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"If she's hungry, she can have some salad"


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#1 cardamom

Posted 26 January 2013 - 09:57 PM

My apologies if this has been done already.

I came across this article tonight; it's an excerpt from a book about a mother's quest to manage her daughter's weight issues.

http://www.essentialkids.com.au/younger-ki...0127-2deer.html

I'd be interested to see what others think of her approach.

As someone who has many issues from childhood related to food and body image, and has lost (and re-gained) weight several times, I'm still mulling it over.

#2 désir d'amour

Posted 26 January 2013 - 09:59 PM

I think she's done the right thing by her daughter in terms of helping her lose weight.

I'm not sure about her methods.  It seems like an awful lot of mental pressure on a young child.

It's hard enough on adults.

#3 Charlies Angel

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:00 PM

My initial response was that she was setting her daughter up for a lifetime of eating disorders.

I think similar could have been achieved without being so draconian eg more exercise/ healthy eating for the whole family. She was only seven.  sad.gif

#4 Charlies Angel

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:02 PM

DP

Edited by Charlies Angel, 26 January 2013 - 10:07 PM.


#5 unicorn

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:08 PM

I only read the first couple of paragraphs but way to give the kid issues over her food.  rolleyes.gif
The mother said she had been on enough diets to know what was required, IMO the more diets it takes the less idea one really has. So me thinks she has got weight issues which she is passing on which is sad.

#6 unicorn

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:08 PM

DP

Edited by unicorn, 26 January 2013 - 10:11 PM.


#7 FluffyOscar

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:15 PM

QUOTE
There are some issues that kids are just born with. I didn't make Bea obese. I don't blame sugary drinks, processed foods, trans fats or gargantuan portion sizes. She didn't become overweight because she gorged on junk food or played video games all day. She was simply and indisputably born with the unfortunate tendency to overeat and a congenital preference for foods that are conducive to weight gain.

I think she is in denial.


#8 Cat People

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:15 PM

I honestly have no idea what to think.

One part of me sort of agrees with her - obesity is a medical condition that need management; just like a peanut allergy.

The other part of me is horrified.  And I admit part of it comes from the photos and the fact the article appeared in U.S.A Vogue.  It gave me the impression the mother is concerned with 'appearances' and perhaps a daughter who is obese doesn't match her Chanel handbag.

I passionately oppose diets though, so I think her approach was all wrong.  I have a similar aged child, and if he was obese, I'm quite sure I could implement changes in his diet and lifestyle that he wouldn't be aware of.  The fact this little girl knew she was on a diet to lose weight is concerning.

#9 rosiebird

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:19 PM

I feel very sad after reading that article.

#10 cardamom

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:23 PM

QUOTE (Madame Protart @ 26/01/2013, 11:15 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The other part of me is horrified.  And I admit part of it comes from the photos and the fact the article appeared in U.S.A Vogue.  It gave me the impression the mother is concerned with 'appearances' and perhaps a daughter who is obese doesn't match her Chanel handbag.


I thought this too Madame Protart, particularly where she mentioned asking her daughter "Do you like the way you look now?" I felt like the emphasis was largely on her daughter's looks (but I acknowledge my experiences could be colouring this).

I was overweight as a child, and rather than make leading a healthy lifestyle a family-based activity, my parents' approach (actually, my whole family) was to criticise me for eating too much, point out how large I was, and tell me to get outside for a walk (they bought me a gym membership when I was 10) while still having cupboards full of junk food. Consequently I have a lot of feelings of guilt around food, have very disordered eating patterns and have spent a great deal of time, money and energy trying to remedy this.

I'm not trying to blame my parents or shirk responsibility for my weight, they did what they thought was best, but I wonder if I would have these issues had their attitude been different.

#11 Lissome

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:23 PM

QUOTE (rosiebird @ 26/01/2013, 11:19 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I feel very sad after reading that article.


So do I.

