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Doctor says my dd is underweight - any advice please

(22 Posts)
starfish4 Tue 20-May-14 10:48:19

My daughter will be 13 in August. She is 147cm tall and weighs 33kg. She had tonsillitis recently and the Doctor said she was more concerned that my daughter was underweight. She looks slim, but you can't see her ribs so never thought about it.

I've been nagging her to eat more of her lunch, adding an extra potato to meals etc but she just doesn't want the extra. She's not anorexic as a typical day she'll eat large bowl of cereal (more than me), toast, 3 biscuits, lunchbox 4 small sandwiches, piece fruit or veggie sticks and something like cheese, crisps, pepperami, cereal bar (about 20% comes back uneaten), two snacks on return from school - one is always fruit, the other can be crisps, chocolate, biscuits, peanuts. Tea might be a pasta dish with veggies or chicken or fish with 2 potatoes, whole carrot and large portion of other veggies (she loves veggies). She doesn't like many puddings and has a chocolate mousse twice a week and I've been giving her crumpets sometimes since she saw the doctor. She has a drink of milk in the evenings.

Has anyone got any advice? This is the first time she's been to the Doctor in five years so I was proud she managed to stay so healthy. I'm now worried in case she needs to see Doctor again, hasn't put on weight and then they realize she's hardly seen a Doctor (probably only seen one five times) and think we don't care.

kinsorange Tue 20-May-14 13:50:13

Personally I wouldnt worry.

But what I would do, is do a food diary, either yourself or her[might be better if it was you so that she doesnt get anxious about food issues[you coulld perhpas tell her you are doing one for the doctor and say no more than that]]

That way, if she does need to go to the doctor, and it is mentioned again, you cam say well we did a food diary and here it is. I thought that it looked ok. What do you think?
That way you should be covered, as in they can see that you took the issue seriously.
[I am not a medical person btw]

starfish4 Tue 20-May-14 14:17:23

Good idea. Like I say she rarely goes to the doctor, but I could do a food diary every few months. If they then turn around and say she's underweight and they're concerned, I could then throw the ball back in their caught by asking for advice - that way they'll know I'm not ignoring the issue.

WowOoo Tue 20-May-14 14:22:56

I was a skinny teen. (long time ago!)

I can remember being told by a doctor that a little extra weight would be good for me, because when you get ill and can't eat you always have a little bit of back up. So that might be what the GP meant.

My mum fed me well, but I was so active I remained skinny. I wouldn't be worried if I were you as it's clear she eats well and is rarely poorly.

There's nothing wrong with not having a sweet tooth either. It's her choice and taste, isn't it?

Solo Tue 20-May-14 14:26:59

I wouldn't worry either; she's still growing and developing at 13. Why do doctors worry parents about this when children are still growing?!
My friends Dd was apparently overweight at age 4. She was no bigger (fatter) than my own Dd, though she was slightly shorter than my Dd. Her Mum was distraught!

Solo Tue 20-May-14 14:28:17

Meant to say that my Dd came in at 'just right'.

Gibbsismine Tue 20-May-14 14:36:15

My son is also 13 in August and is a similar height to your daughter but 2lbs lighter. In my case it is me that told the doc I was worried about his weight. He is a nightmare to feed and doesn't eat a healthy diet like your daughter sounds to. My doctor was of the opinion that while my son is healthy and has plenty of energy I shouldn't worry.
He does eat but not the nutritious balanced meals I would like him to. He is very rarely ill, in fact the rest of the family are currently fighting a virus and he is unaffected.
I know it can be worrying but I think that so long as they are healthy, it's better to keep an eye on it but not turn food into an issue.
The food diary sounds an excellent idea. I will also try this.

kinsorange Tue 20-May-14 22:23:27

There has just been a fly in the ointment idea buzzing in my head.
There isnt the slightest chance that she has bulimia is there?
I wanted to keep quiet, but thought that if by any remote chance she did have it, then I shouldnt keep quiet.
I dont know anything about bulimia, but just did think I ought to mention it. Sorry.

starfish4 Thu 22-May-14 14:42:46

kinsorange, thanks for your message. I think it's unlikely as our house is small and you you'd certainly hear if someone was being sick! She has company walking to and from school and even when we go out, we both usually go to the toilet together, ie she's hardly on her own.

Gibbsismine - my daughter will also be 13 in August as well.

