Weight Loss Support - Need a good book for a gift!




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ThePrettyOne
11-14-2007, 03:23 PM
I have a very good friend. He's overweight by about 60lbs, and for 2 years I've been trying to help him (nicely) to get motivated. He'll get on it for about a week, then give up. His family is Italian (he claims he can't say no to fod), and his girlfriend is about 80lbs overweight with no intentions of losing weight so he doesnt really have the support he needs. He's really down on himself about his weight but I truly believe he wants to lose it. For X-mas I want to put a gift bag together with all "diet" related things to give him a little head start. I wanted to include a book, but not a "diet" book or a cookbook, just a book about getting healthy and weightloss. He's the sentimental kinda of guy, so I think a nice book would be appreciated. I also want to include a calorie counting manual, a pedometer, a magazine subscription voucher (something like Mens Health?I actually don't even know what that is, but the name sounds good!), and a few other fun things!


Glory87
11-14-2007, 03:33 PM
This is just my opinion, but I don't think is a very good idea for a Christmas gift. I understand wanting to help someone, but you're basically saying "Merry Christmas! You're fat!" Who wants that kind of proof that a friend thinks you are overweight at the holidays?

Everyone has to start on their own timetable, nagging and reminding and "helping" can just make someone feel worse.

What about a gift subscription to Harry & David's fruit of the month club? Healthy and delicious and a really great gift. Who doesn't love their pears?

ThePrettyOne
11-14-2007, 03:36 PM
This is just my opinion, but I don't think is a very good idea for a Christmas gift. I understand wanting to help someone, but you're basically saying "Merry Christmas! You're fat!" Who wants that kind of proof that a friend thinks you are overweight at the holidays?

Everyone has to start on their own timetable, nagging and reminding and "helping" can just make someone feel worse.

What about a gift subscription to Harry & David's fruit of the month club? Healthy and delicious and a really great gift. Who doesn't love their pears?

Oh....for anyone else I would NEVER! But we are very close, like brother/sister and this has been the bulk of what we've been talking about for the last 2 years. He gave me full persmission a long time ago to do and say whatever I need to get him into shape and kick him into gear!!


junebug41
11-14-2007, 03:36 PM
This is just my opinion, but I don't think is a very good idea for a Christmas gift. I understand wanting to help someone, but you're basically saying "Merry Christmas! You're fat!" Who wants that kind of proof that a friend thinks you are overweight at the holidays?

Everyone has to start on their own timetable, nagging and reminding and "helping" can just make someone feel worse.

What about a gift subscription to Harry & David's fruit of the month club? Healthy and delicious and a really great gift. Who doesn't love their pears?

I completely agree. Sometimes the road to **** is paved with good intentions. I also like the Harry and David idea. I've been on the receiving end of well-meaning friends and family's attempt to "help" me lose weight through Christmas/birthday gifts and I just felt like poo.

JayEll
11-14-2007, 04:21 PM
Just my opinion... Please don't give him a "diet package." You may think you're close as brother and sister, but even if my actual siblings had given me such a gift when I was obese, it would have broken my heart, and it definitely would have cooled my relationship with the giver.

If you want to give him a diet book, do it out of the blue--and don't make a big deal out of it. Just take it to him and say, "I thought you might like reading this because I found it helpful." But for Christmas... well, I just think it's not a good thing to do.

Here's a thread on a diet book discussion that we had here in Support a little while ago:

http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/showthread.php?t=125493

Also, you can read reviews of lots of diet books starting from the 3FC main page!

Jay

mandalinn82
11-14-2007, 05:15 PM
What Jay said!

Giving him a book is one thing, but there is something about it being a Christmas present. The "I read this and it was really helpful" phrasing will make it less intimidating.

I definitely wouldn't have wanted that gift from anyone, no matter how close we were. But I'd take a book as a non-gift.

