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Old 01-23-2012, 07:45 AM   #1
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Good diet for teens?

Would you recommend this diet to a teenager? My daughter said she'd like to get into a healthy diet and lose a few pounds. She is 15 and 165 but is very lean as she's athletic. She would like to get down to 130, I think she'd be great at 150, but that's besides the point. She was down to 158 and looked really good, but, since she's not in any sports right now, has gained a few up to 165. She will be starting some volleyball again this week.

I calculated her stats, and it came to 1989 for up days and 387 for down, but would you go with 500 for down days? She likes my Wonderslim shakes and would probably use those on her down days as I am.
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:18 AM   #2
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Please remember, this is only my opinion...
Since she is a developing and athletic young woman, I would not recommend 500 calories. I would do between 750 and 800 for DD, and 2,000 for UDs. Remember, that averages to 1,375 and 1,400 calories per day. She is also not very heavy.
She can always lower the DDs during the off-season. Volleyball is a high-intensity sport. I would make sure that she gets plenty of electrolytes if she practices or plays on a DD.
Just my opinion...I think she would do great! I would totally have a teenager learn to manage their weight early on in life. I think it is a gift when presented properly and with a healthy mindset. It is part of being a good parent, not to allow our children to become overweight. Not politically correct, perhaps, but the truth
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:23 AM   #3
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I wouldn't. The DD calories are too low for a growing teen, IMO.
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:34 AM   #4
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This is a full body shot of her, kind of shows you how she looks at her weight.



I wondered also about the low calories for a growing teen and also during her active period (volleyball) where she's not just sitting around all the time. This isn't actually her volleyball season, so she won't be going to practices and stuff, it's kind of like an out-of-season league where they'll be playing games every Sunday, I think. Her actual VB season doesn't start until August. She may be joining track in a couple of months also.
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:34 AM   #5
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I wouldn't. The DD calories are too low for a growing teen, IMO.
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:45 AM   #6
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This can be an excellent way of eating for a teen with certain cautions, since they are still developing. As for all of us, and especially for a youngster still experiencing growth, it is very important for their diet to be very nutritionally dense if it isn't going to be as massive in quantity every single day, but is being held down on Down Days.

So I think DDs should come in at around the 700-800 calorie number and include plenty of protein and good veggies on that day especially. UDs always leave a lot more calorie room for any of us to indulge in the cheeseburgers, pizzas, etc. that we all like regardless of our age.

There is no reason why a teenager can't watch calories, can't reduce calories to moderate weight if it's needed. And if it's needed, this is the time to form new eating habits, not after weight has built up to the point where there is yet another precious young life being lived unhappily in an overweight body. Although I remember seeing the pics of your daughter in prom (?) photos, and she was lovely!

I don't think I would encourage DDs as low as we hold to, as I don't think a teen needs to experience fasted states, but certainly doing a plan of calorie cycling, wouldn't be a problem.

So many teen girls are naturally quite slim, regardless of what and how much they eat. But if your daughter isn't one of them, this will be a good time for her to make careful and controlled eating choices a smart habit for life. Nice to learn thoughtful and controlled eating habits before they are really badly needed!
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:08 AM   #7
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I don't have so much the growing teen concern but I do worry about the UP DD cycling and how easily it can lead to binging. I've just perused a few threads today and it's very apparent that it's quite easy to lose control over the UP day. I developed a lot of my eating issues as a teen and this seems to fall easily into those patterns. I'm doing JUDDD as well so I'm not picking on this but I could see that it could go awry for someone too. I think SoHappy's idea of maybe more judicious food choices is the wiser route to go. I'd just be cautious - btw your daughter is very lovely and I can see why you think 130 is too low and I tend to agree - she really looks quite nice even now.
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:23 AM   #8
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I agree with the wise food choices, and if we do this, I'll have to take the responsibility for myself as well and go with the good food choices for both of us. I know she loves fruit, so I can do that easily for her, veggies not so much. I think she likes peas and corn, so I can go with those, maybe a salad or two, maybe make some chef salads to get the veggies in. She's a tough one with veggies as am I, pretty picky. She likes the whole grain wheat bread, is pretty much against fast food, which is good. I like the idea of higher calories on down days for her, especially as she is active.

