Health and weight

Rachel - Interview 16

Female

Brief outline: Rachel, 16, recently went to see her doctor because she was worried that she was overweight. Although the doctor said her weight was average for her height according to the BMI (body mass index) chart, she still feels worried. Ethnic background: White other.

Background: See 'brief outline'.

Audio & video

Rachel, 16, recently went to see her doctor because she was worried that she was overweight. Although the doctor said her weight was average for her height according to the BMI (body mass index) chart, she still feels worried. Rachel thinks she might have gained weight because she hasn’t been exercising like she used to because she says she can’t be bothered. Rachel describes herself as average, but with muscular arms and legs, and she thinks she has a fat belly. She says she doesn’t want to be skinny but says her ideal body shape is thinner and more toned than she is now. Rachel says she hasn’t ever tried to lose weight and thinks she’s an average size because she has always been interested in exercise and quite active. During her time at school, Rachel says everyone was weighed in front of each other and this was something she felt uncomfortable about, because even though she was an average weight, she didn’t want people to know what it was because she sees it as a personal thing.
 
Rachel says she has a big appetite and although her mum does most of the shopping and cooking, she does get a choice in the things that she eats, subject to her mum’s budget. Rachel believes it’s important to be healthy and says she is planning to go back to the gym to improve her health and fitness. Rachel also thinks it’s important to do exercise because otherwise you can gain weight. She thinks the government could do things to make it easier for people to be healthy and avoid gaining weight, for example, by ensuring healthy foods like fruit and vegetables are cheaper than processed foods and by creating better, cheaper opportunities for exercise and increasing the amount of PE done in schools. She thinks that the media presents some sports (like football) as being just for men and that this discourages girls from getting involved. She thinks it might be difficult for people who are overweight to get involved in exercise because, unlike her, they aren’t particularly interested in sport, and they might feel embarrassed about running or cycling in public.
 
Although Rachel believes that personality is more important than looks, she also says she thinks you feel better in yourself if you take care of yourself and look as though you do.
 
Rachel is currently an administrative assistant and Chair of the Young People’s Advisory Group at the National Youth Advocacy Service.

Feedback

Please use the form below to tell us what you think of the site. We’d love to hear about how we’ve helped you, how we could improve or if you have found something that’s broken on the site. We are a small team but will try to reply as quickly as possible.

Please note that we are unable to accept article submissions or offer medical advice. If you are affected by any of the issues covered on this website and need to talk to someone in confidence, please contact The Samaritans or your Doctor.

Make a Donation to healthtalk.org





Find out more about how you can help us.

Send to a friend

Simply fill out this form and we'll send them an email