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11yo DD Overeating


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#26 MarciaB

Posted 25 August 2019 - 01:54 PM

Also - I see the GP recommended increase in exercise.  At age 11, squad training 3 times a week isn't excessive (I see soccer has finished).

Many 11 yo do a lot more.

It doesn't need to be a formal sport - but maybe even going for a walk after dinner/kicking the soccer ball around outside on the weekends etc all good exercise.  Don't make a big fuss - instead if it is questioned just say that it is healthy to exercise every day and it will help her swimming (which it will!).

#27 MarciaB

Posted 25 August 2019 - 01:56 PM

View Postchicken_bits, on 25 August 2019 - 01:50 PM, said:

If a child is growing and you're serving a healthy dinner, I'm not sure why it's inappropriate to give a second helping of dinner if they're still hungry? Surely that's better than being hungry later and snacking on less healthy alternatives?

I'm imagining not the same portion again, but just extra.

My kids are younger, but they will often go through phases where they are hungrier and times when they're not hungry. We need to remember that they are still growing and grow in phases. As adults, that's where we can often go wrong because we stop growing but still eat as if we are and our metabolisms are different too.

I would also allow second helping at dinner.  If quantities is the problem (eg you can't afford to buy extra portions) - cook extra veges or sides and let her have that.  And ask if she is still hungry after school lunch and add in an extra sandwich, tub of yoghurt etc if she says yes.  Don't limit the good food!

#28 Prancer is coming

Posted 25 August 2019 - 02:03 PM

Outside her organised sport, is she active?  I was reading an article the other day that compared kids who walked to and from school every day to those who did organised sport, and the walk to school every day kids were more fit.  I imagine squad and soccer would be about an hour.  So not excessive.  Is she active and getting incidental exercise in for the rest of the day outside sport, or is she more sedentary in nature?  My 13 yo kid walks or rides 2km in the morning to school and then 2km back again, then does several sports on top of that.

#29 aluminium

Posted 25 August 2019 - 02:17 PM

View PostPrancer is coming, on 25 August 2019 - 02:03 PM, said:

Outside her organised sport, is she active?  I was reading an article the other day that compared kids who walked to and from school every day to those who did organised sport, and the walk to school every day kids were more fit.  I imagine squad and soccer would be about an hour.  So not excessive.  Is she active and getting incidental exercise in for the rest of the day outside sport, or is she more sedentary in nature?  My 13 yo kid walks or rides 2km in the morning to school and then 2km back again, then does several sports on top of that.

I think so.

We walk to and from the bus stop for half the afternoons in a week. We walk our dogs together a few times a week, family bushwalks and bike rides are high on our weekend activities. She and her sister are learning to skateboard and will often ride their bikes around the neighbourhood with the kids next door.  She also does sport at school and most lunchtimes plays in a game of soccer or tips.

I feel less concerned now having read a few different responses.

#30 Pocket...

Posted 25 August 2019 - 02:28 PM

I agree with thinking about if it's thirst. I was always eating even though I should have been drinking. Mostly because the tap water tasted awful and we weren't allowed much Cordial. So that might be worth checking on.

I'd not worry while she's under the care of a dietician and gp and they are happy. Maybe ask for some blood tests if she's not already had some to make sure she's not low on iron, etc etc incase she eating to meet a craving for something she is lacking, rather than for energy she's using for sport, puberty, growing and life.

#31 literally nobody

Posted 25 August 2019 - 02:36 PM

What is her weight and height op?

#32 aluminium

Posted 25 August 2019 - 02:46 PM

View Postliterally nobody, on 25 August 2019 - 02:36 PM, said:

What is her weight and height op?
53kg ETA That should have been 55kg and 157cm tall

Edited by aluminium, 25 August 2019 - 02:51 PM.


#33 literally nobody

Posted 25 August 2019 - 02:56 PM

She’s quite tall, my 11 year old dd is 41kg and 153cm., Id not worry too much at this stage, Id see if she would enjoy a trampoline even - that’s quite fun or basketball..

I give the kids either a meat and veg dinner 3 times a week, one night it’s either tacos or rice paper rolls with shredded chicken and salad or fish.