As most teens do, I think they hear of models and movie stars who have such low weights and she thinks she should be at that low weight also. I know as a teen, 160 sounds high to her, but our family tends to hold our weight well, and she has a lot of muscle on her also, so 165 looks good on her and 158 looked really good. I think that 150 would be ideal but really nothing much below that. I'm hoping that she'll just feel so good at 150 that she'll hold it there and not think about the number so much.

I think we'll give it a try and see how a week goes for her. Thanks, everyone, for your input.
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:24 AM   #9
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Perhaps she could just do 1 or 2 DDs a week, and see how that goes?
And possibly at higher calories, as others have suggested.

Another plan that comes to mind is Eat Stop Eat, where you just have two 24-hour fasting periods per week. You can pick any cut-off time you wish; say you pick 2pm, you could have breakfast & lunch one day and then you just wouldn't eat until 2pm the next day.

Any kind of IF plan has health benefits unlike "regular" diets such as Weight Watchers or daily calorie restriction, so I think it's a valuable method to learn about early in life.

I was a very active, very athletic teenager--5'7", 135lbs, played volleyball, basketball, did martial arts, rode my bike to the beach every day and swam--who ate any amount of food I could get my hands on. My parents were very strict, no-junk-food vegetarians who forced me to do water/lemonade fasts starting at about age 9 and teased me incessantly about how much I ate; I still have rebellious feelings when it comes to dieting and brown rice!

But I wasn't given the freedom to make my own choices and I didn't learn HOW to eat if I wasn't active and/or needed to lose weight.

So I agree that it would be a great gift to your daughter if you give her a tool for healthy eating and lots of support--even though I think she looks gorgeous & toned and must be very tall if she weighs as much as you say!!!
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:26 AM   #10
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Quote:
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Perhaps she could just do 1 or 2 DDs a week, and see how that goes?
And possibly at higher calories, as others have suggested.

Another plan that comes to mind is Eat Stop Eat, where you just have two 24-hour fasting periods per week. You can pick any cut-off time you wish; say you pick 2pm, you could have breakfast & lunch one day and then you just wouldn't eat until 2pm the next day.

Any kind of IF plan has health benefits unlike "regular" diets such as Weight Watchers or daily calorie restriction, so I think it's a valuable method to learn about early in life.

I was a very active, very athletic teenager--5'7", 135lbs, played volleyball, basketball, did martial arts, rode my bike to the beach every day and swam--who ate any amount of food I could get my hands on. My parents were very strict, no-junk-food vegetarians who forced me to do water/lemonade fasts starting at about age 9 and teased me incessantly about how much I ate; while we mostly ate healthy food, I still have rebellious feelings when it comes to dieting and brown rice!

But I wasn't given the freedom to make my own choices and I didn't learn HOW to eat if I wasn't active and/or needed to lose weight.

So I agree that it would be a great gift to your daughter if you give her a tool for healthy eating and lots of support--even though I think she looks gorgeous & toned and must be very tall if she weighs as much as you say!!!
Thank you - she's 5'6".
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Old 01-23-2012, 10:55 AM   #11
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Hmmmmm - I think she looks good as she is! I am very concerned that a teenager who is healthy, active, fit and obviously not overweight would diet. It's a roller coaster that I wish I hadn't got on when I was a teen.

However, if she is to do something - a modified JUDDD may be the way to go.

I recently read about a 2 day a week diet - 650 cals per day and low (not atkins level) carbs. Perhaps she could look at restricting her cals to 800 - 1000 2 days a week during the season (with moderately low carbs) and then in the off season - drop her cals a bit more?
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:13 AM   #12
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Unfortunately all of the various tools to calculate BMI, etc, say that she is overweight, and that the healthy weight for her age, height is 101 to 149, but, of course, they can't tell how fit she is either.
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:36 AM   #13
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Unfortunately all of the various tools to calculate BMI, etc, say that she is overweight, and that the healthy weight for her age, height is 101 to 149, but, of course, they can't tell how fit she is either.
Of course we all know that the charts are only ranges found to fit most everyone, but that doesn't necessarily mean they do actually fit everyone. And we are used to seeing plumper girls these days, so hard to see that as maybe a smidge overweight. And hard to judge with absolute accuracy from photos.

