~ 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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 Do I have a food addiction? Am I overweight? Why do I eat out of boredom?

=> Q: food problem? do i have a food adiction? i am 13 and i weigh 159lbs and i always eat and sometimes when i am not hungary i eat and i eat at night when evertbody is asleep what can i do? i am 13 and i weigh 159lbs. i need to loose 19lbs and i can't will you help me?

=> q: i have a weight proble. 1: sometimes i eat when i'm not hungary 2: i weigh 159lbs. 3: is this overweight?

=> how much should i weigh? i'm 13 5'1\2 i weigh 165lbs.

=> i turn to food when i'm boared and all i do is eat and thats almost everyday i need help

 All of the above questions were submitted by the same child over a three month period, so Lucy thought it would be best to answer these questions together.

Although you provided your "statistics" (age, height, weight), whether you are a boy or a girl also matters. Use our Weight Calculator to learn if you are healthy weight, overweight, or obese. The Weight Calculator will also show how much you should weigh (a range) based on the data you enter, but talk with your doctor to make sure the weight range is right for you.
Bored Boy Drinking Soda Pop
If you turn to food when you are bored or you eat when you are not even hungry, then these could be signs of emotional eating. If you find that you often eat the same food or type of food when you have these unpleasant feelings, then this may also be a sign of a food addiction. Check out "How do I lose weight?" to learn more about how finding comfort in food often leads to overweight, and how to successfully deal with withdrawal symptoms when cutting out problem foods. For specific tips on how to quit certain foods, check out Saying Goodbye to the Food Drug.


 Stress and comfort eating. Tough childhood or parental pressure to blame for overeating?

=> Hello, I am an overweight 12 year old. I was in a home where my mother used drugs, and I was exposed to a bad lifestyle. I was really skinny then, until my grandparents adopted me and since I had near to no food before and ate whatever I could when there was any food. Once I was given food as I wasn't before I splurged I was really young then. Now as I get older that year or two of splurging has caught up with me. It doesn't help that I live now in a house of hoarding and that gets me even more stressed. I am now 5 feet 6 inches and in the mid 100's what do I do?

=> Hi Lucy, i have been trying to lose weight for 8 months. My parents are always pressuring me and I gets so annoying that they make me soo mad that I just stress eat, and that has made it very hard for me to make my weight goal... Please help me...

 Stress is a common problem for kids. It's an emotion that many children identify as the reason why they overeat. We can experience stress for different reasons, but many kids deal with it by eating more.
Stressed girl eating chocolate bar
One of you describes stress from living in a house that hoards, on top of an already stressful childhood. The second question reports stress from parents who may be nagging or badgering you about being overweight or for other reasons.

It is important to try to find ways to cope with stress other than eating. Some ideas include: painting your nails, calling a friend on the phone, listening to your favorite music, going on a walk or run, building paper airplanes, and writing a poem. For a longer list, click here. Visit our Kids Helping Kids page and the Comfort Eating Board to learn how other kids deal with stress.

If possible, one may also want to see if they can reduce the amount of stress in the first place. If you feel you experience problems from a troubled childhood, consider talking with your school counselor or another trusted adult about your feelings. If your parents are becoming overbearing, then you might find helpful pointers in this tip: "When Parents are Unsupportive and Siblings Tease".


 Asthma and Overweight

=> I'm 12 years old and I'm only 4 feet and 11 inches tall. I just found out I'm obese and I've been having breathing problems lately. I weigh 128 pounds and it gets worse eachday. Today i just ate a whole entire packet of shortbread cookies with fudge. We just baught them today and I finished it all. I hate vegtables and only like a few fruits. I'm obese but healthy. I play a lot of sports like basketball, volleyball, soccer, and swimming. All my pants don't fit me anymore so my mom has to buy me size 10 or 11. I use to be a size 5. I tried throwing up but my friends told me it's dangerous. Then I tried not to eat. At first I lost a lot of weight. I weighed 94 pounds but a teacher had a talk with me about the dangers of not eating. Please help I want to lose a lot of weight. I want to be at least 98 pounds maybe a little more. As long as I lose a lot of weight. PLEASE OH PLEASE HELP!!!

=> im 10 and i weigh 148 pounds and im the heavest kid in 5th grade my friends are allways saying god im soooo fat and i always say look at this and they all laugh and i have asthma and its really hard to run off my weight because when i have to stop to take my inhalor everyone laughs at me and i always watch the movie sandlot the 1st one and i think they most be nice not to tese ham about his weight and do you know how i can get down to 90 pounds in 10 days

 Girl Taking InhalerNeither of you mentioned it, but Lucy wants you to know that asthma symptoms worsen if one becomes overweight or obese. There are probably many reasons for this link between overweight and asthma. However, one of the main problems is excess fat cells inducing chronic inflammation (swelling tissues) within the body. This chronic inflammation, in turn, can increase the severity of asthma. The good news is that asthma symptoms decrease when kids lose excess weight.

