Posted by: Lie | 2008/01/08

Child overweight

Hi Doc
I'm a concerned mother; my son turned 10years old, a month ago, and is weighing around 40kg.

He was a pre-mature baby, and for most of his life, he was in shape. Suddenly, about 2 years ago, he gained weight over night (it feels like it for me) I can see that this problem is turning him into a child that’s not happy at all.

I am afraid that he will get a heart attack, and that the overweight issue may cause future emotional problems.

It’s not like he is eating all day, and I do the small portion thing, and he does not even like things like sweets and ice cream. In our family we don’t have overweight people, so I can’t explain why my son is suffering from this.

I need a healthy eating plan, or some advice.

Thanks, do appreciate.


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Our expert says:
Expert ImageDietDoc

Dear Lie
I would firstly recommend that you have your son examined by a medical dr to determine if his rapid gain in weight is not due to an underlying problem (e.g. hormonal disturbances or depression). If he is given a clean bill of health then I urge you to take him to a dietitian (visit the Association for Dietetics in SA Website at: and click on "Find a Dietitian" to find a dietitian in your area). It is important that the dietitian works out a slimming diet for your child that helps weight loss, but still contains all the nutrients he needs for normal growth (e.g. calcium, iron, etc). Another factor that is particularly important when young children have to lose weight, is exercise. Encourage your son to be as active as possible, by playing sport, swimming, cycling, going for walks or skipping. You may have to join him for walks, etc, to give him the support he needs, but it is worth it if he can lose weight.
Best regards

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