December 29, 2016
We’ve come a long way since January, and we appreciate you allowing us to take this weight loss journey with you. As we start to make plans, goals, and resolutions for the New Year, let’s take a moment to look back on some of the things we’ve learned in the past 12 months. Check out the slideshow below where we’ve highlighted 12 of our best weight loss tips, one for every month of 2016. Take inventory of things you tried that did or didn’t work, as well as things you meant to try but never got around to. Use this as a guideline for how you can set a clear roadmap to weight loss success in 2017. Download our free Goal Helper Worksheet to help you discuss New Year’s Goals with your weight loss provider. If you still need to find a provider to help you set a firm foundation for the New Year, visit our Find a Clinic page.
And for weight loss professionals, don’t forget, Robard offers a wealth of complimentary resources to aid you in recruiting and retaining patients for 2017, including Staff Training Kits, Customizable Marketing Materials, Educational modules, and more. Click here to get more information, or for customers, simply log on and start browsing our Holiday Resources! All of us at Robard wish you a healthy and productive New Year!
Blog written by Vanessa Ramalho/Robard Corporation
December 26, 2016
Finding the motivation to pursue a healthy weight can be difficult sometimes. But a new study out of Stanford University may be able to add an increased sense of urgency and purpose, particularly for parents: Do it for the kids!
Childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents in the past 30 years. While many factors have contributed to this, including increased access to fast foods and higher birth weight, more evidence shows that the factor that puts children at greatest risk of being overweight is having obese parents.
“The findings of this study suggest that at-risk children may be identifiable in the first few years of life,” says W. Stewart Agras, MD, Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, whose team assessed both established and hypothesized risk factors in a study published in the July issue of the Journal of Pediatrics.
Agras says parental obesity represented the most potent risk factor, a finding that confirms previous observations, and the connection between overweight parents and overweight children is likely due to a combination of genetics and family environmental influences.
Childhood obesity can lead to many other health issues for children. According to the American Obesity Association, pediatricians are reporting more frequent cases of obesity-related diseases such as type-2 diabetes, asthma and hypertension — diseases that once were considered adult conditions.
It can be emotionally conflicting to think about the ways that one’s own health can negatively impact one’s children. But remember that the focus of this study and its findings is not about blame or shaming overweight parents, but rather about prevention. “It’s important to identify risk factors because they may provide a way to alter the child’s environment and reduce the chance of becoming overweight,” Agras says.
Remember: Good health is paramount for many reasons. The first reason is YOU. Obesity can prevent you from living a long, happy, and healthy life. The next reason is the people that you love. You play an integral role in building a healthy family. But while bad eating and exercise habits in children can be passed down from parents, the good news is that we have the power to change those unhealthy habits for ourselves, as well as for our children. Stay tuned for Part 2 for 5 tips for a healthier family….
Sources: American Heart Association, News Medical, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Blog written by Vanessa Ramalho/Robard Corporation
December 21, 2016
If we were the gambling type, we’d put money down and predict that many of you are deliberating New Year’s resolutions at this very moment. As 2016 comes to a close, our sights are set on 2017 and the things we’re looking to accomplish in the New Year. Some write goals down on paper, others just set it in their minds; no matter how you do it, New Year’s resolutions are currently being crafted. For a sizable portion of us, our 2017 resolutions will consist of something involving our weight or a healthier lifestyle. Whether it’s a better diet, losing a certain amount of weight, going to the gym or exercising more, the majority of us will be focused on better health in the New Year.
With that in mind, here are some realistic reminders to consider when you are thinking about what your resolution(s) should be:
Motivation: I understand that you are excited about the new goal that you just set, but will you be just as excited four months from now? How about six months? When you aren’t getting the results you hoped, how will you react? Remember this moment — when you made the declaration of what you want to do going forward — and have the same determination to see it through as you had when you originally made the commitment.
There will likely be Setbacks: Very few times does something go exactly as we planned. When times get tough and the road seems long, have the perseverance and motivation to push through and continue with your journey.
Short-Term vs. Long-Term: Knowing the difference will help you decide how you shape your resolution(s). If it is a short-term goal, the resolution would likely involve accomplishing what you’re setting out to do quickly. If it’s a long-term goal, the resolution should include taking smaller steps toward what you want to achieve.
Don’t Sell Yourself Short: Don’t think that you can’t accomplish something. This kind of thinking will throw up a seemingly insurmountable hurdle between you and your goal. In reality, we don’t know what we are capable of until we are put to the test and need to rise to the occasion. You got this!
Blog written by Marcus Miller/Robard Corporation
December 6, 2016
Yo-Yos go up and down… but your weight isn’t supposed to! Nonetheless, many dieters find themselves in an endless cycle of losing a portion of pounds, only to gain it back all over again — and then some. When you get stuck in what seems like an endless cycle of weight loss and regain, losing weight can become a frustrating and unachievable pursuit. How do you keep up the motivation to lose weight when you can’t seem to keep it off?