The rule of thumb for females is 5 pounds for every inch over 5 feet. If the woman is quite fit and muscular, than that number can go up to about 10 pounds for every inch over 5 feet, to account for the added muscle weight. And the truth is, if you are very far out of that range, chances are that you are a bit too thin or too heavy. It would be nice to poo poo it all, but the reason these guidelines are generally accepted is because they are generally accurate. LOL

I wouldn't worry about her shedding a few pounds. You're her mom. You can see her and should be able to judge whether she could stand to lose a few without getting too thin, too focused on the number on a scale, etc. Especially if you are doing this together, you can discuss healthful eating, healthful weight, unhealthful fixations, etc.
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:45 AM   #14
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I think that she would feel so good at 150 that she wouldn't be concerned about losing anymore really. I think she felt really good at 158 when she was down to that last fall, so 150 would probably really be a change for her. Either way, we'll take it as it goes, and I started out good today having a turkey sandwich on wheat with LC cheese wedge to help set a good example. I'll pick up lots of fruits for the kids when we grocery shop this weekend and we'll see how next week goes.
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Old 01-23-2012, 12:00 PM   #15
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Out of curiosity what size does she wear? I'm curious because I am also 5'6", and when I lost weight in 2005 I went from 267 to 167, and at 167 I was in a size 12, and definitely did NOT LOOK LIKE THAT! But I was not very athletic, I was doing some forced cardio and weight training but nothing like sports.

I'm not sure how much exercise she would qualify for based on the calculator on JUDDD site, but even with light exercise 1-3 days a week, if you choose in the weightloss/maintenance range, it comes out to about 2200 up days, 880 down days. That averages to about 1550 a day, which seems about right to me? I mean you're looking for a slower weight loss with her right, she needs her energy and losing it slowly would be safest I would think! I think a positive from experiencing this diet (other than the health benefits), it might teach her to really know the difference between true hunger and eating out of boredom or because it's scheduled into you.
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Old 01-23-2012, 12:02 PM   #16
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She wears a size 11 in jeans. Tops can range from medium to large. Yes, a slower weight loss would be preferable, and I think that's a good calorie range to go by.

Here's another of her in jeans and a T-shirt - the black dress is harder to see:


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Old 01-23-2012, 12:14 PM   #17
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I have twin 14yo girls, one who is very fit and active and the other slightly less so. One wears a size 1/2 and the other was a 7/8 (now she is 5/6.) When the one came to me asking for advice on how to get in better shape, I told her to up her activity level, to make soda a rare treat instead of a "thing to do as soon as mom isn't around," and try to shoot for 80% healthy eating/20% not. She started swimming 2 days a week for an hour and walking more in her everyday activities. It's not a quick fix, but it is working for her.
So my advice to you is to encourage is to increase her activity between sports and look to where she can improve her healthy eating to 80%. Good luck!
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Old 01-23-2012, 12:16 PM   #18
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My 19-yr-old son stopped playing football and went off to college last August. A 20-lb gain later, I told him to try ONLY on Mon/Wed/Fri not eating until dinner. Then eat a normal dinner and even dessert if he wants, and do not eat after dinner. I figured that is probably enough for now and I don't think it is cutting his calories too much, all-in-all. His gain is mainly from eating junk food from dinner until bedtime.
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Old 01-23-2012, 12:24 PM   #19
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Your daughter is gorgeous, she looks awesome! She doesn't look overweight at all to me, but I'm sure pictures don't always show everything, she probably needs to lose a max of 10 pounds if at all so slow and steady will do great for her.
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Old 01-23-2012, 12:26 PM   #20
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Your daughter is gorgeous, she looks awesome! She doesn't look overweight at all to me, but I'm sure pictures don't always show everything, she probably needs to lose a max of 10 pounds if at all so slow and steady will do great for her.
Thanks - I think the 10 lb is right too. She maybe has a little bit of pudge in the belly, and she hates that her thighs touch - lol. Her legs are unbelievable and muscular and look great - I'd kill to have her legs again (mine used to be that way lol)

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Old 01-23-2012, 12:32 PM   #21
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Looking at those photos, I would never in a million years guess that your daughter weighs as much as she does. I wouldn't encourage her to eat even as low as 700 calories on DDs. I'm afraid that JUDDD might trigger an ED in a teen girl. I'd have her try something much less extreme... JMO, but I wouldn't want my little girls doing this.