Trying to lose weight by "throwing up" or "not eating" is dangerous, especially for kids who require many nutrients when their bodies are still growing and maturing. Attempting to "get down to 90 pounds in 10 days" when starting out at 148 pounds is unrealistic.

Instead, a safe rate of weight loss for most kids is 1-2 pounds (1/2-1 kilogram) per week. Check with your doctor to learn if this rate of weight loss is recommended for you. A safe rate of weight loss will help maintain your health and also increase your chance of successfully keeping off the extra weight.

If you think you just can't say no to things like "shortbread cookies with fudge", then you might approach this problem like an addiction to a drug. Learn how to Say Goodbye to the Food Drug and consider if changing how you relate to food may help you kick this overeating habit.

Finally, if other kids are giving you a hard time about being overweight, explore these tips about teasing:
Teasing at school...ouch!
Dealing with Bullies Greta Garbo's Way


 Exercise Ideas and Expectations

=> 1) im not overweight that much, but want to lose weight in my thighs. what kind of exercise will help me?

=> 2) if i am 17 years old and i eat doritos 4 days a week until i turn 20 without exercise what would my weight be?

=> 3) if you know a video or something i can do for exercise in my room please tell me cause i am desperate about my weight i dont want to be fat any more and i need to do some exercise in my hose in my room because i cat do it outdoors or in a gym.

=> So ive been doing tredmil every day since April and i have been seeing results, but my weight has not been going down, instead of me having a toned body ive been making a lot of muscle, is this okay for a teenage girl?

 The above four questions are answered in order.

1) It doesn't matter what type of exercise you use to lose weight if you want to shed pounds from your thighs. This is because you can't "spot reduce". When you start burning more calories than you take in, then your body will remove fat in proportionate amounts from all over your body. However, one can develop muscle definition (also known as "toning") in certain parts of their body by exercising those specific muscles. This can result in a more pleasing appearance since muscle takes up less space than the same weight of fat. If one is severely overweight or obese, it will be difficult to notice any toning because a layer of fat will still cover up improvements. For ideas on toning thighs or other parts of the body, check out ToneTeen for recommended strength training exercises.
Girl Exercising
2) This is an impossible question to answer since we need to take into account your total food consumption versus your energy use. Eating Doritos four times a week is probably not the only reason why someone would be overweight. Doritos are a very salty snack and a high salt diet causes us to retain water. Cutting down or completely eliminating Doritos would probably allow you to lose some weight by both reducing calories and allowing your body to release excess water (high salt diets contribute to high blood pressure by the way). If you commonly crave salty foods, consider alternatives such as pickles, saltines, and olives. See Foods to Help You Fight Through Cravings.

3) Check out what other kids have to say about various exercise videos and calorie burning activities by visiting Kids Helping Kids and clicking on "Exercise Ideas" and then an age group.

4) "Making a lot of muscle" usually means toning. Even if your weight has not gone down, you probably look and feel better if some of the fat is being replaced with muscle. It is almost impossible for people to develop too much muscle at any age (unless they are taking steroids), but check with your doctor to make sure your exercise program is appropriate for your age and condition.


 Food Addiction? " i just cant stop eating the food i love"

=> Hi... Im 12 years old and i weigh around 170-180 pounds. I am trying to lose weight before i go to a family trip, but i just cant seem to stick with my diet and excersise plan. My parent know about this and they encourage me every day... i think i have a food addiction!! Do you have any tips on how to lose weight and how to stick with a diet? Thanks a bunch!!

=> Dear Lucy, I'm 12 years old and I'm only 4 feet and 11 inches tall. I just found out I'm obese. I weigh 128 pounds and it gets worse eachday. Today i just ate a whole entire packet of shortbread cookies with fudge. We just baught them today and I finished it all. I hate vegtables and only like a few fruits. All my pants don't fit me anymore so my mom has to buy me size 10 or 11. I use to be a size 5. Please help I want to lose a lot of weight. I want to be at least 98 pounds maybe a little more. As long as I lose a lot of weight. PLEASE OH PLEASE HELP!!!

=> I just cant stop... i dont know whats wrong with me... My grandma trusted me 2 be home alone and the first thing i do is make myself 4 huge burgers that were like super greasy and a massive plate of salty fries.. idky i do this.. i need 2 stop but i dont know how. and i like drank 62 oz of apple juice and ive caught myself eating entire loafs of bread.. i need help :( any ideas?