Don’t feel alone. Most dieters will experience weight regain at some point, and it is definitely frustrating. "People go on diets over and over again - and keep failing," says professor Eran Segal of the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. "It's a very common problem. Up to 50 percent of obese people suffer this relapsing pattern.” Such a pattern can lead to a lot of mental and emotional anguish, making dieters more likely to give up on their dreams of achieving a healthy weight.
But in addition to being emotionally and mentally draining, Yo-Yo dieting can actually come with health risks. Due to an increase in the stress hormone cortisol, consistently losing and gaining weight can increase your risk of developing heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Naturopathic doctor Natasha Turner claims that Yo-Yo dieting can also damage arteries and cause an increase in LDL cholesterol — both of which increase the risk of heart disease. And, there are many other health risks associated with being overweight and/or obese.
Additionally, Yo-Yo dieting is often associated with rapid weight loss in a short amount of time by limiting calorie intake. When you are undergoing low calorie diets without the supervision of a doctor or dietician, you can actually be depriving yourself of important nutrients and healthy calories. This type of dieting can slow your metabolism, lead to low energy levels, tiredness, fatigue and irritability. Not fun!
Step one of losing weight healthily and keeping it off in the long-term is to find support. Working with a weight loss professional who can provide you with proven tools and resources can be a far greater investment than any fad diet out there. Also consider these additional tips on how to avoid the endless cycle of Yo-Yo dieting:
Be realistic: A weight loss professional can help you set achievable goals. Make sure your goals come with a realistic time frame and can fit reasonably into your life, and that are aligned with health objectives. Having a goal to lose 20 pounds for a wedding two months from now can set you up for failure, and promote unhealthy habits. As a starting point, commit to goals that can be achieved with moderate effort.
Reward yourself: But not with food. When you reach a weight milestone, treat yourself to a massage. Or start a change jar and add the equivalent of what you would spend on junk food. At the end of every month, use the money accumulated to go on a shopping spree.
Identify your motivation: Motivation is key to success. “That is the number one most important thing,” says Judy Caplan, a registered dietitian and spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association. List out why you want to get healthy, and refer to those reasons during moments of weakness.
Don’t give up: “One of the most important tips for being a successful weight loser is not to let past failed attempts keep you from trying again,” says Michael Dansinger, M.D., weight loss and nutrition advisor for “The Biggest Loser” and assistant professor at Tufts School of Medicine in Boston. “Every time you fail, you get more insight about what to do differently next time.”
Sources: Livestrong, U.S. News
Blog written by Vanessa Ramalho/Robard Corporation
November 8, 2016
The time between Thanksgiving and the New Year can be the most challenging for your staff and your patients. There’s temptation around every corner — saboteurs are everywhere and, as a result, many patients fall victim to the mentality that “no‐one can maintain a diet during this time of year.” This mindset causes a chain of negative events that result in lost retention, decreased program effectiveness, lost revenue and momentum within your business.
But facts confirm that it’s simply not true. It’s time for you to prepare and educate your staff so your patients can break through the obstacles of tempting delights so they can enjoy a January filled with weight loss achievement.
The belief that patients can’t be successful during the holidays is based on outdated assumptions. Years ago, before we had an obesity crisis — before over 65 percent of Americans were overweight — the diet industry largely catered to cosmetic and seasonal weight loss. From January to May and from September to Thanksgiving, consumers turned to weight loss programs and then dropped their program during the summer and holidays. Today, more people join weight loss programs for health and wellness and to eradicate medical issues. These reasons are impervious to seasons, but patients are still susceptible to sabotage and exposure to diminished expectations. It’s during these times that we need to increase our vigilance against excuses and sabotage.
Educate your staff to counter all of the excuses, uncover sneaky saboteurs and eliminate them.
9 Tried and True Strategies for Retaining Your Patients
1. Create a weekly calendar with each client for each week during the holiday season and include their upcoming social events. Let the patient see how many of the 42 weekly eating occasions don’t involve a social event. (Assuming a patient eats six meals/snacks daily).
2. Stock up on Robard snacks and protein bars. These are easy to take on-the-go and require no prep. Perfect for shopping!
3. Re‐do goals with every patient and give specifics to focus on. Remind them it’s a series of small daily choices, not all or nothing. Help them counter the, “Well, I had cake at lunch, so I will start again tomorrow” approach.
4. Help patients visualize January 1.
5. Have patients fill out their food log.
6. Go over socializing basics. For example, if there is a dinner? On that day, eat breakfast, a snack, and lunch (preferably products). Eat just before arriving. Consider trade‐offs. For example: wine vs appetizer/appetizer vs dessert/sharing dessert. At the event, relax and socialize. Keep high‐fat treats out of sight.
