:37

There are a lot of overweight people around -full stop. At least they were getting exercise which is all to the good-they don't want anyone putting them off.

ouryve Tue 19-Feb-13 20:19:59

You're right, OP. They're exercising, rather than sitting on their arses.

(No I haven't read beyond the OP, yet.)

crashdoll Tue 19-Feb-13 20:20:01

I agree there is no way it is comparable to disability or race.

It still made me (and others) feel really fucking shit though.

maras2 Tue 19-Feb-13 20:20:38

Address your own issues and leave the fat kids alone.They will eventually slim down.

Amaxapax Tue 19-Feb-13 20:22:44

You know, here's the thing: people don't lose weight because someone else makes them feel bad about it. We can all stand around pretending to be concerned about health and shouting 'won't someone think of the children,' but that won't make a difference.
I was a fat kid. I did a lot of sport when I was younger, but I was a picky eater and always chose high carb, processed foods when I had the option. When I stopped doing so much sport and had more control over what I ate, I got much heavier. I was extremely aware and ashamed of my weight. I hated myself. I wouldn't talk to my parents about it. I became very depressed and developed some mental health issues. But being called fat or ugly by other people did nothing to change my situation. And trust me, even when people weren't saying it, I had a pretty good idea if what they were thinking. I made a choice a few years ago, and now work very hard to stay fit and well.
My point is, why make this observation? You aren't helping anyone. You aren't pointing out something we aren't all aware of already. You have come across as smug and judgmental. Want to do something? Write to your MP about the cost of good quality foods. Work with your child's school to develop healthier meals for lunch. Set up a group for your children and their friends to help them learn to cook quality food from scratch. But people don't tend to lose weight because other people make them look bad. You aren't making an observation. You are judging. So mind your own business. Worry about your own health. Your faux concern isn't doing anything to help those kids.

WilsonFrickett Tue 19-Feb-13 20:25:46

They will eventually slim down.
What are you basing that on exactly Maras? Isn't that the whole point of the the problem, that obese children don't magically slim down? Yes some will, but some will stay obese, and then obesity will become normalised and the nation will get bigger and bigger.

howdoyouknowjenny Tue 19-Feb-13 20:25:56

That's the point Mara they won't 'eventually slim down' all the evidence suggests that fat children = fat adults.

But let's all bury our heads in the sand for fear of offending!!! We'll just deal with the consequences later I suppose?

MrsDeVere Tue 19-Feb-13 20:26:25

I bet it did crash. I can tell from the visceral posts that it really hit a nerve.

People are very defensive. I would be too. I know I would.

I have my own issues about appearance and I know that sick feeling if someone hits the wrong note.

But I don't think the OP was saying 'ewwwww'. I doubt that she has ever experienced judgement about her weight either.

I am guessing that the majority of the women on here would prefer not to be overweight. It would make life a lot easier surely?

So what are the things that are a barrier to losing weight? The feeling of being judged when exercising must be one, based on the reactions to the OP.
I would be bamboozled by the sheer amount of food and the hidden ingredients. Apart from the occasional expose of junk food, how the hell are you supposed to know that some innocuous looking foods contain 68 spoonfuls of sugar [confused'

Wow I am overweight but go to the gym to do something about it but never swimming. So the OP was stating a fact but what gets me is the fact someone was even looking at people and the first thought was not aww how lovely kids out swimming but oh my god that/those child/ chidren is/are fat. Just confirms what I knew really that people will judge you immediately on how you look

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 20:27:33

No Maras2 - you are wrong. The whole point is that they will most likely NOT slim down.

HorseDNAinJellyAndIcecream Tue 19-Feb-13 20:27:45

wow. poor pingu! what shocks me is the 6 page (could be 7 any minute now) pile on, where the very first post attacks the OP and calls her small minded, and tells her that it's because of "people like you" that other posters don't x,y or z. After the first two pages of posters ripping in to the op anybody who posts to take another swipe at the op needst to rein them self in too.

Rooneyisalwaysmoaning Tue 19-Feb-13 20:28:19

'But let's all bury our heads in the sand for fear of offending!!! We'll just deal with the consequences later I suppose? '

well what are we supposed to be doing about it? Their weight is none of our business.

Rooneyisalwaysmoaning Tue 19-Feb-13 20:29:53

hmmm 68 spoonfuls of sugar? what IS that food? grin

uh. gimme.

usualsuspect Tue 19-Feb-13 20:32:12

I'm puzzled by this, I know we have an obesity problem in this country, but at my Grandchildrens school there are very few overweight children.

Rooneyisalwaysmoaning Tue 19-Feb-13 20:34:35

Same here US. There are maybe about 10 slightly chubby looking kids at ours, and one child who's very overweight indeed. but that's it.

where are all the fat kids we hear about?

howdoyouknowjenny Tue 19-Feb-13 20:35:51

Yes it is. It's a social issue with consequences for all of us.

Further escalating costs to the NHS, meaning less funding for unavoidable illness.

Higher price for the occasional soft drink purchase I make. Due to so many people not considering or caring about the choices they make for their/dc's diets

usualsuspect Tue 19-Feb-13 20:38:04

I certainly don't see any more overweight children then I did when I was at school.There were a few then as there are now.

The last time I went swimming most of the kids looked a normal size to me.

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 20:38:50

Who's business is it then? I don't think it is enough to say that it is only the parent's business because clearly the parents are not doing enough or have lack of educuation to know why their child is so very overweight. There may be a few with health issues, but there is no way that health issues are covering all the children who are overweight.

Rooney, food with ready made packets and jars can very easily have lots and lots of spoonfuls of sugar and salt, which if made from scratch, would not include the salt and food. Jars from Lloyd Grossman for example are full of sugar and salt and fat.

Our taste buds are used to highly sugared and salted food, they then crave the salt and sugar. So if we are feeding children that kind of food from a very young age, then that is what they want to eat.

It is very hard, I work so I want to give my children food that is quick and easy. However, normally this goes hand in hand with processed food.

FabulousFreaks Tue 19-Feb-13 20:40:24

What a fucking lovely op post NOT

countrykitten Tue 19-Feb-13 20:41:12

I teach at a very expensive school US and I cannot think of one overweight child. However, I used to teach in a very poor and deprived area and the difference was huge. These things in children tend to be linked to poverty - not news surely? - and so perhaps if you visited a different area your perceptions may be very different.

moosemama Tue 19-Feb-13 20:42:00

HorseDNA, I take your point and apologise to the OP. I shouldn't have used the words 'people like you' it was knee-jerk and unnecessary.

What I should have said was that I won't put on a swimsuit because of my fear that people will have the same reaction that the OP did.

I think the confusion between the adult/child weight thing has arisen because the title states 'overweight people' whereas the OP does actually only discuss children and teenagers in her post.

I think it's the title of the thread that feels like a judgement of overweight people like myself. I guess seeing that is a bit like your worst fears about what others really think about your weight being realised.

maddening Tue 19-Feb-13 20:43:31

And perhaps the fact that people think it's fine to treat the subject with such disdain is not helping the wider issue which is what the op is worried about -attitudes could be considered to be as much part of the issue as other issues surrounding the problem.

racingheart Tue 19-Feb-13 20:44:42

Their weight is none of our business.
But it is. The NHS is straining under the extra pressure due to our nation's obesity problems. Heart diease and diabetes drain the resources of the NHS, and they are preventable if people stop eating too much. Not comparable at all to someone being black or disabled. Those are not choices. Over eating, whilst a complex issue, is a choice.
We'd all be happily up in arms if a parent got their child drunk. We are already up in arms if a parent smacks a child. But to over feed and under exercise a child, to the point where their health and opportunities for the future are seriously jeopardised is still socially permissable. It's still taboo to criticise. It shouldn't be. It's wrong to let children get obese. It's as bad for their health long term as it would be to let them drink beer.

AllYoursBabooshka Tue 19-Feb-13 20:45:15

How do you know that the parents of these kids are not doing enough, they can't really win can they?

The children were spending their time doing a healthy activity and they get gawked at and a thread on Mumsnet started about them.

usualsuspect Tue 19-Feb-13 20:48:52

I live on a council estate.My grandchildrens school is on a council estate, hardly leafy suburbia.

usualsuspect Tue 19-Feb-13 20:49:40

That was to, countykitten.

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 20:50:42

Hopefully they didnt see you staring at them and wont be put off going swimming again. angry

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 20:53:07

The science is showing, although it is early days, that whilst under activity is an issue, the real issue for society getting bigger is what/how much they are eating. Especially WHAT they are eating.

I could swim non stop for an hour and not burn off 3500 calories. 3500 calories =1lb. Therefore, it is how many calories we eat that is the major factor in our weight.

However, if we don't eat much in volume but what we eat is very high in calories, we can very easily put on the weight.

countrykitten Tue 19-Feb-13 20:53:42

Well US perhaps your council estate is not in a very deprived area?

I think you are nitpicking tbh - the obesity issue in children exists and it is a bit silly of you to refute it on the grounds that you have seen very few overweight kids yourself.

FlouncingMintyy Tue 19-Feb-13 20:57:09

It is indeed very worrying op. I am a bit shocked as to how quickly we seem to have become one of the most overweight nations in the world. I've got a sneaky feeling that for the adults it is years of "dieting" (ironically!) that has led to this incessant weight gain but for children it is obviously something to do with lack of exercise/outdoors activity and the easy availability of junk food and our new snacking culture.

rodandtheemu Tue 19-Feb-13 21:00:56

I think the op could have worded it better - but childhood obesity is on the up, you cant deny that.

It is a concern as these are the young adults that will be admited to hospital with heart disease, diabetes, cancer and much more. It is a problem to the point where some of our borough school nurse will send a letter home stating that the child is obese. Which will utimatly be a drain on our NHS funds- sorry but its true.

