Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

had a letter to say dd is overweight

(86 Posts)
steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 11:54:18

dd1 is year 6. They were weighed in November and she has come back as overweight. I know she isn't skinny, but I was surprised when I put her details into the NHS site, that she is at the upper end of over weight.

She is dc2, and dc1 and 3 are both at the lower end of weight scale. Ds at times was underweight.
They all eat the same, we eat a home made middle of the road diet, plenty of fruit and veg. No fizzy drinks, only 1 juice allowed per day. No fancy sweet puddings during the week (we have nice pudding on sat/sun)

She does football once a week, and walks to and from school. In the warmer weather she is often out on her bike, playing outside, but it has been raining since september and wet, muddy and miserable.

I am at a bit of a loss as to know what to do. I can't get out and about with her 3 days a week as I am working, and it is dark when we get home. The week is pretty busy as it is, and she does a lot, but it isn't sports clubs (she plays in a brass band, does newspaper club at school, and scouts)

There is a part of me that is a bit philosophical, because in sept, when she goes to secondary, she will do a 10 minute cycle, train ride and then a 15 minute walk every morning, then reversed in the evening, and she will be doing plenty.

She has done the thing where she gets fatter, and then has a growth spurt and get thinner. But she is never really thin like the other two are.

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 11:55:35

sorry, the point of posting was - any suggestions?

OnTheSunnySide Tue 05-Jan-16 11:58:45

It's more likely to be what she eats than lack of exercise.
Can you take a look at what she's eating and adjust that?

ohdearlord Tue 05-Jan-16 12:01:18

Is there any reason to suspect any underlying health issue? Does the letter tell you to contact her GP or give any advice?

How were you when you were growing up? Did you have puppy fat that you shed as you grew?

No chance she's illicitly sneaking extra biscuits?

Do any of her friends do other sports where maybe she could tag along and you could share lifts etc. with the other parents?

Iamnotloobrushphobic Tue 05-Jan-16 12:02:07

Could she be eating things that you haven't realised she is eating?
Unless she has a medical reason there might be a simple explanation for why she is heavier than the other two. Does she have the opportunity to help herself to snacks at home or on the way home from school? Are her portions larger than the others? Does she eat anybody's leftovers?
I wouldn't assume that the problem will sort itself when she goes to high school because my own experience tells me that children's new found freedom when they get to high school often leads to a higher consumption of sugary foods (they pass by the shops and choose unhealthy meals at lunchtime etc) and a 10 min cycle and 15 min walk doesn't burn that many calories.

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 12:34:18

No underlying health issue.
She is definitely starting puberty, and is quite hormonal.

I did have puppy fat, but didn't really shed it, but that was also due to boarding school diet and lack of exercise. I don't want her to end up like that.

Pretty sure she isn't pinching biscuits etc. She walks home with me and younger dd so I know she isn't buying stuff after school. Her portions are actually about the same as dd2 aged 8. She doesn't eat anyone's leftovers.

She likes her food, and if offered would always accept eg crisps/biscuits. But she isn't looking for food, or sneaky about food.

I don't think that will be her at secondary loobrush. They don't leave campus at lunchtime, and she has FSM, so will eat in the canteen. On the way home, she might buy stuff, but she won't have much money!

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 12:40:40

The letter referred us to the NHS website, and to be honest we already do most of the things suggested.

I can't add a sport club to the week. I simply can't afford it, she would have to drop Scouts or band, and she would be very upset to do that.

I run 2-3 times per week, so that last thing I want is to turn out again in the dusk after school to do exercise with her, but going on bike rides etc is the only thing I can think of to up her sport.
She really isn't very physical/sporty. She naturally has 2 left feet and runs badly. This also means that now, at 10, if she joins something, eg street dance, all the others have been doing it for a while and are quite good, whereas she will be bad at it and not likely to get improve quickly.

I have to go out now, so won't be back till tonight, keep the suggestions coming.

mercifulTehlu Tue 05-Jan-16 12:50:16

Just a thought - you say 'no fancy puddings' during the week. What constitutes a non-fancy pudding? Also, it's easy to rack up a lot of sugar consumption through the day even without proper puddings and fizzy drinks (sweetened yoghurts, sugary cereal, sweet stuff on toast for breakfast, excessive amounts of fruit, processed foods, the odd biscuit etc). None of those is a big deal on its own, but it's easy to have quite a lot of those things without realising how much sugar it adds up to. I have to watch this with my dc. They are skinny, but excessive sugar's bad whatever weight you are.

ohdearlord Tue 05-Jan-16 13:07:53

Do you have a smart phone?

DD and I do the 7-minute work outs together when we can't get out to do anything else. She and I both feel really icky if we don't do something every day - but winter time where we are means -15 and two hours of daylight. I like moving but not that much!

They are nice too because she'd have utter privacy, no need to worry about other kids being better or her not having the requisite co-ordination etc.

The 7-minute claim is that in and of itself it is enough for all the health benefits of exercise. I'm not sure for weight loss though. Maybe it'd be worth doing a couple back to back but not every day? The Nike Training app has lots of other follow-along workouts that my DD (she's 8 next week) likes too - everything from boxercise to ballet barre.

If apps aren't an option then youtube is brilliant. DD is very into ballet so we use Kathryn Morgan's barres. But she has some non-ballet workouts on there too. Assuming your DD is ordinarily biddable I would imagine she'd be able to do it without too much input from you if time's a big issue.

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 21:11:07

so. I've been having a think.
I focused on exercise, because she is much less physically active than the other two, and that that would apply to school playtimes etc.

But I have been thinking of her diet. She doesn't like breakfast, but usually has one slice of wholemeal bread with cheese (not ideal, but it is pretty much the only thing she will eat in the morning other than sugar coated cereal which I won't buy.)

