Managing excess body weight (obesity) is similar to managing high blood pressure or diabetes—left unmanaged, these conditions get worse and when treatments stop, the problem comes back. This is why weight management strategies have to be realistic and sustainable. Short-term ‘quick-fix’ solutions are not sustainable, which is why weight usually comes back.
A common belief about obesity is that there is a simple cure (i.e. lose weight).
The problem with this notion is that it does not account for the fact that obesity is a chronic disease. The overall goal of obesity management is the improvement of your health and well-being. The first step is to prevent further weight gain. In addition, even a modest reduction in body weight can lead to significant improvements in health. It’s important to look past the scale, and focus on the big picture of why a change is being made.
In the same way that each and every person is different and unique, the reasons behind each individual’s weight gain can be different. Managing obesity is even more difficult when you do not understand the root cause of your weight gain and your road blocks to weight management. Identifying and removing what is holding you back is key to making positive, successful health improvements.
Understanding the reasons why you decided to address your obesity can help you to assess what is important to you and how you will measure success within your long-term plan.
Success may mean having more energy to be active with your friends and family, improving your self-esteem, preventing further weight gain or improving overall health. Whatever your ideal “success” may be, use it to help guide and motivate you.
Take some time to reflect ~ If you or a loved one are thinking about taking steps towards managing obesity, what are the reasons for making this change, and how will you define “success”?
When setting expectations for a weight management plan, it is important to set realistic and achievable goals that work within a lifestyle that you still enjoy. You shouldn’t stress about counting calories, setting a timeline for specific weight loss, or exercising excessively. Instead, focus on making healthy and enjoyable lifestyle changes that will improve your overall quality of life! Whatever weight you achieve through these changes is considered your “best” weight.
Using the resources offered by CON is a great first step in helping you achieve your goals!
Building an enjoyable, healthy lifestyle ~ If you do not like the way you are living when you are managing your weight, it will be much more difficult to keep it off and to keep yourself from going back to the way you were living before you lost it. Work towards building a healthy lifestyle that you truly enjoy!
Starting to talk about weight management can seem difficult and overwhelming, but remember, your healthcare professional is someone who is on your side and wants to help you improve your overall health. Please visit our resources page for additional information.