Cheap,sugar laden,fatty foods are too easily available for low income familys that need to be educated on healthy eating - thats why the goverment are campaining it now.

Free range, healthy,organic food is more expensive than the cheap shite low income familys can afford. But then there are mac donalds, kfc, take aways galore - buying a chippy tea can be cheaper than buying and preparing a healthy low fat meal.

Over weight adults exercising is an amazing, tough comendable thing to do. I see it every day.

BUT parents have a duty of care to make sure there child does not get to this point. Thats why the schools are getting involved.

Education is the way forward on this. Yes there will be some people, thin as a rake but eats like a horse, over weight but eats like a pixi OR have a medical condition but the truth ismostly if the child is over weight its because they are eating too many calories than they are burning off.

Dont stick your heads in the sand people. We should be looking after our future.

moosemama Tue 19-Feb-13 21:03:15

That's true pingu, but we build muscle through exercise and greater muscle mass = greater calorie/fat burn. Neither exercise or diet alone is the solution.

I do agree though that we are in a situation where it is often hard to tell exactly what you are eating, unless you either only eat home-cooked food or are able to do all the calculations necessary to convert the nutritional information on food packaging.

Another factor is that highly processed food, full of palm oil, sugar and corn syrup etc is very often cheaper than buying fresh food. So people on limited budgets simply cannot afford to eat as healthily as they would like.

moosemama Tue 19-Feb-13 21:04:42

Cross posted with similar points to rodandtheemu.

It's quite localised I think. I work as a supply teacher and in most of the schools in one area I teach there are hardly any children who are overweight, none who are obese. Occasionally I travel further to a less affluent area ad come across more chubby overweight children, and more children who look pasty and unwell.

Walking through town where I live, you wouldn't think there was an obesity epidemic.

countrykitten Tue 19-Feb-13 21:05:55

Yes I agree overmydeadbody.

WhatsTheBuzz Tue 19-Feb-13 21:07:41

yep, there are overweight people... and underweight people - both are unhealthy... yawn.

crashdoll Tue 19-Feb-13 21:09:18

Your OP was not one which was trying to open a discussion about childhood obesity. You made an observation which came across really badly and to some, appeared as thought you were making a value judgment. It was extremely insensitive given that weight is an extremely sensitive topic.

AllYoursBabooshka Tue 19-Feb-13 21:11:20

Science is great isn't it? but it has very few answers on how to get healthy food
into these children on a daily basis.

We could put nothing but garden salads and tofu in front of them every day but it would do very little to benefit them if they are not eating it. Yes, some of these children would rather and do starve.

Healthy daily activities are the best way to change their all round attitude towards personal health and can lead to better eating.

We can pull out all the scientific facts we want but we are talking about children here and it's not as easy as "This is what works, full stop".

pinkhalf Tue 19-Feb-13 21:11:49

It is worrying.

It is one thing to be an overweight adult. Chances are that you weren't always that way, and you will have the discipline to manage to get it off eventually.

An overweight or obese child is another. Children who have weight problems, I mean long term, for years, are in real trouble. They haven't yet got discipline about eating. They are surrounded by sugary foods marketed at them. Parents have to engage in this and actively manage what their kids eat.

Growing up overweight it is much much harder to lose it as you get older. It places a strain on children as they grow, from their bones to their heart. Obese child? Good chance of showing signs of heart disease. Fat doesn't suddenly get dangerous when you turn 18. The other thing is, that the evidence is beginning to suggest your body learns a weight it wants to be at, and will take in food to maintain that weight. If you are heavy when young, then your learned weight is going to be heavier, and you are going to spend years struggling on diets trying to get to a healthy weight, when your own body is fighting you.

rodandtheemu Tue 19-Feb-13 21:14:41

agreed over

stickingattwo Tue 19-Feb-13 21:15:17

Good that they're doing some exercise then OP?

FlouncingMintyy Tue 19-Feb-13 21:17:17

I wasn't offended by op and I am overweight. She's only stating facts.

Angelico Tue 19-Feb-13 21:19:25

Why is the OP getting a kicking??? Talk about massive defensive over-reaction!

FFS I'm an overweight adult because I've been a greedy guts but I was a skinny urchin as a child. Having had a brush with gestational diabetes in pregnancy (and ironically having lost lots of weight because of it) has given me a kick up the arse to shift some more weight. I don't want to end up sticking pins in my fingers for the rest of my life. I don't want diabetes and all the associated health complaints (like my granny and 2 uncles had / have). I want to get my diet sorted now so I don't end up passing on my bad habits to DD.

Childhood obesity IS shocking. It should be shocking for us to see lots of overweight children just as we should be shocked so many of us are overweight and obese adults. It's not something that should be swept under the carpet. Something is seriously wrong with how lots of us are living. It should be okay to acknowledge that without lots of cats bum mouths and cries of victimhood!

HollaAtMeBaby Tue 19-Feb-13 21:21:53

YANBU to notice. I have noticed that there are loads more fat children and teenagers around than there were when I were a young 'un. FWIW I have also noticed that there are also loads more Muslims, or at least more women in headscarves. Not a problem for me, just an observation.

But YABU to post it on here! No good can come of that... and it's hardly news that obesity has increased in recent years.

Lizzylou Tue 19-Feb-13 21:26:25

I was a tubby 12 year old for about 6-9mths. I had always been taller and less dainty than my peers but at that point I was podgy. Then I grew 3 inches in height in as many months and was a 5ft 8" tall 13 year old, but a slim one.

The same thing happened to my Grandmother when she was the same age and she has maintained the same slim shape now well into her 90s.
So yes, children have always had growth spurts and puppy fat for a time.

I have definitely noticed more overweight children/teens in recent times. I remember when DS2 used to have a preschool swimming lesson at the same time as a local school's 5th year (so 10yrs old?) had theirs. I was really shocked. Though they could all have been storing fat for their (early) growth spurt I suppose.

Our diets and fitness are skewed. We are bombarded with "Low calorie", "Low fat" or "Low carb" or whatever and healthy, balanced eating has been lost along the way I think.

rodandtheemu Tue 19-Feb-13 21:31:09

allyourI dont think its hard to get children to eat healthly at all?? You dont have to eat tofu and salad every day. It starts from an early age. The parents control the eating habits of there children no one else.

*Healthy daily activities are the best way to change their all round attitude towards personal health and can lead to better eating.*- they actually go hand in hand, like a poster said, they could swim solidly for an hour and not burn of most of the excess calories.

And yes, its children we are dealing with here, so as their parents we should be making sure they are eating healthy, even if it means re educating our selfs. No excuse.

OP I am sorry that you are getting such a hard time.

You are not being unreasonable to be shocked. It is a ticking time bomb, and people should be worried.

Obesity has doubled in the past 25 years, look here apparently as some would have you believe it is due to other health problems. Quite frankly this is bullshit, I am 3 1/2 stone overweight and how did I get here? By eating too much. People need to start taking responsibility for their own health.

We have more sedentary lifestyles and junk food is cheap. Look at the correlation between obesity since the 80's and the revolution of cheap crap food.

Obesity related illness cost the NHS (yeah i'm going there) last year was C£5 BILLION the cost of smoking and drinking combined to the NHS was less than that.

The anti smoking, and cutting down on booze message is working. Now we need a proper health initiative against obesity that will work.

This generation of children will die before their parents. Now that's food for thought.

Wants4 Tue 19-Feb-13 21:44:16

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AllYoursBabooshka Tue 19-Feb-13 21:45:32

rodandtheemu, you have misunderstood my point.

I was speaking of changing the attitude of already overweight children.

Many parents are acknowledging their mistakes and want better more healthy lifestyles for their children. Being given a food group chart and told to change a childs diet doesn't work.

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 21:46:26


I agree with op that obesity is a huge problem grin, but I dont like the way she has gone to a place of excersie - a swimmingpool and moaned about fat people being there.

tazzle22 Tue 19-Feb-13 21:47:40

Whilst I think that the title of the thread did read rather "inflamatory" I think that, taking the emotive stuff out, I do agree with pingu in principle... and with the causes !!!

and dont find it odd to discuss here.... after all this is mums net so maybe its relevant that mums would have a point of view on it and maybe have suggestions as to how we tackle the issue ????

I am a grandmother so do have a longer numbner of years to reflect back on than younger mothers and yes, I do think there are more overweight children now..... although schools are definately becoming more proactive in trying to do something about it.

I speak as someone who has been for a few years now obese for various reasons, some medical and some psychological, but who has always been very active and quite fit really and tried to eat healthily.

but that "healthy eating" might be part of the problem as I have been finding out from doing a lot of research as I am on the cusp of diabetes and testing to find what sends my blood sugar high.

* As said earlier MOST of the "low fat" / "lighter" options we have been conditioned to buy are packed full of sugar and carbohydrates
* we are encouraged to base all of our meals on carbohystrates by the health profession.... and as most of it does not taste good on its own it cries out for the addition of fats like butter, cheeses, sauces (negating the "low fat" yohurts etc we buy thinking we are being "good"
* even healthy fruit contains a lot of sugar as do "healthy" fruit juices
* we think cereals are healthy but manyh are packed full of sugars too .

All this is if we as carers and making great effort to encourage our children ( and DGC) to eat the "right things" ....

but then that can be hard because as a society we have changed .........

when I was a child ( 50 odd years ago) there was just no "low fat", healthy options we just ate "real" food and as long as we were sensible with portions we did just fine. Now many cheap and easy foods are processed stuff with all sorts of additives and there's proportionally a lot of calories in quite small portions. We also "expect" bigger portionss to fill our plates.

