Our bodies are all different and when it comes to how much we weigh, we all have weights where we feel our best and most healthy. If you feel your weight has risen or dropped to a level where you are not feeling good and your health is suffering, you may decide to gain or lose weight.
A quick search online will likely bring up a huge list of articles with a wide range of advice, from diets to help you “drop three dress sizes in a week!” to supplements and shakes that will help you ‘gain muscle fast’.
Trawling through this (often unhelpful) advice to find something that will help you can be demotivating. If you’re struggling, you may want to get professional support. Whether you’re looking to gain or lose weight, there are many ways a nutrition professional can help you on your journey.
All nutritionists will have their own approaches, but the following areas are likely to be covered:
Discuss your motivation to change your weight
This usually happens during your initial consultation. Here you’ll be able to talk through any physical symptoms or conditions you’re struggling with and why you’re looking to change your weight. Being honest about your medical history and what you’re experiencing will help your nutritionist tailor your food plan to your specific needs.
Assess your current way of eating
Many nutritionists like to get a clearer understanding of how you’re currently eating. To do this they may ask you to fill in a food diary for a certain number of days before your initial consultation. Again, being as honest as possible here will help the nutritionist help you!
Look at your goals
Helping you to set tangible goals is another way nutritionists can support you. Often we have a rough idea of our goals, but making it specific and putting a timescale on it can be tricky. This is what a nutritionist can help with, offering an unbiased and realistic view.
Identify habits/actions that may be holding you back
Once they have your goals and information about how you’re currently eating, they may be able to spot some behaviours that are hindering your progress. For example, if you’re trying to lose weight but continue to drink a large amount of alcohol, the could be a sticking point.
Together you can look at which behaviours are holding you back and create strategies to change these behaviours.
Tailor an eating plan
Knowing what to eat to help you reach your goals is one of the biggest challenges when it comes to changing your weight. And this is exactly what a nutrition professional is for – to help you create a new way of eating that will not only support your goals, but also your health and overall well-being.
Offer accountability and support
Throughout the process, having a nutritionist can help to give you accountability. Meaning that you’ll have someone to ‘report’ to as it were, and someone to support you as you work towards your goals. Often having someone you don’t know well (like a friend or family member) can be very useful for this.
If you’re ready to work with a nutritionist, you can use our search tool to find a professional in your area.