I don't know what makes it different, but I feel like it is!

kaplods
11-14-2007, 05:32 PM
I agree. A Christmas gift should say "I love you exactly as you are," and should be about indulgence (I do not mean food here, I mean impractical and fun), basically something a person wouldn't buy for themselves. At best a "self-improvement" gift is as thrilling as a pair of socks. Practical, but it doesn't exactly have love and acceptance written all over it. At worst, it sends a message that he's not good enough as he is.

Also, you make a lot of excuses for him in your post. You say his italian family and heavy wife aren't the support he needs, but that is a big assumption on your part. Just like the rest of us, if he really wanted to lose the weight, he woud find the support he needed. Maybe his wife would join him, if he got serious about losing weight (maybe not), but the choice is his, and the timing has to be his.

It's frustrating when someone we love and respect isn't "living up to their potential," according to OUR definition, but if he's an intelligent human being, then the choice is his. If and when he asks for help, you give it, but pushing the matter is disrespectful, in my opinion.

ANOther
11-14-2007, 06:28 PM
I third the Harry & David (or a box of Honeybells or some other kind of fruit). A subscription to Men's Health may also be ok (I assume it's more than just diet/fitness stuff) but unless he asks you specifically to get him a diet or fitness-related book or other such items, stay off the issue for Xmas

Glory87
11-14-2007, 06:49 PM
Heh, Men's Health is like Cosmo for guys, it's hilarious!

GatorgalstuckinGA
11-14-2007, 06:58 PM
I'm going with jay and madalinn and everyone else. A diet book for christmas. I'm sorry...but if a close friend or family member gave me that..i would be offended. I agree its ok if you give it later on..you can even read it frist and tell him, this was a great book with great ideas...but for christmas...it really should be something that's about that person...even if you are concerned about his health

almostheaven
11-14-2007, 07:04 PM
Second and third...and fourth, fifth...

We say things sometimes to keep the peace too. So while he may have told you it's no big deal, think of how you might feel if the roles were reversed? Honestly think about it. Would you feel hurt? Most people would. Our weight isn't generally something we like to talk about even if we say we don't mind talking about it...because we do, usually. And while you'd still be friends, he'd smile and thank you for the gift, inwardly he'd be battling emotions that he'd likely keep to himself. Emotions that would only further hinder him in any weightloss efforts he would attempt.

The truest friend is there for you, helps you when you need and ask for help. They won't try to push you into it or give subtle "hints" they think you need. Just be a friend, be there for him. Make offers that he walk with you, or join you for dinner and cook a nice healthy meal to show him that healthy food doesn't have to be bland.

missy3gal
11-14-2007, 08:03 PM
What about a basket of things that relate to an interest and will get him moving? Is he a curious kind of person? Putting a basket together with things for letterboxing would be fun and it would get him to walk and hike a little. Same with geocoaching. Did he used to play racketball and he gave it up--or some other sport? Most people enjoy a basket filled with things that that tap into their interest and desires that are unnoticed even by themselves. He may have a desire to loose weight, but you know--we have to find that way ourselves.

ThePrettyOne
11-15-2007, 09:04 AM
Guys I didn't mean like a "Dieting for Dummies" "You're Fat, Deal With It" book.....just a nice inspirational, health related book! :) For the record, he knows he's fat, he forces me to talk about it with him and FORCES me to push him. Honestly I think he has dominatrix fantasies because he seems to like me more when I am mean to him than when I am nice :lol:

missy3gal
11-15-2007, 09:11 AM
What about Dr. Ozs new book (You: Staying Young: The Owner's Manual for Extending Your Warranty) about eating right so that you age slowly. I saw a copy of it at SAMs Club and it looks very good and motivating. It also appeals to people's vanity, so will interest many. A friend saw him on Oprah discussing it a few days ago and is very excited about giving the life approach a try. It seems easy to read with anecdotes and other things that inspire people.

veggielover
11-15-2007, 09:21 AM
Double edge sword, reading what most people have to say. To some people, not saying anything or motivating someone is "dishonest" or "unsupportive". To others, saying something or implying something about their weight is "rude", "unwarranted" or whatever....

