They want to be like
the super-thin models they see in magazines and on TV.
Their desire for the perfect body image can cause them to develop eating disorders like anorexia (not eating) or bulimia (eating and throwing up). Or they start an unhealthy cycle of dieting and weight gain.
Studies show children whose parents criticize their weight and appearance are more likely to develop eating disorders as teens.
To help children feel good about themselves physically:
• Point out that healthy, attractive people come in all shapes and sizes.
• Help your child identify what she likes about her body. Redirect her focus away from what she thinks isn’t perfect.
• Keep your comments positive and realistic. Girls approaching adolescence can have significant weight gain. This is a normal part of growing into a woman.
• Make losing weight a family affair. It’s easier to adopt healthy habits when the entire family is eating and exercising together.
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