Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Next steps: Confirming my source, and what would a lawyer tell me to say?

So, I've been doing more research and found at the American Academy of Pediatrics website a graph that actually says my sedentary daughter should be eating up to 1200 calories a day. Phew. 1000 was difficult to get to over the past few days. We've been in the 1100's but not down to 1000 yet.

Here's the chart as I've cut and pasted from the American Academy of Pediatrics. You can reach it from this link. I imagine that if you feel that your child is obese, or significantly overweight you should first talk with their pediatrician before beginning to develop a weight loss program. If I had lawyers, I'm sure they would insist that I write that into this post. Also, I'm sure that they would insist that I tell you that I am not a medically trained professional (I can't stand the sight of blood), nor am I a trained dietician.

What I am is a mom who has a brain, can do research and realizes that a lot of life is really boiled down to common sense. For instance, to lose weight eat less, move more. More on that next time.

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TABLE 3 Daily Estimated Calories and Recommended Servings for Grains, Fruits, Vegetables, and Milk/Dairy by Age and Gender

1 y 2–3 y 4–8 y 9–13 y 14–18 y

Kilocaloriesa 900 1000


1200 1600 1800

1400 1800 2200
Fat, % of total kcal 30–40 30–35 25–35 25–35 25–35
Milk/dairy, cupsb 2c 2 2 3 3
Lean meat/beans, oz 1.5 2


Fruits, cupsd 1 1 1.5 1.5


Vegetables, cupsd 3/4 1


1 2 2.5

1.5 2.5 3
Grains, oze 2 3


4 5 6

5 6 7

Calorie estimates are based on a sedentary lifestyle. Increased physical activity will require additional calories: by 0 to 200 kcal/day if moderately physically active and by 200 to 400 kcal/day if very physically active.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Back in Action - "Eat healthy. Lose Weight"

"You know where that comes from? Watching that da*# TV."


Those quotes, for those of you who are not movie afficionados, came from "The Nutty Professor", with Eddie Murphy. And studies have shown that obesity, and especially childhood obesity, comes from a sedentary lifestyle that involves watching too much da#% TV.

Oddly enough, although I'm very careful about my eating and exercise and that of my husband - apparently I was a slacker parent. Somewhere over the last two years I wasn't paying close attention to my daughter's eating habits and she put on weight. More than a typical 5 yr should, especially one who is vertically challenged. And since she is not inclined to be as active as her brother at the same age, it is adding up. I feel like such a schmuck. As the stay-at-home parent I should have realized this. My hubby said something on several occasions, and I was doing the "can't see the forest for the trees" or the "ostrich head in the sand" thing.

Well, last week I read an article at the Washington Post about back to school and school lunches for kids. That was the real eye-opener. Of course I forgot to pull my head out of the sand first - that sure stings. The article breaks down by age groups the number of calories a day an active vs. a sedentary child should be eating. On page 2 I got a stunner: a 4-8 year old sedentary child should be eating only 1,000 calories a day! Holy crap on a cracker. I knew my little Ellie was packing way more back than that, and she loves to sit down and feed her baby doll, or read books (sitting) and of course watch TV.

So what did I do about this? Well, it took me a week to get my head out of the sand! Then I realized I needed to start by collecting data. I began this weekend to keep a food journal for her. It has been both eye - opening and encouraging. We've kept her caloric intake to 1170 calories or less, and we've gotten a few veggies "over the lips, past the tongue, look out stomach here they come!"