Counting calories with a side of accountability


Given the choice between running alone or with a partner, many of us would choose to jog with a companion. If you were asked to paint a room all alone or with a group of friends, the majority of us would opt for applying a fresh coat in the company of good pals. Jill Zahm, RN, MSN, nurse navigator, The Parkview Center for Healthy Living, shares a bit with us about the benefits of approaching your weight loss goals with the help of a support group. There are so many benefits to bringing a few friends along on your well-being journey.

We’ve all heard the adage, “calories in, calories out,” as the gospel for how weight loss works. But there are many reasons to base your food choices on criteria other than calorie content alone. Foods that contain higher fiber keep you feeling full longer so you will be less likely to snack later. Being choosey about the foods you pick can definitely give you more bang for your buck. For example, a breakfast of high-fiber fruits and vegetables allows you to have calories left in your bank account the remainder of the day, while choosing higher fat, lower fiber foods like high fat dairy and bacon leave you with far less calories for the rest of the day.

In addition to dietary decisions, the research tells the story; people who attend support groups as part of a weight-loss program lose more weight than those who go it alone. Some things are just easier with a buddy. Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania recruited 166 people to participate in a weight-loss program either alone or with three friends or family members. In the friends and family group, 95 percent completed the program compared to only 76 percent of those who went solo. After 10 months, 66 percent of the friends and family group had maintained their weight loss compared to only 24 percent of those who were on their own.

The Center for Healthy Living has many resources to help you personalize your journey and boost your motivation toward a healthier you. Join us for one or more of these great options!

The Parkview Center for Healthy Living at Parkview Regional Medical Center

Ask the Nutritionist

Tuesday, June 14, 3:30 – 5:30 p.m.

Schedule a 20-minute one-on-one consultation with a registered dietitian nutritionist to have your questions answered.
Cost: Free

Spinning Through the Store: Your Virtual Grocery Store and Label Reading Tour

Thursday, June 23, 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Picking out healthy, wholesome food can be intimidating. You may think a food looks healthy, but is it really? You want to eat healthier, but what foods are nutrient-dense and don’t cost an arm and a leg? Come with us on a virtual grocery store tour, and learn which foods to buy and which ones to leave behind. Lots of ideas and tips will be yours to use at your next grocery trip! Cost: Free

YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program

This program can help you adopt and maintain a healthy lifestyle and reduce your chance of developing type 2 diabetes. Discover how to make better food choices, incorporate physical activity into your daily schedule, practice healthy stress management techniques and manage healthy behavior change for long-term prevention. This course includes 16 weekly, one-hour sessions, followed by 12 monthly support sessions. For more information, call (260) 755-4940. Cost: Call for more information

Parkview Heart Institute

Her Heart Challenge

The experts at Parkview Heart Institute and Parkview Physicians Group — Cardiology can help you reach your health and well-being goals! Whether your personal goal is weight loss, reducing high blood pressure or lowering cholesterol, we’ve got good news for you. A new program called the “Her Heart Challenge” can help you achieve your goal. Beginning in August, the Challenge will include weekly support, health and well-being information, lab work options, opportunities for physical activity and access to health experts. Applications will be accepted through June 1.

Download the application and submit for a chance to participate. Potential participants will go through an interview process and will be notified of acceptance to the program by July 20.

The Parkview Center for Healthy Living Southeast

Ask the Nutritionist

Thursday, June 9, 9 – 11 a.m.

Schedule a 20-minute one-on-one in-office appointment or phone conversation to talk to a registered dietitian nutritionist. Cost: Free

Veggie Va-voom!

Thursday, June 23, 6 – 8 p.m.

Sample our area’s luscious vegetables coming to the peak of ripeness. Learn quick preparation and cooking methods, and hear about ways to make their flavor pop using a variety of readily available herbs. Cost: Free

The Parkview Center for Healthy Living at the Parkview Warsaw YMCA

Organic vs. Non-Organic

Monday, June 13, 10:30 – 11:15 a.m.

When it comes to avoiding pesticides and other contaminants in your food, buying organic is often the healthiest option. But it can also be the priciest. Come listen and learn as Kyla Zehr, MA, RDN, registered dietitian nutritionist, Parkview Center for Healthy Living, discusses what non-organic foods to buy and which are worth the extra cost. This special program will be held at Martin’s Grocery Store, School of Cooking, Second Floor, 1150 Husky Trail. Cost: Free

Ask the Nutritionist

Monday, June 13, noon – 1 p.m.

Visit with our registered dietitian nutritionist over your lunch hour to have your nutrition and health questions answered. Feel free to bring your brown bag lunch. Cost: Free

Meatless Meals

Monday, June 13, 2 – 3 p.m.

Whether you’re adopting a vegetarian lifestyle or looking to have a few meatless meals each week, it’s important to remember the value of protein in a well-balanced diet. Join Kyla Zehr, MA, RDN, registered dietitian nutritionist, Parkview Center for Healthy Living, as she discusses meatless meals and provides tasty recipes to make at home. Cost: Free