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Kids` Health/Obese family


I am concerned about my 10yr old sons weight of 140lbs. He easily puts on weight but does not easily loose like most stereotypical males do. Both me and his biological father are heavier. I have changed my eating habits to eat healthier foods and have started being more active. I have also carried this over into the whole familys dynamic as well. What concerns me is that he feels the need to snack or eat all the time. I feel terrible for telling him that he doesn't need to eat because I feel like he will think I'm calling him fat. He has expressed to me that he doesn't want to be overweight either so I know he is uncomfortable with his body and no 10yr old should have to worry about things like that. Please help me address this issue with him without him feeling put down or "fat shamed"

Hi Mikala, very nice to meet you.  I am so sorry to hear about your concerns about your 10 year old Son.  He is very lucky to have you in his life.  An involved parent is always a positive.  I am not sure how tall your Son may be in contrast to his weight to actually figure out how much he could possibly be overweight.  Sometimes, with his height and weight, I can use a BMI (Body Mass Index) chart to see where he fits in.

It appears you are doing many correct things.  By making the whole family eat properly will not only help the family, but not single him out as the only one who has to eat healthy.  You need to always be concerned about your Son's self esteem, and take every measure to build his confidence, and as you say, not make him feel 'fat shamed.'

My suggestion is to go to your pediatrician, and make a plan with him/her.  Keep a diary of what he eats, how much physical activity he gets, how much sleep he gets, and how much he hydrates.

I have had clients through the years who simply cut out sugary drinks, and then got their child on a walking program.  In months, they started seeing results.

But, your pediatrician can help you make a positive 'health' plan for your Son.  They may even suggest you visit a nutritionist or dietician to prepare a 'smart' menu for your Child.

Unfortunately, for me, using simply the internet, and not seeing your Son in person, makes it very difficult to give specific advice.

But, I wish you the very best for you and your Son.

If it helps, I have written a book that may help you with your specific topic, called Keeping Kids Fit:

I used to send free copies out to people, but unfortunately, I have none left.  I think through the years, I have given out about 250 copies.

All the best.

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Len Saunders


I can answer your questions about children's health, fitness, wellness, and obesity - so be specific with your questions. Many times I get question that a doctor or physiologist is better suited to answer. I specialize more in the line of exercise and nutrition for children. I also deal with the same topics pertaining to adult healthy lifestyle. Please note: Questions should not be related to sickness, as a doctor would be the first choice. I deal mostly with healthy lifestyle, so please, no medical questions!


Len Saunders is an award winning author, motivational speaker in the fight against childhood obesity, and nationally recognized for his innovative health & fitness events. Most recently, you may have seen Len on such media giants as CNN, Good Morning America, CNBC, The Today Show, ESPN, Nickelodeon, MSNBC, and the Fox Channel. He has served as a consultant to the President's Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition as well as a spokesperson for the American Heart Association on the topic of childhood obesity. He has written or consulted with various media outlets, including Sports Illustrated For Kids magazine. Len has received praise for his leadership in the fight against childhood obesity from professional athletes, celebrities, and President's of the United States, as well as being invited to the White House on numerous occasions. Len's approach to children's health, fitness, and wellness is quite simple, but extremely effective. Len is best known for creating Project ACES, an event in which millions of school children worldwide exercise simultaneously in May each year.

Sports Illustrated, USA Today, Muscle and Fitness, along with other publications.

Master's Degree, Exercise Physiology, Monclair State University Bachelor's Degree, Physical Education, The University Of Bridgeport

Awards and Honors
I have won awards at the state and national level.

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