To my eyes, your daughter looks perfect. I suggest the "no info about celebrities" diet!
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Old 01-23-2012, 12:46 PM   #22
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To my eyes, your daughter looks perfect. I suggest the "no info about celebrities" diet!
LOL - I agree!

I think it also started when she was younger, she grew quicker than the other girls in her class and became curvier, and her friends all stayed small and skinny. They're now catching up to her, but a couple of them are still very thin, and I think she looks at that, but that's in their genes (according to what I see in their family members).

This is her group of friends now, and I think she looks just as regular as the rest of them, but she, I think, still looks at herself as bigger.

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Old 01-23-2012, 12:53 PM   #23
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I just don't see it! If anything, I think a couple of her friends look larger than she does.
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Old 01-23-2012, 01:00 PM   #24
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I just don't see it! If anything, I think a couple of her friends look larger than she does.
Yes, I've had a hard time getting her to see it also. She told me at one point that she thinks she's fat and ugly, which blew me away. I've asked advice on the boards here for a lot of it, and we've gotten to the point where she doesn't think she's ugly anymore, but she's still got the weight issue, which bugs me, but like I said, there is a bit of pudge on the belly, and I think if she could maybe go down a pant size or something, she'd be happy. The main thing I'm trying to avoid is anorexia, so if we can alternate 800 or so and higher on the other days, I think I'd feel safe with that. I also think if she'd just cut down on the junk and eat healthier the weight would melt off, especially now when she's going to be active again. I think I'll talk to her tonight about that, cutting out the pizzas and Cheeto's and blueberry muffins she buys at the store and just eating lunches and dinners like regular, she'd see a big difference.
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Old 01-23-2012, 01:14 PM   #25
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I think I'll talk to her tonight about that, cutting out the pizzas and Cheeto's and blueberry muffins she buys at the store and just eating lunches and dinners like regular, she'd see a big difference.
Yes, absolutely. Have her clean up her diet and see what sorts of results she gets. Eight hundred calories is still very low for a teen whose body and mind are both still developing. I also think that 800 a day is low enough to be triggering. It's just such a slippery slope -- if 800 is good, then 700 would be better. If I'm dropping weight at 700, what could I accomplish at 500? And hey, this website says my actual number should be 387 so I'll try that!
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Old 01-23-2012, 02:36 PM   #26
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Unfortunately all of the various tools to calculate BMI, etc, say that she is overweight, and that the healthy weight for her age, height is 101 to 149, but, of course, they can't tell how fit she is either.
Perhaps try one of those body fat gadgets? We have one my DH used to lift weights like crazy and his body fat was down to 7% and it still said he was overweight using the BMI method - that method can't account for body composition.
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Old 01-23-2012, 03:33 PM   #27
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I would just keep encouraging her to eat healthy. I think your involvement might confirm her perception of really needing to lose weight (and not being good enough-or as good as her friends- as you've mentioned) Just keep telling her she's beautiful and you are not going to help her do something she doesn't need to do. As someone said it's a very slippery slope. You can't control how she decides to tweak Juddd later- maybe to her detriment.
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Old 01-23-2012, 03:35 PM   #28
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OMG, she does NOT look like she weighs that much!
I was about the same size as her when I weighed 135-140
(which I felt was a lot for my height, but I was quite muscular).
Sizes may have changed a bit since then (20 years ago),
but I wore a size 9/10 or 11/12 and a medium or large shirt.

I never thought I had a pudgy belly or anything, but I didn't feel "slender" like my friends. I have a big rib cage, wide shoulders and wide hip bones; no matter how much weight I lost, I don't think I ever would have fit into a "small" T-shirt or a smaller size than a 9/10. I also had ZERO boobs and enormous feet...I could never borrow my friends' clothes or shoes and just felt like a heffalump around everybody.

Sorry to ramble about myself...it's just that, I think I can relate to how you describe your daughter's feelings, even though we all think she's gorgeous.