There was only one "takeaway" in our town which was the chip shop.... but it was a rare treat rather than a regular occurence.... same with the burger bar in the next town. Nowadays we are spoilt for choice with takeaways, restaurants and pubs featuring far more in our lives ......... its almost weekly ( if not daily) occurrence to go for a drink ( and a cake) in a cafe.

The tv also daily bombards us all with the social / pleasure aspect of eating, it can be hard to avoid all the programmes and adverts that encourage us, and kids, to partake in the pleasure that is eating.

Sweets also are far more readily available than when I was a child...... and children do see to have more expectation of them regularily or as a reward for something.

We did not have a tv and played outside in all except the worst weather ...climbing trees, playing hopscotch and skipping etc. Not saying kids never do that these days because I do see them do it, just that I do think it might be relevant, there is less freedom for children to do that these days.

I do think that there are definately some people that can eat anything they like , do little exercise and still be slim. I lived next door to parents like that some years ago who started to give their children proportionately the same amount of food they ate and the children both became podgy.

I personally could not eat even half what those adults ate, I exercised (hard circuits training for raft racing) as well as playing sports ... and easily put on weight if I did not judge it just right........ not flipping fair envy

There are some medical conditions / medications that do cause weight gain so that sometimes makes it harder for some people so we cannot just look at someone ...... adult or child...... and make an assupmtion that (s)he is lazy / greedy / ignorant.

For sure its a complex issue that will NOT go away by browbeating anyone (people well aware of the medical side effects of smoking and binge drinking still do it sad.

countrykitten Tue 19-Feb-13 21:52:44

What fabulous post tazzle.

countrykitten Tue 19-Feb-13 21:53:10

And the missing word was....a!

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 21:58:09

I did not moan about fat children being in the pool. I made a comment that I was shocked that there was such a high proportion of children who were overweight.

Tazzel22 thank you for your post.

Angelico Tue 19-Feb-13 22:00:35

Carpetbagger wocka wocka at 'huge problem' grin But I honestly didn't read the OP like 'Oh my God, look at all those fat kids at the pool!!!' shock I just read it that there were lots of kids there and a substantial number were overweight.

I also agree with regional variations. I used to work in London commuter belt and there were lots of very overweight kids there. Lots of parents working long hours and kids had lots of pocket money to buy sweets and snacks with. Where I live and work now there are far fewer overweight children - but lots of OW adults - so presumably a bit of a timebomb.

Angelico Tue 19-Feb-13 22:01:27

X-posted OP - I didn't find it an offensive post.

CarpetBagger Tue 19-Feb-13 22:03:10

Yes but its the idea of you there looking at them all distastfully,

post that you walked past macdonalds with hords of them in there stuffing thier faces and lorry loads chcuking more in at them, but not when they are in a place of excersie!

Snazzynewyear Tue 19-Feb-13 22:05:15

There have been a lot of 'how awful that all these people are overweight' threads lately. Seems like a bit of a trend.

HoHoHoNoYouDont Tue 19-Feb-13 22:05:27

I'm really surprised at the responses to this post. On reading it I took it the OP was referring to how people were now generally more overweight than ever before. A fact forever being thrown in our faces, the reason we put so much energy now into appropriate food labelling. I didn't for one minute think she was being critical of individuals.


When I started swimming again (and took Adult Impover swimming lessons) I was a size 20. Six months later I'm still swimming but am a size 12/14. I was really self conscious when I started swimming as I hated wearing a swimsuit, but swimming (along with other exercise and diet) has made me a more "acceptable" size.

So please don't shock at people plucking up the courage to get some exercise, in spite of (or perhaps because of) the fact that they are overweight.

Moosemama said: ...Perhaps you didn't mean your OP to sound like you judge every single overweight person you see, but it doesn't help people like me to think that others are looking them up and down and thinking about how fat I am....

That sums it up, for me. And I have been working hard to change that mindset, to try to convince myself that everyone I see isn't judging me for my size - and, being absolutely honest, this thread is a setback to that - because I hear and believe the negatives far more easily than I hear or believe the positives.

And I know that is my issue, but I have struggled with depression for so long, starting from when I was an overweight outsider, being bullied at school, and blighting my life ever since - and I know that this is plays a big part in why I am overweight. Life is a daily struggle just to do the basics - getting out of bed, showering, feeding the family, and when I was a member of a gym, I rarely managed to get myself out of the house to go, even though I felt better having gone, and we couldn't afford £50 a month for something I never used, so I dropped it.

And since I don't even like myself, I find it very hard to want to care for myself by looking after my health.

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 22:08:05

Carpet Bagger why on earth would you assume I was looking at them distastfully. I noticed the fact that there were a lot that were overweight/obese. This is no different from noticing colours of swimsuit people were wearing.

I didn't swim with my eyes closed. Why do you assume I was looking distastefully. I was there with 3 children, I noticed and then moved on with ensuring my 5 year old was safe.

HoHoHoNoYouDont Tue 19-Feb-13 22:08:52

Plus the OP was commenting on children only. Children who may not get to make the choices on what they are fed but who rely on us adults to make informed choices.

And since I don't even like myself, I find it very hard to want to care for myself by looking after my health.

That is heartbreaking ^^

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 22:16:40

If I see someone with 1 leg, I do notice that they have 1 leg. I don't judgement negatively, or indeed positively, that they have 1 leg. I purely notice.

The same goes for people with anything that is outside 'normal'. I notice. I'm not judging, I am noticing.

I'm not blind. I see things.

If I went to a party with loads of very tall/short people, I would notice. I wouldn't judge. I would notice.

The difference is that being tall/short etc. doesn't affect society. I noticed that there were a lot more overweight/obese children in the pool than there were around 10 years ago.

If you are obese you will be noticed as being obese. You will not necessarily be judged, well I don't. However, you will be noticed. If you are trying to get healthier and one of the ways is to exercise more by swimming or going to the gym etc. then great for you. However, don't be nieve in thinking you won't be noticed by anyone who can see.

ChaChaDigregorio Tue 19-Feb-13 22:21:03

Not offensive to me. Pretty honest and non judgemental. Unless we can actually discuss the growing obesity epidemic, it's strain on the NHS and on people's physical and mental well being, without getting jumped on by the 'its ok to be obese' crew then attitudes aren't going to change. It will just become accepted that we are getting bigger with all the associated problems that come with it. It's a real taboo and shouldn't be. This post shows what happens when someone is brave enough to mention it.

We don't all need to be stick thin, and yes, metabolism and genetics play a part. But we need to be healthy and look after ourselves and many people aren't for whatever reason. That's sad for them and sad for our society as a whole, in particular kids who have it thrust upon them by adults who either don't know how to eat or can't or won't eat healthily.

When I see an overweight person swimming (or running, or going to the gym) I think good on them, trying to make a change for the better.

When I see overweight children in the pool I think good on them, they are obviously being encouraged by their parents to do some activity rather than sitting in front of the TV eating crisps.

I don't start a thread on an internet forum saying how shocked I am that fat people were in the swimming pool.

I am obese. I am trying to fix this. I have been in the gym starting a new exercise and diet routine. I put it off for months because I was horrified at the thought of people watching me and judging. Today I am going to swim. This is something that horrified me as I know I look repulsive in my swimsuit. My husband assured me people would just think 'at least she is trying to lose weight'. Now I know I was right. Thanks.

ChaChaDigregorio Tue 19-Feb-13 22:26:20

No way spaghetti. Do it! If anyone is thinking badly they are fuckwits, don't let them hold you back. Anyone worth worrying about will look on in admiration. Go girl!

Goober Tue 19-Feb-13 22:26:33

A wise Mumsnetter once said fuck the fuck off!!
Wise words.

Pinging - can you see how your OP comes over as you judging the fat people in the swimming pool?

Sorry - pingu - darn iPad autocorrect!blush

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 22:27:55

I am a size 20. I don't look great in my costume. I felt self conscious. However, I'm not nieve enough to think that people won't notice my size. Just as I noticed the others in the pool who were well above 'normal'. I don't understand how you can get all shirty because someone dares notice that you are obese when you in a swimsuit. Seems pretty bloody obvious to me.

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 22:29:08

I didn't judge others and however self conscious I was, I still just got on with it (the swimming/watching my children).

maddening Tue 19-Feb-13 22:29:43

Fair enough op but can you see that noticing and opening a healthy positive debate is fine but if you word your thread title as you have that the insensitivity therein might provoke a feeling of judgement on your part - even though that is not what you intended.

ChaChaDigregorio Tue 19-Feb-13 22:33:07

The only vaguely judgemental part of OP is the last sentence. The rest of it is observation.

I give up.

PurpleStorm Tue 19-Feb-13 22:34:23

While I think that the OP was very badly worded and can easily be misinterpreted as judging fat people who go swimming, the OP's got a valid point about there being more overweight kids around than there were 10 or 20 years ago.

Junk food's also got a lot cheaper and more readily available than it was when I was a kid. I suspect that's got a lot more to do with rising obesity levels than the amount of exercise kids do.

pingu2209 Tue 19-Feb-13 22:37:14

Maddening, you cant' have a healthy positive debate on this. People are far too sensitive. To say that you won't go swimming because you worry that people will notice your size is just bloody stupid. If you are obese, you will be noticed, especially in a swimsuit. Whether people will judge you negatively is another matter of course. I would like to think that people will notice and think 'gosh she/he is large' but then think 'wow, great they are doing exercise'. But to think that it is 'wrong' to notice someone is very overweight is nieve.

It is such a huge issue for our society - meaning the children being overweight. I don't think my OP was judgemental at all, I think it is people who are way too sensitive about the whole weight issue.

I am overweight. I eat the wrong things and too many of the wrong things. I am addicted to eating. I love all the wrong things and crave them like an addiction. However, I exercise A LOT. My children are slim but I am always wary of what they eat. I don't want them to have the addiction I have.

