I’m happy we have weight loss medication. Maybe you’d expect a dietitian who supports sustainable, intuitive, self-compassion practices to condemn them? But, I’ve worked in weight loss for over 15 years. I can feel so many of my client’s deep frustrations of not seeing changes when they’re doing all the right things.
Why wouldn’t weight budge when they’re moving more, eating well, sleeping better, addressing stress, working on their relationship with food and STILL sees little to no weight loss?
For clients who don’t see the scale change, the good news is that other areas of their health improve. I think these changes are more meaningful than the number on the scale. Increased energy, better workouts, a peaceful mindset, improved digestion, balanced blood sugars, more self-compassion, etc. The list could go on.
But, for those clients who still want to see weight changes, I can understand the desire to choose one of the available weight loss medications. However, I feel very strongly that they should complement the medications with a relationship with a dietitian and invest in themselves beyond the injections.
Here are the top 3 reasons why I feel that way:
You might not want to be on the weight loss medication for life.
A question worth considering regardless of the diet approach or strategy is: “is this something I’m willing to do for life?” Because these medications are effective only when someone is actively taking them, what happens if you wean off of them? When you work with a dietitian, you don’t just talk about food. You work on sleep, stress, habit formation and your relationship with self and food. A holistic approach means weight that you lose is less likely to come back.
You want to support your overall health, not just weight loss.
When you lose weight, are you making sure you’re still eating well for health? Are you getting enough fiber, antioxidants, and protein? Many of these medications cause people to significantly reduce their calories. But, eating too few calories can cause muscle loss and lower your metabolic rate. Muscle mass is critical for a healthy metabolism, function, and sustainable weight-loss. Your dietitian can help you modify your lower calorie intake while still ensuring you meet your nutrient needs for overall health.
You need help managing side effects of weight loss medication.
Dietitians can help support any unwanted side effects that the drugs may cause as well as offset any nutrient imbalances that may occur with less food intake. Common side effects of popular weight-loss medications are nausea, constipation, diarrhea, insomnia, dry mouth, and many more. Working with a dietitian can help provide some guidance on how to aid these unwanted side effects or help in managing some of the unwanted side effects of weight loss medications.
You’ll increase your chances of short and long-term success when you have a partner in your journey.
With a plethora of conflicting diet information, it can feel overwhelming to determine what steps to take to help aid in weight loss. A registered dietitian can help steer you in the right direction so you can tune out pseudo-science and TikTok. Dietitians serve as your accountability partner and support you as you embark on your weight-loss journey. You’ll also receive an individualized plan that works for you in your specific body.
It has been exciting to see so much success when these medications are appropriately used with the appropriate individuals. We feel strongly that partnering with a dietitian in your journey is key to long-term (enjoyable) success.
We have dietitians that specialize in working with people taking weight loss medications. Set up an appointment today!