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to try to explain that its not the ^pounds^ but the ^years^ and ^miles^

(30 Posts)
TalkinPeace Fri 12-Jun-15 21:16:03

When people say they want to lose weight they are initially fixated on clothes sizes and the number on the scales.

But the reason for staying with a healthily low level of fat is not about that.

Its about living into old age able to walk and run and not need medication and be able to holiday where you like.

So how should it be presented to avoid "going on a diet" ...

I get accused of fat shaming ( hence this comment being on AIBU ) but what method will turn the light on better in people's heads ?

CaptainAnkles Fri 12-Jun-15 21:19:22

I guess people are more concerned with feeling and looking better now, and being able to buy clothes they like etc rather than whether they'll reach their nineties.

LaurieFairyCake Fri 12-Jun-15 21:25:06

Well actually it wasn't until I started to suffer health problems that I decided to lose weight.

I'm hoping (but there's no guarantee) that at least I will be able to feel a bit better a few stone less.

So maybe people have to get a bit of a brush with age or mortality to do
something .

abigamarone Fri 12-Jun-15 21:25:34

Personally, I'm trying to lose weight to fit into smaller clothes (because I want to) living maybe a bit longer will be a nice bonus. Can't speak for anyone else.

sunbathe Fri 12-Jun-15 21:26:54

Or people want to enjoy themselves now and not worry about the future.

After all, how many 20 somethings bother with a pension? Mine won't.

PurpleDaisies Fri 12-Jun-15 21:27:40

I think you're underestimating the capacity of people to have more than one motive for doing things op.

Are you really suggesting people don't already know that they are more likely to live longer if they have a fit and active lifestyle? I think your post is a bit patronising op.

GloGirl Fri 12-Jun-15 21:29:06

It's a difficult level of maturity for most people to reach - short term pain for long term gain.

Psychologically for a lot of people, tomorrow can wait. Myself included!

gointothewoods Fri 12-Jun-15 21:31:42

People want to lose weight because they want to look and feel better NOW, who knows what will happen in the long term. People who are fit and healthy all their lives die randomly of horrible things. People who are obese and heavy smokers live to a ripe old age. There are no guarantees.
You're being kind of patronising and a bit blinkered - so YABU.

MrsNextDoor Fri 12-Jun-15 21:31:44

It's an extremely complicated issue though OP. Of course overweight people worry about their health in later life...of course they do. I'm not huge but I definitly need to lose about 14 pounds to be healthier...I'm a size 14 and I shouldn't be...my frame is too small for that extra 14 pounds...I don't just think about being a size 12...I think "If I lose weight then I will be able to climb the stairs faster" I do....and as well as that I want to wear a nice dress!

Stealthpolarbear Fri 12-Jun-15 21:33:00

Laurie I was the same. It took me having a realisation one day (think I may have had a dream) that I would probably have a heart attack in my 40s to flip the switch, and that I'd probably have some sort of weight related health scare in the next few years. I was 16 stone. I knew getting diagnosed with diabetes would motivate me into losing weight for the first time ever but had a literal cold sweat at it getting to that stage.

By the time I'd lost 2 stone the joint pain I'd just assumed was part of me had vanished, of course it was weight related, I hadn't realised.

JohnnyDeppsfuturewife Fri 12-Jun-15 21:34:20

Clothes sizes and lbs on the scales are more tangible. You can set targets for them and beat yourself up when you don't meet them

I lost 4 stone through dieting. I want to live longer but couldn't set myself a target to not get diabetes or not have a heart attack. I am hoping that will be the end result but it's too soon to say.

undoubtedly Fri 12-Jun-15 21:36:02

I read the Slimming World magazine on an irregular basis. They have many real life articles on people and their journeys to being slim.

I would say that almost without exception the lightbulb moment has been one of embarrassment, humiliation and the final realisation that things have to change.

It's usually along the lines of getting stuck on a ride in Alton Towers or needing the extended belt on a plane.

It seems like people (really obese people) often have to hit rock bottom before they'll act, a bit like drug addicts.

TalkinPeace Fri 12-Jun-15 21:37:10

purpledaisies
Are you really suggesting people don't already know that they are more likely to live longer if they have a fit and active lifestyle? I think your post is a bit patronising op.

I'm absolutely sure they do know : FFS the messages are all over media 24/7
but why do they ignore it?
and how to make people want to make the right choice for themselves

NB my motivation is avoidance of major surgery : I'm not a goody goody

MumSnotBU Fri 12-Jun-15 21:45:37

I think sunbathe hit the nail on the head. People who are under stress (limited time, finances, living space etc) live day to day, they aren't planning for a long healthy life.

