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Should a 12 year old girl go on a diet?

My 12 year old daughter has recently been telling me she hates herself because she is overweight according to her BMI. She is a bit chunky and I have always feared this would one day become a problem. She plays soccer, I keep her as active as possible by bike riding walking the dog anything to keep her off the couch. I am an active runner and work out daily. My husband and I eat fairly healthy and encourage the same with her but she will not eat veggies and will not try new foods. She is going into middle school next year and as shy as she is and not liking herself I am afraid of what the years will bring. Has anyone else had/have similar problems? Is there a good tween site that she can talk with other twees about her concerns? I am at a loss and try to help her but she despises me and says is all I care about is making myself healthy. HELP!!!

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Asked by buttercup100 at 11:28 AM on Apr. 17, 2009 in Tweens (9-12)

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Answers (13)
  • here's what i found hope it helps good luck...

    Answer by WhatevaItTakes at 11:31 AM on Apr. 17, 2009

  • You should take her to the doctor and encourage her to talk to the doctor about it. You might also consider a nutritionist. That could be very helpful. These are professionals who can supervise her efforts to get healthier and make sure she is not losing weight in a dangerous fashion.

    Answer by kemclaughlin at 11:35 AM on Apr. 17, 2009

  • only if the doctors says she needs to

    Answer by mama_moonsong at 11:38 AM on Apr. 17, 2009

  • BMI is BS! as much activity as you have her doing some of that "extra" weight is probably muscle and muscle weighs more than fat! have her doctor measure her fat content rather than weigh her since she is so active.

    Answer by MythicMMM at 11:39 AM on Apr. 17, 2009

  • Teenagers need more fat than adults so if she is "dieting" she should still be having fat.

    I would encourage her to eat more fruit over vegetables. Fruit is more important. Get her to eat plenty before every meal and also encourage a large green salad daily or a green smoothie maybe best (fruits blended with spinach or other leafy greens). Get her to eat fatty foods such as avocadoes and nuts..and maybe make meat a weekend thing as opposed to an everyday thing.

    Eating lots of fruit though is a good starting point.

    Answer by keyaziz at 11:39 AM on Apr. 17, 2009

  • Not unless a doctor thinks she should be on a diet. She is probably in puberty and will be a little chunky becasue of the hormones. She is active and eats healthy, then she should be fine. Have her doc talk to her about the importance of being healthy vs being skinny. She will outgrow the chunkiesness as she matures. Also, if she is into sports and is muscular, muscle weighs more than fat.

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 11:48 AM on Apr. 17, 2009

  • Sparkpeople has a Teen website. this will encourage eating healthy and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

    Answer by brannen at 12:07 PM on Apr. 17, 2009

  • i feel yeah and i can realate. I have a lazy 11 yr old who is so very picky. we do get out more and are more active due to the nice weather. I try t stay clear of the use of the word diet and rather focus on chaniing our eating habits. I remember her often of her beauty and the good quailties she has and that yes we all come in different shapes and sizes and we all have value. I think there is to much being put on size and it is being asscoiteated with self worth. It really pisses me off. Im big and im working on reducing my size for my health and im not going to let my size dicate my self worth. I have started to buy water bottles and it helps to get the kids to driink it more. Im getting to where when we go to the park i get up and play with them. anyway just remind her that you love her and her self worth should not be defined by lbls or size.

    Answer by debmom07 at 12:11 PM on Apr. 17, 2009

  • As a family you should all assist, her self esteem is the most important thing, everyone should change their eating habits to help. Start researching together the difference in what is healthy food and not healthy food. Assist her with cutting out processed foods and heavy carbs foods - they all contain to much processed sugars & chemicals that do not allow the body to metabolise food properly. Increase the consumption of fruits, fruits have the same nutrients as veggies based on color so if she wont eat veggies feed her fruits. Cut out the sodas & fast foods. Including her in all your research will help her to learn to eat better. Walking is the best exercise for the body & it could be a great time for the 2 of you to bond. Start slowly & increase your distance every week. The exercise will jump start the endorphins which will help with her positive outlook.. and dont use the word diet - Eating Healthy!

    Answer by AndreaRUJuiced at 1:21 PM on Apr. 17, 2009

  • I can remember when I was around that age - same as when I was starting puberty. I was a scrony kid but after puberty I really started have weight control issues. My mom helped me to lose weight by having portion control. I didn't realize it but she reduced the size of my portions a little every meal. I didn't even notice until someone pointed it out. She also told me, if she didn't pack it for me - I wasn't to eat it. That makes it really simple.

    Theres a bigger issue you're facing here and that is not trying new foods. My son is the same way. If you let her know there are foods that will help her appearance not just her weight, like certain foods for complexion, hair, nails, etc. she might be interested to try new foods.

    I think diet is a bad word. I think this is a lifestyle change she needs to make and I think she's old enough to make it. It looks like she has some great habits and excelent examples! GL!

    Answer by TaiyoandMe at 4:20 PM on Apr. 17, 2009

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