I 100% refuse to let them have anything sweet to drink, if they are hungry it’s only a choice of an apple or banana or a slice of cheese and 1/2 cup of milk.

i cook boiled eggs for breakfast and it’s either that with 2 slices of toast or 3 weetbix.

Edited by literally nobody, 25 August 2019 - 02:59 PM.


#34 lizzybirdsworth

Posted 25 August 2019 - 03:11 PM

Sounds like a growth spurt. I read somewhere spring is when kids have their biggest growth spurt. Also if she is quite active that can make her quite hungry. Ds1 is very sporty and constantly hungry but tends to go to sandwiches or muesli bars instead of fruit or veggies.
Just keep educating about healthy eating. It’s a tough situation because of obesity, eating disorders, self image. I

#35 SFmummyto3

Posted 25 August 2019 - 03:41 PM

View PostSplashingRainbows, on 25 August 2019 - 12:43 PM, said:

She is meant to be gaining weight.

Sneaking food is concerning. She needs to know there will be three meals with two or three options to snack and that she should eat to be satisfied at those times. She needs enough protein and enough fat to feel full and stay full.

View Postaluminium, on 25 August 2019 - 12:48 PM, said:

It is overeating because she eats a full meal and then a second helping then adds more and more until she is unwell because of the food.

These are a bit worrying and something to keep track of with your GP and Dietician.

I personally have never offered my kids two dinner helpings as I don't want them to become used to that mindset, though at times I have given the growing child a larger serve so they're not hungry. Or they might get extra salad or vegies on the side. If hungry they will always have a little supper or snack, somethings healthy as others have mentioned.

She sounds like a fit and healthy girl overall. The sneaking food and overeating to the point of feeling sick is something to keep an eye on though.

#36 *Spikey*

Posted 25 August 2019 - 03:52 PM

Maybe her serving size is too small if she is going for seconds?

Also, a lot of water (we have big 400ml glasses) for before during and after the meal.

Also, try to get her to slow down eating - often speed eating can leave you feeling hungry, even if you have eaten enough. It takes a while for the 'full thanks' message to get back up to the brain.

DD does sometimes ask for more - we know that's growth spurt territory. But it's usually only a week or so at a time. Then back to normal eating patterns.

If you need additional exercise or activity, consider dance. The flexibility and strength building burns the calories and tones the body.

#37 lizzybirdsworth

Posted 25 August 2019 - 04:35 PM

What times of the day is she starving? Is it straight after school? Is she eating her lunch at school and not throwing it away? Is it right before dinner? Can you bring dinner forward and up the serving size slightly. Is it happening on weekends? Watch for a weekend what is going in and what times to see if there is a pattern. Then adjust accordingly. Could just be switching a few things to a bigger filling breakfast smaller lunch and snacks and a filling dinner.

#38 MooGuru

Posted 25 August 2019 - 04:42 PM

I think you said she eats to point of feeling sick in one post.  How does she react to that?
I had a family member who around that age associated feeling sick with being full. No idea where it had come from but they needed some kind of feedback to prove they were full.
In that case it was no to huge seconds or thirds with a "if you're still hungry in 20 minutes you can have another serve - I don't think they were ever hungry enough to ask.
Their sleep also improved because they weren't spending 3 hours before bed with stomach cramps etc.

#39 aluminium

Posted 25 August 2019 - 06:10 PM

View Postlizzybirdsworth, on 25 August 2019 - 04:35 PM, said:

What times of the day is she starving? Is it straight after school? Is she eating her lunch at school and not throwing it away? Is it right before dinner? Can you bring dinner forward and up the serving size slightly. Is it happening on weekends? Watch for a weekend what is going in and what times to see if there is a pattern. Then adjust accordingly. Could just be switching a few things to a bigger filling breakfast smaller lunch and snacks and a filling dinner.

Oh she eats at school. Except she's eating her entire day's worth of food at first break - and is starving by the time school lets out and is cranky by the time the bus gets home - because we think this might be contributing to her headaches, she's agreed to trial eating a snack during first break and the main part of her food during second break. But she'd eat all day, no matter what I fed her, if she were able to.