I saw a great greeting card the other day. There was a mob of people protesting Monty Python style

What do we want?

Instant gratification!

When do we want it?

Now!
grin

LaurieFairyCake Fri 12-Jun-15 21:47:10

SPB - totally get that. I've got utterly buggered hips that they want to
Inject me fortnightly (and then replace) - I'm not even going back to the docs until I lose 4 stone.

As at least then they won't say 'hmm if you lost a bit of weight you might be able to move around more'.

BreadmakerFan Fri 12-Jun-15 21:49:28

Maybe it would be better if people didn't bully others into losing weight. It isn't easy for everyone to lose weight and sometimes even when eating sensibly and exercising the weight doesn't come off.

TalkinPeace Fri 12-Jun-15 21:57:11

breadmaker
nice excuse but the evidence of "I'm a celeb" shows its not true
losing weight is easy : eat less than your body needs
but in the affluent west that involves saying no to available food.

PurpleDaisies Fri 12-Jun-15 22:01:00

*nice excuse but the evidence of "I'm a celeb" shows its not true
losing weight is easy : eat less than your body needs
but in the affluent west that involves saying no to available food.*

Are you Katie Hopkins?

WorraLiberty Fri 12-Jun-15 22:41:08

I think one person's idea of eating sensibly is often very different to another's.

It not even always about the quality of food but the sheer volume sometimes.

A friend of mine went from working in an office (where everyone ate at their desks whenever they wanted), to working in a factory where she has two 15 minute tea breaks and 45 minute for lunch.

She lost just over 1.5 stones in the first 6 months, purely because she wasn't eating all day.

MsVestibule Fri 12-Jun-15 22:51:42

When people say they want to lose weight they are initially fixated on clothes sizes and the number on the scales. But the reason for staying with a healthily low level of fat is not about that.

Erm, it is for me. I've lost a stone recently, and it's so I look good in my clothes out of them, I'm a lost cause. Why do you think you can tell me what my motivation should be to lose fat/weight. Or have I missed the point of your thread confused?

WyrdByrd Fri 12-Jun-15 22:54:33

Perhaps some people go for the 'live for the moment' approach because they've seen too many friends with healthy lifestyles fall victim to serious illness or death regardless.

WinterOfOurDiscountTents15 Fri 12-Jun-15 22:56:52

Pretty damn patronising.
But the reason for staying with a healthily low level of fat is not about that.

To you maybe. Who are you to explain to others that they don't understand their own motivations? People want to lose weight for many reasons, and they don't need you to explain to them what its all about. And for many people, you're completely wrong anyway.

TooExtraImmatureCheddar Fri 12-Jun-15 22:58:41

It's behaviour management theory in action: people are focused on the immediate, certain, positive consequences of their behaviour.

So, if I eat chocolate, it will taste brilliant, right now, and that's sonething i know for certain.

If I eat lettuce (or abstain) on the basis that it might make me live longer and/or avoid illness in later life, the benefits are too far in the future and too uncertain to make that much impact on my daily decisions.

I can sometimes get into the zone of dieting but I have to be focused on a specific short-term goal eg lose baby weight to fit into work clothes by the end of mat leave. I haven't quite cracked getting any further when I'm frazzled juggling work and 2 small children. Maybe people are fatter because more people have to work than ever before to support families? When I was on mat leave, I had mental space to plan and execute a family way of eating that was pretty healthy. DH and I both dieted and lost a stone. I did the organising. Now I'm back at work it's all gone to pot. I am managing to maintain my weight but not lose any more. In ye olden days when families could afford to have one SAHP, that parent could and did plan healthy meals. It's a different ball game when the whole family comes home at 6 knackered, hungry and grumpy.

ClashCityRocker Fri 12-Jun-15 23:01:59

Well yes, if I was in some Australian jungle living off yams, rice and whichety bugs I'm pretty sure I'd lose weight. And I'm not sure that it's the right way to go about it, although I take your point.

Like any vice, for a lot of people health risks are purely hypothetical until they start to happen. I'm including myself in that... It's probably just hooman nature innit?

Iggi999 Fri 12-Jun-15 23:02:07

"Losing weight is easy: eat less than your body needs" is about as useful as:
"Stopping smoking is easy: don't put a cigarette in your mouth" or "giving up heroin is easy: just stop buying drugs".

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