=> I was wondering if you have any tips for me. I have been trying to lose weight but i just cant stop eating the food i love

=> hi lucy im 12 yrs old n im overwieght i hAVE A QUESTION OK?SO how did you do it i cant do it like last time me n my mom went to eat tacos n fries then my sister invited me to eat the next hour i knew i should of told her no i already ate but instead i was craving it n ate the hold thing. plz give me tips

 child addicted to food
"I just cant stop...idky i do this.. i need 2 stop but i dont know how."
"I cant do it"
"i just cant stop eating the food i love"
"i just ate a whole entire packet of shortbread cookies with fudge. We just baught them today and I finished it all"
"I think I have a food addiction!"

Each of these statements is taken from a question above. All of these questions are related because they can be summarized by the last statement where a child suspects that she has a food addiction.

Some of you may have heard of such a thing as food addiction. Others of you may know about alcoholism (addiction to alcohol) and chain smokers (addiction to tobacco), but you may have never heard or thought of a food addiction. Just like alcohol and tobacco, people can get hooked on the pleasure of eating food. Not just any food, but typically junk foods that are high in fat, sugar, and/or salt. Cookies, pizza, cake, chocolate, pop, chips, fries, and ice cream are all examples of highly pleasurable foods. Junk food helps us feel better by crowding out the negative emotions. This is because is it difficult, if not impossible, to feel pleasure and pain at the same time. Unfortunately, eating junk food when we feel bad is just a temporary fix with the side effect of weight gain. Tackling food addiction requires that we recognize this addiction in ourselves. We can then look at the root cause of any commonly recurring negative emotions and find alternative ways to cope or avoid them.

If you haven't seen the poll already, visit
"What do you think about Oprah Winfrey's food addiction confession?" and make sure you vote!


 Help me lose weight!

=> ok dont tell my mom but i have tried using her diet pills they didnt work i want to lose weight cuz im 188 and im 5"2' and im 14 help i want to lose weight

=> hi,lucy!!!!!!!!!! hey actually i am a 13 year old girl and i am overweight kindly suggest me some ways to lose weight plz..........

=> I have a question about me loosing weight. My school dace is on the 11 of november, and I need to know how to loose weight before the dance, what should I do? Can you help me, and help me with my helth?

=> Hey wiz i need advice on how to lose weight right now im 5 feet 7 inchs and i weight around 180 and im only 12 yrs old no one makes fun of me but i wanna lose weight before that start. I dont know why but i gain weight even if i eat less calories please give me asvice

=> i am 13 and i weigh 159lbs. i need to loose 19lbs and i can't will you help me?

 Weight loss pills are dangerous for kids who are still growing. Even adults who take prescribed weight loss pills often have to visit the doctor once month to make sure they are losing weight safely. Do not take weight loss pills unless you are under the supervision of a doctor.

Losing weight also takes time to be most effective and successful. Make sure your weight loss goals are reasonable by taking into account the recommendation to lose only 1-2 pounds (1/2 - 1 kilogram) per week.
Healthy Weight School
Overeating is a habit. To break the vicious circle of overeating, you will need to make a plan and change the way you look at food. Some kids (and adults) use food as a source of pleasure. But eating too much food out of pleasure means we will gain weight. Viewing food more as a fuel source for our bodies can help us break the overeating habit. To learn more, read "How do I lose weight?" within our Healthy Weight School section.


 I turn to food when bored or sad. What do I do?

=> dear lucy help you see i want to lose weight but we have a house filled with junkfood and i eat when im bored help!

=> Dear Lucy, I feel really overweight but it turns out that I am not. NO boys like me because Im too dfar and not pretty. Whenever I am home alone and Im sad (this happens a lot) I just eat until I feel really, really, really sick!!!! I need help...

 Sometimes we eat even when we are not hungry because we have some unpleasant feelings that we want to cover up and go away. Boredom and sadness are common feelings that cause some of us to turn to food in order to make the bad feelings disappear. Unfortunately we usually pick junk food that is high in calories and then we create different problem: overweight!
Bored Face
Find alternative ways to deal with negative feelings. Many activities besides eating can help us feel better about ourselves and avoid weight gain.
Here are some tips to help you deal with emotional eating:
Beating the Boredom Blues
Stomach Hunger or Something Else?

Visit Kids Helping Kids to see the tips children your age have to offer about dealing with eating when bored, stressed, and other types of emotional eating. The Comfort Eating Board can also be a resource for sharing your experiences and learning from other kids going through the same problems.


