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Advice on how to help father lose weight - Carers UK Forum

Advice on how to help father lose weight

Share your ideas about the practical side of caring.
My father has been in a wheelchair for a few years now, after having one leg amputated. The various conditions he has make exercise difficult for him (muscle weakness and fatigue caused by APS) and he's put on a looooooot of weight. He's now been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes as well. OTs have said there's no exercise he can do and want to refer him to weight watchers. Has anyone else out there been in a similar position and have experience of how well this works?
Weight Watchers is probably a good starting point - but as a type 2 diabetic myself I found the best way to lose weight and keep my diabetes under control was by cutting ALL sugars (or as much as possible) and carbohydrates from my diet.

It is now recognised that a diet low in carbohydrates is the best way to go for type 2's. You'll find a lot of very useful information on diabetic diet on these two websites


both have very active forums - although I don't visit either very often these days, I found them very useful when I was first diagnosed.
Fathom a guess it would be something along the lines of replacing empty calories with more filling food, reducing the need to fill up on naughty stuff.. though you'd still be able to eat such things just in moderation (treats) as most clubs are like that with point based system for different types of food.

The big one is always going to be sugar but then giving up the habit of a lifetime.. you'd probably do less harm just starting out with small changes such as instead of a heaped teaspoon of sugar in tea/coffee etc, having a level teaspoon and go from there (even if it takes a few days to go from heap to level) because if you cold turkey on most things altogether you got more chance of relapse. Same idea with milk and other things.

Avoid the so called diabetic labeled food though as often the case its probably worse for that person than the real thing.
Theres been plenty of stink made over the likes of diabetic ice cream and similar desserts over the years for example.
Definite advocate a 'slow reduction' in sugar calories etc. With tea and coffee, you can't believe you can drink it sugarless, but if you do cold turkey on it, after a bout five days you'll find if you do put sugar in, it's disgusting! I 'broke' myself that way of sugar in tea, but coffee is tougher, probably because it's got a stronger, more bitter taste.

The trick with dieting overall, I've found, is to substitute protein and fibre for starch-carbs. By bulking up on protein, and fibre, the 'mass' of food stays the same, but it has both far fewer calories, and creates a 'full feeling' too.

Carbs play havoc with blood sugar. If I lapse and eat bread etc, (even low GI bread to an extent) I find I get hungrier again far faster than if I ate the same number of calories in the form of protein.

Personally, I wouldn't try and cut out fat too much (I find it makes the protein and fibres - ie, meat/fish and veg - far more palatable to have a knob of butter on them!).

There are loads of sources of 'needless' calories, fruit juice being the main culprit. If you're thirsty, drink water, tea, or fruit tea even. (Fruit tea is brilliant - like hot juice without the sugar!)

Can your father do ANY exercise? A lot of wheelchair athletes have formidable upper body strength (I read somewhere that they make the best archers - as they are sitting down, their centre of gravity is low, but their draw-weight - the amount of force they can impel an arrow with - can be fantastic!)(Just a thought!).

The more muscle he can develop the better, as it burns calories far faster than other types of tissue. (It's why athletes get away with eating 10k calories a day!!!!!!!!)
My husband (age 80) developed type 2 after his weight soared to over 20 stone although he's not in a wheelchair. He developed a real sweet tooth and would buy and eat everything and everything he fancied.
His GP gave him 1a 2 weeks free course at Slimming World, and although hubby brought the sheet of paper home he refused to even contemplate the idea, even though the diabetes diagnosis scared him to death.
Eventually when the time for joining was running out I managed to persuade him to go, promising to go with him and pay for my own classes.
However, I'm not overweight and she refused to consider me as a prospective candidate, but she did allow me to attend classes
as an observer so I could use the information to cook for OH. Apparently this os OK with Slimming World.
I couldn't believe how he took to it! The weight dropped off him and he's down to 16stone, which is still overweight, he's not obese any more and his bloods are showing almost normal.
Just now he's being silly and saying he doesn't want to lose any more or he'll be ill and anorexic (daft bat) and is taking a delight in eating my carefully prepared meals then sabotaging them by going out and buying fish and chips or something ON TOP OF the meal he's just eaten. He still goes to classes but has to pay as his 12 free weeks are over, and happily comes home telling me he gained half a pound - and he won't let me see his chart so I can tell how much he's put back on. He says his teacher isn't worried.
I recently found a stash of 3 pkts of chocolate coated digestives and 6 Mars Bars in his car along with some empty packets. The capacity for food that man has is extraordinary.
I get soo frustrated after all that hard work.
I suspect its a backlash against interfering women so I say nothing.
Phone your hubby's GP surgery ans ASK for a slimming world referral. It worked for mine (until he gave up).
I could blame myself for turning into the diet mafia, but refuse to exonerate him, he;s not a baby.
Thanks all for the replies.
The low carb side of dad's diet is definitely something I'll start him on once he's home again, thanks jenny lucas.
Dad doesn't actually eat much at all - if he could be active, he'd probably be perfectly fit. He's actually pushed the OTs into coming up with a plan to get him more active again. So hopefully, we can get his weight back down to a better level.
I'll scour the forums you mentioned, susieq, and dig out some recipes!
Hey,I'm happy you had a concern in your father's health. How is he doing now?
This is an old thread, Cal last posted in 2018. I am locking it.

Melly1 moderator