Today, after a Sunday morning big bacon and eggs breakky w/ fruit she asked for more food no more than an hour afterwards. I said no, gave her a drink of water and distracted her with permission to go and play down the street with neighbour kids - and she was just fine. She wasnt hungry, she didnt even come back for lunch in the end.

#40 Pocket...

Posted 25 August 2019 - 06:14 PM

View PostMooGuru, on 25 August 2019 - 04:42 PM, said:

I think you said she eats to point of feeling sick in one post.  How does she react to that?
I had a family member who around that age associated feeling sick with being full. No idea where it had come from but they needed some kind of feedback to prove they were full.
In that case it was no to huge seconds or thirds with a "if you're still hungry in 20 minutes you can have another serve - I don't think they were ever hungry enough to ask.
Their sleep also improved because they weren't spending 3 hours before bed with stomach cramps etc.

We're doing this with our seven year old at the moment. His appetite varies a lot but if he's eating fast and going through more that his usual upper limit we say to wait a while and he can have something else in a bit. Otherwise he gets a sore tummy.

#41 tily

Posted 25 August 2019 - 06:27 PM

I’m sorry to be harsh but this is the beginning of an eating disorder. It is not about hunger. Maybe set meal times and quantities based on dietitian’s advice to take the food out of the issues. What need is food filling? Boredom, sadness??

#42 aluminium

Posted 25 August 2019 - 06:29 PM

View Posttily, on 25 August 2019 - 06:27 PM, said:

I’m sorry to be harsh but this is the beginning of an eating disorder. It is not about hunger. Maybe set meal times and quantities based on dietitian’s advice to take the food out of the issues. What need is food filling? Boredom, sadness??

I am genuinely concerned about this.

#43 HolierThanCow

Posted 26 August 2019 - 07:06 AM

OP, if you have a history of disordered eating in your family and think you may have some underlying issues yourself, I would back right off from your daughter and stop mentioning food at all.

I'm sorry to sound blunt, but as someone who had issues with my mother projecting her food issues onto me, starting from about your daughter's age, and this leading to a life-long struggle with bulimia and body dysmorphia, I would say remind yourself:

-Overeating and/or being fat is not a crime. It isn't even necessarily unhealthy.
-It is better to be overweight and healthy/happy than to have an eating disorder
-If you think you are overreacting, there's a good chance that you are (you know yourself better than anyone)
-She's a child and hasn't finished growing yet
-Ultimately, she needs to learn that she has autonomy over her body and learn her 'hungry' signals and won't do this if you tell her when/what to eat all the time
-You are doing a brilliant job with the lunches and meals
-the sneaking food may be in response to your reaction to her eating, so stop it. Bring the crackers and biscuits back out into plain light and let her eat them in front of you
-Calm down. You say she is a happy and healthy kid, so what's the problem?

#44 dreamweaver80

Posted 26 August 2019 - 09:16 AM

I would never attempt to give you advice having no experience with pre-teens but good luck to you seeking out answers. God, my partner and I can't even get on the same page about the eating habits of our 1.5 yo son! He thinks it's perfectly acceptable to offer him snacks anytime of the day and countless cups of milk, which our son will happily accept, then wonders why he won't eat his lunch or dinners. He's by no means overweight or obsessed with food but I do get concerned about the behaviours he potentially could develop at such a young age. I realise this is a vastly different scenario but just shows how polarising this subject can be when even the parents of one very small child seem to think differently about it.

I have obviously been a pre-teen/teenaged girl and don't envy your position. My mother instilled all of her very healthy eating habits and love of fitness and exercise in a very responsible way and I still suffered for 20 years with body image issues and various food and exercise-related disorders. Take comfort in and focus on the fact your daughter is happy and well-adjusted, I think that is a huge credit to you and what I'm sure every parent hopes and wishes for their child.

#45 Sincerely

Posted 26 August 2019 - 10:15 AM

Like PPs, my DDs have eaten more & put on weight just before growth spurts and they are healthy & fit. If anything, I am occasionally concerned about DS who is extremely active (runs 8km most days) and only eats an average amount of food. His BMI sits under 18 (he is nudging 6ft at 14) which is underweight but he is all lean muscle and extremely fit, so I leave him to determine his own diet & exercise regimen as he has requested.