However, there are a lot of parents out there that are just not even aware that their children are becoming addicted. They must notice their children are overweight/obese but don't know how or what to do.

countrykitten Tue 19-Feb-13 22:37:17

I think agree purplestorm - junk food and constant snacking were not part of growing up for many of us.

rodandtheemu Tue 19-Feb-13 22:37:33

well she did as its a free net work site! Just like the OP can make an observation and have an opinion..

It the Post police didnt like it they would remove it. Get over it. Oh and the observation was on the number of children that was obese... not the nervous fat lady in the corner. Maybe the parents should have encouraged the children to eat healthly before hand.

There is a difference between noticing, and noticing and then starting a thread on it.

And there was no hint in the OP of wanting a discussion about how to tackle the issue, and the things that might have caused the issue. It smacked to me of 'pointing at the fatties', nothing helpful or constructive.

dikkertjedap Tue 19-Feb-13 22:41:59

Well, the good news is that they were all getting some exercise at the swimming pool! Swimming is probably one of the best types of getting fit if you are overweight anyway as it doesn't put undue strains on the joints and you use lots of different muscles.

Basically, all the people you saw at the pool deserve a little pat on their back for going!

LadyWidmerpool Tue 19-Feb-13 22:42:07

Of course, we just need to encourage children to eat healthily and obesity will vanish in a puff of smoke. Hooray!

ChaChaDigregorio Tue 19-Feb-13 22:46:15

Pretty much. That and exercise.

juneybean Tue 19-Feb-13 22:48:29

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OP, you are one of these overweight people you kindly mentioned in your OP.

Surely you should change your habits and judgmental attitude before trying to shape your children? They learn from what you do not what you say.

ubik Tue 19-Feb-13 22:56:03

It's true, it is shocking. Nor so much the older folk who have had kids/ health probs etc

It's the obese teens and young children which often surprise me - not just podgy but seriously fat.

manicinsomniac Tue 19-Feb-13 22:57:18

Pingu hasn't hidden the fact that she is overweight herself. She isn't talking about adults, she is talking about the rise in the numbers of overweight children.

And to compare obesity to being black, disabled or muslim is ridiculous and offensive to those groups of people. There is nothing wrong with being black, disabled or muslim but there is everything wrong with being obese. That might not be comfortable but it's the truth. Black, disabled and muslim people cannot and should not change. Obese people (most of them, barring medical conditions) both can and should.

Startail Tue 19-Feb-13 22:57:19

Swimming was the one form of exercise my DMum could have taken that might have help her with her weight and her arthritis.

She felt everyone judging her and wouldn't go. sad

GrowSomeCress Tue 19-Feb-13 22:57:50

It's unlikely to be representative of the population as a whole - perhaps you're more likely to see overweight people there as they'll be trying to lose weight? I dunno

It does feel, sometimes, as if we fat people are the last remaining group that it is OK to poke fun at.

Why do you even look at a person/ child and think wow they are obese/fat/skinny instead of looking at the person/ child and think that's a happy child larking about in the pool or learning to swim. I don't walk past people in the street and think omg how fat is she/he/child, I am more likely to think the coat they have is really nice and I'd love to have it, or they look like they are having fun - so if I was in OP situation I would of thought kids having fun and it would not even have crossed my mind to think they were obese or far too thin.

fatlazymummy Tue 19-Feb-13 23:07:03

Where is the Op 'poking fun' at fat people? She was simply making an observation. I noticed the same thing the other day when I was swimming - there were 3 or 4 visibly overweight children out of a class of 25 or so.
Why do some people on this forum find it so difficult to discuss weight without taking it personally? I'm speaking as a formerly obese person, who actually did go swimming in a size 20 costume. Anyone who saw me getting into the pool would have n oticed I was obese.So what? It was a fact, not a judgement.

WhoWhatWhereWhen Tue 19-Feb-13 23:09:07

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GrowSomeCress Tue 19-Feb-13 23:10:34

It is sad though for the poor children to be burdened with that so early on sad

GrowSomeCress Tue 19-Feb-13 23:11:50

According to bupa:
" In 2006, around one in six children aged between two and 15 were obese."

Tortington Tue 19-Feb-13 23:16:24

i have to say that - ok - there will be the minority who have a medical condition / which is contributary to weight gain

imo - most kids shouldn't be fat - and medical issues notwithstanding... the fault is the parents.

HoHoHoNoYouDont Tue 19-Feb-13 23:18:36

Each and every one of us form an opinion of someone/thing when we see it. It's human nature. First impressions and all that.

HoHoHoNoYouDont Tue 19-Feb-13 23:19:37

OP are you a bit thick?


midastouch Tue 19-Feb-13 23:21:41

Being children its surelyl more there parents fault that they are over weight!

BlackMaryJanes Tue 19-Feb-13 23:21:53

OP are you a bit thick?, to draw conclusions about the total number of overweight children in society from the tiny numbers you observed today in the pool is the science of the half wit.

Random sample, no?

TuftyFinch Tue 19-Feb-13 23:23:39

Having read more if penguin's posts I feel I misinterpreted the OP. Aa others have said, the wording wasn't great but ... I'd like to apologise for my previous, early posts.
I'd also disagree with the PP whomsaid buying fast food for a family meal is cheaper than cooking from scratch. It's not.

Eliza600 Tue 19-Feb-13 23:26:11

The OP is spot on.

I don't know why the UK population is becoming increasingly obese, I'm in my 50s and don't recall it being such a problem when I was younger.

But I would never go swimming in public, because although I'm slim I'm well over 50 and would be embarrassed about the 'saggy bits' (bingo wings, knees and suchlike).
By the same token I don't like seeing obese people in pools and on beaches etc.
Either do something about your weight or keep yourselves covered up. If you are overweight, there are plenty of exercises you can do in the privacy of your own home, without wearing a swimming cossy in public.

HoHoHoNoYouDont Tue 19-Feb-13 23:29:57

Either do something about your weight or keep yourselves covered up. If you are overweight, there are plenty of exercises you can do in the privacy of your own home, without wearing a swimming cossy in public.


Annakin31 Tue 19-Feb-13 23:30:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AllYoursBabooshka Tue 19-Feb-13 23:31:08


chickydoo Tue 19-Feb-13 23:31:44

In the 1950's the average hight for a woman was 5'ft 4 ins the average weight was 8 stone 12lbs.
Something has gone wrong since!
I think the Op has been unfairly flamed. An opinion ( and a correct one) was stated " kids are getting bigger" the fact they were in swim wear made it more obvious. People can hide a lot under clothes. (Most of us look better with clothes on...I know I do)
I don't believe it is all down to genetics. My parents are obese, my brother is very overweight. I am slim.
Op I get where you are coming from

plinkyplonks Tue 19-Feb-13 23:31:48

Seriously, people need to get a grip on this forum. It's actually to the point where I think people are close to bullying the OP. Some of the comments here are absolutely disgusting.

Being overweight is not normal, being obese is not normal. It's not healthy, it's more likely caused by bad diet - food and nutrition education is provided by parents.

It's a valid question to ask to be honest. OP - I went swimming at a centre parcs type retreat with some family members a few weeks ago and I too was really shocked at how many young children were overweight. I was even more shocked at the poor food choices kids were faced with - eating deserts before main course, eating nothing but chicken nuggets and wedges for food. Some of the older children (aged 7-8 or so) still couldn't use cutlery- something I definitely know i was using at their age.

Maybe lack of time, fast food and the cost of fresh food has something to do with it. I can't really say. But it seems a shame we are setting up a generation of children who have no idea what being a normal weight is about.

HoHoHoNoYouDont Tue 19-Feb-13 23:31:50

As my Ma used to say...'^suits the wearer not the starer^

WhoWhatWhereWhen Tue 19-Feb-13 23:36:05


WhoWhatWhereWhen Tue 19-Feb-13 23:39:41

Eliza, how would you feel if I said I wish people of your age would just stay inside because I don't want to see saggy wrinkly faces and hands?

diaimchlo Tue 19-Feb-13 23:40:52

If I had been swimming with my DCs I would certainly not have had the time to notice and count how many people were overweight in my opinion, I would have been enjoying the quality time with my children.

Children's physique changes all the time one day they are chubby and next day they have had a growth spurt..... teenagers are going through hormonal changes and the dreaded puppy fat etc

My DD2 was a very small and slight child up until the age of 8 and then all of a sudden filled out, no change in diet. My youngest son seemed to fill out overnight at the age of 11 and got quite chubby, by 12 he had slimmed back to his slight build with again no change in diet.

What a vile and unpleasant thing to say, Eliza. I could lose the weight - could you ever lose that nasty mindset? Or perhaps you would rather I committed suicide. Then the world would be rid of the horrific sight of me.

Hello playmates, I was on the other pointing and staring thread earlier, so I thought I'd come and be fat on this thread. Its a pity you can't see me as you could have a really good gawp but never mind, you did that earlier eh OP?

Anyway. The way it seems to go with these threads is the OP is a bit like a bully in a playground who runs up and punches someone. When the punched person objects, they say "oh but I was only being friendly, YOU took it the wrong way!!" and then bursts into tears and is immediately surrounded by lots of supportive friends, who then take her to the teacher, sobbing "Punched Person is being MEAN to me!!!"

Just telling it how it seems from this side of the screen.

diaimchlo Wed 20-Feb-13 00:00:12

Eliza600 how rude and small minded you are. I am over 50 as well and overweight and cannot exercise due to various health issues. But if I could I would and am pleased to say that I wouldn't have to cover my legs as I don't have saggy knees!

Eliza600 Wed 20-Feb-13 00:05:37

Apologies, I overlooked the fact that the OP was mainly referring to children. However, I agree with her opinion.

