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03 Mar 2004

9 year old son is obese
This is my last resort. My son is 9 years old and is overweight (Body mass index = 31). We have gone through all the tests – including sugar levels, growth hormones etc. According to a pediatric endocrinologist is there no sigh of any hormone disturbance. His suggestion is a strict diet, e.g. red meat only once a month, no rice or potatoes, etc. This would not be difficult – this is impossible. There is no way that a 9-year-old boy could follow a diet like that. My question is – is there any alternative than to accept his weight (include the result of no self-confidence, almost non-existing self-image, etc).
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Expert
naturopath

01 Jan 0001

I have good news and bad news for you and your son. The good news is that if all his tests are clear for other causes of his overweight - then he has a every chance to change and control his overweight problem. The bad news is that it is not going to be easy, and right at the outset he needs to decide whether it is important to change. The only answer is appropriate nutrition and exercise - please note I say appropriate, not fanatical. This will have to become a complete lifestyle change for good, make no mistake your son has put on weight over a number of years due to a lack of physical exercise and getting used to the bad habits of eating a western diet of refined food. This is a huge problem today, overweight children have become the norm in the city environment. Children do not walk or cycle to school anymore for security reasons, they take part in less sport in school, they have less active-play after school at home rather doing computer games etc. Add to this they have at their continual disposal highly refined processed food that is high in fat, high in sugar and calories. It becomes a formula for disaster. Unless you and your son decide that it is time to live differently to the "norm", you will not be successful - too many people continually look for a short-cut solution and the bad news is that there is none.
So to answer you question, YES there is an alternative to just accepting his weight - he needs to feel confident that with exercise and good healthy nutrition of "whole foods" he will start to feel fit, strong, healthy, confident and will naturally lose the weight over time. Make the change - go take a look at our diet section of the site.
(Dr Chase Webber ND)
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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