im 16 years old and i weigh 170 i really want to lose weight but i have no support or anybody to even help with health food what do i do?
Signed: Want To Lose Weight, But Have No Support
Dear Want To Lose Weight, But Have No Support,
Trying to make different lifestyle choices when it comes to food and exercise so that you can safely lose weight can be a difficult thing in the beginning – so it is important to have the education to know how to do it in a healthy way, and it can definitely be helpful to have encouragement and support from the people around you while you are making these changes. TeenHealthFX applauds your efforts here, and offers the following suggestions as different options that will allow you to get the education and support you need depending on what is feasible for you right now.
Talk with your family and let them know that you would like to make changes in the way you eat and exercise so that you can reach a healthier weight. Let them know that their encouragement and support will be very meaningful to you, and ask them to do things like taking you to your doctor or a nutritionist so you can develop a healthy plan for yourself, ensuring that there are healthy food choices in the house for you, and giving you positive feedback on the work you are doing to make these lifestyle changes.
Speak with your primary care physician about the diet and exercise changes that are indicated for you so that you can lose weight in a safe and healthy way. Ask your parents to schedule an appointment for you, or call the office and ask to speak to your doctor on the phone if you parents are resistant to taking you for an appointment.
If you are unable to speak to your doctor about this, talk to your school nurse about the diet and exercise changes that are right for you.
If you need to learn about healthier recipes or how to cook healthier meals, ask your doctor or school nurse if there are any cookbooks they would recommend for you where you could learn about healthier meal planning. And you could speak with your parents, a neighbor, extended family member, or even the home ec. teacher at your school if you need some assistance in learning how to prepare and cook healthier foods.
Some hospitals have programs for children and teens that give them the education and support to reach a healthier weight. Call your local hospitals to see if any have these kinds of programs. You could also check with your school nurse to see if she knows of any programs in your area that would be helpful to you or if your school district offers any.
Ask your doctor if any weight management programs in your area (like Weight Watchers) would be a healthy choice for you. These kinds of programs often offer weekly meetings where you might find some helpful support for yourself.
Check with your friends to see if any would be willing to be a partner with you in changing eating and exercise patterns. And any friends who do this with you do not necessarily need to be losing weight as making these types of changes is not just about weight loss, but about overall improved physical and mental health. If you have a friend, or friends, who are willing to commit themselves to eating healthy lunches with you at school or workout with you before or after school, it might help you to feel like you have more support.
In setting and attaining your goal of reaching a healthier weight, FX would also like you to remember the following:
Losing weight safely takes time, so be patient with the process and remember that these changes will not happen overnight!
It takes work to make significant changes to our daily routine of eating and exercising. Sometimes this work may feel hard, but remind yourself that the pay-off will be well worth it and that the more you get used to this new lifestyle, the less it will feel like work!
If you have a day where you do not exercise or eat the way you hoped, try not to let it derail you completely. Forgive yourself, remind yourself that everything will still be okay, and try and get back on track with your eating and exercise plans.
Be careful not to skip meals or be too restrictive with food – as both can increase the chances of binge eating later on.
Remind yourself of your goals and why you are making these changes – and remember to be supportive and encouraging of yourself!
If you don't have a doctor and live in northern New Jersey, you can call the Adolescent/Young Adult Center for Health at 973-971-6475 for an appointment or contact your local teen health center or Planned Parenthood.You can also contact Girl’s Street – A Young Woman’s Health Program – at 908.522.2555.
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