Treatment adherence is a term used to refer to people's ability to comply with health care prescriptions and guidelines.
The most difficult area related to adherence has to do with making and maintaining changes in human behavior.
To put it more clearly, people who are trying to change a problem behavior like overeating, or develop new skills like controlling one's eating, must address adherence issues.
With regard to weight loss, the adherence issue usually centers around a weight loss diet plan. But diet adherence—sticking to it—is much more than the diet plan. There's the YOU part of the process, all the things you have to change about yourself so you can achieve weight loss success.
Here are some reasons why "THE YOU" may not stick to a diet, even when you know you should.
- Self-defeat from past experiences trying to lose weight
- Embarrassment about being on another diet
- Pessimism about making the needed changes
- Letting too many competing demands in your life take precedence
- Fearing that losing weight will be too big a change when it comes to family relationships, emotional equilibrium, daily life patterns, or self-concept
- Too much riding on continuing to use overeating and being overweight to regulate your emotional life
According to Drs. Donald Meichenbaum and Dennis Turk in their book Facilitating Treatment Adherence, there is one thing that can be said with confidence about adherence. It is this: the more complex the demands of the treatment, the poorer the rates of adherence.
Losing the weight you've been wearing comfortably (and most likely uncomfortably too) close to you for however long, makes complex "treatment" necessary. Because it's not just the food, it's THE YOU too.