Dietitian: Weight loss is a group effort

Bicycles are available for staff members to use as a way to encourage exercise and movement.

Bicycles are available for staff members to use as a way to encourage exercise and movement.

It’s better to make the attempt at losing weight when there’s someone by your side.

“There’s research out there that says if you’re part of a group, you do better,” said Tina Miller, dietitian at Bishop Wicke Health and Rehabilitation in Shelton. There are even bicycles available for staff members to ride from one building on campus to another, instead of taking cars.

Recently, a group of 19 staff members at the center joined in a weight loss group, taking part in Weight Watchers. They lost 281.2 pounds total.

“The Weight Watchers sessions for the staff … started a 12-week session,” said Miller. “At the end for the session, we offered an incentive to the staff. They expected a weight loss of 5% [and] they all pretty much lost 5% or more.”

Weight Watchers groups were held on the Wesley Village campus and this group of staff took part in weekly classes at the campus, at neighboring sites and online.

Taking a part in a weight loss group at work is a way to have a support system all around you, Miller said.

“These are the people you see day in and day out,” she said. Even people not taking part in the Weight Watchers group lost weight. Miller said it’s the “oh that salad looks good, I should try that” kind of thinking that helps with the loss.

“As a dietitian, I offered free one on one sessions for anyone who needed it,” Miller said.

There are also fitness classes — such as Zumba, aerobics and Pilates — to help boost metabolism.

Many staff now take the few extra minutes to walk the distances between buildings for meetings (instead of hopping in their car), or grab one of the retro pink or turquoise bikes to commute between the communities.

“They’re available at two buildings,” said Miller. “We can use them back and forth between the two buildings.”

The staff has recently started their second weight-loss group session.

“We’re hoping to lose more weight,” said Miller. “They’re inspiring.”

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