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Hipster hangups.

I have really wide hips, and I hate it. I look bad in jeans and skirts, and I envy skinny-minnie girls. My mom says I'm just growing up, but it sucks.

Whether it's weird toes, thick calves or pointy elbows, every girl hates something about her body. Your morn is right--it's normal for your hips to widen during puberty. You should learn to love what you've been blessed with, and we know that ain't easy. "I have a large ribcage," explains Tootsie Olan, New York choreographer and dance instructor at Equinox Fitness Clubs, "so I had to figure out which moves work for my body. On the dance floor, I make bigger, joyous, expansive movements that go along with nay body type." To feel better about your bod, Tootsie suggests using your body for something you love, like dancing or running. "The more your body works for you, the more you'll love it," she says. Also, avoid fashions you don't feel awesome in (mini skirts are flattering to about 1 percent of the population).

I heard it's a sign of diabetes if you pee too much. How many times a day is normal?

Well, it's difficult to define "normal." Most people urinate around six to seven times a day. Keep in mind that if you drink tons of water and other beverages, you might go more often. Or if it's very hot outside, you might drink more and pee less, explains Dr. Larrian Gillespie, urogynecologist and author of The Goddess Diet. If you're always thirsty and urinating a lot, yes, that could be a sign of diabetes. But you'd likely have other annoying probs, such as unexplained weight loss or being hungry all the time. Still, childhood diabetes, which often shows up in overweight kids, is growing at epidemic proportions. So exercise and eat healthfully--those things are good for you ... and so is peeing!

I crack my knuckles, and my brother says my knuckles will get huge from it. Is this true? I try to stop, but I can't.

Make a bet with your brother because you'll win. Studies show that popping your joints does not make them bigger, nor does it cause any other long-term harm. Fact is, there's fluid in the joints, and those fluids contain a gas called nitrogen. When you pop your knuckles, the gas can release a snapping or cracking sound. Another cause for the cracking might be ligaments--tethers that hold your bones together--tightening when your joints move quickly, according to Dr. Edward G. McFarland, Johns Hopkins Medical Center, Baltimore. While you're probably not hurting yourself, it wouldn't hurt to give your knuckles a break (not that kind of break).

Stumper of your own? Send your question to Body Q&A, Girls' Life, 4517 Harford Road, Baltimore, MD 21214, or e-mail it to
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Title Annotation:Body Q&A; answers to children's health and body questions
Author:Kemp, Kristen
Publication:Girls' Life
Date:Dec 1, 2004
Previous Article:Gifts wrapped!
Next Article:Fact!

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