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Brief intervention for weight management

Advice, guidance and monitoring in Primary Care (Tier 1)

GP’s have an important role to play in providing regular monitoring of weight and advice and guidance about weight management as part of their routine patient care. If you are thinking about providing weight management support for a patient the Live Life Better Derbyshire service can be a useful source of information to help you engage the patient in changing their eating habits, their activity levels, and developing a sustainable approach to weight management.

You might also consider offering them some brief weight management interventions yourself ; please see our list of top tips to help you think about how to do this successfully.

Top tips (for professionals supporting people to lose weight)

Think about the practicalities

Helping your patient feel as comfortable as possible when visiting your clinic can help make conversations about weight easier to tackle. Having chairs which are big enough for your patients to sit comfortably in will help them feel more at ease. Having scales capable of accurate weighing, even at their upper range will help you track your patients’ progress more easily. Knowing about the full range of weight management services will help you pick the right one at the right time.

Consider using a brief Intervention

Although you may not have long to discuss weight management with your patients there is still plenty you can do to support your patient on their weight loss journey using a brief intervention. This might include:

  • Gently and sensitively bringing up the subject of weight management whenever there seems to be a useful opportunity to do so.
  • Offering a further appointment to specifically focus on weight management if the patient is interested in this.
  • Offering appointments for regular weighing at your surgery.
  • Displaying information about weight management services in your waiting and consulting rooms.
  • Providing written information about healthy eating and increasing activity when your patient expresses an interest in knowing more.

Click here for more information from the National Obesity Observatory about the evidence for brief interventions in weight management

If you have even a little more time available to talk to your patient about weight management you could try  assessing their readiness for change.

This page was last updated on: Monday 30th November 2015