#12 RealityBites

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:26 PM

I thought the article was awful. Subtle changes could have occurred, rather than the public embarrassment this child was obviously subjected to.

#13 bambiigrrl

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:29 PM

its her own fault if her daughter was overweight at 7 year old. Who buys the groceries? If the whole family is focused on HEALTHY eating then her daughter will feel like shes doing something good for her body, not that she wont be socially acceptable if she doesnt lose weight. So sad..

#14 Emby

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:29 PM

I read this in the paper today, and while I'm not a fan of "going on a diet" as a thing, I try to keep an open mind. For a seven-year-old to weigh 42kg ... well, that's nearly twice what my seven-year-old weighs. It really does sound like a lot. So clearly, whatever they were doing, they needed to change something. And the mother did cop to having her own "food issues" but seemed to think she got them irrespective of what her upbringing had been.

I do think she's "damned if you do, damned if you don't" here. You might say "oh, the mother has food issues, she's screwing up her daughter with them" - but even if that's true, she does have food issues, I doubt if she can magically wave a wand and turn herself into someone who doesn't. She could have gone a different route - just tried to "eat more healthy" - but that would run the risk of not having a big enough effect, and not doing anything about the problem that was already there.

I certainly don't think it's as simple as "oh if you just eat healthier, you won't have a problem". (although eating healthier is always a good thing) I know a lot of folks who eat WAY more healthily than our family, and still have more of an issue with weight.  There's definitely something in genetics as well.

#15 cira

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:31 PM

It made me feels sad too. But also a bit angry at the mother - do you think she has a sound understanding of nutrition? I would rather my hungry child ate a nicoise salad with olive oil and satisfied her hunger with a tasty, protein-rich, healthy-fat meal than snack on a piece of fruit.

#16 Guest_Marquise_*

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:32 PM

QUOTE (Charlies Angel @ 26/01/2013, 11:00 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My initial response was that she was setting her daughter up for a lifetime of eating disorders.

I think similar could have been achieved without being so draconian eg more exercise/ healthy eating for the whole family. She was only seven.  sad.gif


+1. also, not a word in the whole piece about exercise.

it mad me so sad for her daughter. She's going to transfer her own issues right onto the little girl's shoulders.

Upsetting piece.

#17 cardamom

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:36 PM

QUOTE (Marquise @ 26/01/2013, 11:32 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
+1. also, not a word in the whole piece about exercise.


This really stood out to me too.

#18 sa5ha

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:37 PM

Seems like the mother is just programming her child to have a really toxic and dysfunctional relationship with food and body image by going about it like that.

#19 Cat People

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:37 PM

Thinking about it some more, I just don't understand why she had to mention the weight loss to her daughter.  How many times do you go to parties?  Even if it's once a week, is it really go to make much difference to her weight if she eats the M&M's and the cake?

And it still doesn't address the cause of her over-eating.  Surely there must be a reason for it in such a young child?  And what happens now?  Go back to normal and regain the weight, or the daughter is on a permanent diet?

I hate to be all judgy because I think the mother obviously cares about her daughter's health and well being, but I just think her approach is all wrong.  Especially by appearing in Vogue and telling the whole world, including photos?!


#20 haras1972

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:38 PM

Here are some more quotes, from the book....

I once reproachfully deprived Bea of her dinner after learning that her observation of French Heritage Day at school involved nearly 800 calories of Brie, filet mignon, baguette, and chocolate. I stopped letting her enjoy Pizza Fridays when she admitted to adding a corn salad as a side dish one week. I dressed down a Starbucks barista when he professed ignorance of the nutrition content of the kids’ hot chocolate whose calories are listed as “120-210″ on the menu board: Well, which is it? When he couldn’t provide an answer, I dramatically grabbed the drink out of my daughter’s hands, poured it into the garbage, and stormed out.