 Example of Emotional Eating Vicious Cycle

=> Well I have recently turned 14 about a month ago and Iam overweight I weigh around 148 pounds and iam only 5' 1". I have tried to lose weight before in the past and last year I actually used to weight 158 pounds and then I lost 25 pounds but then I went on vacation last year and after that I stoped exercising and dieting and I ended up gaining 15 pounds back this summer and I really need to lose my fat but I dont know how to start again.... And the problem is that I have been stuck at home all summer doing nothing but eating because I have been bored with nothing to do and I feel that it is way to hot outside for me to do anything because it usually gets about almost 100 degrees here and another one of my problems is that Iam an emotional eater so everytime I get hurt or feel down I eat and eat more so that doesnt help at all either. I have been trying so hard this summer to control myself but in the end I ended up gaining 15 pounds and I feel hopeless and everytime I watch t.v. or see all those skinny models and pretty girls out in the mall or movies

 The good news is that you've lost weight and even though you have gained some of it back, you are still down 10 pounds! We know it can be discouraging to give up some of your weight loss, but give yourself credit for the progress you have made so far.

Emotional EatingEmotional eating may be more common than many kids realize, but you've made an important step in recognizing how it plays a role in your overeating habit. Boredom and "getting hurt or feeling down" are certainly unpleasant feelings. Covering up these uncomfortable feelings with food, when we are not really hungry, can often lead to weight gain. Plan ahead to deal with these situations by using something other than food. For example, if you find yourself bored in the summer because it's too hot to go outside, then find puzzles, hobbies, or other fun diversions to do inside where it's more comfortable. If watching TV and movies or going to the mall prompts you to feel hopeless because you see "skinny" girls, then consider decreasing the amount of time you spend on these activities. Another strategy is to break the habit of comparing yourself to others. Many "skinny" girls have problems to face as well, even though these may not be visible or obvious to you. By getting into the practice of comparing yourself to....YOURSELF in the past and what you can do in the future, you then turn the focus of weight loss from external forces to your own control.

To learn more about Emotional Eating, read The Tale of Two Tanks:
Lawrence's Travels Through Emotional Eating
and
Lawrence Fills His Blue Tank


 How do I get motivated to lose weight?

=> Hey Lucy, I want to lose weight but I dont have any motivation... Can you help me find some?

 Most kids who ask about motivation, already know how to lose weight - eat reasonable portions of food and get more exercise. However, starting and sticking with these habits is often easier said than done. Why is it so hard to get started and stay on the right track?
target
Picking small achievable goals, such as cutting out pop, or taking the stairs instead of the elevator, can help you begin losing weight. It will also boost your confidence and provide additional motivation to tackle the more difficult challenges that are between you and your ultimate weight goal.

The best motivation comes from within yourself. In other words, you are ready to take action in losing weight because it is important to YOU. You can also get a boost in motivation by finding support from parents and friends.

Use The Motivation March in the Healthy School section to find the motivation that can help you lose weight. Don't give up!


 How much should I weigh?

=> 1. Hi I was wondering am i overwieght do I need to lose weight. My height is about 148 cm and im 6.6 stone and 41kg. All my friends are either the same wieght and much taller than me or the same hieght and much thinner than me! Please help

=> 2. what should an 12 to 13 year-old weigh?

=> 3. i really unsure on what i should weigh becausse im quiete short . i sometime feel realy fat . i so confused x i am 12 and 4 ft 4 so how much should i weigh xx thank you xx

=> 4. Hi Lucy, I'm twelve years old i think I'm overweight. I'm about 5"0 or 5"1 and weigh 11o-112 pounds i just feel insecure about my body and was wondering if it's normal for my weight to be that heavy. If you have any suggestions on how i could lose a couple of pounds please help me out. Thank you.

=> 5. I am 11, 4 ft 7 in and i weigh 77 pounds. Am i overweight?

=> 6. is being 157lbs overweight but my bmi i took onlinsaud iam obese

 Lucy tries to answer the above questions in order. Many of them she cant answer because not enough information is provided. Double check her answers by using the weight calculator for kids age 2-20 on this website. Click on the question mark for a direct link.

1. You dont give your age or sex, but one probably isnt overweight if they are ten years old or older based on the height and weight you offer (height: 148cm or 4'10", weight: 41kg or 90 pounds or 6.6 stone). Try not to compare yourself to the height and weight of others. You have little control over your height, and their weight may or may not be within the healthy range.

2. It depends on your height and if you are a boy or girl.

3. If you are a girl, 12 years 6 months old, and about 44 tall, a normal healthy range is 58 - 84 pounds. Check the calculator if you are a boy or a different age and height.

4. Depending on your sex and exact age, you are at the upper range of healthy weight (close to overweight) or overweight. For a bunch of tips on how to lose weight, look at our Tip by Topic page.

5. No. You are well within the healthy range by all measures. Whether you are a boy or a girl, just turned 11 or going on 12, you are not overweight.

6. This depends on your height and age. Please use our weight calculator to find the recommended healthy weight range for your statistics.

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