Totally floored here...

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Totally floored here...
29
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 10:51am

I took my neighbors children for a walk last night. Every night, Zak and Alex and I go to the local university and back. It is perhaps half a mile or less. The nine year old neighbor girl went with us and we started talking about weight. I told her how I was trying to excerise more and eat correctly because I have gained thirty pounds since Devin died. She told me she weighed 151 pounds. 151 pounds and she will be in fifth grade next year. WTF?!?


I never, ever see their family exercise or play outside. It just makes me so sad. She is going to have so many health problems and they are doing nothing. I really think it is child abuse. They are not helping her with healthy eating habits. She eats donuts and, for snacks, bologna and crackers. I am going to start inviting her to every walk we take. It just makes me really sad for her and mad at her parents for neglecting her weight.


I know I am coming across judgemental but I just can't imagine letting a child get to that size and do nothing.


"I do not want to be a princess! I want to be myself"

Mallory (age 3)

      &nbs

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 11:07am
Around here, it's motorized scooters. Every night when we go for our family walk after dinner, kids are on these scooters zipping around. The one kid I see on his constantly is around age 11-12, and he looks like he would bypass a training bra, right into a generous cupped size one!

It is pretty sad. Hopefully she will take her cue from you and join you more often!

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 11:35am
This is a big soapbox issue for me. Childhood obesity has become the number one nutrional health issue for our kids today. It is predicted that obesity is going to become more of a killer than cigarettes eventually.

People need to WAKE UP. We are killing our children with this, we are killing ourselves with this. America is the fattest country in the WORLD now, its horrible. And its just getting worse. Every day, someone jumps on the bandwagon of some *diet*, yet people continue to just get fatter.

Imo, there is ONE solution. ONE. Eat less and exercise. More calories out than in. Its a simple solution, but one few people care to undertake. We want to be able to eat until we are stuffed, we want to be able to lay on the couch after dinner. We dont have *time* to eat right and exercise, but its killing us.

My dd comments all the time about the abundance of junk food in her friends homes. She is amazed that her friends bring sodas in their lunches, have lunches that rarely consist of any fresh fruits or veggies (her friends call her *health nut* because I pack carrot and celery sticks in her lunch and she eats them!).

We are not stringent by any means. We usually have some kind of dessert in the house-but the difference is that while I might buy chips OR cookies OR ice cream when shopping, I *NEVER* buy all 3. We dont have soda in the house period, unless we are having a party. We dont eat fast food except as an occasional treat. I require each of my children to participate in a sport-I dont care what, just something. Dh and I try very hard to lead by example-we make fitness a priority in our home, and make no excuses or rationalizations for avoiding it.

Whats sad to me is that I look around, and we are in the minority! I hear moms saying about their children *oh they are thin, they dont need to worry about their eating habits*. But I wonder, what kind of future are they setting their kids up for? How many people do you know who were thin as children/teens but heavy now as adults? Because they never learned to eat with self control, never learned to eat healthily, never learned about nutrition!!!!

Argh. And as far as heavy kids, a heavy child has something like a 80 percent chance of being a heavy adult. It makes me SO sad to see this, I just wish people would GET IT.

(discreetly stepping off my soapbox now........)


dj

Dj

"Now when I need help, I look in the mirror" ~Kanye West~

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-2003
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 12:01pm
Your last post really strikes home to me. My kids are skinny. Skin and bones skinny. Almost malnourished looking skinny. It is their father's genes.

I am so tired of hearing comments about how I shouldn't be so picky about what they eat, how it's okay for them to have cookies or junk, how I should lighten up, because they are so thin it doesn't really matter.

I hate the idea that thin=healthy, as I have never been "thin" in my life, no matter how active or health conscious I act. I have curves; I will always have curves. That is who I am and how I have looked sicne I hit puburty at age 11. But I can be active, eat well, maintain good bp and cholesteral, take care of my body and live well. I don't want to teach my kids that thin=good health, but when they hear coments from other about their thinness and how that means they can have whatever they want to eat or drink, agghhhhhhhh...

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 12:13pm
my son is like that, and I was like that as a child (although NOT now, LOL).

My dd *looks* very thin, but she is 5'4" and about 105. people are surprised she weighs that much, but she is solid muscle-she sinks like a stone when she swims, lol!

