If you are trying to lose weight on your own, it could soon become a drag because it might feel like a lonely business. It becomes increasingly difficult because of so much temptation around. Also, it is not easy to make lifestyle changes that a weight loss program will force on you. You can increase your chances of long term weight loss by having weight loss support system in place.
Science behind weight loss support
In fact, it has been proved scientifically that having weight loss social support not only increases the weight lost but also helps maintain weight after initial weight loss. A study published in the Obesity Surgery journal found that people who attended weight loss support meetings lost more weight. Another study found a positive link between weight loss after surgery and help from the support groups.
Weight loss support may sometimes be needed to traverse the un-supportive behaviors. For example, it may be quite common that your partner/companion may feel threatened if you have been making considerable progress with weight loss. Even your mother might start to feel hurt if you stop eating her handmade desserts that you loved before.
Types of weight loss support
You could need emotional support when you are not making progress with weight loss and need a shoulder to help you stay motivated. There can also be practical support.
For example, someone may watch the kids while you go out for a jog or to the gym. And perhaps the most useful is the inspiring support because having an actual coach or partner who encourages you to keep moving when you are the mood to binge-watch TV and add potato layers to your belly.
Options for weight loss support
You can get support for weight loss and dieting via different routes. What is more important is that you select the best option for you. Some available options you may consider are:
- Formal weight loss program. Many weight loss programs might be available in your area that offer both individual counseling and group meetings. The type of support each provides and the associated costs may vary widely. Look for advertisements for weight loss centers in your local area.
- Find a weight loss buddy. This is surely one the easiest options to find weight loss support. Both of you can support each other if you have a friend around who also wants to shed a few pounds. Some types of engagement you can have are daily joint workouts, phone contact for supporting each other and sharing healthy recipes.
- Online weight loss social support. Internet is an amazing place to find support online. There is no shortage of free website platforms that have forums for social networking for people interested in weight loss and dieting. Some of these websites may charge a little fee. If you are not someone who can afford time to attend face to face meetings, then this is a good option for you.
- 12-step groups. If your problems is binge eating, then a program like Overeaters Anonymous might be a thing to try. It is a dedicated organization that arranges meetings among people with problematic eating and provides support.
- Join a fitness class. You can come in contact with like minded people who are also interested in fitness and health by joining a class. Most local gyms, community centers and even some hospitals offer fitness classes which might become an opportunity to network.
- Create your own group. Many people know their friends and colleagues who are also interested in moving to a healthy lifestyle and dieting. It might be a good idea to set up your own private social support group for weight loss in your own community or at your office. A plus point is that people are already known to you and it provides an opportunity to get support from people who already spend a lot of time with you.
There are substantial benefits of social support for weight loss. Those people tend to lose more weight who do not diet alone, and they are also likely to keep the lost weight off for longer. And of course all this social connection makes them feel happier about the whole weight loss challenge.
Your friends in the support circle will keep you from giving up by cheering you up when are demotivated and by celebrating your success.
You may feel discouraged and isolated if you are trying to diet alone. But as you read above, there are many people who are ready to lose weight alongside you. Finding a friend to help with the weight loss process is not hard.