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Losing Weight: Conversation starters

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Talking to an adult family member or friend about losing weight can be hard. Use these tips to start the conversation.

Begin by saying, “I care about you.”

  • “You are important to me, and I want you to be around for a long time.”
  • “I want you to have more energy and not worry about your health. That’s why I want to help you reach a healthy weight.”
  • “I’m here for you. Let’s find ways to get healthy together.”

Share what has worked for others.

Here are some ideas for losing weight in a healthy way:

  • Start by trying to lose about 1 to 2 pounds each week.
  • Weigh yourself regularly.
  • Eat smaller portions.
  • Start a food diary to keep track of what and how much you eat and drink.
  • Eat a healthy breakfast every day.
  • Choose foods and drinks that are low in added sugars and saturated fats.
  • Drink water instead of sugary drinks like soda or energy drinks. 
  • Be active your way. Find activities you like and do them often.
  • Do something active every day – take the stairs, go for a walk at lunch, or enjoy a family bike ride.
  • Join a walking club or support group to keep you motivated.

If you have friends, family members, or coworkers who have lost weight by eating healthy and getting active, ask them to share what worked for them. 

Do more than talk.

Find ways to get active and eat healthy together. Here are some ideas:

  • Go food shopping together. Compare food labels to make healthy choices.
  • If you go out to eat, split a meal or save half to take home.
  • Go for a walk every day or take an exercise class together.
  • Celebrate your loved one’s weight loss – but don’t use food as a reward.

Content last updated January 23, 2020

Reviewer Information

This information on losing weight was adapted from materials from the National Institutes of Health Weight-control Information Network (WIN).

Reviewed by:
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Dietary Guidance Review Committee

February 2018

For more information on healthy weight loss, visit: