A Delicious Way to Diet

By Nicci Micco, January/February 2009

Learn how nine readers lost weight on the EatingWell Diet and how you can too.

"Sounds good hope it works for diabetics "

Step #6: Get Support

It used to be that if Jenn Moore was having ice cream, so was her husband, Troy Hermansky. “I would fill up a giant coffee mug and hand it to him—because I wanted a giant mug myself and it made me feel better if he was having one too,” says Jenn. “He’d say he didn’t want it, but then, since it was there, he’d eat it anyway.” Now if Jenn wants ice cream, she portions out a small dish for herself. “I may ask Troy if he wants some but I don’t automatically bring him a big cup anymore,” she says. “I know he’s trying hard to lose weight, too, and I don’t want to sabotage him.”

Recognizing that losing weight is easier if you have someone to support you, Jenn and Troy decided to do our Diet Challenge together. Jenn still had to lose 19 of the 54 pounds she’d gained while pregnant with their son Jude, now 1. Troy was eager to shed the 30 pounds he’d gained after a career change and divorce a few years earlier. “My blood pressure is already high. I don’t want to set myself up for the host of [other] health problems that come with being overweight,” he told us at the start of the diet. By the end of the three months, Jenn and Troy had each lost 17 pounds. Doing the diet together was helpful for many reasons. They conquered and divided when it came to planning healthy meals (Jenn shopped; Troy cooked). They exercised as a family. They split entrees when they went out to dinner. “When you have a partner, that person can be an enabler in a lot of ways,” says Troy. “Just being on the same page really was the secret to our success.”

But not everyone has support at home. In fact, a few diet participants—we won’t name names!—mentioned that, at times, their partners were “diet saboteurs,” suggesting caloric cocktails or hearty breakfasts at moments of weakness. The participants eventually figured out ways to outsmart these situations: they’d sip one glass of wine then switch to seltzer or they’d decide what to order at breakfast before they got to the café so they wouldn’t be enticed by the aromas of bacon and baked goods. And, luckily, friends stepped in as supporters. Rebecca, for example, turned to a co-worker for exercise motivation. “We work in a building that has nine flights of steep stairs,” she says. “We decided to climb up and down all nine flights at least once a day, sometimes twice a day.”

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