Where to Get Weight Loss Help

Overweight women gets weight loss help

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Does weight loss seem harder for you than for others? Perhaps you've watched friends and family succeed with popular programs while you've struggled to get results no matter what you do.

Does this mean you have no chance to reach your health goals? Of course not! A 2015 study suggests that a lack of success may not be your fault, and a personalized weight-loss approach may be your best bet.

Personalized Weight Loss Help

A small study conducted by the National Institutes of Health found that some people have "thrifty" metabolisms that slow down more than usual during calorie restriction. The study concluded that weight loss is more difficult for these people.

Researchers explained: “While behavioral factors such as adherence to diet affect weight loss to an extent, our study suggests we should consider a larger picture that includes individual physiology."

If you feel like your body is working against you, maybe it's time to get some extra help. Although they work for some, online weight loss programs and commercial diets aren't for everyone.

Instead of relying on a one-size-fits-all program, reach out for the right kind of support. An individualized approach considers your medical profile, lifestyle, food preferences, and any emotional eating concerns.

Medical Assistance

Your primary care provider is a great place to begin your weight loss journey. Because your doctor has access to your medical history, labs, and medications, they will be able to explain the benefits of weight loss for you personally. Perhaps weight loss will reduce the pain in your knees or allow you to cut back on certain medications. These medical benefits can serve as long-term motivators to keep you on track.

Your doctor can also refer you to a registered dietitian (RD) and/or a physical therapist. Dietitians provide counseling and create personalized meal plans based on your lifestyle. If mobility issues or pain are a barrier for exercise, a physical therapist can guide you towards tailored solutions.

Your doctor may recommend weight loss surgery or prescription medication for weight loss. You can ask questions about the side effects and pros and cons and discuss payment options depending on your insurance company.

There may be community programs or resources that your doctor is aware of and can share with you. It never hurts to talk to your doctor about your plans to lose weight.

Social Support

Many commercial weight-loss programs include a social support component. That's because accountability works. Getting group support in person, over the phone, or online can be a game-changer when it comes to reaching goals and maintaining success.

If you think social support was a missing factor in your past attempts at weight loss, look for programs that include health coaching, message boards, or group meetings. Many faith-based organizations, libraries, community centers, and insurance companies offer group support for weight loss. You can also reach out to coworkers, friends, and family to build a personalized support network.

For food addiction issues, a program like Overeaters Anonymous might be a good fit. Or find a behavioral health expert, such as a psychologist specializing in eating disorders, through the American Psychological Association. Ask your doctor or insurance company for a specialist referral if you're unsure where to turn.

A Word From Verywell

Weight loss can be tough, especially when you're going at it alone. The good news is that sustainable weight loss is possible for anyone as long as a personalized plan is put in place. Reach out for support to build new habits, learn skills, and find resources that you can use for the rest of your life. Don't let a few failed attempts or setbacks stop you from making your health a priority.

3 Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Reinhardt M, Thearle MS, Ibrahim M, et al. A human thrifty phenotype associated with less weight loss during caloric restrictionDiabetes. 2015;64(8):2859-2867. doi:10.2337/db14-1881

  2. National Institutes of Health. Ease of weight loss influenced by individual biology.

  3. Lemstra M, Bird Y, Nwankwo C, Rogers M, Moraros J. Weight loss intervention adherence and factors promoting adherence: A meta-analysisPatient Prefer Adherence. 2016;10:1547-1559. doi:10.2147/PPA.S103649

By Malia Frey, M.A., ACE-CHC, CPT
 Malia Frey is a weight loss expert, certified health coach, weight management specialist, personal trainer​, and fitness nutrition specialist.