When Weight Matters Blog

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Looks Can Be Deceptive

 Looks  can be deceptive when it comes to  our health. photo by Ben Wicks unsplash Looks can be deceptive when it comes to our health

I receive reminders on a daily basis as to why it is important to listen carefully to our clients, and to suspend all assumptions and judgements about their world or life. Many years ago, when my child was seriously ill with cancer no-one was able to work out why he was so unwell. His blood tests showed something was clearly wrong, but it took near...

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The Subtle And Not So Subtle Hurt In Many Relationships And Families, When it Comes To Weight Management.


The Subtle And Not So Subtle Hurt In Many Relationships And Families, When it Comes To Weight Management. One question I ask my clients is who do you have supporting you thought this process? I ask this because having true care and support and understanding is powerful, and an important part of being able to wade through the muddy waters of hype, m...

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What Does Asking Our Patients to "Do The Work"Even Mean?

what-may-be-going-on-for-our-patient underneath the surface when presenting for help with weight management  2023 What Does Asking Our Patients

I've been mulling this over for some time now wondering if I can articulate my concerns about asking our patients/clients to "do the work". My main concern is that while whatever technique, theory, meal plan, therapeutic modality makes sense to us, we need to be mindful that this may be the first time the person sitting before us may have...

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The Importance Of A Strong Therapeutic Relationship When Working With People Living With Obesity


Reaching out for help and support when you are vulnerable is never easy.  The weight loss market place has become cluttered and crowded with noise and  such ridiculous promises, that it has completely muddied the waters without acknowledging there is a huge difference between people who may want to lose  a few kil...

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There Is A Unique Sadness That Comes From Not Being Believed, Time And Time Again.


If somebody reaches out for help with weight management, it is often one of many repeated attempts to ask for help and support. When listening to people's history and past experiences, I've realized how often they feel they need to edit what they are saying due to the fear of being judged and not believed. Clients will tell me they now refuse to wr...

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Some Things To Consider When Behavioural Change Might Seem Too Hard


Just like any chronic complex health condition, obesity management needs careful and ongoing interdisciplinary care. This might be any combination of medication, surgery along with dietary and exercise guidelines and counselling. It is for some of the reasons below, why attending to a person's inner psyche, their pain, or their trauma might be impo...

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The Shaming Needs To Stop

there-is-light-at-the-end-of-the-tunnel-2023 thanks for the image Kevin Oetiker

There is a teeny corner of the health service providers who are working in the area of obesity that I sit in as a counsellor. The research and understanding of the complexities of obesity are so impressive and hopefully will help thousands and thousands of people in years to come with all the new advancement in medical and surgical treatments. Howe...

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TWO, OR MORE THINGS CAN BE TRUE AT THE SAME TIME If we can accept that two or more things might be, and, or are true at the same time we open up the capacity for another layer of support for our patients. One truth, belief or experience doesn't necessarily exclude the other. I am not talking about facts or data here, rather about people's thoughts,...

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I Would Love This To Be The Year Where The Narrative Shifts In The General Public,So The Shaming & Blaming Of Individuals Living With Excess Weight Stops.

New Year, Same Tired Narrative On Repeat. But There is Hope, There Really Is

When we ask people to walk a mile in someone else's shoes when thinking what it might be like to be going through something sad or challenging, I wonder why it is so different for the general population to consider the same when it comes to having compassion and a willingness to understand what it might be like for someone living with obesity. I am...

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How Else Can We Best Support Our Patients ?

How-Are-You-Really-2022 The Layers Of Support We Can Offer Our Patients, Are As Varied As The Person Themselves.

When we help our patients living with obesity, whether it is through surgery, medication, behavioural change, or a combination of interventions there are many other factors that declare themselves in my consultations, that I think are worthy of support and help, and an important part of holistic care for the persons wellbeing. I speak daily with pe...

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Why I Think Tough Love Rarely Works When It Comes To Weight Management


After listening to thousands of people's stories when seeking help for weight loss and long-term weight management, a recurring sentiment is one of self-flagellation, self-loathing, incredibly high expectations of self, a lot of guilt, enormous shame and harsh criticism of self. Year after year they berate them selves for not being more disciplined...

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What Does The Natural Way Even Mean?

Lets-talk-about-it- thank you for the image Cody Engel

I've been reflecting lately on the way the discussion about  weight in some circles still relegated to the personal responsibility realm. This spills into the natural vs medical debate among many people. I've been thinking about how many loved ones lives have been saved or how many loved ones lives are now bearable or comfortable thanks to sci...

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More Often Than Not, It Is Not An Excuse, It Is A Valid Reason


I have listened to hundreds of people over the years, who, have been told that they are just making excuses, when they have  not been able to follow the advice they have been given. I challenge this assumption, as it is just more blame being placed on someone who is already vulnerable. I think it is really important for us who work in the area...

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I Care About You, But.....................

Feeling Supported Feeling Supported

There is something that I have observed over the years while working in the area of long-term weight management that seems to slip through the cracks when it comes to care and support. What I notice happening is that people can go from feeling supported and heard by their healthcare providers, only to return to their home and or social circles...

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My Room Is Crowded With People Who Are Not Physically In The Room

Feeling-sad-2022 Kat-j-NPmRORbly All Those Comments Take Their Toll

There is something that comes up over and over again in my conversations with people living with obesity that is so upsetting and painful for them. I am heartened by the advocacy and the medical research that is finally being heard, and recognised in removing blaming the individual for their weight. My concerns are that we  stil...

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The Importance Of Being Believed

It is deep inside our brain The extraordinary complexities within the brain

Not being believed is a horrible feeling. Not being believed over and over again is a really horrible feeling. Being blamed for what you are not being believed about is also a really awful feeling. Being blamed by people who are meant to be helping you or reading running commentaries on social media about the concept of will power and lack of self ...

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If It Was That Simple, It Wouldn't Be So Hard

Tangled-and-complex Tangled & Complex

Some things to do with our weight, our height and our health are simply out of our control. For example no amount of nutritious food, exercise and positive thinking will make me taller or make my legs longer. I probably will feel stronger and fitter from the exercise and my insides will feel good from the extra nutrition and may protect me from som...

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My Reflections On World Obesity Day (March 2022)

Its-all-a-bit-confusing The many pieces of something we don't yet properly understand

 My Reflections On World Obesity Day (March 2022) It was world obesity day on Friday March 4th and I was reflecting on the many treatments that are available for people living with obesity, in particular just how fraught it can be trying to find appropriate help. Particularly  when there is an attitude from the community/media/ socia...

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Why Using "Guilt Free" As a Message To Sell Food Is Counterproductive

Its Totally OK To Eat Cake Sometimes Its Totally OK To Eat Cake Sometimes

Every time I read the words or hear the words "guilt free" I feel a slight tinge, and sometimes a great tinge of discomfort. When the words "guilt free" are used when discussing food and eating, especially as a way of selling products I cringe even more. As if people who are feeling vulnerable about their weight need to be humiliated and shamed any...

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Trauma Informed Care Can Play An Important Role In Weight Management Counselling

A safe place to share your story Trauma Informed Care Is Important

It is so important to have a space, a place and a time where you can share your story. And, when you share it, you are given the care, respect and space you need to feel safe. Safe from harm, safe to be heard and safe to ask for help. When I talk about obesity here I am not talking about being over weight or about someone who would like to lose a f...

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