A weight management programme is reaching further into the community by appointing two local dietitians from Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust NHS to help people in Melksham.

Counterweight has been running in various surgeries around Wiltshire since 2007 to help combat the obesity epidemic and is now providing the programme to people in Melksham and the surrounding area in a group setting free of charge.

The programme begins on Monday at 4.30pm in the Melksham area. To attend this introduction session, people will need to enrol first.

The programme runs fortnightly over a three-month period covering topics such as energy balance, weight loss goals, shopping and label reading, physical activity, lapse management techniques, triggers to eat as well as strategies when eating out.

Liz Smith, a diabetes and Counterweight dietitian based at Chippenham Hospital, said: “Counterweight offers a choice of approaches to weight management – either a structured portion-counting plan or a more relaxed and flexible goal-setting approach for those with busy lives.

“People are welcome to enrol on the course, then come along on the 13th and see how they feel. More often than not, once people experience the benefit of groups they stay with them. However, there is no pressure to come back to the following sessions.

“Once the initial programme has finished people are not left to fend for themselves; instead three further quarterly sessions are offered to help ensure the weight is kept off.”

To qualify, you must have a body mass index (BMI) of over 30kg/m2 or a BMI of over 28kg/m2 with one of the following conditions – high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes or impaired glucose tolerance.

To check your BMI use the BMI Weight Calculator available on NHS Choices www.nhs.uk For an enrolment form and further details contact Liz Smith at Chippenham Hospital on 01249 456512.