I think the body fat monitor is an EXCELLENT idea! Especially since she is an athlete...she may appreciate that it's a better gauge of fitness than overall weight.

I̶ ̶t̶h̶i̶n̶k̶ ̶1̶2̶0̶0̶ ̶c̶a̶l̶o̶r̶i̶e̶s̶ ̶m̶i̶g̶h̶t̶ ̶b̶e̶ ̶a̶ ̶g̶o̶o̶d̶ ̶s̶t̶a̶r̶t̶ ̶f̶o̶r̶ ̶D̶D̶s̶.̶ ̶

Actually, just journaling her food for a week or two and figuring out how much* she's currently eating before she makes any changes would be a better way to start.
Then try a couple a days a week doing a smaller percentage of what she's used to eating rather than what any calculator says; that might be enough to start a little weight loss. Or the thing about not eating muffins and Cheetos.

*Maybe just by measuring and weighing, not figuring out calories. Girls tend to talk diets & can be very competitive...I'm glad I never knew how many calories I was eating as a teenager, because I already felt so inadequate about my size/feet/boobs etc...comparing calories would have made me feel worse, even though I exercised so much more than most of my friends. :/
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Old 01-23-2012, 05:06 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by cherryhair View Post
I would just keep encouraging her to eat healthy. I think your involvement might confirm her perception of really needing to lose weight (and not being good enough-or as good as her friends- as you've mentioned) Just keep telling her she's beautiful and you are not going to help her do something she doesn't need to do. As someone said it's a very slippery slope. You can't control how she decides to tweak Juddd later- maybe to her detriment.
Well, that was my first inclination also, to just keep telling her how good she looks and that I don't think she needs to diet, but, after asking for advice on the boards (I've come to the boards several times for my teenage DD woes), the consensus was that if she was not feeling good about herself, I should let her diet but teach her how to in a healthy way, so that's what I'm trying to do. I know that 95% of the people who responded to that thread (including myself) put it down to normal teenage angst and that they all, as did I, felt like they were fat when they were teens and I did also though I was not now that I look back and would give anything to go back and enjoy the weight I was then (all of which I have also told my daughter).
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Old 02-04-2012, 09:54 PM   #30
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What a GREAT mom you are!!!

First I have recently gone from 235 to 148... I am 5'6" and weighed 155 all through high school and was always the "fat" girl! Played Basket ball, was a cheerleader and involved in track field events. I am now 148 and shooting for 135 and am almost 40 years old. I am large framed as well and carry my weight very well. I'm not sure if I'm aloud to post my blog link.. if I am I'd be happy to, you can see my weight loss pics and current photo (taken last weekend). I tried adding a face shot to my profile here and it isn't showing up. I'm very techy challenged so I'm sure I did something wrong. I can see it when I go to my profile but it isn't posting... GRRRR!

Second.. I can understand her struggle with feeling like she is just 10 or 20 pounds too much. That is where I was all through high school which is why I'm getting to goal weight for the first time EVER in my life... I WILL get there. I'm finally at a healthy BMI but really see the need in my body to be less still.

I really like the input from the group about higher cal down days, I'm sure she would lose slower but she would learn a skill for managing her weight long term. I always think of it as "normal" skinny people eat less for a couple days after having a day where they eat big... so learning to balance a lighter day with a "normal" or larger eating day is not an unreasonable skill for a teen to learn.

I'm now wearing size 8 classic fit and 10 skinny jeans, both of which are lose at 148. Tops are mediums with some smalls... larges look really big now. I admit that my muscles are not as toned right now. I do plan to add exercise to my routine once I am done with the hcg/VLCD. I know that when I tone I will most likely gain and am ok with that. :-) Your daughter is obviously more toned than I am since she is an athlete in school... I'm just a farm mom and home executive. :-) If I don't reach my sweet spot in weight by the end of this hcg/VLCD round that is ok. Now that I've found JUDDD I know I will get there, just a little slower and with much more nutrient dense food variety.

You have a fabulous attidue about helping your daughter and I think you and she will be able to come up with a plan that will work for her. She is blessed to have your support and encouragement to be Healthy not skinny! :-)
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