7. Eat regularly every 3–4 hours and sleep regularly.
8. Don’t buy or make holiday treats until the last possible moment. Buy or make things that are not your personal favorites.
9. Maintain and increase physical activity. Great walking opportunities can be had with shopping or taking the family for a stroll to view the holiday lights.
While we would all like our patients to be perfect throughout the holiday, many struggle. For the struggling patients, continue to encourage them by letting them know that moving forward, even without perfection, is a goal worth driving towards.
For more tips and information on helping your patients and your business succeed through the holidays, Robard customers can download one of Robard Corporation’s many resources that help patients successfully navigate through the season. We also invite non-customers to download a holiday staff training kit, titled Visualizing January, by clicking here. Good luck and have a wonderful holiday season!
Blog written by Lynda Lewis/Robard Corporation
November 3, 2016
In many households, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. can feel like the busiest, most hectic part of the day. You arrive home after what can be a stressful commute from work; the kids have homework and need to get ready for bed; the house is a mess; you’re tired from pulling an eight-hour shift (or more)… How do you fit in making the time to cook a healthy, family-friendly meal without driving yourself crazy?
Firstly, don’t be quick to come home with fast food just to save yourself some sanity. A recent study from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that home cooking is a main ingredient in a healthier diet.
“When people cook most of their meals at home, they consume fewer carbohydrates, less sugar and less fat than those who cook less or not at all — even if they are not trying to lose weight,” says Julia A. Wolfson, MPP, a CLF-Lerner Fellow at the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future and lead author of the study.
The findings also suggest that those who frequently cooked at home — six-to-seven nights a week — also consumed fewer calories on the occasions when they ate out.
Making dinner happen after work on a consistent basis can feel like a challenge. Even just figuring out what to cook can be hard, let along doing it quickly and with results the whole family will enjoy. But believe it or not, a healthy dinner is achievable… and you can even do it in less than 30 minutes with simple, fresh ingredients.
Start off by committing to ONE WEEK of home-cooked meals. To get you started off right, we’ve compiled a list of 7 recipes for healthy dinners you can make in 30 minutes or less. Give it a try and share your favorite recipe with us on Facebook!
TIP FOR DIETERS: When it comes to cooking while on a diet, portion control is everything! Download Robard’s Portion Platter to learn how to properly portion your meals. Weight management clinics offer programs with helpful resources and food education like our portion platter… to learn more about joining a weight management program, visit Robard’s Find a Clinic page.
TIP FOR PROVIDERS: Cooking healthy meals is a vital part of maintenance for any dieter. Robard’s programs offer tailored resources like meal plans to help your dieters keep the weight off. For more information on Robard’s programs, fill out Robard’s Become a Provider form.
Sources: Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Food Network, Better Homes and Gardens
Blog written by By Vanessa Ramalho/Robard Corporation
October 20, 2016
I recently saw a picture on Facebook that was captioned: “Do something today that your future self will thank you for.” It’s a common saying, but thought-provoking at the same time. It puts things in perspective and helps you understand that the decisions you make now can affect you in the future.
One thing that we can all do now is decide to make a conscious effort to watch our diet and weight over the next three months; our future selves will thank us for it. Remember, from now until the end of the year we are all likely to gain weight. Why? Blame our friends, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Yes, the holiday season is upon us, and if we aren’t careful we will gain weight that will take a lot of effort and time to lose. Actually, according to findings published in the New England Journal of Medicine, it will take upwards of five months to lose that weight. Think of all the work you put in throughout this past year trying to reach your fitness goal, only for it to vanish in a span of a few months, then you have start again when the calendar flips to 2017.
So, what do we do? First, let’s all agree that for the majority of us there will be a few days during the holidays that our diet goes haywire. However, the goal should be to minimize those days, which is tough to do when the leftovers in the fridge are begging to be eaten; we have to find ways to control those urges and cravings.
Another thing we can do is make sure we have a consistent exercise plan. With the holiday season comes traveling, relaxation, and at times lack of motivation to workout. But even if it’s just a short walk, commit to do something! It will be easier to get back into your normal workout routine if you are starting somewhere instead of starting from a place where you went an extended period of time with little to no physical activity. Try to keep your regimen as close to normal as possible.
Cornell Food and Brand Lab Director Brian Wansink said it best: “It’s easier to avoid holiday pounds altogether than to lose them after they happen.” With research showing it will take five months to lose three months of weight, it’s hard to disagree. So stay motivated, be consistent and focused on reaching your good health goals. If we’re mindful of watching our weight over the next three months, our future selves will thank us for it.
Source: Cornell Food & Brand Lab
Blog written by Marcus Miller/Robard Corporation