Tips on Encouraging a Loved One to Lose Weight (Without Losing the Person)

Cancer, high blood pressure, heart disease, heart attack, stroke, osteoarthritis, type 2 diabetes, gallstones, infertility, sleep apnea — what do these things have in common? One’s risk of having them is increased by obesity.

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Evidently, with so many potential health implications, being overweight is something that needs to be taken seriously. What’s more, it’s something that affects not only a person physiologically, but also emotionally. It’s exactly for this reason why the subject of weight is a very sensitive one.

Do you have a loved one — significant other, family member or friend — who is evidently overweight and could benefit from shedding off unwanted pounds? Especially if you are well-aware of the complications of obesity, you may be itching to approach the person and say something like “you have to lose weight or risk dying from one or more of its terrible effects on your health”. Don’t — unless you want that person out of your life pronto.

For individuals who are obese, talking about their weight can be a touchy matter. While it’s true that some of them may have learned to simply laugh about it, the fact is the problem still tears them apart deep within.

According to experts, people who are carrying more pounds than normal do not really get the motivation to lose weight from family members or celebrities — they are the ones who give themselves motivation. You may beg and implore all you want, but the individual will remain unlikely to start springing into action unless he or she becomes self-motivated.

So does a genuinely concerned person like you have no choice but to stay back and watch a loved one become larger and larger until all sorts of health problems related to obesity start showing up? Not really. Experts say that the key is to wait for the person to realize that some changes weight-wise have to be done.

Once such realization comes into being, that’s when you swoop in. There are a few things that you may do to help the person get started. Here are a few of the smartest and inoffensive actions on your part:

Set a Good Example

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There is no use in encouraging a loved one to lose weight if you are obese yourself and you’re not doing anything about it. Show the person that healthy eating is good for one’s health. Exercise on a regular basis or become physically active, and look for the perfect timing to encourage the individual to join you.

Utter the Positives and Not the Negatives

It’s a good idea to focus on the good things about eliminating excess pounds rather than the nightmares obesity brings. For instance, you may tell the person about the perks of loading up on high fiber fruits and vegetables. Never say something like he or she will meet his or her maker soon if those excess pounds are not eliminated.

Refrain From Being a Judge

What your other half, family member or friend needs is an ear or shoulder to cry on, and not judgment. It’s no secret that losing unwanted weight is not an easy task, and there will surely be plenty of challenges along the way. Ensure that you’re there to listen — this will let the other party know that he or she is not alone in the tricky journey to slim down.

Never Get Tired of Giving Love and Respect

The path towards the attainment of an ideal weight is usually long and testing. You can expect that there will be instances wherein the person ends up taking a few or several steps backward, but that’s okay. If you really care, don’t run out of love and respect for the individual — he or she needs both, too, and not just healthy eating and regular exercise.

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