Dealing with issues surrounding our size and weight is difficult at any age but for overweight children it can be particularly tricky. As well as low self-esteem and a lack of confidence, overweight children are often the victims of cruel bullying.
At Slimming World we’re able to offer real help to overweight children. We know that the emotional and psychological support they need to raise their self-esteem and confidence is as important as help in changing their eating habits. We only ever recruit group Consultants from our member base, so they know exactly how it feels to have a weight problem – and can offer the crucial understanding and support needed by overweight children.
Support for overweight children
We know that the last thing overweight children need is pressure to lose weight. With Slimming World’s Free2Go plan, created especially for younger people aged 11-15, the focus is always on health, not weight loss, and achievable levels of activity. We encourage young members to make their own healthy eating choices and positive lifestyle changes, through understanding and non-judgmental support with input from their parents and importantly, their GP.
Consultant Jayne Pitcher, from York, has helped many young members in her groups: “Anyone who's had a weight problem understands and empathises with others in the same position, regardless of their age. Many of us had weight problems as teenagers, so we can understand what a huge step young people take to join and the tremendous impact of being overweight. Children really will find an unsurpassed support system with Slimming World.”
Defining ‘overweight children’
Although there’s no official weight that children should be, there is what is considered a healthy range, based on height, weight and age. Specially developed BMI wheels are used to track healthy weight ranges according to age, height and gender.
Family help for overweight children
We believe that family influence is a key factor in a young person’s eating habits and exercise routines. We encourage the whole family to make healthy lifestyle changes so that young people aren’t singled out, and we help parents to support their child in making these changes.
When my daughter Katie told me she wanted to lose weight I decided to support her wholeheartedly, so we both joined a Slimming World group.
From Debbie Wright
We find the healthy eating plan so easy. I cook the same dinners for the rest of the family too.
Katie and I have always been close, but in the last couple of weeks I feel even closer to her. We now take our dog for a walk together and cook together and TALK! What a change you’ve made to our lives - thank you!
Overweight children - the future
“The Free2Go plan helps teenagers keep on a path towards a healthy weight and away from adult obesity, by growing into their weight rather than crash dieting”, says Slimming World’s research officer Dr James Stubbs, PhD.
Helping overweight children adopt a healthy lifestyle at an early age really is the key to healthy habits for life.
To discuss your child's nutrition and for lots more advice on healthy lifestyle changes, join your nearest warm and friendly group today...