~ QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ~

Here is where we answer your questions about your weight and reaching your weight goal. Our site provides general health information only and cannot give medical advice.
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 My Weight Interferes with My Social Life - Nothing Works

=> im 12 years old and i am very over weight! I feel very miserable with my friends and a few days ago my friends asked me to go to a pool partay with them and i told them i couldent go but the reason is that i am overweight and it is interfering with my social life. Please help me lose weight!

=> i feel fat i keep trying and trying but nothing works hopefully you can help me lose weight thank you

 Obesity in young people can lead to feelings of isolation and unhappiness. When someone gains excessive weight, this can lead to lower self esteem. These negative feelings increase the desire to seek comfort in food, which in turn leads to more depression as your weight increases.

Lets start with self-esteem. Keep in mind that your friends like you for who you are, not for what you look like. Keep a journal and write down all the things you can think of that you like about yourself and all the things other people like about you. Read this every single day and whenever you are feeling badly about yourself. It will take some time, but eventually you will feel better about yourself, and you will show yourself to others as a more confident person. Here is one of Lucy's tips about self esteem to help you get started.

Second, you need motivation in order to lose weight and keep it off. This is what keeps us going when we want to give up. In a new section of your journal, write down all the reasons you would like to lose weight and all the reasons why losing weight is hard. Write down everything you eat every day, and write down all the exercise you do in one day on another page.

As you progress, write down the things that you have accomplished. Things like “I lost one pound this week”, or “my clothes feel looser than before” are great MOTIVATORS to keep you going!

Finally, reward yourself each week or month after you have been working hard on your goals. But DO NOT reward yourself with food. Reward yourself with things like new clothes, earrings, a DVD, go to a movie with a friend.

The Healthy Weight School's Motivation March can help get you started.


 Weight Loss and Constipation

=> does losing weight sometimes cause constipation

  Constipation can be a result of any change in your diet and is often related to a loss of fluids, a lower food intake, or poor food choices. Usually, making a few changes to your diet can help you find relief.

There are some easy things you can do to prevent constipation while losing weight. Make sure you are eating fresh fruits, vegetables and grains to provide plenty of fiber. An extra benefit of these foods is that they are often lower in calories and are very filling. Replace snacks such as chips and other salty foods with seeds and nuts. You can still get the salty taste you crave without all the fat and calories. And as always, it is important to drink plenty of water.

Exercise is also important in improving bowel function. Try to increase your physical activity by taking the stairs instead of the elevator, taking a short walk when you are able throughout the day, park farther from the door at the mall or at school. These are little ways to sneak in extra body movements to help resolve your symptoms.


 Belly Fat

=> I'm a little overweight, but I have a big belly. Do you have any tips for getting rid of a big belly?

  If you have extra fat to lose, you may have already realized that spot reduction (concentrating on losing fat in one area) is not possible. But any exercise or weight loss should help your problem areas in proportion to other areas of fat. In addition, toning, or strengthening the muscles in a certain location can help give the body a better appearance if the fat layer is not too thick to hide your improvements.

Many people find that they can lose weight when they start walking or jogging regularly as long as they don’t increase the amount of food they eat. Most kids (and adults) tend to eat lots of foods that are high in fat, sugar, or salt. The key is moderation.

Are you ready to lose weight? Take a trip to our Healthy Weight School to learn how to break the habit of overeating.


 School Lunch - Keeping It Healthy

=> What can I do to make sure I don't ruin my diet at school. I don't always have time to pack a lunch , and my friends always have sweets. Help me please

 

Packing a school lunch is one of the best ways to help you reach your healthy eating goals. Your goal might be to choose something from each of these groups: proteins, grains, fruits and vegetables, and a high calcium food.

Shop with a parent or make a list ahead of time and pick creative choices from each of the above food groups to add interest to your lunch bag. Don't forget Fruit, a sweet alternative to high calorie desserts. Your friends will envy your creative choices like kiwi, Asian pears, or juicy fresh raspberries!
EXPERIMENT!

When there isn't time for packing a lunch, make wise choices at the school cafeteria and at the salad bar. Click on the "Food Bar" above to see how far Lucy would have to walk to work off her snack. (Drag the red arrow over a food.)

Armed with a little planning and knowing ahead of time what the better food choices are, you will be less tempted to pick high calorie foods. Remember, EATING HEALTHY CAN BE FUN!

Click on the pic at right for a video on other fun ideas on packing school lunches.


 Binge Eating and Alone - How to Stop Binging

=> I am an emotional eater. I am an only child and home schooled. I have no friends. I am a normal weight, but I have been gaining weight and I am on my way to being overweight. I am so sad and lonely, I binge when I am home alone. I want to fix my problem. How do I stop binge eating? Please help me I don't want to become fat.

 

GOOD NEWS! Binge Eating Can Be Treated! YOU CAN STOP BINGE EATING!

A binge is when a person eats a lot of food at one time. When the person binges, she or he usually feels out of control. They feel better for a while after eating, and then typically feel bad about themselves. They turn to food to feel better again, and the cycle repeats. Click here for a video about a girl who did this. Most people with binge eating disorder feel out of control with their eating and food habits.

Often times binge eating, is triggered by some emotion or stressful event or even by seeing food commercials on television. It can be helpful to learn to recognize what your triggers might be. Once you recognize your triggers, you can develop a plan ahead of time for what you can do instead of binge. For example, plan to do a distracting activity or call a friend for support.

Binging is treatable, and there are many resources available. Many health care professionals are specially trained to help those with binging problems.