Honestly, I try my best not to be "unsupportive" but I find it so hard to talk about other people's weight issues. Sometimes we cross the line even when we don't intend to, and this is why 99% of the time I'd let them handle it themselves. I'd just get them fruit baskets if they really want to be healthy and have a treat, but most of my friends prefer sweets and such. I don;t kow, how about a fine bottle of wine or a fruit basket from dean and deluca's? I'm all out of ideas, but I like the concept of a book (a diet book? maybe not?)..

JayEll
11-15-2007, 09:49 AM
Hey PrettyOne,

Let me just ask, is it possible that there is more to this relationship than "good friends"? I'm getting a kind of hidden agenda vibe--partly from you and partly from him. Anytime a guy isn't getting enough "support" from his girlfriend, my antenna goes up...

Jay

Glory87
11-15-2007, 10:41 AM
Guys I didn't mean like a "Dieting for Dummies" "You're Fat, Deal With It" book.....just a nice inspirational, health related book! :) For the record, he knows he's fat, he forces me to talk about it with him and FORCES me to push him. Honestly I think he has dominatrix fantasies because he seems to like me more when I am mean to him than when I am nice :lol:

Well sure, just a book about overall health is one thing, but you're giving him a basket of weight-loss related geegaws - like a pedometer. A book might be okay, the whole weight-loss Christmas ensemble seems a little wrong for the holidays. My favorite book along those lines would probably be You On a Diet (http://www.amazon.com/You-Owners-Manual-Waist-Management/dp/0743292545/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1195141098&sr=1-1), but it has the word "diet" in the title. Morgan Spurlock's Don't Eat This Book (http://www.amazon.com/Dont-Eat-This-Book-Supersizing/dp/B000NO1CPA/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1195141176&sr=1-1)was pretty good and funny (based on his SuperSize Me documentary). What to Eat (http://www.amazon.com/What-Eat-Marion-Nestle/dp/0865477388/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1195141131&sr=1-1)by Marion Nestle was good, too. I also loved World's Healthiest Foods (http://www.amazon.com/Worlds-Healthiest-Foods-Essential-Eating/dp/0976918544/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1195141023&sr=8-1) and The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth (http://www.amazon.com/150-Healthiest-Foods-Earth-Surprising/dp/1592332285/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1195141023&sr=8-2) And of course, my own personal favorite - SuperFoods Rx: 14 Foods That Will Change Your Life (http://www.amazon.com/SuperFoods-Rx-Fourteen-Foods-Change/dp/0061172286/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1195141202&sr=1-1). A healthy cookbook might be a good idea (if he already likes to cook).

I'm getting the "he likes you" vibe too. It's a possibility he likes to talk about losing weight with you because the topic makes you passionate and verbal - you have LOTS to talk about. He gets to spend quality time with you. Of course, maybe not. When I was heavy, I spent many years passionately dreaming about being thin and talking about it without doing a damned thing. No one could help me start, it had to come from me.

ThePrettyOne
11-15-2007, 11:13 AM
Hey PrettyOne,

Let me just ask, is it possible that there is more to this relationship than "good friends"? I'm getting a kind of hidden agenda vibe--partly from you and partly from him. Anytime a guy isn't getting enough "support" from his girlfriend, my antenna goes up...
Jay



LOL!! We are both in long term relationships. Although his girlfriend (actually, fiance come December!). I am laughing at just the thought of him and I (sure he's very nice but to me, he's less than appealing to the eyes) he's a super quiet, shy, sensitive guy, living at home (to mention only 5'7"), hardly the object of lust......exactly the opposite of my, incredibly loving, S/O. I know he thinks very highly of me and looks up to me and wold not turn down a date in a different life (though he would be holding his breathe for a long time, lol). All of my friends are guys, I've never been able to keep a girlfriend around! He isn't getting support from his girlfriend because she does not want to lose weight herself and has no interest in anything he's trying to become interested in, healthwise.


The excuses he has given me are just that.....I am not making them "for" him, those are straight from the horses mouth!

