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12 Jan 2006

My 10yr old son is overweight
Hello Diet Doc,
I wonder if you can help me. I have a 10 year old son who has in the last few months become quite overweight. My first question to you is what is the average weight of a ten year old?
My son weighs in the region of +/- 55kg - which is almost the same as what I weigh. He eats at any one time 8 slices of white bread! Thats besides his breakfast, which is cereal like Wheatbix / All Bran / Corn Flakes, and a cooked meal everyday with the normal veggies, meats, etc. I generally cook healthy meals, as I am also very consious of what I eat. I never fry any of our meals. I have tried to get him to eat brown / wholewheat bread, but he refuses. He has tried to cut down on the bread, but always asks for more saying that he is still hungry. I have dewormed him, so I don't think that it is that. I have told him that it is unhealthy, and he has now come to the realisation that he is "uncomfortably" overweight. He can't run very far, then he is out of breath. He has fat rolls when he sits, and from behind he has huge "love handles" and the fat rolls can be seen on the sides of his back. I would really love to help my son lose his excessive weight, but am not sure how I would do that safely? Is there medication to control his eating? What type of diet plan can I put him on?
Im really looking forward to hearing from you soon...
Thanking you in anticipation... PE_Mom
Answer 397 views

01 Jan 0001

Dear PE Mom
According to international tables a 10-year-old boy should weigh about 28 kg, thus your son does seem to be very overweight. I would recommend that you have him examined by a physician to rule out any underlying physical problems such as diabetes or hormone imbalances. If he is given a clean bill of health then please take him to a clinical dietitian (check the List of Dietitians on this Website or phone 082-593-0276 or send an e-mail to or look in your local telephone directory or Yellow Pages, to find a dietitian in your area). The dietitian will have to do a dietary history on your son to find out why he is insisting on eating so much bread. There is also a psychological component that may need to be explored. Children often develop eating aberrations because they have an underlying anxiety or depression. If this should be the case then do take him to a child psychologist for an assessment. Experts the world over agree that physical activity is one of the most important factors in controlling weight in children. Encourage him to go for a brisk walk for at least 30 min a day - go with him to encourage him to do this regularly, or enrol him in a swimming programme or a gym.
Holding thumbs for both of you
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.
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