I think it's appropriate, as parents, to keep an eye on what our kids are eating and provide the right foods & opportunities for physical activity, but unless it's very clear there needs to be active intervention, I agree with PPs who have advised that it is important for kids to develop their own autonomy.

#46 Kreme

Posted 26 August 2019 - 11:23 AM

I’m torn on this because to me eating to the point of nausea, eating your entire lunchbox at the first opportunity and asking for food straight after a big meal IS disordered eating. And I don’t think it’s fair to place the blame entirely on your shoulders OP. I can understand why you’re worried.

However I don’t think that shame should be attached to food and I haven’t seen many good outcomes when it has been.

It sounds like she eats when she’s bored so I’d try to keep her busy. At that age my DD was doing 6 hours a week of dance and netball. Now at 13 she does 8 hours a week. None of it is purely for exercise from her point of view, it’s all just things she enjoys doing. She doesn’t pursue any of her sports at a high level and we encourage her to take up new things she’s interested in. Netball season is over so she’s going to try basketball in a social comp. What about summer soccer, cricket, water polo, basketball?? Get a team of her friends together and make it fun.

#47 null

Posted 26 August 2019 - 11:32 AM

I have a child that can react with the direct opposite behaviour if I push too hard. How does she usually react to what you ask? Also do you think she may be stressed?

#48 Ruf~Feral~es

Posted 26 August 2019 - 11:53 AM

View Posttily, on 25 August 2019 - 06:27 PM, said:

I’m sorry to be harsh but this is the beginning of an eating disorder. It is not about hunger. Maybe set meal times and quantities based on dietitian’s advice to take the food out of the issues. What need is food filling? Boredom, sadness??

You cannot diagnose an eating disorder from a post on an internet forum.  Seriously.

#49 Ruf~Feral~es

Posted 26 August 2019 - 12:10 PM

View PostHolierThanCow, on 26 August 2019 - 07:06 AM, said:

OP, if you have a history of disordered eating in your family and think you may have some underlying issues yourself, I would back right off from your daughter and stop mentioning food at all.

I'm sorry to sound blunt, but as someone who had issues with my mother projecting her food issues onto me, starting from about your daughter's age, and this leading to a life-long struggle with bulimia and body dysmorphia, I would say remind yourself:

-Overeating and/or being fat is not a crime. It isn't even necessarily unhealthy.
-It is better to be overweight and healthy/happy than to have an eating disorder
-If you think you are overreacting, there's a good chance that you are (you know yourself better than anyone)
-She's a child and hasn't finished growing yet
-Ultimately, she needs to learn that she has autonomy over her body and learn her 'hungry' signals and won't do this if you tell her when/what to eat all the time
-You are doing a brilliant job with the lunches and meals
-the sneaking food may be in response to your reaction to her eating, so stop it. Bring the crackers and biscuits back out into plain light and let her eat them in front of you
-Calm down. You say she is a happy and healthy kid, so what's the problem?

I thought this post was worth repeating.  Every paragraph of it.

#50 shellyb

Posted 26 August 2019 - 12:19 PM

Some Girls can have a huge growth spurt around this age. I was watching my nieces 11yo net ball game the other day and was reflecting on how little they still were whilst standing next to me was my fully grown 14 year old daughter. So much goes on at this age so quickly.

My daughter would eat like this at around that age and she would get a bit chubby then grow and slim down again. She's very sporty as well. Then in high school she suddenly became very fussy and I was secretly watching that she was actually eating enough. Luckily it was a very short phase, she's still fussy but eats a healthy diet. I was kinda hoping she'd go through a vegan stage so we could all do it but no that will never happen.

They learn a lot about nutrition as well in high school and of course are surrounded by enough body image stuff as teens. Luckily my daughter admires woman who are fit and athletic and her celebrity role models are all sports woman.

It sounds like you're doing a fabulous job and your daughter is a healthy prepubescent girl and will before you know it morph into a young woman (feels like overnight).




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