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Weight Loss Support Is Critical

Introduction

Losing weight is​ not rocket science. it​ requires no special diet,​ no special foods and no special exercise program. All we​ need to​ do is​ eat less calories than we​ burn. Despite this,​ as​ well as​ an​ ever growing number of​ diets and weight control plans,​ obesity continues to​ grow. And the​ vast majority of​ dieters find it​ almost impossible to​ lose weight without regaining everything within a​ matter of​ months. Why is​ this? Answer: because we​ don't get enough support.

Get Proper Help to​ Lose Weight

Our greatest need when dieting is​ encouragement. we​ need people to​ cheer our successes and help us overcome our disasters. Amazingly,​ most online weight loss programs fail to​ address this need. Instead,​ they focus on​ what we​ should eat,​ how many calories we​ should consume,​ and what exercise we​ should take. And while this advice is​ useful,​ it's not critical. Because most of​ us know this stuff already. What we​ have difficulty with,​ is​ motivation. we​ know what to​ do in​ order to​ lose weight,​ but we​ can't sustain it. Maybe we​ lack a​ strong incentive,​ or​ perhaps our family situation interferes with our weight loss plans,​ or​ maybe we​ hate cooking and eat out too often. Whatever difficulty we​ have,​ it's not likely to​ involve food or​ exercise. It's much more likely to​ be a​ motivational or​ lifestyle problem. Yet as​ I say,​ most online programs don't offer motivational or​ lifestyle support. And even when they do,​ their advice can often be expensive and quite uninspiring!

Survey of​ Dieters

The value of​ proper support was highlighted in​ a​ recent survey of​ members of​ Anne Collins online weight loss program. the​ program includes a​ 24/7 community forum specializing in​ motivation and lifestyle support,​ with several thousand topics and approximately 100,​000 posts. Subjects were asked to​ assess the​ personal benefit they had obtained from the​ forum. a​ total of​ 1,​348 subjects responded,​ of​ whom 81 percent rated the​ program's community forum as​ "important" or​ "very important" in​ helping them to​ lose weight,​ while less than 5 percent said it​ "made no difference." While in​ no way conclusive,​ the​ results indicate the​ practical value of​ a​ "community" approach to​ weight management.

Weight Loss Meetings

For urban dieters,​ Weight Watchers is​ probably the​ best option. Their meetings are specially designed to​ help dieters overcome difficulties,​ but even Weight Watchers has its limitations. First,​ it's not cheap to​ join. Secondly,​ members typically attend only once a​ week. So if​ your diet-wagon loses a​ wheel on​ Saturday night,​ you may have to​ wait several days for the​ next meeting to​ help you out. Like eDiets,​ Weight Watchers now offers an​ online service,​ but again - at​ something like $250-300 a​ year - it's not cheap.

Not Easy to​ Change Habits

Changing our eating habits is​ no easy matter. Sure,​ it​ helps to​ know that a​ cup of​ fat-free milk contains 40 percent fewer calories and 16 times less fat than whole milk,​ or​ that lean ground steak contains half the​ calories and 4 times less fat than regular cheddar cheese,​ but how does this help us to​ say No to​ a​ second helping of​ pizza? How does it​ quench our desire for a​ double cheeseburger and fries? it​ doesn't. Because facing down temptation requires a​ change of​ attitude,​ a​ change of​ priorities. And in​ my experience,​ this takes time and as​ much encouragement as​ we​ can get. we​ need to​ hear from people like us who have managed to​ change their attitude and eating habits,​ and who can explain how to​ overcome the​ problems involved. Above all,​ we​ need a​ safety-net if​ we​ fail. we​ need shoulders to​ cry on​ and "tough love" to​ help us win through. in​ short,​ we​ need the​ support of​ a​ real community.

Join an​ Online Community Forum

In my experience,​ dieters who join a​ good online community forum can expect to​ lose 400-500 percent more weight than those who go solo. in​ addition,​ if​ they maintain their community membership after achieving their goals,​ they have an​ excellent chance of​ maintaining their weight loss indefinitely. This is​ because an​ online community can provide a​ number of​ specific benefits. First,​ as​ stated,​ it​ offers personal advice and encouragement. Secondly,​ it​ offers members the​ opportunity to​ help other people - something that typically works wonders for their self-esteem and understanding. Thirdly,​ most community forums are self-run. Members may progress to​ become moderators or​ resident experts. This too is​ a​ real confidence booster as​ well as​ a​ great incentive to​ maintain weight lost. But by far the​ major benefit is​ the​ fact that online forums are in​ action 24 hours a​ day,​ 7 days a​ week. So support and human warmth is​ available whenever you need it. They are real 24/7 safety nets,​ especially Anne Collins forum which has members from all time zones of​ the​ world.

Features to​ Look For

The best forums are active,​ well-managed and provide quality advice and support. Activity is​ best judged by checking the​ number of​ "active" members,​ rather than total membership. And the​ greater the​ number of​ recent threads (topics) and posts (messages),​ the​ better. Assessing the​ management and quality of​ the​ forum is​ a​ bit more difficult. to​ do this,​ open a​ recent thread,​ scan the​ posts and look for the​ following. First,​ how quickly do members and/or moderators reply to​ questions asked? Second,​ are the​ questions and answers reasonably serious,​ or​ more frivolous? Generally,​ a​ well-managed forum will have a​ higher percentage of​ serious posts. Other questions to​ ask yourself include: how "personal" does the​ forum appear to​ be? Do you feel a​ sense of​ warmth and caring? What age-groups are most active? Take a​ good look around,​ and don't hurry. Finding the​ right forum for yourself is​ crucial to​ your weight loss success.

Summary: Focus On What Matters

The secret of​ successful weight loss is​ to​ focus on​ what matters. So don't waste too much time or​ money trying to​ find the​ "perfect" diet. I mean no disrespect to​ any dietitian or​ nutritionist but,​ for most people,​ a​ diet is​ a​ diet is​ a​ diet. as​ long as​ it's reasonably balanced and includes a​ reasonable number of​ calories,​ it'll do fine. What really matters is​ support - to​ help you cope with temptation and disruption during your journey. an​ excellent option is​ to​ join an​ online weight loss forum and be part of​ a​ real community. Because when you have tons of​ friendly people cheering you on,​ you can move mountains.

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