So I do agree that sheer size doesnt necessarily have anything to do with health. Ive certainly known plenty of thin, unhealthy people.

dj

Dj

"Now when I need help, I look in the mirror" ~Kanye West~

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-28-2003
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 12:28pm
That's is really sad. And the family also need to realize the importance of healthy life style *as a family.* If one member of the family is under diet restrictions, then the rest of the family needs to try as best as they can to try to keep bad foods out of the house. Same goes for exercise.

It's nice of you to invite her in your walks. I hope she benefits from them.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 12:48pm
Hopefully she'll see you as a positive role model & continue to take walks with you! :)
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-18-2004
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 12:52pm
I totally agree that thin doesn't always mean healthy. I've been really thin all my life, but it doesn't mean that I'm in shape. I'm working on that. What I hate is when people constantly put down my efforts as it not being something I need to do.

Overweight children though really makes me sad. I work in schools and I see what the kids bring for lunch, and sometimes it's just disgusting. Dried noodles, pop, and then they buy an ice cream. Yuk! About 20% of the kids in my grade 3 class are overweight already with those pudgy stomachs. It's so sad then when you see them running around in those low rise jeans with those short tops, and these big bellies hanging out. We did a field trip to a park last week-walking-and many were exhausted after only 1/2 block.

I am pretty fanatical when it comes to my son's lunches. I prefer to take the time to make him something healthy, rather then throw in the sugary/fatty junk. I'm lucky that he eats just about anything, too. (and some unusual things like sushi) But the funny thing that I have found is that given a choice of something that is more unhealthy (say for example, Lucky Charms cereal) over something healthy (Raisin Bran) he chooses the Raisin Bran. We have never made food a huge issue, just taught the importance of eating healthy for your body. When we visited my relatives in CA last year, we were totally FLOORED by what they ate. It was awful! Pop with every meal, chips, cookies, cake for breakfast, everything deep fried, pre-packed, Fruit Roll ups for snacks. Yuk. It was hilarious, when my aunt offered ds a fruit roll after breakfast, he said no thanks. She insisted that he should have it, because it's fruit. Ds looked at her and said "No, if you look on the package the first ingredient is sugar. They are sugar roll ups. Can I have an apple?" rofl!!! He's learned to read labels because I have allergies to peanuts/nuts and I have to. He's a skinny child too, but that's because dh and I are both built that way. We exercise as a family on bike rides, hikes, and swimming. Ds is not an athletic kid, but he does love to play hard outside, which I think is good for him. We actually have to make him come inside to watch tv and settle down.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-21-2003
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 1:42pm
Kristi, I totally agree with your judgement. If we don't "judge it" and do something about it, it will only get worse, not better.

As an overweight parent, I am fanatical about what my kids put in their mouths. I've been overweight my entire life and know full well how difficult it is to grow up with weight problems. My parents and grandparents who raised me were all/still are rail-thin, and simply didn't know how to handle my being overweight. To them food=love so I was allowed to eat whatever I wanted. I'm determined to keep my kids active (as well as myself!!) and teach them to eat right. In fact, it's only been since I've been a parent that I've actually taken the time to carefully plan what I purchase and what we all eat. I'm still about 50 lbs overweight but I'm eating healthfully and I'm making every effort to do what you are doing...walk WITH my kids, ride bikes WITH my kids....when my son wants to scooter, I walk briskly WITH him, I run and practice his soccer in the backyard. I make sure we go to the gym a minimum of 3x per week and I make a BIG DEAL out of them knowing why we're going "to stay healthy"

I agree, it is soooo sad that so many kids are obese. Back when I was a fat kid, I was the ONLY fat kid in my class....now classes are littered with fat kids. We all need to take and *active* part in turning things around. You are doing a great thing!!

Jen

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 1:52pm
I really feel for her. I was a fat child, and my life was sheer hell. My son is 9 and weighs 77 lbs, and I am trying like heck to work with him to stay at a reasonable weight.

- Christine

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-31-2003
Fri, 05-21-2004 - 2:09pm
151 is not disastrous if a kid is tall. I've known 10 yo's that were 5'10", and that would not be seriously out of line for them.

I firmly believe that the reason that Americans are fat as a country is not so much junk food as it is suburbia and the lack of public transportation thereto. Other countries illustrate this. People in the UK, for instance, eat TONS of high calorie foods and lots of junky high-calorie snacks, but weight didn't get to be an issue there until just a few years ago, after a major transit strike caused personal ownership of cars to skyrocket.

Fifteen years ago no one I knew in the UK had 2 cars in a household; now it is common and now people are starting to look like Americans in terms of weight. The families I know who have no car still have no weight issues.

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