Posted by: Sybbi | 2008/06/04

concerned about 4 year old's weight

Dear Doc

My 4 year old daughter, turning 5 in September is overweight. The cause, I must confess is her dad who used to have chocolate every evening and sharing that with her. I am really getting worried. The dad also agrees now that she is overweigh whereas he denied it before when raising it with him. She eats at creche during the day and a cooked meal at night. She has a big appetite and will sometime eat her little sisters food. We are allowing her a yoghurt or fruit after a meal if she is not satisfied. For the past two week no sweaties chocolate and chips during the week and she is doing things like ballet at creche. Should I take her to a dietician? Should I opt to make lunch for her for next month or so? PLEASE HELP!!! I DO NOT WANT MY KIDS TO HAVE SELF-ESTEEM PROBLEMS DUE TO WEIGHT WHICH I SHOULD BE LOOKING AFTER AS THEIR MOTHER.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageDietDoc

Dear Sybbi
It would be a good idea to consult a dietitian with your daughter because it is important that very young children should still have a fully balanced diet that promotes normal growth, but that helps them to lose weight (visit the Association for Dietetics in SA Website at: and click on "Find a Dietitian" to find a dietitian in your area). The dietitian will advise you if you need to intervene about the food she eats at the creche and how you can encourage her to stop eating high-fat and high-energy snacks. It is good that she does some activity like ballet at the creche, but she also needs to do additional physical exercise to help her lose weight because experts throughout the world agree that physical activity is one of the most powerful means of helping children to lose weight. You may have to take her for walks or arrange that she can swim or cycle of skip every day to make her more active.
Best regards

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