7 Slimming Ideas to Get Family Support for Your Weight-Loss Journey

African American Family Having DinnerYou’ve made it through your first full week on your weight-loss journey. You’ve controlled your portion sizes. You’ve started exercising. All in all, you’re feeling pretty good about yourself as you relax on the couch on a Friday night.

Then your husband walks in with a large bag of Lay’s Wavy Potato Chips and a generous bowl of French onion dip. You’re going to give him a piece of your mind for tempting you – after you’ve sampled some of those chips.

Losing weight is hard enough on your own, but it’s also important to have your family on board when you set sail on your weight-loss journey. How do you get them on your side?

The first thing to remember is to have reasonable expectations for them. You know it’s not reasonable to expect to lose 50 pounds in a few days. Well, your family won’t change overnight either. They won’t adjust to your new lifestyle in a few days.

Help them out by making small, steady changes over six months or longer. When planning meals, sit down with the whole family – or maybe one member at a time – to find out which foods they can live without and which ones are really important to them.

Here are several tips from experts at the Memorial Weight Loss & Wellness Center.

  •  If your family insists on some unhealthy foods, ask them to buy the food on their own and keep it somewhere you won’t find it, suggested Angie Sebree, registered dietitian.
  • See if one of your family members will serve as an exercise buddy who will work out at the same time you do, physical therapist Linda Crews said. Gym memberships also are cheaper per person when you buy a family plan. If no one in your family wants to be an exercise buddy, ask if one of them will be an accountability partner, Crews said. Their role is to “gently urge you to exercise without resorting to badgering and shaming you.”
  • Designate a night to try a new meal or food, Nicole Florence, MD, offered. “We tend to stick with what we know and need to create new habits,” she said. “Incorporate a new vegetable or try a new healthy meal choice weekly.”
  • When you’re making desserts or a high-calorie side dish, make enough for the meal; don’t make enough for leftovers in the fridge. “If your children really want cookies, buy the break-and-bake kind and make only two cookies for everyone,” Sebree said. “Put the rest in a Ziploc bag in the freezer.”
  • Designate one day each week for an activity, such as roller skating, bowling or a nature walk on a trail or in a park, Dr. Florence said.
  • Have your family make a list of foods they don’t want to give up, Sebree said. Then only buy the foods on the list that won’t tempt you.
  • Consider family rewards for achieving personal milestones, Crews proposed. For example, one family she worked with went to the movies every time the mom lost 10 pounds.