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When Fat Kids Diet, They Gain Weight

There are more obese children in the West than ever before in history, putting them at risk for type 2 diabetes and future heart disease. But when they try to diet, they gain more weight. How can this be happening?

The truth is, dieting never works?the only thing that leads to permanent weight loss is permanently changing the way you eat. These kids are being affected the same way as adult dieters: when they eat less, their metabolisms learn to work more efficiently. Then when they resume normal eating, they gain weight on the same diet that kept their weight stable (if too fat) in the past. Also, a repeated cycle of weight loss and gain causes fat to replace lost muscles, making kids appear heavier, thus making them want to diet even more. And muscles are more responsive to exercise than fat, so post-diet, you get fewer results from an exercise program.

We now know that a poor diet in pregnancy can predispose a child to excess weight gain and type 2 diabetes, because the body switches on the set of genes that deals with what it perceives to be starvation. Baby formula and solid food given too early can also play a part in this.

Diet books and diet foods are a big business in the U.S., and these companies would rather you didn't realize that diets can actually make you fat.

We all need physical and mental healing, and Steven Halpern can help.

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