Harnessing the power of support on your weight loss journey


Support can often be an overlooked tool in any walk of life in addition to successful weight loss. This article provides an overview of its potential role in the weight loss journey, different types of support, and some tips for finding what is right for you!

Why is support helpful on your weight loss journey?

The journey of weight loss, when looking to sustain and maintain it, requires creating real change. We will define support as ‘to give assistance to’. The challenges that you will encounter on this journey will be dependent upon your individual situation. Research shows that people who have a support network are more successful at weight loss and weight loss maintenance. Lacking support is characteristic of those who end up regaining weight.

Support can be helpful in numerous ways: to feel understood, for motivation, to help with accountability, to share experiences, to uncover roadblocks, to gain objective feedback, to provide practical assistance and to feel a sense of shared responsibility.

Different types of support


1. Familial support


Gaining family members onside can help to make sustainable change. They may assist you with creating a healthy home environment that can facilitate making your weight loss journey more smooth sailing.

Tip: be clear about what the support looks like from your family so all parties can be clear about what is and isn’t helpful.


2. Friends


Friends can be great to talk to about what you’re going through and may be able to provide a different perspective to family. They know you well and can be there to provide some objective feedback, as well as there to listen to you! It can also be helpful for those social situations around food.

Tip: remember that your friends are your friends foremost and consider their needs too!


3. Online groups/forums


Can be a way to connect with others going through a similar journey and to share your experiences. This may be helpful for gaining insight and the tools to manage certain challenges you experience – you can talk to people who have been there and done that! Sharing with others who are going through a similar experience can provide different benefits – motivation and you never know, you might even make a friend!

Tip: choose carefully – look for registered and trained nutritionists and dieticians that run the group/forum and be mindful of providing your details etc.


4. Nutritionists


This means that you have 100% support for your specific weight loss goals. It’s your own coach to support you on this weight loss journey. This provides you with the option to get the type of support that you most require at that time. Perhaps one week you need more support with creating a habit that helps you to overcome a stressful situation, whereas perhaps the following week you require support to manage your hunger levels. Working with a nutritionist, who will set goals with you and also designs a specific plan for you, can be especially helpful for accountability to adhere to the plan. Your nutritionist is there for you to check in with on a regular basis, track your metrics with you and provide you with objective and evidence-based support based on their clinical experience.

Tip: Choose your nutritionists wisely. Experience and, qualifications are obviously important. Try and have a chat with your nutritionist before working with them. We offer a free 15min discovery call for all clients before booking in for a consultation. This gives you a chance to ask questions, understand the process and get an idea if this is someone you are going to be able to work with.


5. Commercial programs


Registered nutritionists and dieticians may set up their own group programs online where you pay a certain amount of money for access to a course/set of tools for weight loss and part or much of it includes interacting with others – quite often over a forum setting and private community access. Being part of a community can be a positive and supportive experience. Additionally, quite often, if you pay for a commercial program, you may find that you meet more like-minded people since you have chosen the same course/health care practitioner.

Tip: choose a commercial program created by individuals who are trained with expertise in the area, not a program ran Doris down the road with minimal of no qualification or experience.

Which type of support is best for you?

In an ideal world, everyone would receive a variety of support. However, this isn’t always realistic due to barriers with cost and limitations for the services that are available. Additionally, people can often have challenging relationships with family which means support from them is not viable. Similarly, it may not be feasible to gain support from friends due to yours or their own current circumstances. So sometimes it can feel as though the options are limited!

Our advice would be to prioritise where you need support most and determine what resources you have available to enlist support. As a clinic, we specialise in supporting clients in this area, with skill clinicians support many possible areas of your weight loss journey. Check out our Weight Loss Page, for more details on what we offer and to see our team.

How often do you need support?

This is a big question and will depend upon your current situation, where you’ve been in the past (in terms of nutrition and lifestyle) and where you want to get to. It will also be a journey – for instance, if you do decide to work with a nutritionist, then it may be that at the beginning you meet more regularly, like once a week or every other week. However, after a few months, you may find that it works to reduce that frequency of support.

We work on a flexible basis or with structured 12-16 week support programs for our clients. To learn more about our approach please get in touch using the form below or review our Weight Loss page.

If you would like to enquire to work with one of our practitioners, please click the button below: