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How to Talk about Weight Loss - Medical Minutes Episode 7

Hi and welcome to Medical Minutes.

Today’s topic is about how to talk about weight loss. In this there are two different pieces. The first is how do you talk to a friend or a loved one about their weight? And the first question to ask is quite simple.

The first question:

is, “Are you concerned about your weight?”

And obviously there’s a yes and a no answer. If the answer is, “Yes, I am concerned about my weight,” you may ask, “What have you tried in the past?” And they’ll go through some diets or potentially that they haven’t done any diets and you’d say, “Well, it seems like those have not worked well for you in the past. Would you consider seeing a physician who is board certified in weight loss or obesity medicine and who’s been treating patients very successfully for the last 14 years?” Or something along those lines.

And the second is the opposite answer, which is, “No, I am not interested in doing anything with my weight at this point.” At that point, all your goal is, is to plant a seed.

The seed is very simple, say, “In the future, if you were interested in doing something about your weight or want to talk about it more, just please simply ask me.” And at that point, stop talking about it. And sometime in the future, whether it be a week or a month, or even a couple of months, that person may, if they’re ready, come back to you and say, “Hey, when we were talking about weight, what did you have in mind?” And at that point, you may go through the details of your plan, that thing that really helped you this time in weight loss.

Second Question:

The second part of this is when you actually have lost a significant amount of weight, somewhere over 15 pounds, in the 20 to 25 range. That’s when people start talking to you about it, they see you from across the room and they say, “Oh my gosh, you look great. What are you doing?” And initially the answers are kind of short and it may be, “I’m using shakes and bars or meal replacements to help with my weight,” or, “I’m taking some medicines to help me with my weight.” And the person all of a sudden goes, “Oh, you shouldn’t do that.”

For some reason, there is a belief in our society that medical meal replacements or anti-obesity medications, which are the true term, are not healthy to use longterm. And that is completely just not true. The simple answer at that point for most of us should just be, “Thank you for your concern. I am seeing a medical professional or a medical doctor who is certified in obesity medicine and who has my health at the top of their concern. Thank you.” And then again, you don’t have to explain yourself. You don’t have to talk anymore. A simple thank you will suffice and go about your day.


Have a great day!


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