~ 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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 Is breakfast really that important?

=> My diet is to just eat supper and lunch.

=> Is it safe for me to not eat breakfast?

 Yes, Yes, Yes, eating breakfast is really important! Eating breakfast helps to get your metabolism going (how fast you burn calories). After not eating all night our bodies slow down its metabolism to save energy. Eating breakfast tells your body that it doesn't need to slow down anymore. It is better to tell your body to speed up in the morning than in the afternoon. An article once that said that people who skip breakfast tend to eat 15% more calories than if they ate breakfast. That means if you normally eat 2,000 calories to maintain your weight, you may eat 2,300 calories if you skip breakfast. If that happened everyday you could gain almost 1 pound a week. There are studies that say that kids who eat breakfast also do better in school. So breakfast is not only important for weight loss, but your mind as well!


 How can I lose weight fast?

=> I am trying to lose 35 pounds in one month.

=> Should I starve myself?

=> I am going to Puerto Rico in 4 months and I need to lose over 50 pounds!

 Fast weight loss is not recommended. It can lead to health problems and most people who lose weight quick end up gaining it back and then some. In fact, one way to tell if a weight loss program is a gimmick is if it promises quick results. The most weight that health experts recommend for a person to lose in a week is 2 pounds. That equals 8 pounds per month. It doesn't seem like much, especially when you have decided you want the weight gone, but it's the healthiest way to do it. Instead of focusing on the total weight loss goal, try making little goals that lead up to the big one. Then when you accomplish the smaller ones you will feel more successful and still be working towards your big goal. For example, if your goal is to lose 35 pounds, make your first goal to lose 5 pounds. It makes it seem much more doable and helps you feel good throughout your weight loss efforts. Sometimes people try to starve themselves to lose weight fast. This is not healthy and cannot be maintained over a lifetime. When working on weight loss think about a plan you would be able to stick to for the rest of your life. If it doesn't seem possible chances are it won't provide you with permanent weight loss. Your best bet for weight loss is healthy eating and exercise.


 How can I feel better about myself when everyone makes fun of me because of my weight?

=> I am hurt b/c it feels like that all people focus on is me being fat.

=> I cry myself to sleep every night b/c I am too fat.

=> I hate my life.

=> I get made fun of by the 'popular' girls every day of my life.

 It can be so tough growing up especially in our society. People place a lot of emphasis on looking good physically. When someone doesn't fit that standard they can be labeled as 'bad' or made fun of. The truth is very few people look like what our culture views as beauty. Even models are airbrushed to look skinnier or have longer legs. It is important for you to remember that your worth as a person is NOT based on what size you are. If you are overweight, losing weight is important for your health, but it is only one part of who you are. It's important to not view your body as the enemy because, it really can do amazing things like breath, move, dance, sing. People with weight problems often have a negative body image. A way you can tell if you have a negative body image is if you base your self-worth only on your weight. Your self-worth is based on much more than just weight. Think of someone you really admire. Why do you like them so much? Is it because they are thin or because they are funny, caring, honest, nice? When you are feeling down about the way you look make a list of things that are good about you. Tell the world who you are through things like kindness, honesty, a sense of humor, or being a hard worker. As for the "popular" girls, would you really want to be friends with someone who likes you only because you look good? Often people tease others because they are unsure about themselves. Being fat happens to be a good target for people like that. If you think you have a problem with low self-esteem or a negative body image, we encourage you to talk to someone about it.


 I feel like hurting myself because I am overweight.

=> I am only 11 years old and have the weight of an adult I weigh about the same as my mom she is 36 years old I weigh 247 ps everyday when I go to school the popular girls make fun of me and say I am ugly when I come home from school I go to my room I feel like hurting myself please help me!!! this is the only sight good I can find on here for my age please give me some advice and help fast!!! P.s I think this webpage will definetly help me.

 This person sounds like she is very unhappy. What does she mean by "hurting myself"? If you have these types of feelings you need to talk to someone you trust about these feelings so that you can get help. This can be a school counselor or a trusted adult. As far as the weight goes, it will take time to lose it. The weight charts and weight calculator on this site can help you to set a weight goal. The kids and teens who chat here or write bulletins seem like they may help to support others through their weight loss. Remember, a person's worth is so much more than what they weigh. If "popular" girls make fun of you, try to ignore them. Sometimes people tease others because they are unsure of themselves. A person's self- worth is NOT based on what the popular girls say. When you feel bad about yourself, you should focus on things you do well. Hopefully the other kids and teens on this site can offer support.