Freckletoes Thu 22-May-14 15:01:49

My daughter is 12 and also officially underweight. She has always been thin and is picky with her food but when she has something she likes she can out eat my OH! She is active and does a lot of sport, sleeps a normal amount-regular kid really. I look back into the dim and distant past to when I was that age and she is physically the same as me, and from seeing pictures of my mum-of her as well. I was very sporty, active, not too fussed about food (those were the days!) and just thin. I wouldn't worry too much about it, if she is eating OK and not bothered about her weight then I suspect it is the way she is!

Freckletoes Thu 22-May-14 15:03:00

plus maybe doctors as getting used to seeing so many overweight kids that it makes the thin ones look extra thin!

ColinFirthsGirth Sun 25-May-14 18:47:17

My son is nearly 13 and is a stone lighter than your daughter OP and so was I when I was 13. I think Freckletoes may well be right, Doctors are seeing more and more heavier children so maybe it does make it look like our slimmer children are too slim. My son has always been small. In fact you are meant to be able to see their ribs apparently. The doctors have told me that my son is naturally small. If you daughter is eating ok then don't worry.

ColinFirthsGirth Sun 25-May-14 18:48:01

my son eats loads btw but runs around alot!

Soapysuds64 Mon 16-Jun-14 22:36:43

dd is 12, 151 cm tall and 33.3kg - pretty much the same as yours.

When she was 4, a nutritionist told her 'chips make you fat'. When she was 6, a shoe shop assistant asked if she was ill because she is so fine.

She's a bit picky, but she does set a fair bit. We have done health visitors and food diaries - no major concerns. I try not to let it worry me, but I wish I could find a shop that sold jeans that would fit her.

LIZS Thu 19-Jun-14 18:52:31

dd weighs less than 30kg about 145cm tall , but she has actually put on several kg recently (not that you'd notice though). Am I worried , er no . I was the same build (hard to believe now sadly!). She is constantly on the go. She has been "underweight" since she was a baby and no paed or gp has ever expressed concern as long as she was healthy and eating normally. When I was a teen anything that drew attention to my size or portion size was counterproductive.

Jbck Thu 19-Jun-14 19:13:59

DD is 13 in September and is 144 cm, she weighs just under 30kgs. We've been told she was underweight since she was about 3.

I was exactly the same (wish I was a bit now), she is perfectly fine, healthy and energetic.

I think the posters who mention heavier kids might have a point, lots of people seem to have a warped idea of size nowadays. I am 2st overweight and the amount of people who genuinely call me slim is shocking. They are not just being pleasant, they actually don't realise what fat looks like anymore.

Don't worry about her at all, she'll be fine.

melissa83 Thu 19-Jun-14 19:18:58

She is probably just slim. Im only 20kg more than her and Im a heavily pregnant older woman.

Georgethesecond Thu 19-Jun-14 19:22:20

I was a skinny teen. Even in my forties I am on the borderline of underweight according to the charts, my BMI is about 19.5 IIRC. I'm not underweight, I'm just built light. I have long skinnyish arms and legs, small hands and feet and I'm 5'8" tall. I eat plenty and have no food issues. Don't worry - it's just how she is.

Georgethesecond Thu 19-Jun-14 19:25:09

Actually at about 13 I was particularly skinny, people used to call me spider for a while around then. My periods started at 12.9, I was completely normal. Just skinny. Oh and flat chested which I suppose also keeps my weight down a bit!

bumdiedum Sat 28-Jun-14 00:55:21

Ask the doc to check for any underlying illness if she's off the bottom of the chart, and think hard about whether there's anything else that might suggest she's not quite right. Most overweight kids are perfectly healthy but the odd one or two aren't and you want to make dam sure yours isn't one of those. We're (probably mostly ) not doctors, and personally i think if they think its worth mentioning they should do the tests to reassure you she's ok.

Rummikub Sat 28-Jun-14 01:34:22

My dd is off the bottom of the chart, always has been. She is thriving though. I had a very sensible health visitor who could see this.
I don't want to give my 11 yr old a complex about her weight. She eats healthily and well, as does your dd seems to op. she is very sporty and has lots of energy. I agree with previous posters that GP s are used to seeing larger kids so I'm sure it skews their view of normality.

Rummikub Sat 28-Jun-14 01:37:11

Your dd is a half stone heavier than mine. And I was a stone heavier in my 20s.

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