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Overweight DD (7)

(89 Posts)
DontOpenDeadInside Sat 18-Nov-17 08:46:07

My DD is 7 (almost 8) and her weight has become very obvious now. I noticed a while back but my efforts to reduce it have not worked. She's in 9-10 clothes and even then they are tight around her stomach. She's 127cm and 36.1kg. I'm trying to not make a big deal out of it (though she keeps saying "I'm fat" and "I've got a fat belly".

A usual day's food is
Breakfast either: 2 pieces of toast/bowl cereal with whole milk/waffles with strawberries. Cup of tea.

Dinner: ham sandwich (2 pieces of brown bread) yogurt or jelly or sometimes a treat (cake), fruit (melon and grapes or apple slices) and carrot sticks/cucumber/toms and crisps (I know crisps are not great but I'm worried she'll still be hungry)

Tea: this varies though we do have a takeaway more often than we should. Really need to stop this. Spaghetti Bolognese (dolmio-dp doesn't like homemade)/roast/curry(jar)/rice and chips/ burritos/etc. Last night we had mince and dumplings. She had 1 dumpling about 10 carrot slices 3 small bits of brocolli, a ladle of mince and about 2 tablespoons of mash.

She usually has a 50p mix up or similar after school- I'm going to start taking fruit I think, not sure how that'll go down.
Tea is at 5 and although she usually asks for something before I'll tell her to wait or get fruit (usually waits) then she likes "dessert" which is usually a yogurt.
I just need advice on how to reduce her food intake without her really noticing. It's hard because dd2(9) eats the same (and always has) and is fine.
Exercise wise, we don't do a lot of exercise, she's just learned how to ride a bike, however by the time we get home after school it's dark (can't ride from school as dd2 can't ride one and it's steep downhill) I don't have enough to money for them to do dance etc (and they've never asked)
So objectives :
Stop takeaways
Remove crisps from lunch
No sweets after school
More exercise (how?)

What else can I do?
Thank you if you've read all this.

Ausparent Sat 18-Nov-17 08:52:47

Didnt want ti read and run.

There is some good information here www.nhs.uk/Livewell/childhealth6-15/Pages/child-health-measurement-programme-overweight-advice.aspx re. Children's weight at her age. I agree that it would be best not to put too much emphasis on it to her.

TweeBee Sat 18-Nov-17 08:58:57

There is a programme called MEND which may run in your area or you may find the website helpful.
I would swap whole milk to skimmed or semi.
What does she drink?
What's a 50p mix up? Is it sweets? Could you reduce that gradually - every other day and then only one day or something? Or just change it for both DC as its not good for teeth either to something healthier eg breadsticks, rice cakes, brioche. This would be more filling than sweets too.

DontOpenDeadInside Sat 18-Nov-17 08:59:07

I did read that, but apart from lack of exercise I'd say we're not doing too bad according to their guidelines and the fact dd1 and 2 are not (and never have been) overweight. We are doing exactly the same.

Actually that might be a slight lie. I realised the other day that when dd1 was younger we'd go to softplay a lot, then as DD2 then 3 came, we went a lot less as it become too expensive (£20+ for an hour)
Dd1 is almost 14 now so I could possibly start going there again with dd2 and 3 once a fortnight or so. Swimming also.

TractorTedTed Sat 18-Nov-17 09:02:11

Your plan so far sounds good.

Could you do more bike rides/swimming/ trips to the park at the weekend? Find fun ways to ensure they all do lots of exercise.

How do you normally get to and from school? How old is dd2?

DontOpenDeadInside Sat 18-Nov-17 09:02:15

I thought whole milk/full fat butter/yogurts were meant to be healthier for kids? Is that just if they are not overweight to start with? And to be honest I don't think the amount of milk she has would make much difference. We generally have squash (Robinson's/vimto) occasionally fizzy-I've cut out buying this as much.

Ilovelampandchair Sat 18-Nov-17 09:03:26

There's a lot of improvement to be made in your list. I'd say she's getting about 4 times the recommended sugar allowance for her age daily at the moment. Count it up and get aware of what sugar is in what.

Breakfast
-waffles are loaded with sugar and are a treat for maybe once a week. What cereal? It should only be cornflakes, rice crispies, bran flakes, shredded wheat or porridge. Anything else is full of sugar. Is she having loads of butter and jam on her toast?

- lunch sounds ok but way too much food. Get rid of the jelly and cake completely. And make sure her yogurt is Greek or low sugar. No frubes or petit filous etc. They have half her daily sugar in just one pretty much! Ham sandwich, yogurt, fruit and occasionally crisps is more than enough.