 Is throwing up to lose weight a bad thing?

=> I am so overweight. iam only 13 and i weight 193 pounds and i weigh more than my dad. people allways tease me all the time becus i am fat and they say my fat hangs over the chair. i cry my self to sleep every nite. i try to loose the weight but its in my jenes to be fat. i either go anorexic or i throw up the food i eat. i dont want to tell anyone becus i dont want to go to a docter and they will tell me just to exersise and eat less . i try to eat less but i just cant contrul myself.please help me. what do i do. i hate mylife.

 If you throw up the food you eat on purpose (which is called "bulimia") or you go without eating, you need to seek medical help. You can develop an eating disorder, which can do serious harm to your body. It can be tough if your doctor just tells you to eat less and exercise. If you are afraid to talk to their doctor about it, you can tell a school counselor first. The reason behind the throwing up is why it is a good idea to seek help for this. It may seem like you throw up or starve to help you to lose weight, but often times people do that because they feel crummy inside. It is weird to think that eating problems are about more than just food, but they actually have very little to do with food. It is what's going on inside that is the problem, and the way people make fun of you may make you not feel good about yourself. Again, seeking help from a school counselor or talking to an adult you trust is a good idea. As far as being overweight, that shouldn't stop them from getting help. People who are bulimic are sometimes overweight. When you feel better about yourself on the inside it is then easier to take care of your body on the outside.


 Why Don't I Lose Weight?

=> I have a question. I am 15 years old. I weigh about 165 lbs. Thats a lot!! i need to lose about 35 lbs. but how do i do it. Trust me...i ate all the right things...had small portions...ran everyday for an hour and didnt lose a drop of fat! i dont have the money to buy any of those programs. what do i do?? Plz answer this.

 Losing weight requires that what you take in be less than what you burn up. If you are not losing weight that means that you are still eating more than you are burning up. It's pretty simple. What is not so simple is resisting the high fat, high sugar foods, the large portion sizes, second helpings, and frequent "junk food" snacks and soft drinks that you are used to. For many kids this is almost like coming off of a drug that they are hooked on. It takes time for the cravings to go away and for the habits to change. If food comforts and soothes you, then you have to find something else to substitute for food that doesn't also cause health problems. Low-fat, sugar-free foods can still be fun and offer comfort, and healthy foods like fruits can be your snacks. If you tend to get depressed and you eat to make youself feel better, it may help to talk to a counselor or to your doctor who may prescribe an antidepressant, which can make you feel better without also causing you to gain weight. Distracting fun activities can get your mind off of food and burn calories. Sometimes when we try to loose weight by ourselves, it doesn't work very well. If you have a friend, become weight loss buddies. Call her/him when you feel the urge to eat, instead of eating. Find distracting activities that you both like (make a list of things that you like to do), such as take walks, ride bikes, play tennis together. Slow, steady weight loss is much better than fast weight loss, so start slowly and build up to more exercise.

It helps to do a food diary and write down everything that you eat and drink each day. We frequently eat a lot more than we realize and keeping a food diary can help us see that. By keeping a food diary you can see where you need to cut down, like cutting out one soda a day. Even cutting down small amount can help. For example, cutting out one 16 ounce soda a day will result in 25 pounds of weight loss a year. Also keep an activity diary and write down all the activities and how long you do them everyday. Try to increase the kinds of healthy activity you do EVERY DAY! For example, walk up the stairs instead of taking elevators, walk to school, walk up hills instead of walking on flat areas, or ride a bike. Walking faster is also helpful. Sometimes eating about the same but increasing ones activity level breaks the cycle.

You might want to talk to your doctor, as there might be other reasons why you aren't loosing weight. Your doctor will do a physical and check your blood for various things such as for diabetes, might put you on a certain diet (cutting down on certain foods) and have you see a dietitian if you are having trouble.


 How can I not be hungry when I lose weight?

=> I am 10 year old and i weigh 226 puonds i am very fat and i have a big belly that jigglys. i can not run in gym class like other kids can do. and i eat more than them. my doctor put me on a deit but it leaves me hungry what do i do?

