Weight :

Weight Management for Those Under 5 Feet

Barry Carpenter, KDAF-TV, Dallas

Kelli Hughes is big time small--standing at just 4 feet 10 inches she doesn't exactly tower over a sitting co-worker.

She said one thing really stands out being small.

"103 pounds versus 106 pounds is a big difference in somebody of my stature," Kelli said. "You really notice it."

And now a new diet called The Petite Advantage Diet by author Jim Karas has some dining advice for women like Kelli--including eating 40 fewer calories a day than taller women.

It may not sound like much but it adds up to 4 pounds a year.

Kelli said its good advice--in fact she's been practicing it for years.

"I find I eat a lot less just because of my stature," Kelli said. "I really don't want to pack it on too fast but I also think my stomach is smaller in size as well because I never really finish a meal."

Forest Park Medical Center registered dietitian Katie Pearson said the logic is sound and simple math--the smaller the person the less fuel is needed.

"Shorter people, yes, they probably have to work a little bit harder than taller people because it can kind of catch up with them quicker than taller people," Pearson said. "There is less space to put it."

The petite diet also calls for women to eat early in the day with breakfast comprising 40% of the day's calories.

Pearson said most of her small friends and patients are aware they need to consume fewer calories.

Eliminating 40 calories a day can be as easy as ditching a trial size piece of chocolate or something even smaller.

"40 calories," Pearson said. "To be honest, that could be a couple of mints a day."

Katie doesn't envy her taller friends--she's bigger than that-- besides being short comes with certain benefits--losing just a few pounds is obvious.

"I'm okay with being short because I kind of like having to watch what I eat" Kelli said. "It keeps me balanced; it keeps me on my toes."

(c)2012 KDAF-TV (Dallas)

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