She complains all the time that she's unhappy with her weight but she won't do anything about it like change her diet, reduce calories, etc. Her workout options are limited with hemiparalysis and electric wheelchair.
The hard part is over.
I'm matching you with one of our specialists who will be calling you in the next few minutes.
You can read and be given 500 Diet Tips and they're all 100% useless until mom wants to make some changes in her life.
My many observations are that overweight people eat too much. That makes as much or more difference than what they actually eat. A buffet meal at a local pub shows fat families absolutely loading their plates. It’s the same with our sheep. When feed is lush, they put on weight (you ‘fat score’ them by rubbing down the spine and feeling the coverage on the spine and ribs). Come the end of summer, they ‘take it off their backs’. Which is good, because they do better with lambing at fat score 2 (score 3 is overweight, score 1 is very very skinny). Humans unfortunately don’t have less paddock grass to manage their ‘diet’ for them. Occasionally we ‘fat score’ visitors to explain how it’s done – always interesting for them.
1) Use smaller plates. They look full with less food. Buy two new smaller ones because 'they looked so pretty'.
2) Put out a fruit snack at the time when people are getting hungry. Guests don’t like munching into a whole apple or pear, but if I cut it in slices (minus core) and put it on a plate in front of them, it disappears quickly and I have to cut up another one. Do that for M, a little while before meals. Fruit snacks also help to delay drinking alcohol. My teenage daughters' visitors took 'snacks' for granted, but were always surprised and enthusiastic about fruit nibbles.
3) Don’t buy potato crisps or cheezels. People sit watching TV and get through a packet without even knowing that they are eating. Make sure that ‘Oh, we’ve run out’ – and buy one packet at a time.
4) Drink water, and have a glass of water in the places where people reach for a sip. Don’t drink fruit juice, it’s full of fructose with no roughage.
Of course you can change the dinners radically, but that’s unpleasant for a lot of people. Try the suggestions, which aren’t so ‘in your face’. You can cut out the worst bits of the meal more gradually. And it's 'a change in diet', not 'a diet' you can lapse from.
Just for interest, I was working with a group of older women who laid into a very high-cal cake at morning tea. I said “But I thought you were diabetics”. They looked at each other, and one said “That means you aren’t allowed to buy it yourself”. Making change easy, and bad habits more difficult, goes a long way.
My 'fat score' went up over Xmas 😂. I will keep in mind 'reducing my paddock' from today.. eg icecream does NOT grow there 😁
Have her meet with a dietician.
Dieting is pretty depressing, mixing it with meetings can make it a shared journey with people who can empathize.
Try making some healthy recipes with her: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipes/84/healthy-recipes/
* Focus on mood / mental health, i.e., depression.
It is really hard to change at all if depressed.
* Get inspirational videos (mood, cognitive behavior, anything uplifting), including meditation, relaxation DVDs.
* View DVD of yoga, stretching -- perhaps eventually weights (2 lb weights to start))
* Important to ease into changing behavior.
* Reward System: Really important. What does she like ? enjoy ? would help motivate her?
* How does she get weighed? Can she stand (on a scale) ?
* ALWAYS focus on positive reinforcement vs pointing out the negatives of what she isn't doing.
* Aim for 5-10 (points/positives) a day (in any area of her life). I did this when depressed in my 20s. It turned my thinking around to where I could function / have hope. Even getting out of bed or taking a shower gave me a point.
* If she is isolated, see if you can find ways for her to socialize / connect with others (by phone, zoom). Perhaps a 'health program' buddy.'
* Focus on optimal health, not losing weight. If the underlying behavior is not addressed, the weight will come back. The weight is connected to trauma, wounding, stressors. These need to be acknowledged and processed, along with cutting down caloric intake / losing weight. Often, people loss too much weight too fast and they psyche doesn't catch up and fear and traumas pop up. People do not know how to handle these (new) feelings so they numb out by returning to old negative, unworkable behaviors.
* Zoom meetings are excellent. Find Buddhist Zoom meetings or programs. There are hundreds. Very inspiring / uplifting.
* If a person has low self esteem, depressed, they will not either start or sustain any weight (for healthy weight) program. You need to deal with the mental / psychological first or certainly equal to SLOWLY shifting / changing dietary decisions.
* Do offer snacks. It is much better to eat 6-8 small meals a day than 3 larger meals. It is also better to have the larger meals in the morning and smaller ones in the evening.
See my comments below in another post re diet:
* Tofu, lentils, Almonds, vegetarian meatballs (from Costco)
* Sautes using chicken / turkey stock / broth.
* Limit meat / animal products
* If making vegetable dishes, add a little grated cheese (on top) for flavor.
* I have many tools although you'd need to private message me (as too much to list here).
Gena / Touch Matters
She's in a wheelchair, however if she could get out of the house a couple times a week, you may find there is a rehab/therapy place near her home that does outpatient therapies. Some even have swimming pools that make exercising easier and have lifts to get them in/out. Of course that would depend on her limitations.
You can help by doing some food prep for her. Create meals that can be heated or served cold with better nutritional value. Doctor may even suggest some shakes or other diet 'filler' that a person can eat/drink to ease the hunger that happens when anyone goes on a diet. If you have control over what comes into the house, then control the amount of junk food. And try to find some kind of treat that she could have once a day that satisfies the sweet tooth but doesn't have excess of junk calories....no sugar small kid size serving of ice cream maybe.
Most people I know who try strict dieting fail because they finally give in to major craving, feel guilty, eat whatever with the goal of just starting over next week. I would think if you allowed yourself a little pleasure each day, it wouldn't feel like you totally restricted yourself from everything.
