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ajja
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Hi,

 

First of all, I am not vegan, nor am I a vegetarian; however, I am in the process of trying to eat as many fruit and veggies per day that I can. I do also try to minimize the amount and type of meat my children and I have per day. Here is my prob: my youngest son and I are short -I am 5"2, my youngest son is about 6 inches shorter and 2 yrs younger than his brother but they wear the same size pants (my youngest is actually beginning to exceed his brothers). His body mimics mine and I tend to carry a lot of bellyfat. I will admit that we do eat probably 4 meals out per week (stupid I know). I am very concerned. Do I allow him to eat as many fruit as he can to eliminate sugary snacks or do I need to restrict the number of fruit he eats per day? How many servings of veggies should I strive for? I also live on a college campus which has a mile long trail -how many laps and how often should we do this as a family?

 

I appreciate all the help you guys can give me. Being overweight pains me but I was not an overweight child and it is devastating thinking that my son will have to deal with this at such a young age. Please help me.

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You can't give your kids too many vegetables. A good way to get them to eat as much as possible is to say they can't eat anything else until after they're done. Then if they have space they can eat something else. As for working out it won't hurt to put them in some type of sports program. The motivation of being with other kids will make them work harder to burn more fat than walking.

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I think it's wonderful that you've decided to take action to improve your family's health. When I became a vegetarian, I lost weight very quickly however over the years I gained it back and then some and it was due to my diet. Even though I no longer ate meat, I switched to starches and a lot more cheese than I used to eat. However, over this past year, I've started eating as many organic fruits and vegetables as I can get my hands on. I dramatically decreased my sugar (and when I do have sugar, it's unbleached organic) and replaced it with agave necter, organic maple syrup and stevia. I have also strictly banned high fructose from my diet. It was when I did this that I saw big changes regarding my body fat, particularly in my stomach.

 

Finding these foods are sometimes challenging depending on where you live and you'll find that high fructose is in EVERYTHING! So the easiest way around that is to stay away from processed foods as much as possible. It seems like a lot of work at first, but soon it will become second nature and you and your sons will look and feel great!

 

As far as exercise, I think doing laps with them is a great idea. I would start slow, even if it's just walking, so it will be an enjoyable experience. If it feels too much like work, they will lose interest very quickly. (at least that's how my kids are) The more ways you can keep your kids active and away from the tv the better.

 

And of course, as offense74 said.. read! You can never have too much information regarding the health of your family. Best of luck to you!

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Thank you guys for the advice. The walking is almost a last result. I live in a very small town where there are no organized sports programs for the children, the one we do have is run by a very unsavory individual whom I would rather not expose them to. They do like Tae bo tapes but I am hesitant to have them do them since they are pretty tough even for an adult and are mostly 40 minutes long. It is this recent move that I think has devastated us. We no longer have access to organized sport programs, regular PE classes, basketball goals, etc. so I am having to figure something out quickly.

 

Thanks again.

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I'd stop going out to eat completely. I have never gone out to eat and still never do and neither do my parents. Eating fast food 4 times a week will undoubtly make you fat in my opinion. how old are they? when they aren't with you, do they ever eat other things without you knowing? if so, where do they eat (with their friends?)and what?

How often do they go outside to play? When I was young, I use to play outside all the time by our creek and use to build forts with my friends and ride our bikes. I didn't have any video games or time to watch tv. Sometimes me and my friends would get a wooden bat and a ball and play softball, or some other game, like football. You don't need organized sports programs to play sports. When I wasn't running around outside, I was drawing and being creative.

If you have an outsdoors like areas where your kids can explore and have fun, that would be good as long as it is safe.

I dont know if this has helped any?

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Kon, it does help tremendously. That is how I grew up also. I know without a doubt that the fast food must go. They are only 10 and 7 but they do eat breakfast and lunch at school and the school sells snacks (straight junk food) which I do not give them money to buy. Other than that I control what they eat, I have just read so much over the years until I am truly hesitant to even give them an abundance of fruit. But if you suggest, this is one change I can surely make. I can replace at least 98% of their snacks with fruit. Will this make a difference though if I am not able to completely change their activity level?

 

As far as outside, we live in an apartment with only a street in front of it and there are no kids for them to play with. They can ride their bikes but not freely like we did because the sidewalk does not allow for much freedom. Before we moved here they were way more active outside. I sound to myself like I am making excuses...I do appreciate your advice though and promise myself and them that I am going to figure something out.

 

Thanks

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