5 Effective Tips To Lose Weight When You Don’t Have Family Support
Written by: Angelique Johnson
Are you trying to lose weight, but feel like no one close to you is supporting your journey? Read on, I have some journey-saving advice for you!
As a nutritionist myself and for someone who has been studying the field for over 10 years, I can tell you for a fact that having a support system helps you to achieve your goals. Most of the time, family can be quite supportive of your weight loss goals, especially if you have recently been diagnosed with a medical illness.
In fact, research has shown that when families get involved:
- Women with type 2 diabetes lose more weight when they have their partner’s support
- Those diagnosed with heart disease make healthier choices
- Physical activity is increased
- Healthier meal planning is made easy
- More weight is lost
However, if your family is not involved, this can put a huge damper on your weight loss plans. Unfortunately, when a member of the household makes a dietary change, other members in the house may begin to worry how this will affect them as far as eating choices are concerned.
Use the following tips to guarantee yourself weight-loss success without driving your family crazy:
1. Plan on going to restaurants that offer both the unhealthy foods they enjoy and healthier items that fit into your new lifestyle.
For example, most burger joints offer healthy salads and sushi restaurants have a nice balance between the deep-fried and the fresh. Everyone’s ordering dessert? Have a bowl of fresh fruit to end the meal!
2. Cook meals that incorporate both unhealthy and healthy items… and bulk up on the healthy items.
Is the family begging for ribs? Go ahead and break out the barbeque, but also make a large salad and some sweet potatoes and fill up mostly on those and a small rib!
3. Don’t remove all the unhealthy items from the house… it’s not fair.
Keep ONE unhealthy item in each category at the home and also keep a healthier option. Kids love snack foods? Keep the potato chips, but also make sure you keep some whole grain pretzels around for yourself. Do not keep more than one unhealthy item in the snack category around, as having a variety sometimes causes more invitation. Replacing favorite snack items with healthier items can also help dampen the damage of keeping these items around the house in case of a mishap.
- Buy lower sodium baked tortilla chips instead of the fried kind.
- Buy reduced fat lower sodium potato chips instead of the regular kind.
- Buy (or make your own) frozen fruit bars instead of regular ice cream bars.
- Replace ice cream with sherbet, fat-free ice cream, or no sugar added ice cream.
4. Avoid family sabotage.
Most families experience a sense of dread when someone in the house begins a new lifestyle, because they fear that they may never be able to eat their favorite foods again as a result. Teaching them about healthier substitutions may work, but sometimes they beg for their favorite fattening meals to be served. Be creative! Changing some of the ingredients can help reduce calories and fat content, without sacrificing too much of the taste.
- Unsweetened applesauce instead of butter in baked goods.
- Light, unsalted butter instead of regular butter.
- Low-fat cheese to make lasagna instead of regular cheese.
- Double up on the egg whites: 2 egg whites = 1 egg
- For every cup of white flour, use ⅞ of a cup of whole wheat flour.
- Use 1 cup mashed banana in place of 1 cup of butter or oil.
- Mix half mashed cauliflower with half mashed potatoes.
- Whole wheat pasta for regular pasta.
- Use Lettuce leaves for tortilla wraps.
5. Let your family know how much this means to you!
Ask your family to accompany you when seeing your nutritionist, doctor, or physical trainer. It helps if a professional conveys the message of the importance of their support in your new lifestyle. However, if these new lifestyle changes lead to name-calling and arguments, family counsel and therapy might be in order to help sort out any new feelings of resentment.
Just remember that your new lifestyle in an absolute must for the sake of your health and your happiness. Compromise is important and as soon as you reach that balance and your family starts cheering you on, you can accomplish anything!
How has your family received your health goals? Were they supportive? Let me know in the comments below and don’t forget to share!
Angelique Johnson is a nutritionist from Miami, FL. Through her own journey in weight loss, she discovered her love for health and nutrition and realized she wanted to help others achieve a healthier lifestyle. Angelique has been featured as a nutrition consult on CBS4 Miami News and is a published author on many online health sites. She is passionate about debunking diet rumors and showing her clients how to have a healthy, balanced relationship with food.
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