1) any pasta, even whole wheat pasta.
2) Lean meat is still meat.
Lentils (can be created like a stew. I would mix with wild rice (again, not too much with the carbs (rice) although this is really good.
As you suggest, TOFU is good as are:
Almonds (can be crumbled up in vegetable saute)
Meatless meatballs (from Costco) - really good fillers in vegetable sautes.
If eating meat: more poultry than beef, pork, lamb.
I saute vegetables or lots of things with broth in the boxes (chicken, bone, vegetable, turkey) vs oil or butter (?)
My first question is does she live with you? Are you the gatekeeper who delivers and makes the meals and gets the food into the house? Because much of the answer is what access she has to the amounts and types of food she is eating.
Best of luck to you.
Men lose weight much more easily than women do, but it would be the best way for your mom to start. That way she isn't deprived of what she likes to eat.
You could also get her on Weight Watchers which will teach her about eating and what is better to eat but won't tell her she can't eat something. If she's not able to get out to WW meetings, there's a digital membership available, too.
You can find many exercise videos online adapted for people with limited mobility. The exercise would be good for her in many ways, but her food choices will have a more direct effect on her weight.
It is being willing to feel and process feelings vs 'eating them in.'
This is a process and not 'black or white.' It isn't that easy, if aiming for a sustainable healthy life-style. It is often easy for people to lose weight, it is the keeping it off that is key and where more / most of the work comes in.
Is it possible to have your mother's primary care physician order homecare with a physical therapist?
Also, is an UpWalker Lite of any help to you. As I write you, my mother, with Lewy Body Dementia is walking in the hallway using her UpWalker Lite. If she didn't have this she would have no freedom.
It goes to the market, doctor's appointments, etc. Even doctors' have asked me where did you get that? $495 well worth the money.
Drinks lots of water. I'm not a medical personnel but maybe we can all brainstorm. I'm a firm believer in a good shoes too.
Her mobility is critical to know and we do not know.
I have counted calories for over 55 yrs. Yes, I put on weight from pregnancies and menopause. I am 15 lbs over my lowest adult weight and have kept it off for 30yrs. I gain a couple of pounds, cut back and lose a couple of pounds. I have never been a big eater. I now have to stay within 1500 cal. a day or I start to gain weight. You can only eat what your body can burn. Being sedentary Mom can only eat so much. I eat a light breakfast, no lunch but I snack on something and then dinner which is not big. And exercise, like walking, does help with burning those calories. Also building up those muscles that also burn calories. Can Mom walk at all? Just getting up and moving helps to burn calories. Cutting down on carbs and sugars help if not cutting out completely. For me, watching my weight has become a lifestyle. My stomach can hold very little at one time. Its also a mental thing. I was a cubby kid and teased. This was at a time when being fat made up a very very small % of my class.
Unless ur with Mom 24/7 to monitor her intake, not much you can do.
sending new year hugs to you, and to your mother.
i know you're looking for serious answers, but in case your mother has a sense of humour, you can tell her this quote:
"Losing weight doesn't seem to be working for me, so from now on I'm going to concentrate on getting taller."
Alcohol is high calorie, in most cases. Low alcohol beverages are building in popularity here, quite a lot in the supermarket up high above the soft drink. How does mother get the drinks? Any chance you can help her to ‘run out’ and change to drinking something high volume but lower calorie?
How does she do her shopping? If you do it, you can drop down on junk food. After all, if toilet paper ran out with early Covid, some snacks might do the same! Fruit for snacks, like mandarins, might help a change in diet.
If M won’t change, then she won’t lose weight. Tell her it’s up to her. And tell her that if she becomes a 2 person lift, she will probably be moving to a facility, where change will be forced on her anyway.
On the farm, I make virtually all our bread in a bread machine. Flour, yeast and water – that’s it. I add seeds and nuts for variety, but never sugars. You need a routine because it takes over 3 hours, so it goes on a breakfast time as hot bread for lunch, every other day. That might be an option, if you can do the routine.
If however, someone else has control of groceries coming into the home, and someone else is preparing food, then there is some more control. Would still suggest nutrition training for the person doing the aforesaid.
Sure wish you luck.
You didn't mention the types of food she eats, but she needs to eat healthy - and that means eliminating sugar as much as possible - in beverages and food - drinking more water - reducing her carb intake (no cakes, regular desserts)...replace it with sugar free jello or fruit. Also, focus more on protein food - chicken, fish...vegetables and salads are very important.
When she improves her diet, eventually, her taste buds will change and she won't crave unhealthy foods as much and she'll begin a better regime.
There really aren't any shortcuts - if your mother wants to lose weight, she needs to do the work behind it - hopefully, you can be her cheerleader and coach thru this to make it a positive experience!
Sugar in moderation is much healthier but, lose the high fructose corn syrup.
Complex answer...She is the only one that can make the decision to change what she eats and how much she eats.
When she complains change the subject.
If she has any cognitive impairment / dementia trying to reason with her is an exercise in futility. (not the kind of exercise that will help) And with cognitive impairment she is probably not able to grasp the fact that eating is related to weight.
Whenever she brings it up tell her, to lose weight you have to make changes in your diet, what do you see yourself being able to change? Cut down portion size? Give up junk food? Stop eating cheese? Whatever she is doing can be modified to help lose some weight.
When you age, it gets harder to lose weight, so it takes time to see results. Encourage her to stick with whatever she decides she can do. If she does nothing, it's just conversation.