New, my intro and ? on DD's weight

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-10-2007
New, my intro and ? on DD's weight
Tue, 07-10-2007 - 2:23pm

Hi! This is my first time posting on this board. I was a posting freak on the parentsplace boards before the new format, but it's been a LONG time! I have 3 beautiful children, 2 sons aged 10 and 8, and a daughter who is about to turn 5.

None of my children have ever had overweight issues, but as an overweight Mama it's something that I worry about constantly. So I have to put that out there - I'm VERY sensitive to this issue. So having said that...over the last few months my dd has put on some weight. Her height has remained the same, but all of her pants/skirts have gotten too tight. My mother thinks she might be gearing up to have a growth spurt and that she'll probably thin out once she does, but I can't get rid of the nagging concern that this might be the beginning of her life as an overweight child. I don't want her to have the memories that I have of being teased, of never being picked for teams during PE and I have myself completely wound up and freaked out. She is starting kindergarten in September and I just want her transition into school to be a real positive one, I don't want to be worried about her weight and if she might be teased.

We have tried to not be a junk food house, but I've also been worried about going too far the other way so I would say that we've tried to keep things in moderation. That being said, my dd has definately always enjoyed her sweets and definately has a healthy appetite. The last thing I want to do is put her on a "diet" or do anything else that might tip her off that the weight is becoming an issue. I just want so badly not to start planting food issues into her head at 4 1/2!!

So after that long drawn out explanation...has anyone else noticed weight gain or growth spurt at around this age, and do you guys have any suggestions for how to handle this?

Thank you for any thoughts!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2003
Tue, 07-10-2007 - 2:44pm

I wouldn't say a word about it to her. I wouldn't doubt that it would put ideas into her head and could cause issues. I saw that happen with my younger sister, and she was never fat. It could be that she is just getting ready for a growth spurt, like you said. I've seen my girls do that, where they will fill out a little more and then suddenly shoot up.

I know what you mean about being an overweight mom (I need to loose 30 pounds and I've been

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-20-2003
Wed, 07-11-2007 - 12:45am

I think it is pretty common for this to occur!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-28-2004
Wed, 07-11-2007 - 9:17am

My girls are very prone to obesity. My husbands family is very obese. My husband is currently about 40 pounds overweight. It is a constant battle. My kids have inherited his appetite. They are always hungry. What we do is try our best to feed them healthy foods with the occasional treat. They do get plenty of junk from birthday parties and such. And anytime we have a playdate or go to someone's house they always serve junk foods. So at home I keep it as healthy as possible. To combat the amount they eat, we go for walks each evening to help burn some of those calories. We usually walk 2 laps around the block. They do not drink juice. They drink water, milk, and the occasional sugar free drink (like Fruit Falls by Minute Maid.) I never talk about weight but do talk about being healthy. I don't know if I am doing the right things but we do the best we can. I have your same fears and at some point I know my girls will be chunky. They are 3 and 5 right now and like I said, ALWAYS hungry. I worry about teasing as well. What makes it worse is that due to genetics they will be short and they grow very slowly. Which means they won't "grow into their weight" as easily as some other kids. The hardest thing is when we are around other people and they know they can eat and eat and I get too embarrassed to cause a scene. They will eat until their stomach hurts. Other parents don't understand what I am battling (especially if we just recently met them) and they are used to serving their kids junk to eat. I feel like I am rambling now but I hope I have helped some. At least you know other mom's are battling this, too.

Also, how tall is your almost 5 year old and what does she weigh?

Edited 7/11/2007 10:54 am ET by babylove1972
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-07-2003
Thu, 07-12-2007 - 8:26am

I have a couple of kids with sensory deficits, so they never, ever feel full. They are always hungry. They are on the husky side, but I also have a "slim" child and a "normal" child. Although we try to focus on eating healthily, and the kids understand the food pyramid, I find it hard to always eat right (especially since some of their sensory problems make them hyper-sensitive to many food tastes/textures). And, it doesn't help when EVERYWHERE the kids go, they are bombarded with junk food rewards (sports, church, school, etc). I think my kids are far healthier and less heavy than they'd be if I weren't so vigilant, but this will be a constant battle for us.

One positive side -- if there's such a thing -- to the obesity epidemic is that my kids don't look different than their peers at school. They are not teased for being the big kid 'cus so many kids ARE big. Each new season at the swimming pool I'm stunned to see how many BIG girls are in bikinis, even! It's becoming quite the norm which is unfortunate but works to my family's advantage emotionally!