- Definitely no mix ups. A piece of fruit is fine.

- Dinner, no take always for children in general. The salt is horrific and calories too. Maybe once a month on a Friday evening as a treat. Yogurt is fine for desert but again, NOT frubes or 90% of yogurts. Try Greek yogurt with some stewed apple etc. Or custard (made with milk and custard powder) and Apple.

Your 9 yr old may be fine now but if she's eating like your 7 yr old I guarantee she will have weight oroblems later.

You need to check the sugar content if the food you're giving the kids (including the bread etc) and really understand where you're at.

TractorTedTed Sat 18-Nov-17 09:04:36

Sorry, just realised dd2 might be the dd in question. From your initial post I thought she was the younger sister.

DontOpenDeadInside Sat 18-Nov-17 09:05:17

Dd2 is 9.5 (21 months between them). We drive to school. We could possibly walk but dd3 is a terrible dawdler and takes ages, and she couldn't ride her bike as it's uphill (she's not mastered that yet)

I'm just about to go get them ready and take the dog out so she can ride her bike and get a bit exercise. She lives going out on her bike, it's just lacking opportunity in the winter.

LordSugarWillSeeYouNow Sat 18-Nov-17 09:06:07

Hi op my dd is in year 2 and we're going through the same. Most of her friends are tiny so it's more obvious when at school.

My dd is tall and weighs around 5.7 stones ( not sure of kilos ) and is constantly hungry.

We've recently enrolled her in 5 dance sessions a week ( over 2 days ) after school and she's loving it.

I've stopped going to the shops after school and am restricting food that is deemed to be a treat.
She loves fruit, less so vegetables but has a really sweet tooth.
Ironically her teeth are beautiful and has never had any issues at the dentist.

I was always a chubby kid and hated it.
I don't want dd to be bullied.

I'm also getting better with cooking.
She is a vegetarian in the sense that she refuses to try meat and doesn't eat "children's food" so I'm aware where I'm going wrong, just have to keep at it.

Good luckflowers

Ilovelampandchair Sat 18-Nov-17 09:07:11

Just saw your update. Absolutely no fizzy drinks except maybe at parties! And keep juice well watered and to a minimum. You are definitely thinking I'm being a nazi here but it's actually easy to live without all those things and your tastes do adjust and seriously, if you're wondering where al those adults with weight problems came from its from childhood diets like the one you've listed. Sorry to be blunt but I hope it helps. (I struggle to say no to frubes and biscuits for my lot but do work hard to keep them all to a min, it's important).

DontOpenDeadInside Sat 18-Nov-17 09:07:16

Dd2 is the middle one, I'm talking about dd3 smile

missminimum Sat 18-Nov-17 09:12:28

I think the link Ausparent has given is the best place to start for advice. You are right cutting out take aways and crisps is a good plan. I would also cut the waffles and make sure the cereals are not laden with sugar or chocolate. Maybe allow sweets once a week as a treat. Physical activity would be the way to go as this will become something that is part of her life always. Are there any sports clubs at school? Swimming lessons can be done all year round. A scooter rather than a bike to and from school. Getting out at weekends for bike rides and family walks. A table tennis net and bats to put up on the kitchen table. Teach her to skip and get her sister doing all these things too. Make sure she is not drinking squash, fruit juice or fizzy drinks. Just water and milk ( but not large amounts of milk). She may well have a growth spurt soon and slim. I think try and make activity fun and be a positive role model and not talking too much about her weight so she doesnt get too worried about things.

TweeBee Sat 18-Nov-17 09:12:50

Yes definitely change the milk. No need for whole milk over 2 unless someone is underweight.
Hope it goes well for you X

DontOpenDeadInside Sat 18-Nov-17 09:13:01

Ilovelampandchair, thank you for your reply. At 1st I thought "woah that's a bit extreme" but actually you do have a point. Yes she has jam on her toast and she likes syrup on her waffles too blush That all needs to stop. Sometimes you need an outside perspective to see what you're missing. I'm going to have to do a complete overhaul of all our diets I think.
It's so difficult as apart from dd3 (who'll eat anything) they're all so fussy. I think the only meal I make which everyone eats is a roast (except dd1 doesn't eat the meat)so it's easier to just order in, then everyone can have what they like.

LIZS Sat 18-Nov-17 09:13:06

That is a lot of sugar, some natural some added. Look at jars of sauce and see just how much is hidden in there.Does she get enough exercise? Swimming, trampolining, dance, climbing can all burn off calories without feeling sporty if she doesn't enjoy team sports.

margaritasbythesea Sat 18-Nov-17 09:14:07

I agree with not drawing attention to her weight but I wonder if she is aware of it? My DS, who is at the top of his centiles for everything, is aware he is bigger in every respect to his peers though not oficially overweight. I put measures in place for the whole family on the grounds that we needed to cut back on sugar and he has accepted them all without a whisper, even gratefully.