I don't see why it's a 'vile and unpleasant thing to say'.
Much as I'd like to go swimming (and I used to really love it), I wouldn't dream of inflicting my 50-something body on an unsuspecting public. I hope I still retain a bit of dignity, so I wouldn't do it.
And I'd expect the same of anyone else - why parade around the worst aspects of yourself?

I'd rather have an unsightly figure than an unpleasant mind, Eliza.

MariusEarlobe Wed 20-Feb-13 00:07:16

I'm overweight, following an emergency hysterectomy, early menapause and fleeing exh. before that I was a size 8.

I eat when I am stressed , I have a food problem I will admit.

Dd however is skinny and exercises and eats well because I make sure she does.

I'm sure you don't see why it is vile and unpleasant, Eliza - I am surprised that you don't realise how bad you are making yourself look, though. You are painting a very nasty picture of yourself, and I, for one, am bloody glad I don't know anyone like you.

MariusEarlobe Wed 20-Feb-13 00:11:01

Maybe to make a change Eliza to lose weight,maybe that's why they are showing their worst aspects.

swimming is one of best forms of exercise.

I have used the search button tonight.

rodandtheemu Wed 20-Feb-13 00:13:30

Hysteria has now set in.....good night y'all.

fatlazymummy Wed 20-Feb-13 06:18:46

eliza what a stupid thing to say. Swimming pools aren't just for young beautiful people you know. I am in my 50's and I go swimming regularly, which may explain why I don't have 'bingo wings and saggy bits'. Not that it would matter if I did. People of all ages, shapes and sizes swim in my pool. So far I haven't noticed anyone laughing or throwing up at the sight of them.
I'd like to reassure anyone who is self conscious about going swimming. I was very overweight (bmi 37) when I started. I was self conscious at 1st, but rely, no one cares. Going back to swimming was the best thing I ever did, and no one at the pool ever made me feel bad.

TiggyD Wed 20-Feb-13 06:26:42

Fat people in a pool is good. It means they need less water to fill it.

lonnika Wed 20-Feb-13 06:27:31

my daughter was a big baby and toddler - we were recommended to take her swimming by a peaditrician -

countrykitten Wed 20-Feb-13 10:03:12

So Eliza has made some less than polite comments about fat people and admitted that she has some saggy skin. Cue posters having a go at her for her fat comments and then going on to have a pop at her for her saggy skin. Oh the irony. confused

Pigsmummy Wed 20-Feb-13 10:21:14

I think that it is ok to be shocked by this, it's healthy to be shocked by this in fact and people shouldn't be offended. overweight shouldn't become the norm

MiaowTheCat Wed 20-Feb-13 10:40:11

I'm fat/obese/a moose (choose your term and delete accordingly). I once dropped 3 stone by gym+diet.

I stopped going - because I went in half-term once, went to queue to swipe in and two delightful brats and their bitch of a mother started pointing, staring, laughing and commenting (all three of them).

Are you sure it wasn't the OP?

neverputasockinatoaster Wed 20-Feb-13 10:43:50

I take DS and DD swimming every week. Two weeks ago you wouldn't have noticed DS as being overweight - he is usually a tall lanky thing! However, this week he would have been among the children you noticed as overweight as he is due a growth spurt, is eating for England and has gained a podge. In about 2 weeks he will shoot up, his trousers will suddenly be 2 inches too short and he will be a bean pole once more.

I, on the other hand, am overweight - very - but I am doing something about it. I have massive issues with food which I am trying NOT to pass on to my children. We eat healthily most of the time. I was once a skinny minnie with a weeny waist and then my first Step dad told me I was fat and put me on a diet..... I have been overweight to some degree ever since then.

I know people notice me when I go swimming. I am more concerned that they are judging my hairy legs than my rolls of fat! One day I will once more be unremarkable (although I will still probably have hairy legs!)

I do think we have an issue with obesity. I think half of it comes from a nation so obsessed by food that it all must be 'low fat' and 'low calorie' and thus IMHO 'low taste' and 'low satisfaction'. I think we need to look more at portion sizes, listening to our bodies and eating 'real' food that satisfies our taste buds and our mouths need for texture and substance.

I will continue to take my children swimming. I will also continue to feed them real food, listening when they say they are full, making no food forbidden. I will also continue to swim with hairy legs!

countrykitten Wed 20-Feb-13 10:43:55

Since the OP has said that she is a size 20 herself I would doubt that very much. Don't like the way you say 'bitch of a mother' either. She was ignorant and rude but to call her a bitch makes you as rude as she was.

Countrykitten - if I read her correctly, Eliza would like all fat people to stay indoors, where they won't offend her gaze. That is considerably worse than '...less than polite...', in my opinion. I think it is hateful, in fact. And I am gobsmacked that anyone would publically and proudly voice those hateful opinions, given the impression that it gives about themselves!

Enigmosaurus Wed 20-Feb-13 11:14:40

Is it any wonder people who are overweight get defensive when people like Eliza post stuff like that? Horrible, hateful words. I bet my bottom dollar that any of the overweight people I know are a hundred times nicer than Eliza ever will be.

countrykitten Wed 20-Feb-13 11:18:05

SDT I am in no way defending her comments. It's just that making offensive personal remarks in retaliation is not the way to go is it?

Step Wed 20-Feb-13 11:18:41

I'm overweight.

I swim 3.8km in sub 1 hour. Follow it with a week bike ride of 180km and then do a marathon (on one day of the year anyhow). Fat does not mean unfit.

These kids in the pool are at least exercising, good on them, encourage them and don't make them feel crap about themselves for putting a swimming costume on. Sport for all! (--except breastrokers in the fast lane--)

fatlazymummy Wed 20-Feb-13 11:20:07

countrykitten people were having a go at Eliza for her attitude, not her sagging skin. She was the one who said she didn't want to inflict it on the public, and she doesn't think anyone else should either.

countrykitten Wed 20-Feb-13 11:22:34

flm - the comments about her saggy skin were unnecessary even though she mentioned it first. That's all I am saying.

LurcioLovesFrankie Wed 20-Feb-13 11:24:02

My mum was a fantastic swimmer and had been a competitive diver in her youth. In middle age she put on weight and became embarrassed to go swimming because of people like you, OP. I find your views repugnant. (I also suggest you bear in mind the fact that many women put on weight round the menopause - karma may come back to bite you on this one).

HoHoHoNoYouDont Wed 20-Feb-13 11:27:03

Lurcio why would you be embarrassed to go swimming because of the OP's comments? She didn't attack fat people. She merely observed that CHILDREN seemed overweight and showed concern.

Signet2012 Wed 20-Feb-13 11:27:07

This is why I won't go.
I'm ashamed enough about my size without people judging me.

Dp always says "no one is watching you don't worry" obviously I am right and he is wrong sad

VenusRising Wed 20-Feb-13 11:28:39

I can see both sides to this.

Ok maybe the OP didn't realise what a hornets nest fat as an issue is, and maybe she didn't realise how sensitive people can be about their bodies.

But really, there are a lot more obese people around now, and it's not being outrageous to observe that. I didn't feel the OP was judging, just observing.

Have a look at this site we are designed to move and the video in it: the point is that life expectancy of obese children is five years less than their healthier peers.

It's a real shame that fat kills, but it does, and it's so difficult to choose the healthy option day after day.... Please don't offer me a biscuit! I'll eat the packet smile

CremeEggScoffer Wed 20-Feb-13 11:29:20

OP I agree with you, the cost of obesity has on out economy shouldn't be ignored, heaven forbid you should upset the people of Britain by staring at them at the swimming pool, fat shouldn't be seen as normal, other European countries think we are disgusting so why is it being swept under the carpet?

YANBU and all those that don't go swimming due to their size, do something about it and stop making excuses!

VenusRising Wed 20-Feb-13 11:39:44

I can see both sides to this.

Ok maybe the OP didn't realise what a hornets nest fat as an issue is, and maybe she didn't realise how sensitive people can be about their bodies.

But really, there are a lot more obese people around now, and it's not being outrageous to observe that. I didn't feel the OP was judging, just observing.

Have a look at this site we are designed to move and the video in it: the point is that life expectancy of obese children is five years less than their healthier peers.

It's a real shame that fat kills, but it does, and it's so difficult to choose the healthy option day after day.... Please don't offer me a biscuit! I'll eat the packet smile

VenusRising Wed 20-Feb-13 11:40:22

So good I said it twice?

countrykitten Wed 20-Feb-13 11:40:39

Lurcio if you had read the thread you would see that the OP is in fact a size 20 herself.

fromparistoberlin Wed 20-Feb-13 11:45:55

I am sure OP has been flamed to shit.

but I think its concerning that we have an obesity issue with children and teens

WRT to adults I dont really have an opinion, but we have a problem and its nigh on impossible to raise it, as people get upset

I got fucking told yesterday that my 2.5 year old is (a bit) overweight!!! I dont like it at all, but I needed to know

fromparistoberlin Wed 20-Feb-13 11:50:06

SWEET JESUS just read responses

classic MN

people are soooooooooooooooooooooo oversensitive


Its about seeing obese children

I am surpised when I go to Italy (Europe highest child obesity). I dont stare at them, I dont "gawp" at them, but its noticable.

but lets say NOTHING right? better to not riase it, than to offend people?


Shagmundfreud Wed 20-Feb-13 11:56:24

We have a massive problem with obesity in the UK.

And it's getting worse.

The NHS will disintegrate under the strain of caring for growing numbers of obese adults - already £1 in every £10 spent on treatment in the NHS is spent on diabetes related health problems.

So no OP - YANBU.

The huffy responses of 'mind your own business' and 'stop being judgemental' are pretty typical and make me feel like we're all bloody doomed - so few people take this issue seriously or realise what a crisis we're in.