For the record.....the pedometer was something he had mentioned he wanted should a gift giving time ever come :)


Thank you for the ideas though from the people who had them :) I know you are all just trying to help and not meaning any intentional harm, but suggesting a stewing love affair was more than a bit out there!

JayEll
11-15-2007, 11:24 AM
I calls 'em like I sees 'em, and sometimes I calls 'em wrong. :dunno:

Jay

nylisa
11-15-2007, 11:42 AM
Hmm, to stay away from the "diet" thing, but to encourage him, how about looking for a book which focuses on healthier Italian food? Not all Italian food is laden with fat & drenched with cheese. Browse the cookbooks to see the cuisine for the different regions. And you can tie in a basket of healthier food items with that. Like some sundried tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, some really good olive oil and maybe some multigrain pasta and/or some Italian themed spices from Penzeys (link below)?

http://www.penzeys.com/cgi-bin/penzeys/shophome.html

Personally, I think that might be good because it gives him new ideas for food, which aren't "diet" but fit in with a healthier eating approach.

As for exercise, what are his favorite activities? How about a customized playlist of upbeat songs, which while not labelled as such, could be used for a workout?

baffled111
11-15-2007, 12:01 PM
I'm with chorus that a diet basket might not be the best present, but as far as books go, what about something like Michael Pollan's "The Omnivore's Dilemma"? It's not about dieting at all, but it completely transformed my thinking about food and the food supply and I came away from it with a new commitment to eating healthily (whole foods) and sustainably. It would be far more subtle as a gift than a traditional diet book.

ThePrettyOne
11-16-2007, 09:55 AM
I calls 'em like I sees 'em, and sometimes I calls 'em wrong. :dunno:

Jay


Hey, I ain't mad atcha!



I like the idea of a healthy Italian cookbook. He's moving out of his home and in with his girlfriend in a couple weeks and that might be a great idea!


I've heard good things about the Omnivore's Dilemma. I wil go to the book store today and check out some of your suggestions! :)

kaplods
11-16-2007, 06:29 PM
I agree that he may be crushing on you, and you seem to be encouraging it.

As Glory87 pointed out, he has found a topic that gets the intended results, your attention. When a woman goes about trying to improve a man, the man generally sees that as an indication of romantic interest, not "sisterly affection."

His excuses about his fiance not being a support, ring of "My woman doesn't understand me," the classic statement men use when they're trying to "trade up." In taking his comments at face value, you are responing very much as the new "other woman" tends to. Don't you find his comments about his girlfriend highly suspicious? I certainly do. I do not think I have ever met a woman, 80 lbs overweight or not, who would not be willing to support and even join her boyfriend, fiance, or husband in losing weight, exercising, or getting healthier together. His statements about his "unsupportive" family and girl friend are an invitiation for you to show him that you care more about him than they do. I think that any role you would plaly in "helping him" lose weight could be misconstrued.

I have to say, it does seem a little odd that you consider this guy such a close friend, and yet your statements indicate that you believe that you are far out of his league, while assuming (despite his having a fiance) that he has a romantic interest in you, or would if he had a chance, which you remind us he definitely does not. Why would you want such an unbalanced friendship? It doesn't seem that you respect him very much at all. It seems more like you see him as a project or charity case.

Spinymouse
11-16-2007, 06:51 PM
How about a gift certificate to a sporting equipment / clothing shop? That is less specific. Just about anyone can find something they like there. He can choose something fitness oriented, or maybe he'd just buy a T-shirt.

cakses
11-16-2007, 07:02 PM
I am sort of on the fence on this one (about the original topic, not what it's warped into lol). While I think it's sort of iffy to get books and stuff as a Christmas gift, it still says I am thinking about you and care about you. He had better be a close friend though. My Mom who is not close with me but apparently thinks she is, bought me cellulite cream a few years back. Yeah, I was furious and even cried over it later on. WAS NOT COOL. Now if I had mentioned I wanted it first though, and someone got it for me that's great.