She has a school dinner, which is probably not that healthy and includes cooked pud. I know they are not allowed to use lots of sugar in school dinners, but even so.

She has a snack when she comes in and that is usually a biscuit (or 2) and then fruit.
drinks are milk or water.

Pudding is a yoghurt, or sugar free jelly.

Because we all eat the same and dh and ds and dd2 are all skinny, I think it is fine, but actually for her, it is just a matter of too many calories in and not enough calories burnt off.

So, I think we will have to run a few changes.

grumpysquash2 Tue 05-Jan-16 21:24:28

If she is just starting puberty, it's really likely that she will gain quite a lot of height in the next year.

I think cheese and bread is ok for breakfast and more filling than cereal.

Agree about school dinner, but the portions aren't massive for a y6.

She could trade the biscuits for something else, but tbh, I don't think there's obvious big changes to be made, since she doesn't have sweets, fizzy drinks etc.

If her portions are similar to her siblings, then it's probably genetics, as is her non-sportyness. But I bet you a pound that this time next year she will be a different shape....

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 21:39:49

grumpy - I am torn between your opinion, and the fact that she is quite high up the overweight scale and I don't want to ignore it.

She got a bucket load of sweets for Christmas (not from me), so January is a disaster anyway. Good job the weigh in wasn't this week!

wizzywig Tue 05-Jan-16 21:41:38

What is her height and weight? Do you think she is overweight? Could she be eating food from elsewhere?

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 21:51:56

she is 147.5 m tall.
weighs 49 kg.

She is not skinny, and when you see her in the shower there is a spare tyre. But seeing her mess around after school today she really doesn't look fat.

She wears size 13-14, but that isn't because she needs the width. The trousers are the right length and width. She is tall for her age. All my kids wear clothes 2-3 years above their actual age, and as I said the other 2 are skinny.

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 22:18:11

for various reasons I haven't got an up to date photo on my laptop, so this is about a year ago. She is a big bigger than this now.

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 22:18:31

a bit bigger

Penfold007 Tue 05-Jan-16 22:28:08

I'm sorry but your lovely girl is very overweight. She is taking on too many calories and not physical enough. Could she go running with you?

RJnomore1 Tue 05-Jan-16 22:28:27

Op are you sure those measurements are correct?

I've ran them through the nhs bmi calculator using my dds date of birth (September 04) as I reckon they're close in age and it comes up 94th centile.

That's not the child in that photo to me unless I am very very skewed ?

grumpysquash2 Tue 05-Jan-16 22:33:04

If she hadn't been assessed at school, would you be concerned?

My DD definitely had a bit of a tum and extra layer of padding in y6 and is not skinny (unlike one of my boys who is a rake and borderline underweight). I can't remember her weight/height but she was 85th centile for BMI (top end of what the NHS consider to be the 'healthy range' [their words])

She is now in year 8, 12.5 years old, has shot up to 165cm - not sure of weight but would estimate 55kg (could be a bit more). The tum has gone and she is looking beautiful and shapely, honestly not the least bit fat (nor even slightly podgy).

FWIW, I would say she has had a similar diet to your DD and similar activity levels (does a dance class weekly, but not really into sport).

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 22:35:39

well, those are the measurements on the letter. Her birthdate is march 05. The NHS calculator comes up as 96 centile.

She is a little bit bigger than the photo, but not significantly. Her legs look thinner in the photo than they are.

This is why I am torn. The facts say it is a problem. The girl in front of me not so much.

I think I might re weigh and measure her.

We have tried to get her running (ds and dd2 run sometimes) tried to get her involved with junior parkrun, but she says her knees hurt when she runs, so she doesn't like it. (and she runs in a very ungainly way, doesn't look smooth or comfy)

She isn't anti physical exercise, actually likes it and is happy to do it, if with someone or something she likes.

RJnomore1 Tue 05-Jan-16 22:36:35

I'd pop her on the scales.

See what they say.

jorahmormont Tue 05-Jan-16 22:40:56

Just interested in what you say about her knees hurting when she runs - do they bend/lock backwards? It looks like one of her knees is locked slightly backwards in that picture?

Chippednailvarnish Tue 05-Jan-16 22:41:18

Could you ask your GP for advice (she doesn't have to go with you)?

If it's a question of money and your in receipt of FSM would school be able to use the pupil premium to allow her to go to an after school sports club? My DCs school have girls only football, tennis and dancing over the week.

grumpysquash2 Tue 05-Jan-16 22:41:45

For the last bit of my tuppence worth, I'd just like to add that when they get into secondary school they have total control over what they eat at break/lunchtime. So I would say that being in the routine of healthy food choices will have a bigger impact than focusing on weight, if that makes sense.
As in: eat when you're hungry; a filled wrap is better than a couple of doughnuts; take some vegetables with the main meal; water better than juice or smoothies (the devil's drink imh grin); something with protein will fill you up more than a slice of pizza.

At our school you can get an itemised list of money spent, so easy to have a quick monitor!

steppemum Tue 05-Jan-16 22:42:02

grumpy - that sounds very like dd.

Would I have been concerned without the letter. Hmm, well, not as concerned as I am now, but I am aware that she isn't skinny and have been quietly doing more veg and fewer biscuits etc, and since I started running we have all been trying to be more active (until the bad weather set in)

I am also aware that most of us don't see kids as overweight because so many kids are overweight, and I don't want to be the parent who doesn't notice.
Sometimes I compare he to dd2 and think hmm, need to watch that.

I am overweight, and have been most of my life. I don't want her to follow in my footsteps, and I am also aware of not wanting to put my issues on her.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now