I would second a lot of the advice here but would also say that ready prepared sauces can have a lot of sugar in them too.

I have the added problem that I have a DD who is extremely thin!

Crumbs1 Sat 18-Nov-17 09:16:07

Yes, agree she’s got a lot of sugar in there. Sweets should be weekend treat only (and not more because it’s only once a week).
Boost evening meals with more vegetables. Avoid takeaways and jars that are sugar and fat laden. Bolognese is so easy you don’t need a jar. Swop Chinese takeaway for stir fry and plain noodles. Swop Dominoes for a homemade pizza with less cheese, more vegetable toppings.

Keep proper takeaways for a once a month treat.

Menu plan. It’s cheaper and healthier for you all.
Use baked potatoes a lot. Filling, nutritious and cheap.
Make oven baked risottos that are easy and low fat/sugar.
Use pasta with tomato based sauces rather than creamy ones.
Consider Quorn instead of meat sometimes.

Don’t single her out and give her different food.change how you all eat. Do increase her exercise levels. Lots of free/ cheap activities that are more active than TV.
Try brownies, swimming club, walking to school or walking at weekends as a family. Do school have any clubs?

Quartz2208 Sat 18-Nov-17 09:20:43

Perhaps also focus on DD1 and DD2 fussiness as well as that is having an adverse effect. Make one meal and get everyone to eat it

Tanaqui Sat 18-Nov-17 09:26:08

it looks low in protein to me- one slice of toast for brekkie with egg or nut butter, lots of ham in lunch sandwich and mayo, then cut out all the treats except one.

80sMum Sat 18-Nov-17 09:27:51

Have takeaway food only very occasionally, less than once a month. Cut out completely, or drastically reduce, all the obvious sugary foods, i.e cereals, sweets, waffles, syrups, jams, biscuits, cakes, sugary drinks & fruit juices and reduce the intake of crisps, pizza & pasta.

JonSnowsWife Sat 18-Nov-17 09:28:19

The trick is to not is to not let them realise they are exercising and to change what they're eating slowly.

The only exercise a child of that age needs is play. Walks to big country parks at the weekends? I e Richmond park types. Nipping to the park on the way home from school for twenty minutes. Then by the time she gets home she'll be hungry enough for her dinner.

Careful on the fruit side or not giving her too much of that either. Veg would be better. Does she like the carrot sticks? DD is 11 and still likes them as a treat.

Just because your DH doesn't like certain things doesn't mean you can't get DD involved in your own cooking. Get her to help you make pitta pizzas. They always go down a treat here (and you'll save a fortune in dominoes).

I never cut sweets out of DCs diet completely but did restrict them, they know they're only allowed sweets on 'sweety day'.

SottoVoc3 Sat 18-Nov-17 09:31:40

I sympathise. My DS2 (10) is obese ( whereas DS1 is a beanpole).Obese DS2 eats a reasonable diet, hates fizzy drinks, does 3 sports a week, walks to and from school every day . It truly is a mystery to me how he can be so overweight. He has started having Weetabix every night for supper- I think that’s a bad habit he’s got into lately but we do have early tea in order to get to his activities... so I can see it’s reasonable he might be hungry by 8pm.

Ideas? As others have said- sweets once a week ( break the after school habit by replacing with something healthier with sweets only on Fridays??); takeaways once a month (you would save a fortune which you could spend on swimming/ soft play etc etc); cut out sauces in jars; rather than crisps in lunchbox, add another sandwich if she is hungry???
My son likes sugar free chewing gum- satisfies his sweet tooth without taking in as many calories as a biscuit...
Is there a junior Parkrun nearby- your family could do it together, so no one is singled out.

JonSnowsWife Sat 18-Nov-17 09:32:26

I think the breakfast sounds a bit too sugary, does she have cereal and toast?

Neither of my DCs would eat that. I have a strapping 5ft 11yo and a skinny runt of an 8yo. Both had half a bowl of porridge this morning and still left some.

Would she eat anything like dippy eggs and soldiers for breakfast? The protein in the eggs would fill her up for longer.

DancesWithOtters Sat 18-Nov-17 09:33:46

I bet just dropping the waffles, sweets and take away would make a huge difference.

What does she have from take away? Chicken shish, salad and pitta isn't bad at all. Pizza or Chinese is very bad.

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