A Banner Publication
January 7, 2010 – Vol. 4 • No. 5
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• Support groups: A support system of people who relate to what you are going through can provide emotional support and help keep you motivated. Weight Watchers and Overeaters Anonymous are two beneficial programs. Many hospitals and community health centers in Boston offer similar services.

• Nutritional counseling: Developing healthy eating habits and understanding the nutritional value of food can help improve health and wellness. Working with a nutritional counselor can help you develop a life-long plan to achieve and maintain weight loss.

• Local athletic centers: Investigate local fitness centers. Some offer special rates based on income or medical condition. For example, the Reggie Lewis Athletic Center in Roxbury has an indoor walking program and a large selection of fitness programs, and offers special rates for seniors.

• Weight loss challenges: Keep yourself motivated with a little competition or group activity. “The 50 Million Pound Challenge” is a national health initiative that encourages people to form teams to take control of their health by getting fit and avoiding weight-related diseases that greatly affect the African American community.

• Health insurers: You may not think of it, but health insurers can be very important sources of support. Many offer financial incentives for joining fitness centers and weight loss organizations such as Weight Watchers. On www.ahealthyme.com there is an entire section devoted to online weight loss tools such as food tracking and determining the calorie count of various foods.

Starting and sticking with a weight loss program is not easy, but it can be done. Create a realistic diet and exercise plan, make small incremental steps that are easy to accomplish and utilize resources that will help you stay motivated.
Your mind, heart and body will thank you.