Taking Healthy Steps
A Guide to Supporting Loved Ones In Their Weight Loss Journey
Support from loved ones can go a long way for those working towards achieving their long-term weight loss and wellness goals. Nutrition, physical activity and behavior modifications are key components to a successful weight loss program. Obesity Medicine Physician, Dr. Katie Rosenfeld, shares tips to help your loved one stay healthy and active all year long.
Encourage Open Communication
Long-term weight loss is an ongoing process. Talking to your loved one about ways you can provide emotional support emphasizes that you want them to achieve their wellness goals. Asking questions and listening can foster a trusting and open relationship during their weight loss journey.
A few conversation starters include:
- What healthy goals are you working towards?
- How can I be there for you?
- Do you prefer that I come to you with suggestions or would you prefer that I wait until you ask for help?
Be a Cheerleader
Establishing and maintaining lifestyle changes is no small feat, so make sure to celebrate your loved one’s health accomplishments. Taking the time to acknowledge their achievements and reminding your loved one that you are proud of them can have a significant impact.
Things to Celebrate:
- Staying committed to achieving their health and wellness goals
- Reaching a new weight or health milestone
- Sticking with a workout routine
Focus on the Positive
The path to weight-loss is often filled with peaks, valleys and plateaus. Throughout the year, your loved one may be faced with making difficult decisions. Supporting them without judgement can foster a sense of compassion and make it easier to regain their focus if they have fallen off track. You can share positivity by:
- Giving genuine compliments (both weight and non-weight compliments are important)
- Reminding your loved one of how far they have come
- Avoid dwelling on the missteps and continue to applaud the successes
Be a Teammate
Giving your loved one unwavering support and encouragement shows them you are equally as committed to helping them achieve their goal. You can create a supportive environment and encourage healthy choices by:
- Including new, healthy food options in your get-togethers throughout the year (or swapping ingredients for healthier substitutions)
- Getting active together
- Being mindful of your own food choices when you are together
Whether your loved one is just beginning their weight loss journey, or has been working towards a healthier lifestyle for a while, your support will help them achieve their goals and improve their quality of life. For more information on improving your family’s health, or to schedule a visit with an obesity medicine physician, please call 1.888.MY.DMG.DR (1.888.693.6437) or schedule an appointment online.