BTW, my almost 4yo understands that there are foods that make our bodies healthy and strong (grains, fruits/veggies, a little dairy, a little protein), foods that are part good and part bad (yogurt with all the extra sugar) and foods that taste good in our mouth but don't make our bodies healthy and strong (treats). There are kids' versions of the food pyramid that you can download and discuss with your dd. We don't make a big deal about it, but when the kids ask what they can eat, I tell them grain/fruit/veggie. If they need me to get more specific, I'll rattle off a list of what's in the fruit bowl on the table, veggie crisper in the fridge, and/or grain-products they're permitted. I never discuss the food in terms of what makes you fat or not. It's simply about what will make our bodies healthy. I do on occasion have to cut one of my kids off from food by telling them they've had enough until the next meal time, but even then it's not an issue of "you're getting fat" but an issue of "your body doesn't work right to know when you've had enough to eat, so I'm telling you you've had enough and that you're going to hurt your body if you have any more right now."

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Sun, 07-15-2007 - 4:08pm


Hello, there!!!

I know how easy it is to think we, as mom, as totally responsible for how our kids turn out. Sometimes, though, mom, it is just how they are and we didn't encourage or discourage it.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-18-2006
Sun, 07-15-2007 - 6:38pm

I'm glad to hear my kiddo isn't the only one that has done this. Back in March DD (who has always been around the 25-50% in weight and height) started to get a bit of a tummy. It was worrysome. She realy became a chunk, and then one day I looked at her and all her pants were too short and the tummy was gone.

I would recommed keeping any eye on her and call the pediatrician if you get too concerned.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-10-2007
Mon, 07-16-2007 - 5:03pm

Thank you ladies for all of your wonderful responses! babylove - I totally relate to the whole appetite thing. This is such a problem in my family! I honestly can't remember a time when I knew what it felt like to be "satisfied". All this talk about eating until "satisfied" goes over my head, it feels like I have two settings - famished and physically in pain, LOL. I say that jokingly, but it's unfortunately true. I have always tried to be very careful with my children about not demanding they clean their plates or be in the "clean plate club", when they stop, I respect it. However, the older they get, the more I'm noticing that my oldest son and dd in particular just LOVE to eat and are going to have the appetite issues. With my son, I am honestly not sure where the food goes - he has been blessed with a great metabolism and remains rail thin in spite of his appetite. I worry that if he doesn't learn to control those tendencies he will have overweight issues in his adult life when he's not a "growing boy" anymore. And I really worry that it would seem dd won't have the same fortunate metabolism, I really feel that if we can't control her eating it might become problematic.

I have never SAID anything at all to my dd about weight because I'm so extremely paranoid about giving her food issues on top of what is already going to be a clearly healthy appetite. I know that I'm guilty of "do as I say, not as I do..." I often will dish up for the kids very healthy portions including a veggie but then when I fill my plate it's way too much - I know that I have dropped the ball with that and need to be more willing to lead by example. I am so scared of passing on my own food issues! She is in karate and swim lessons and was in soccer for the spring season and wants to do fall season as well. I've tried very hard to make sure she has had activity in her life, and I've also tried so hard to serve balanced meals and be careful of how much fast food we eat. And for the most part I feel really good because I think that if I weren't doing these things, my poor kids with their genes wouldn't stand a chance!!

The thing that concerns me isn't that dd is overweight NOW, it's that she is definately gaining weight right now without getting any taller. Last November at her well child exam she was 42 inches and about 39 pounds which is pretty much 50% for both height and weight. When I measured and weighed her last week, she was 42 1/2 inches (and it's pushing it to say 1/2, LOL) and was up to 47 pounds. And while she has always had a good appetite, I haven't noticed her eating that much more lately, or any drastic change in lifestyle. So that's where I have to sort of this some sort of normal growth? Or the beginning of her being a chubby child?

At any rate, thanks everyone for your replies, they are SOOOOOO appreciated!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-17-2003
Tue, 07-17-2007 - 7:06pm
It probably wouldn't hurt to mention the weigght gain to your doctor. That does seem like more than norm, but she may be just growing all at once. It may ease your mind just to make the call. Sounds like you are doing a good job. You do walk a fine line when it comes to weight issues. Trish :)