When the NHS is in its knees in 20 years time from dealing with a tsunami of obesity related conditions, we're all going to be screwed.

I don't think saying nothing is the way to go, fromparistoberlin. But the OP didn't seem to want to discuss why there is an obesity problem in the UK, or what might be done about it - there was no hint of that in her OP, nothing constructive - just a rather judgemental-looking, shock-horror post about how many fat children there were at the swimming pool.

GoSuckEggs Wed 20-Feb-13 12:04:07

I think that it is disgusting that parents let their children get fat, you are responsable for them!!!

I am fat, but i was always a skinny child.

undercoverhousewife Wed 20-Feb-13 12:05:11

So what can we do about it as a society?

The attitude expressed by some posters that it is nobody's business but the parents' is clearly misguided as the fact that there are lots of obese children demonstrates.

So should we be trying to educate the parents more? (Do they really not understand about nutrition or do they underestimate weight?), or should we be taxing high fat, high sugar and processed foods? Or should very obese DC be taken into care or closely monitored by SS under that threat? Or what???

Overfeeding kids to the point where their current and future health is compromised is pure and simply a form of (possibly well intentioned) child abuse, and it is truly shocking how much of this is around. It cannot possibly be the fault of the children as kids eat by and large what is put in front of them. They have little or no control over the weekly shop.

fromparistoberlin Wed 20-Feb-13 12:08:17

Remeber the 70s, when we did not have cupboards and shops full of crisps and chocs?

even back then my little brother was a little chubby.

So I DO get that some people are natutally inclined to obesity

But given we now live in an age of plenty, with a bag of sweet for £1, with MacDonalds for £1.99 we need to do something

I understand that people feel self conscious about their size I am a size 18-20 after having lost 1.5 stone. I am obese and until recently I was 3/4's of the way to morbidly obese. I also went swimming this weekend. I am comfortable that this post is not about me as an individual but a more general observation.

We as a society are getting fatter and more worryingly our children are getting fatter. We haven't yet got to the position of the US but we are heading that way. Children (except for medical conditions) should not be fat and most certainly should not be obese. It is shocking to see how many more children are overweight now as it was unusual when I was a child. Young children don't choose what they eat, they can't pop to McD and buy a happy meal or nip to the corner shop for a chocolate bar. It is our job as parents to make the right choices for them even if that sometimes makes our life uncomfortable (yes, I've been through the sweet aisle tantrums too).

Oh and to all those who won't go swimming because they fear what others might think. Its your life, please don't let your fear of what strangers might think, stop you from doing what you want. Their opinions really don't matter.

I am always impressed when I see larger people swimming / exercising, because (having been quite overweight myself) I know how hard it can be - physically and mentally.

I went swimming 2 weeks after having my hip replaced. It looked gross (as my dear children kept telling me) and I wondered whether I would be stared at / asked to leave / cover up (it had plastic sealant so ok to swim). However, no one appeared to look and no one commented. I was being a bit over sensitive.

Generally I agree with the OP - it is a problem that we collectively need to deal with. My Dad is overweight (70s) and has been read the Riot Act by his Dr...he seems to be taking it seriously this time, and hopefully will regain his health. Otherwise his heart and knees will give up. Think of a nation in the state he is in....but these people are not in their 70s, they are children, with potentially the health problems of much older people.

I think that the first thing we need to do is to bring back cookery in schools - where all children can learn the basics of cooking - how to prepare the raw ingredients, what the terms in recipes actually mean (because if you don't know what dice and saute the onions means or how to do it, you aren't going to feel confident about tackling that recipe). They need to be learning how to prepare and cook the food that will nourish them properly - casseroles, bolognese, tomato sauces that can be used for pizza and as the basis for many pasta dishes, burgers made from proper mince, with oven wedges they have made themselves, not out of a packet, curries etc - so they know they can make themselves the food they like and it still be healthy.

It's giving them the basic vocabulary and skills, so that they have the confidence to make their food from scratch, rather than having to rely on packets, ready meals and takeaways.

They also need to learn the basics of good nutrition, and how to build a balanced diet - which they do already, I know, but which is not that useful in the absence of the cooking skills.

And they need to learn how to plan their meals and budget their money, so that they can see how much cheaper it actually is to make your own food rather than buying the ready meals etc.

There needs to be less designing of packaging, and more learning of the real-life skills that the children will need in order to feed themselves properly.

HeySoulSister Wed 20-Feb-13 12:28:42

Lol at being at the pool=exercise!

It doesn't... Is everyone lane swimming or messing around at poolside or chucking a few inflatables!?

Of course it is exercise, HeySoulSister - it burns up calories, like any other activity. Obviously not as many calories as an intense session at the gym or a long run, but more than sitting down with a book/the tv. All activity burns off calories.

countrykitten Wed 20-Feb-13 13:33:09

HeySoulSister I do find that a strange post for you to make and refer you to SDT's excellent reply. Is there nothing that people will not knock on here? Not everyone needs to be Rebecca Adlington to gain something through being at the pool. FFS.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Wed 20-Feb-13 13:34:39

This isn't a fat-bashing thread, I don't read it that way, well - not until I see the very defensive posts. It's a discussion, like any other, but it's one that affects so many people that it can hit hard sometimes.

To the posters saying, "Thanks op, you/people like you are the reason I'm not going swimming now". Think about what you're teaching your own children... give up? Something that you want to do for yourself? Based on a random person's opinion? Now THAT is shocking and so very defeatist...

Would you really use the excuse of letting another person dictate what you do based on nothing more than a smirk or whisper or comment even? Nevermind what ANYBODY says, they don't have the power to stop you, only you do.

See you in the pool... grin

Lottikins Wed 20-Feb-13 13:39:55

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

willesden Wed 20-Feb-13 13:40:09

Hope OP doesn't have any fat friends. Of friends with fat children. They will never hear the last of it.

countrykitten Wed 20-Feb-13 13:42:18

willesden the OP is a size 20 FFS. Read the fucking thread before wading in with your sanctimonious crap.


Shagmundfreud Wed 20-Feb-13 13:46:23

SDT - at most kids will burn up a couple of hundred calories larking around in the pool. At most.

The bag of crisps, bar of chocolate and bottle if lucizade they buy from the swimming pool vending machine on the way out will nix that three times over.

Swimming makes kids hungry doesn't it?

Shagmundfreud Wed 20-Feb-13 13:47:57

Lottikins - it depends how fat and how fit.

Shagmundfreud Wed 20-Feb-13 13:51:25

Should add, I know a number of very very overweight children who happen to be also very active. These children eat high calorie snacks every day and their portion control is poor. They're still much more at risk of type 2 diabetes even if they do exercise.

It's still better than sitting on the couch, playing xbox games, with the packet of crisps and the bar of chocolate.

And for someone who is overweight, little changes are a good start - better to spend an hour playing at the swimming pool, and learning that exercise can be fun, than to try to do a level of activity that is way beyond you, and then get disheartened.

The swimming itself might not be enough to make the child lose weight, but it could be a gateway to more activities and sports. Baby steps.

HeySoulSister Wed 20-Feb-13 13:54:46

shagmund nobody wants to hear that tho do they? Its too near the truth

HeySoulSister Wed 20-Feb-13 13:55:54

Yeah it IS better they play at the pool

Swimming at the pool would be better tho!

HoHoHoNoYouDont Wed 20-Feb-13 13:57:05


<and breathes> Glad I got that off my chest gringringrin

MummyPigsFatTummy Wed 20-Feb-13 13:57:20

Not sure I agree LWITW. I am fat and swimming is a form of exercise I enjoy, so I do it. DD (3) loves it too, so I take her. However, I almost run into the pool (not so fast my flab starts to wobble though) and avoid all mirrors on the way in and out. That way I don't have to face up to how I look in a costume. Another thing I do is try to assume that everyone in the pool is more concerned about their own issues - looking after their children. enjoying their swimming, thinking about what they will have for dinner etc. - than to be concerned about how I look.

Posts like the OPs make me reaslise I am wrong there and people are looking and judging. Won't stop me swimming but it will make me even more uncomfortable doing so.

The same point - about the increasing levels of obesity in society - could have been made (if it had to be) without bringing in swimming pools, as if you only notice people are fat when they take their clothes off. After all, this just reinforces the idea which some of us fatties cling to hopefully - if you don't take your clothes off, maybe noone will notice you are fat. That is enough to put a lot of people off swimming on its own.

Well - today playing, tomorrow swimming, maybe, HeySoulSister. Like I say, gateway.

And if they are encouraged to continue, and not made to feel they are being judged for being there (or, if Eliza is there, for having dared to step outside their houses), they are more likely to carry on.

Exercise needs to be fun and achievable, and readily available.

kerala Wed 20-Feb-13 14:02:41

Its a challenge this not being fat lark though. Have been aware of what i eat since Jan - lost half a stone eating less and moving more but boy do I miss those between meals cakes/crisps <looks mournfully at ryvita "biscuit">

DesiderataHollow Wed 20-Feb-13 14:06:27

I've noticed this too. I have two sons who are 21 years apart in age.
We used to take DS1 swimming weekly and we've just started taking DS2 swimming. The only difference is the 21 years between (and a new pool) .

I am horrified by the difference in the shape of the children. I'm not horrified by the individual children, lest you think I hate all fat children on principle, merely by the very obvious difference in the general shape and size of those children in the pool. (Yes, I know some of them might have medical issues or genetic issues, but surely not more than half of those enjoying their half-term splashabout)

I'm not judging anyone (I'm hardly a super-model myself), but I do wonder how those children who are overweight now with no real control over their food are going to become healthy adults.
20 years ago, I was likely to think that a chubby child had other extenuating circumstances, now I'm just scared for what we are doing to this generation. (And why we keep making excuses and hoping that it will all get better on its own).

