How Can a Dietitian Help With Weight Management

Weight management discussions usually start with an over-simplified, over-generalized and often bias statement of “just eat less and move more” – which couldn’t be further from the truth! Last year, new Canadian Guidelines for Obesity were released, and after a much needed and long overdue overhaul of the old guidelines finally this old statement is proven wrong. Working with weight management clients for over 10 years and receiving my designation as SCOPE certified (Strategic Centre of Obesity Professional Education- the only international recognized certification in obesity management) I can tell you that we have all needed to start thinking differently and start having better conversations around weight management as it is MUCH more than that!

Did you know that sleep, stress, emotional eating, mood, environment, hormones, medications, medical conditions, genetics as well as age, stage of life, hormones are all factors that can impact your weight?   Obesity is now considered a chronic condition (just like diabetes, heart disease and cancer) for the very reason of the multiple factors that impact one’s weight? The guidelines talk about obesity as a complex condition caused by many factors and what is important is determining the root and addressing them. Obesity is considered a chronic disease because it can progress and change over time especially if we don’t try to stop or change our course of action and the journey we are on.

But just because weight is considered a chronic condition doesn’t mean it’s not possible to start to feeling better, have more energy, feel stronger, eat better, move more, address stress, improve emotional eating as well as adjust and manage for stages of life while maintaining a great quality of life – all without feeling deprived, or like you are on a diet! The new guidelines talk about the importance of not just looking at weight but OVERALL HEALTH meaning that regardless of a persons weight, there are numerous health behaviours that everyone can achieve.


How a Registered Dietitian can Help:

  • We discuss all areas and factors of your health to help identify which areas need to be addressed and offer strategies for them.
  • We know one size does not fit all: coming in for an initial appointment is all about figuring out which lifestyle and behaviours changes are going to work for you and your
  • We rely on our whole team which includes registered dietitians, a registered psychologist as well as a chef to come up with the right plan for you.
  • We also know that behaviour change can be challenging and frustrating especially along the journey of weight loss. Therefore, we work with clients on determining the why, the what, and the how for lifestyle change and how to make those changes be sustainable, realistic, and long term!


By Andrea Shackel

– Registered Dietitian (Nutritionist) & Certified Diabetes Educator