I cringe when I recall the many times I had it out with Bea over a snack given to her by a friend’s parent or caregiver … rather than direct my irritation at the grown-up, I often derided Bea for not refusing the inappropriate snack. And there have been many awkward moments at parties, when Bea has wanted to eat, say, both cookies and cake, and I’ve engaged in a heated public discussion about why she can’t.

It is grating to have someone constantly complain of being hungry, or refuse to eat what she’s supposed to, month after month . . .  and exhausting managing someone’s diet, especially when her brother has completely different nutritional needs.


No mention of exercise, public humiliation, conflicting messages - the whole no dinner because you joined in a school activity, so contradictory....

Edited by haras1972, 26 January 2013 - 10:38 PM.


#21 Coffeegirl

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:39 PM

I read this today in the SMH.  I do wonder what happened after that year of weight lose.  Did the child learn anything?  Did the mother continue with the 'diet'?

While I do understand from the SMH article that this was a family wide 'diet' change.  I do feel for the child who seems not  to have been allowed to be a child at parties.  But bullied into adult choices.  An occassional lapse of cookies AND cake for a child, certainly was not going to set that child up for obesity.  It needed to be a more balanced view of everyday eating and the occassional splurge.

And like PPs have mentioned.  No discussion of exercise at all.  Diet is not everything

I finished this article feeling profoundly sad for the child and a bit angry at the parent for not being 'a better parent' earlier and explaining better choices from a younger age.

#22 lafonda

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:39 PM

I don't know what to think about it. Made me feel sad because I have a 4 yr old that needs to lose a few kgs but I don't want to go about it the way she did.

#23 poss71

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:40 PM

QUOTE (rosiebird @ 26/01/2013, 11:19 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I feel very sad after reading that article.

Me too.

My mum made changes to our diet when I was a kid of around 7 or 8, changing to wholemeal bread and buying skim milk. That's all I remember, whinging about "brown bread", until I got over it (maybe a month, on and off). Looking back, I imagine she also made changes such as introducing more vegies into our diet, but that went over our heads as kids.

I infinitely prefer that to this method.

I also couldn't tell you if either of us kids were overweight. It wasn't our responsibility, that lay with our parents at that time.

I am pretty happy with myself and my body image is positive. I hope to teach that to my children.

#24 Cat People

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:41 PM

QUOTE (haras1972 @ 26/01/2013, 11:38 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Here are some more quotes, from the book....

I once reproachfully deprived Bea of her dinner after learning that her observation of French Heritage Day at school involved nearly 800 calories of Brie, filet mignon, baguette, and chocolate. I stopped letting her enjoy Pizza Fridays when she admitted to adding a corn salad as a side dish one week. I dressed down a Starbucks barista when he professed ignorance of the nutrition content of the kids’ hot chocolate whose calories are listed as “120-210″ on the menu board: Well, which is it? When he couldn’t provide an answer, I dramatically grabbed the drink out of my daughter’s hands, poured it into the garbage, and stormed out.

I cringe when I recall the many times I had it out with Bea over a snack given to her by a friend’s parent or caregiver … rather than direct my irritation at the grown-up, I often derided Bea for not refusing the inappropriate snack. And there have been many awkward moments at parties, when Bea has wanted to eat, say, both cookies and cake, and I’ve engaged in a heated public discussion about why she can’t.

It is grating to have someone constantly complain of being hungry, or refuse to eat what she’s supposed to, month after month . . .  and exhausting managing someone’s diet, especially when her brother has completely different nutritional needs.


No mention of exercise, public humiliation, conflicting messages - the whole no dinner because you joined in a school activity, so contradictory....



That is just plain rotten. Poor kid.


#25 kpingitquiet

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:46 PM

I think she sounds like a vain, controlling woman who has just set her daughter up for a LOT of therapy bills in the future. Where was the exercise? Where was the quiet adjustment of a very young child's available food? Why in god's name should any 7yo know about calories outside of science class?!




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