Is your spouse sabotaging your weight loss efforts?


Engaging in a weight loss program and successfully finishing it is a difficult task. But, what makes it doubly hard is a spouse or partner who does not approve of it and is unwilling or reluctant to help.

There are a number of reasons why a spouse would consciously or unconsciously sabotage his or her partner’s weight loss efforts. A frequent explanation why this happens is that the unsupportive or uncooperative spouse feels threatened; oftentimes fearful, insecure, envious, and bitter. Usual scenarios that may elicit such reactions are the following:

  • As your weight drops, people around begin to take notice causing your better-half to feel jealous and hate you for all the attention you are getting.
  • Your spouse may dislike the time you spend either exercising or preparing nutritious foods when you could be spending your time with him or her.
  • Your spouse may feel guilty about continuing to feast on your favorite foods before while you consume a much lighter meal. He or she may miss the usual foods you both used to eat together.
  • Your spouse may feel that your weight loss makes his or her weight seem more visible or apparent to others especially if he or she has weight issues too.
  •  With your new and improved lifestyle, your husband or wife may think that the new you will be leaving them out in favor of more health-conscious friends or companions.

Spotting a spouse saboteur is as important as acknowledging the fact that he or she is indeed sabotaging your efforts to lose weight. Here are some clues to watch out for:

  • Pushes you to eat sugary or fattening foods and continually offers you second helpings/servings of food in every meal in spite of the fact that you already said no.
  • Keeps giving negative, harsh, destructive, sarcastic comments and criticisms regarding your weight loss efforts.
  • Keeps a watchful eye on everything you consume and regularly inspects the fridge to see if you have cheated by eating no-no foods in their absence.
  • Is overly critical of your weight loss regimen/ techniques.
  • Constantly mocks or deprecates your efforts and hinders you from doing your daily physical routines.

If you happen to find that the previously mentioned characteristics fit your spouse, there is a very high likelihood that your special someone is wittingly or unwittingly sabotaging your desire to shed pounds. Recognizing if your partner is making your weight loss efforts a lot harder than it seems is very important because denying the fact can lead to failure and/or possible marital strain.

Finally, to avoid weight loss sabotage by your spouse, here are some helpful tips.

  1. Communicate your partner honestly about your plans to lose weight. Convey him or her, your desire to achieve a fit and healthy body, why it matters to you and that you are asking for his or her help, understanding and full cooperation. This is perhaps the best way to prevent or stop spousal sabotage.
  2. Keep unhealthy food out of sight. Tell your spouse to keep these foods stored or hidden in the kitchen where there is no way for you to find them.
  3. Persuade your partner to join you. This will make it easier for you to stick to a much healthier diet for the long-term.
  4. Set a cheat day. The purpose for this is to reward yourself for your achievements for the week and also to give credit to your partner’s support.
  5. To motivate your spouse, set out a plan that will benefit both of you once you’ve reached your target weight. A vacation for instance would be great.


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