FunnysInLaJardin Wed 20-Feb-13 14:06:48

oh dear, fancy fat people wanting to do some exercize. Shame on them

FunnysInLaJardin Wed 20-Feb-13 14:07:48

and no I didn't RTFT. It's got 13 pages for heavens sake. How much time do you think I have?

Shagmundfreud Wed 20-Feb-13 14:10:45

Funny - the OP is concerned about the number of overweight children. Not the fact that they're swimming.

MummyPigsFatTummy Wed 20-Feb-13 14:11:51

Actually thinking about it, maybe it is where we live or something, but although when I go swimming with my toddler I see lots of fat parents (which makes the experience mosre relaxing for me as a fellow whale) I rarely see fat children. Which I always feel is reassuring - clearly, like me, they are trying not to pass on their own bad eating habits to their children (not as easy to avoid as you might think sadly).

However, going by the few pages I have read on this thread, that is not a universal experience in the UK.

ZumbaZara Wed 20-Feb-13 14:17:07

Just a thought.
I am a sport lover swim, gym, badminton..... Over the years I have observed very little relationship between body shape and fitness except at perhaps a national competitive level.
I have found out to my cost in lots of competitive situations that you can SERIOUSLY underestimate someones skill and fitness.

I am delighted that anyone takes the time to go and take part in any type of sport or physical activity there are so many benefits. It is sociable, combats depression boosts metabolism....

Go for it parents. Don't be put off. Run, jump, play go for a walk in the park .who knows what your child might become. Who knows what a great time you might have and where it might lead.

SchnitzelVonKrumm Wed 20-Feb-13 14:59:33

At my children's school - solidly middle-class area - there are very few overweight children and none I would classify as obese.
Our local pool is a mile and half away in a much more deprived area, and the number of kids I see there who are seriously overweight (not just a bit of pre-adolescent puppy fat) is truly shocking.
We are allowing a whole class of people to kill themselves, basically - but according to this thread the problem is that we might upset them by calling them fat hmm

Shagmundfreud Wed 20-Feb-13 15:04:26

Yup - t'is largely a class issue in the UK.

Poor kids tend to be much fatter.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Wed 20-Feb-13 15:27:14

MummyPigsTummy... <takes deep breath> It is a falsehood to think that people won't notice that you're (general) fat if you're wearing clothes - they do. A swimsuit might make the wearer more self-conscious but, if you're fat, you're fat. Same with big boobs really, clothes can drape a bit but they can't disguise them.

You're going swimming anyway - kudos to you - I go too. I don't think anybody is 100% happy with their body, or there aren't many who are anyway. Some people will cast their eyes over our figure faults and we won't know it - other people will be more overt - and others, like me - genuinely wouldn't spot your cellulite even at close range. I might notice your swimsuit though if it's a nice one that I admire.

Swimming pools might accentuate the discomfort but I would offer you (and me) this advice:

1) Stop running, the floor is wet usually and you might slip and really hurt yourself.
2) Stop refering to yourself as a 'whale'
3) Consider a namechange; it's not self-deprecating, its sad if you see yourself like that rather than just because you're a real PP fan.
4) Bloody carry on regardless because those people you think are watching you, probably aren't at all.

We (the nation) need to stop taking a collective gasp everytime the word 'fat' is mentioned. It's an adjective that is generally matter of fact. It's not a measure of a person's' worth but it's a good indicator of health and we ignore it at our peril.

MrsDeVere Wed 20-Feb-13 16:47:58

Want to know something?
NOT being fat does not make it easy for a lot of women to be seen in a swimsuit either.
Body image is not all about weight.

I have not been swimming for years. I would never wear a bikini. I am about a size 10. I feel very uncomfortable. I would much rather wear leggings and teeshirt to the pool.

I really do not think you are being judged or stared at by other women if you are overweight at the pool. I might glance your way but only in the way I would glance at anyone.

Thin people do not spend their lives judging non thin people. The most scathing remarks I hear generally come from women who are themselves unhappy with their weight. Some really nasty stuff shock

I think our society has got very mixed up about weight generally. We cant seem to tell what is healthy or normal. The 'ideal' is not based on medicine but the pages of Heat. If that is what people think they have to aspire to, no wonder many just think 'fuck it' and give up.

HoHoHoNoYouDont Wed 20-Feb-13 16:52:10

I think our society has got very mixed up about weight generally. We cant seem to tell what is healthy or normal. The 'ideal' is not based on medicine but the pages of Heat. If that is what people think they have to aspire to, no wonder many just think 'fuck it' and give up.


plinkyplonks Wed 20-Feb-13 21:35:46

I know it's from the DF, but still...

plinkyplonks Wed 20-Feb-13 21:39:35

HoHoHoNoYouDont glad I am not the only one to have read the OP's post. This is about over weight children, not adults. Shame this thread has been hijacked by people who seem to be insecure about their own weight. In regards to the argument "ohh but they're swimming!!" - so what? It's very unlikely you will lose weight whilst exercising whilst you are consuming more than you burn off. And how are children put in the position where they need to lose weight anyway?

fromparistoberlin Wed 20-Feb-13 22:17:31

what shagmund said

its not very palatable, but its sadly so so so true

and agree MummyPigsFatTummy, CHANGE YOUR USER NAME! give yourself i foxy one, you deserve better

fromparistoberlin Wed 20-Feb-13 22:19:10

its actually depressing, poor kids

BegoniaBampot Wed 20-Feb-13 22:44:03

I do actually find it almost upsetting seeing overweight and obese kids. So sad to start out that way. I always struggle to understand how young kids can get like that, to me it's natural for kids to be slim, what are they eating? Maybe this thread might make some parents think about what they can do do help their kids be a healthy weight.

I'm not surprised adults get over weight. Think about it, we have an abundance of food, and particularly that which is the worst for us. All the procesed and snack stuff. We don't have to do anything like the physical excerise we did in the past. Why wouldn't we be overweight, these days it probably takes quite a bit of knowledge, self awareness and self discipline.

And MrsdeVere was right, I'd bet as many slimmer folk struggle going swimming and are self conscious. But you know what, encourage your kids into sport as much as you can. I believe folk that do sports seriously, generally are more body confident and won't think that everyone is staring at them or care as much. Also think folk who do sports, those you will find at the gym or pool will not judge you if they see you working out or swimming. They'll just think fair play for just doing it and will generally be supportive.

Lottikins Thu 21-Feb-13 08:31:15

Perhaps you could make the lot of these fat kids better by not looking at them, not judging them and their parents and not pitying them.Try to look at the child within.
I live in a very MC area and can't think of any obese kids, maybe 1 or 2 overweight.I think a lack of exercise is a big problem for the poor.Swimming lessons for example £6 for 30 minutes, my 8 yo DD does 9 hours gym a week and hence can eat anything she wants and still be skinny (not that she does eat a lot of rubbish) but that costs me £75 per month. These will be out of reach of many families.In winter children spend most of the daylight hours at school.Schools need to take more responsibility for gettiung chikldren active.My youngest DD only does PE twice a week which is ridiculous.

DesiderataHollow Thu 21-Feb-13 09:12:15

Lottikins, in our borough if you are under 16 or over 60 you swim for free. Childhood obesity is an issue the council take very seriously.

DesiderataHollow Thu 21-Feb-13 09:19:25

from the council's strategy document
"In 2009 Enfield produced its first ‘Healthy Weight Strategy for Children and Young People’ to respond to the rising threat of childhood obesity within Enfield. However, much has changed since then, so this strategy provides an update, review and includes both actions and aspirations for the next ten years.
Tackling obesity requires long&#8208;term action. The significant numbers of children and young people who are overweight or obese mean that reversing the rising trend will take a concerted, sustained effort by all partners. For this reason Enfield’s aims are to:
&#61623; Halt the trend: stop levels increasing and maintain current obesity levels until 2015.
&#61623; Reverse the trend: by 2021 see a reduction in rates of childhood obesity
In 2009/10, National Child Measurement Programme data showed that in Enfield a quarter of reception age children and nearly 40% of children in year 6 are either overweight or obese.
As with many poor outcomes, childhood obesity and overweight levels are highest in the eastern half of the borough and amongst pupils eligible for free school meals. However, obesity is nonetheless a borough&#8208;wide problem, with wards from all areas showing rates above the borough average over the past 4 years."

The rest of the text is here:

We're not judging or pitying, just pointing out that nearly half of all children in some areas are overwight, some of them very overweight. It's impossible to NOT notice this.

BegoniaBampot Thu 21-Feb-13 12:30:36

Lottikins - kids don't really need all the fancy swim and sports classes that cost money. I grew up on a council estate, didn't have much of that but we were always out playing, running about. We got much more excerise than going to an hour class every other day and 99% were skinny minnies. Do kids still play out in council areas or more disadvantaged areas the way we did as kids? We never had indoor play dates or computer games, 24 hour telly for kids - we were chucked out in all weather.

fromparistoberlin Thu 21-Feb-13 13:36:49

"Perhaps you could make the lot of these fat kids better by not looking at them, not judging them and their parents and not pitying them.Try to look at the child within.

sorry but thats complete and utter bollocks! thats not going to solve their obesity


beenhereayear Thu 21-Feb-13 14:39:14

Actually I agree with OP and these things should be said. Now people that are not overweight in this country are in the minority. Yes some people have serious medical problems causing it but they are a tiny percentage the rest just eat too much and exercise too little and are passing these things onto the next generation.

Lottikins Thu 21-Feb-13 17:27:59

begonia Maybe in summer months but my point is that in winter it is dark nearly as soon as they get home from school and not many people want their Dc paying out when it is dusk or dark.
fromparistoberlin gawping,judging and pitying these children who are exercising isn't doing much to solve the problem either is it?

