Eating Disorders:  Dieting vs. A Healthy Diet

Eating Disorders: Dieting vs. A Healthy Diet

[ Music ]>>Can you talk a little bit about a parent
who may have a child who is a little overweight or perceives themselves as a little overweight
and starts by just kind of wanting to get healthy. What’s the difference I guess between
eating a healthy diet and dieting?>>Well, eating a healthy diet, you
want them to eat all categories of food, whether it’s a protein, a fruit, a vegetable,
starch, lipids, that sort of a thing. They’ve got to watch the diet when they start
getting restrictive and it becomes more unhealthy, like they’re saying, “Oh, I’m
not going to eat any fats.” Or “I’m not going to eat any sweets.” That’s when you have to start worrying about
the diet becoming a little bit less healthy and the kids getting into more trouble with that. Because that– oftentimes, it’ll start with, I’m just going to become vegetarian
and then it just goes on. But if they want to have a healthy diet,
try to keep them in all the food categories.>>I would agree. I also see pediatric obesity
patients and even with those patients, I try to focus on healthy eating and activity. But I don’t like to focus on weight. I don’t like to give patients a
target weight or a number of calories because that’s not how we
want them to think about food.>>If a child was just on a diet and hadn’t
exhibited any of these other signs or symptoms that we’ve discussed but they just came home
and said, you know, “I don’t want to eat this. I’m on a diet.” Is that in itself something that
should raise a red flag for a parent?>>Not necessary.>>Not necessarily because–>>No, not necessarily.>>We’re in very diet-focus, weight-focus society. And so, the majority of kids will attempt
to diet at some point in their childhood. But I would caution parents to
just talk to their kids about that. Say, diets are not usually
effective at losing weight anyway. What we would want to focus on is just having
a healthier eating habits for the whole family. And if the whole family does it together, they
stay active together, they eat more fruits and vegetables together, then there’s less
focus on the child and their body image. [ Music ]