I remember several years after I started my healthy living journey, once I had successfully achieved my goal, I became quite militant about overhauling the household diet. I dived in gung-ho, making changes overnight to their dismay. As you can imagine, I was met with quite a bit of resistance. I remember once buying low fat ice cream and hubby asked me never to buy it again. He said he’d rather not eat ice cream than eat something that didn’t taste nice. 😂
Here are a few tips to help loved ones loose weight.
- Be sensible. Big changes all at once are unsustainable and met with a lot of resistance. Smaller changes over time are resisted less. For example, using less oil, using lower fat oil, eating slightly smaller portions, less red meat, more sea food, less sugar, including more fruits and veggies in the diet to name a few. Change is huge, not everybody welcomes it, people respond better to smaller changes over time.
- Be active with them. With regards to physical activity, find out their preferred activity and encourage them to do short bouts of it. Join them and also explore other activities with them, start slowly with 10-30mins daily. Don’t encourage them to jump into high intensity or high impact exercises straight at the start if you feel they might not cope. This can put them off. Cycling, walking and dancing are great ways they can keep fit at their own pace and slowly improve their fitness.
- Be supportive. Aside from your own support, encourage your loved ones to seek out friends who are on a similar journey or to join a health and fitness support group for encouragement, motivation, support and accountability. This is crucial to success. No man is an island. We were not created to be alone. The community support aspect is huge. They will realise that they are they alone or unique in their battles. They can share their experiences in the group and get advice about how to overcome the inevitable obstacles that will come. Nothing out there is new. Someone somewhere would have experienced the same or similar.
- Be consistent. If you are constantly battling brick walls in the home, focus on your own consistency and be consistent with your efforts and message. You can’t help someone to get up if you are down. Let your family members see that there is no going back for you and that you are serious about a lifestyle change. Make sure healthy food options are always available for them so they have healthy choices. We are conditioned by our environment. If we live in healthy environments then we will be healthy without effort. We will live healthy subconsciously.
- Be patient. Keep praying, believing, and be patient. Sometimes a message gets absorbed in a day, week, month, six months, sometimes it may take years. If you genuinely care, then keep at it with love.
I never repeated the low-fat ice cream move. I buy normal ice cream. We just don’t have it everyday or every week. My belief is that my consistent lifestyle and message over the years has affected my whole household. My husband ended up losing a lot of weight 10 years ago and he has kept it off. He often attributes it to the changes I made in the home.
I’d love to hear about your experiences, drop a comment in the comment box below.