SugarMouse1 Thu 21-Feb-13 17:47:18

Why are people flaming the OP so much?

She has only made an observation!

Young children being overweight is entirely down to the parents.

Besides, if its the 'norm', what would there be to laugh at/ feel self-conscious about? Being 'normal'? If anything a very skinny child would probably get laughed at.

I work in swimming pools, and I have to say I haven't noticed this.

What do you consider overweight/obese OP? A lot of kids go through looking very chubby with puppy fat before puberty, but it evens out perfectly well, I looked fat at 11 but all through my adult life I remained either a 10 or a 12 dress size!

As I have said before, SugarMouse, just making the observation, without (apparently) wanting any sort of discussion on why this happens, and what we can do about it, smacks more of pointing at, and judging the fatties - which is not helpful or constructive.

Desiderata Is Enfield worse than the rest of the country in general? I would hate it to be, it's a lovely area in the main.

It is great they have the ability to do free swimming there, as the green spaces especially are disappearing fast!

I want to look at cooking lessons at school. In the 90's when I was at senior school we baked utter crap, cakes, biscuits and a token veg dish- surely we should be cooking with real food, giving children the love of cooking rather than just baking?

Helping them to help themselves and their families.

DesiderataHollow Thu 21-Feb-13 21:11:25

I think that it's fairly representitive. The leafy North/West is full of colt-like children who are as slim as ever, but the south/east chunk is deprived. The childrens centres try very hard to introduce healthy cookery lessons and the like, but they are fighting a losing battle.

jinsymaw Thu 21-Feb-13 21:34:09

Agree with plinkyplonks, HOhoho and sugarmice1. Feel like i'm trippin in boddiwod world with bubbles for eyes (just kiddin, love the names).An observation that we all have witnessed but god forbid say out loud and agree with the statistics and that we are trundling along at being the sick man of euorpe(again). No shush, don't say anything as we'll upset those who are obese. Let's just let it be till the NHs cannot cope.

yoyo123 Thu 21-Feb-13 21:44:35

I'm fat, I'm fit and I swim (very well) a lot.Unfortunately, I sometimes forget to wear sack cloth and ashes and a huge tent covering my being, just in case a thin person may see me....Oh, my goodness, my 2 grown up , healthy, fit children may resent the fact that I took them swimming, frequently , when they were young..did I fail them??

FergusSingsTheBlues Thu 21-Feb-13 21:57:00

Not sure why everybodys up arms at OP.... Ive been abroad for ten years. I moved back last year and am amazed atthe amount of obesity i see. I live next to a russell group uni with lots of well heeled students and even they are noticeably much chunkier, so it does transcend social class, unlike the old stereotype.

Before anybody starts moaning about "substituting obese for black, disabled etc", try substituting it for smokers instead! Its largely a lifestyle choice too, and being all defensive and touchy about it doesnt help any more than pointing and gawping at the overweight.

countrykitten Fri 22-Feb-13 09:44:03

yoyo you have spectacularly missed the point of the thread. I am guessing that you have not bothered to read it.

Fergus - I honestly don't see the point of a thread that is just pointing out how many fat people there are. In the absence of any attempt at discussion about why this might be, or how best to tackle it, it smacks of 'point at the fatties and sneer'. That is my objection to this thread, and why I find it offensive and upsetting.

FergusSingsTheBlues Fri 22-Feb-13 11:00:04

Well maybe she was trying to start one, no matter how cack handed it might have been. I crept up to size 22 when i left uni. Causes, basically poor lifestyle. I learnt to cook, the weight dropped off. Back to size 8 in under year. But i would have felt v defensive too, if i had come across this discussion at that are right, it doesnt actually help to sit mindlessly either criticising or defending obesity. In my view, a basic interest in cooking can be all it takes. I think lazily lumping it into social class differences is also misleading and used as an excuse. Ffs you can make a vat of soup for a quid.

And its one thing being defensive about being overweight, ok, obese, because you become remarkably sensitive. And you get the looks. And the comments like "youve got such a pretty face..." as if the rest is a disgusting car crash. Its emotionally difficult being obese and hard to turn back from it, But at no point would I have chosen it, or advocate it for my own kids or defended it as an acceptable choice. Its increasing, its unhealthy, its dangerous for our children and nobody truly wants that.

Loa Fri 22-Feb-13 11:16:25

You don't have to go swimming to see seriously overweight DC - in my area they are very common and easily spotted without being semi naked.

In fact the local swimming baths here which cost to go to and in in the nicer end of town tend to have less numbers of them.

I think there is a difference to talking about the large numbers of DC and people who are overweight and talking about staring at people in swimming pools where large numbers of people are not particularly comfortable but where people go to exercise.

I think it is particularly bad with DC because while many parents are in denial about their DC weight even DC like mine who eat very well and exercise frequently do get cubby at times before shooting up several inches. For the girls at least ignorant strangers passing comments or just staring – combined with a peer group obsessed with fashion and thinness – despite our efforts – could well be very detrimental to them.

I’ve been made to feel unwelcome – even when in ideal weight range – at gyms and aerobics classes and only manage to go swimming by convincing myself that no one cares what I look like . The op kind of shatters that happy illusion.

Loa Fri 22-Feb-13 11:21:32

In my view, a basic interest in cooking can be all it takes.

They do healthy eating cooking classes in children centres near me - always eager to learn and improve I went along. The fried in a huge amount of butter leeks then covered in cheese - that was healthy apparently as it had vegetables in – it was pretty much all like that and soup was never mentioned once.

From that experience I really wonder about health cooking knowledge generally.

TooExtraImmatureCheddar Fri 22-Feb-13 11:26:21

Being fat is a choice (for adults) in the same way as smoking is. The difference is that saying someone is fat is considered highly offensive. In my office probably 50% of people are overweight. It shouldn't be normalised!

Loa Fri 22-Feb-13 11:32:11

I don't think it should be normalised, though that is hard when in areas like mine over weight DC are the norm, but I don't see why making people taking exercise or enjoying an active activity feel bad helps.

BegoniaBampot Fri 22-Feb-13 12:29:40

i don't think anyone would try and make someone obese feel bad if they are excercising unless they were always a dick anyway.

Noideaatall Sun 24-Feb-13 01:01:57

why are fat people so touchy....? wink

I went swimming twice this week, swam for an hour and 15 minutes both times, probably looked like a harpooned killer whale, but who cares, I knew it was a step in the right direction and I felt good (but exhausted) after each time. I was embarrassed at all the perfect people in there with their toned gym addict bodies, but humbled too, by a lady a good 100lbs heavier than myself, who swam with great confidence and considerably more skill.

I feel better for it - more energetic, sleeping better and more confidence. I may not physically look different to the way I looked a week ago before I started going to the gym daily, swimming and dieting - but I cared enough to shave and dye my hair and wear make up for the first time in months today. So any other larger ladies who worry about being judged at the pool - just do it! You will end up feeling much better about yourself afterwards smile

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sun 24-Feb-13 06:16:15

FSM... If you're ex-FHG, I know for fact that you're a 'babe', I've seen pictures of you. wink

And the reason it's a problem is 90% of the responses on here. Somebody with a weight problem is told to "ignore the bastards, you're a beautiful, bubbly human being" rather than. "Well actually, your body isn't designed to be like this, you are putting a huge strain on your internal organs and your life expectancy".

In my primary school class 20 years ago, there was a handful of kids that I would class as over weight. I believe the OP was pointing out how this is no longer the case.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sun 24-Feb-13 06:39:06

yy Probation. It is an emotive subject, no doubt about it, but it needs to stop being so. It's far too much of a taboo and it really shouldn't be. Obesity is such far-reaching and potentially lifelong problem and seeing so many young and very large children struggling to walk is something that just has to be tackled, unpalatable as it is to some people.

Seeing very overweight children is a lot more common now. The fact that some people don't see so many could be attributed to a distorted view of what 'overweight' looks like.

For the record, I'm a lifelong dieter with a horrid relationship with food. I'll be like it all of my life and if I don't keep a very firm grip on myself I have a tendency to disordered eating at both ends of the scale. I'd hate to see that being developed in children; we're the adults and we need to do something to protect them from it because they can't.

Cinnamom Sun 24-Feb-13 06:40:22

I absolutely agree with the OP that we need to start doing something. No point ignoring the facts. It is much more like smoking than it is black, muslim, etc Its a choice. Hard to believe but we do actually still decide what we eat. If it grows on a plant, eat more of it. If its made in a plant, eat less of it.

tree568 Mon 11-Mar-13 05:04:29

There aren't many overweight children at my children's schools but in the poorer areas some of the kids are quite large. I put that down to poor diets and relatively little for the children to do, e.g. vandalised parks.

Maybe obesity is a local issue though. I was in Newcastle recently - first time I have ever been - and was struck by the sheer size of the city centre, and being surrounded by so many slim people I felt like I was on a TV set for a new show called "Beautiful People". It was like being in an "overweight people not expected to enter" zone.

merlottits Mon 11-Mar-13 06:37:00

What a strange thread. The poor OP! She merely made an observation and was slated for it. She clearly wants to bring in ethnic fat cleansing and exterminate all the fatties. Not.

We are getting fatter. Pretending we aren't or getting so super sensitive that it can't be discussed is not going to help. Especially our children. It IS shocking. Does nobody else sometimes look around them and see just how many fat people there are and wonder - shit, what have we done?

It is about the price of processed food. It's about our taste buds being tuned to high sugar, high fat foods. It is about lack of time. I also feel its about stress and comfort eating. Everyone I know uses food (and alcohol) to feel better, as a drug. I personally think its almost nothing to do with lack of exercise.

I'm a fatty so I'm hardly sitting on my high horse judging.

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