You can also find other kids who care in the chatroom and you can get good ideas from other kids on the pre-teen and teen bulletin boards. Don't forget that every Wednesday "Lucy" is in the chat room to answer questions!

Don't feel alone, others are here to help support you!


 Why am I fat and my sister isn't?

=> My sister is skinny, I'm fat. How do that work?

 We are what we eat! No two people (even if we are sisters) eat exactly the same thing in the same amount every day. We don't do the exact same activities each day either.
That's why some of us will gain weight and some of us won't.

When we eat more than our body needs for fuel (to nourish our bodies), we gain weight. Check out what the body does with extra fuel and what you can do to avoid this. You might be eating for other reasons than eating to nourish your body. Examples might be because you are stressed, bored or eating for comfort.

When we eat to soothe a feeling, we are TEMPORARILY comforting our self, not fueling our body because it needs it. You might try practicing "mindful eating." Being mindful means thinking about the emotions you are feeling as you eat. Are you eating because you are hungry or because you are trying to feel better about something? Find out if you are eating because your are hungry or full.

Take a look at the action plan to help you to stop eating even when you are full. You can make the change to mindful eating too!


 Too Much Of Any Food Can Contribute To Weight Gain

=> hi lucy, does eating too much fruits and vegetable make you fat? tnx

 Simply put, if we eat more food (no matter what it is) than our body can use for energy, our body will gain weight. Food is Fuel, and if you take in more food than your body burns up, then the extra fuel is turned into fat and your body stores it as fat. Then, you gain weight.

It is recommended that we eat a combination of 9 to 13 servings of Fruits and Vegetables a day. However, keep in mind what a serving size is! Too large of portion sizes can contribute to weight gain.

Remember, fruits and vegetables are important to eat because they are filled with lots of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and other nutrients that keep us healthy. And, they are low in calories. Because they are filled with fiber and lots of water too, they can help us feel full.


 Motivation

=> how can i keep myself determined into losing weight?

 fun exerciseMOTIVATION is what keeps us going when we want to give up. Finding motivation to lose weight can be tough work, but you can do it! You may have many reasons why you want to lose weight, (feel healthy, look and feel better about myself, wear clothes that fit, and so forth). Having motivation can help you keep your spirits high and encourage you along the way.

Many kids find that keeping a "Motivation Notebook" helps. Here are some insider (notebook) tips:

- Write down in a notebook why you want to lose weight. Write down what motivates you to want to do so. The reasons can be big or small, silly or serious.

- Next, write down all the reasons why losing weight is hard. For example: "It's too hard to give up some of my favorite foods," "It's hard to stop watching TV," "I don't like to exercise because I am so heavy." Write down as many reasons as you can.

- Write down everything you eat every day on one page. Then, write down all the exercise you do in one day on another page.

- Pick one food goal and one exercise goal each week. For example, "I will stop eating pizza." "I will walk for 30 minutes 3 times this week." Keep track in your notebook how you are doing. Sometimes writing your goals down and checking your progress at the end of every day helps you stay on track and stay motivated.

- Write down the things that you have accomplished, or new motivations along the way. Writing these down such as “I lost one pound this week”, or “my clothes feel looser than before” are great MOTIVATORS to keep you going!

- Reward yourself each week or month after you have been working hard on your goals. CAUTION: Do NOT reward yourself with food. Reward yourself with things like new exercise clothes or a DVD, go to a movie, or get a new hair style.

- Now, start on your next goal. The key is to do it step by step. When you feel like you are losing your motivation you can take a look in your notebook and read about why you want to lose weight or find a motivation mate to help you. This will give you more motivation. You can do it! Good luck!


 Stretchmarks and losing weight

=> if i lose the weight,will the strechmarks go away

 Stretch marks sometimes develop when the body expands faster than the skin can grow. This often occurs during rapid weight gain most commonly on the belly, under arms, sides of the body, thighs, buttocks and hips. A stretch mark is skin damage that may result in some scarring, but the marks usually fade over time.

Keeping your skin well hydrated by drinking plenty of water can help accomplish two things:
1) maintain skin elasticity and prevent or reduce further damage
2) help reduce your calorie intake because you feel full more often

It takes quite an excessive amount of calories to gain weight so rapidly that stretch marks appear. This may be a sign of emotional eating or a food addiction. Check tips on how to avoid problem foods to help with excessive eating.


 How Lucy Lost Weight

=> how did u loss tht weight?

=> are you overweight anymore

 Thanks for asking how I lost weight. If you remember in Lucy and the Pit," I had an eating problem. I just loved to eat, especially sweet stuff like ice cream and cake. My friends showed me that if I ate less of what I usually ate, I could lose weight. They also showed me what foods are good for me, like fruits and vegetables and how to cook healthy fish and chicken, that wouldn't make me gain the weight back. They also told me to STOP DRINKING SODAS and try flavored water and low fat milk instead.

My friends showed me that activities like walking, swimming and skating are fun. I found that when I did active fun stuff with my friends, I didn't even think about food! It worked!

I realized that I craved certain foods so I learned to AVOID THEM and substitute fun activities instead. I learned how to get in touch with my feelings and emotions and got support from trusted friends. That really helped!

Now I am still overweight, but not as much. I have ups and downs but my friends encourage me and I have friends on the chatroom here. I also get good ideas from the tips area and read stuff from other overweight kids on the pre-teen and teen bulletin boards. So, I don't feel alone.

It's a journey to lose weight, but I don't feel so alone anymore and I'm not afraid to ask for help. Keep positive, you can lose weight too!

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