I've Noticed That My Child Is Beginning To Put On Weight. How Do I Intervene Without Hurting His/Her Feelings?

Question: I've noticed that my child is beginning to put on weight. How do I intervene without hurting his/her feelings?

Answer: If you notice your child has begun to put on weight, it's important to ask yourself what may have led to that and look at your child's lifestyle and ask yourself if anything might have changed. Is your child eating more? Are they participating in activities less? Is there anything about the child's lifestyle that might have changed over the last several months?

And if there is, start looking at ways you might even change it. And a good way is to ask yourself, "What have I done also?"

Have you cooked differently? Have you prepared meals differently, or snacks? Have you stocked different foods in the house? So, create an eating environment that's very conducive to eating a healthy diet.

Also, it's important to involve your child and really position it from a health standpoint, and say: "Listen. it's maybe time that we as a family take charge of our health ad start eating well. And let's do this as a family," so that the child doesn't particularly feel singled out. And it becomes really an issue of health, not about weight. It should never be an issue of weight, self esteem, or any other measure that's not about health.

And involve the child as much as possible. Get your child involved in cooking and preparing meals or snacks. Ask them what things they like. And if they help you prepare, kids do like to help eat what they help prepare. So that can get you a good start on at least looking at your child's diet and getting yourself started on helping your child eat a better diet as a family.

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