 When you first start a diet it is very normal to feel hungry. But it may be cravings that you are dealing with. You are used to high fat, high sugar food, and large portion sizes. The feeling of hunger should go away after a short period of time. You need to give your body time to get used to the reduced amount of food and the less fattening foods. If you miss particular fattening foods (like french fries) this is probably because you crave them, not because you are hungry.

There are many things that you can do to make the hungry feeling go away. First, drink more water, at least 8-10 glasses a day. Keep a pitcher of water in the refrigerator and every time you feel hungry, drink a glass of water instead of eating something. Eat more raw fruits and vegetables, they fill you up more and have a high water and fiber content that will also make you feel fuller faster. You can eat large amounts of fruits and vegetables and still lose weight. Be sure to check with your doctor and let them know that you are still hungry. They can't help you if you don't tell them how you feel.

It is also helpful to do distracting activities (take a walk, shoot baskets, dance, etc.) when you feel hungry. Do something physical instead of eating and definitely turn off the television when all the food commercials are on.


 I'm overweight. How can I be better at sports?

=> Hi my names Sara and im 15. I read the story about how you helped lawrence and it really inspired me cuz in a way im kind of a lawrence myself. My 6th grade yr i only scored 1 homerun in softball but got plenty of hits. Its really embarrassing. Do you have any tips? The only thing i can truly say i really want is to be happy about myself by losing alot of weight. I just recently started working out and have lost like 5 or 10 pounds in 3 weeks but thats not enough. What else do you suggest? I cant stand being this big anymore its embarassing and really depressing. You sound like a wonderful person and i hope you can help even someone like me.

 There is no guarantee that you'll be a better baseball player if you loose weight, but you'll feel better and probably run faster. The more overweight you are the poorer your body is able to use oxygen so you get out of breathe more easily. The weight itself puts stress on bones and joints. Kids who are overweight almost never lose weight just by exercising. They have to also cut down on the amount of food they eat, mainly they have to cut down on high fat and high sugar foods (like junk food such as soda pop, cookies, etc.) The trick is to cut down on what you normally eat and increase your exercise.


 How do I resist overeating at home?

=> Whenever I try to stop myself from eating I usually end up eating so much more. I hate it. There are so many foods in my house that tast really good and I can't seem to stop at just one. What can I do?

 One trick is to hide, or better yet, get rid of all the junk food in your house. Ask your mom to buy fruits, or non-fat yogurt, or low-fat popcorn for snacks. It is pretty hard to gain weight by eating fruits like seedless grapes, nectarines, pears, or oranges, and they contain vitamins and fiber which are good for your health. You can slice the fruits up and freeze them and then you can suck on them. If your parents still want to bring home junk food, ask them please to hide it from you. Also, find fun distracting things to do, like a hobby, or take a walk, maybe with your mom or a friend or your dog, to get your mind off food.


 Why do I eat so much? Why am I so hungry all the time?

=> i really need a lot of help. people make fun of me a lot not cuz im fat cuz of i eat so much. and the more i eat the fatter i get. im 12... if you could help me in any way please do cuz mainley what my problam is is thati need to stop eating but im so hungry all the time and i know you can tell som eexercises or sumthin. well later ps even if you dont pick my email thanx alot

 There is a difference between "hunger" and "craving". Hunger is what you feel when your body needs food for energy and for growth. How do you know if you are hungry? Your stomach growls and you may feel a bit "queezie". If you are really hungry you will eat almost any food, even vegetables and foods you don't normally like very much. Here is a test: if you think that you want a food because you are hungry, ask yourself if you would eat something else that you don't like that much. If the answer is no, then what you are feeling is likely a craving. Craving is what you feel when your body wants food for pleasure. We usually crave not just any food but one particular food, like chocolate or french fries. Usually the foods we crave are high in sugar or fat. Lets face it... food can be enjoyable, and it can also comfort you. When you feel unhappy or bored, you crave a tasty food to make you feel better. But the food pleasure lasts only a few minutes, and then you feel bad because the extra food makes you become more overweight and risks your health more. So when you think that you are hungry, ask yourself if it could just be a craving, especially if you just ate only a little while ago. When you feel a craving, drink ice water (with lemon?), chew surgarless gum, or try to do some fun activity to distract yourself, like a hobby (maybe gardening or knitting?), or shoot basketball or rollerblade, or call a friend and go for a walk, or take a walk with your dog or even by yourself. Even reading a fun book can take your mind off food. Look for adventures - they are everywhere!

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