These days, everything needs to be fast. We need fast internet, fast traffic, fast DMV lines. Fast is almost always better, right? The keyword is almost. Fast seems great on a surface level but when it comes to fast food, the tradeoff is fast weight gain.
According to the World Heart Federation, 21 percent of chronic heart disease cases are attributable to a BMI above 21. And with nearly 70 percent of U.S. adults overweight or obese, we are looking at the potential for heart disease rates to skyrocket in the coming years if we don’t collectively do something about the obesity epidemic.
I’ve struggled with weight all of my adult life. At times, I was sickly thin. Other times, I was bloated and uncomfortable in my own skin. Both experiences have given me a perspective on what it’s like to be overweight and underweight.
Physicians want real and long-lasting solutions for their patients’ obesity. In this quick-fix culture, it can be hard to sift through the bait and switch diets that promise quick results without lasting impact. Quick weight loss is a great benefit to patients, especially those with chronic obesity-related conditions, but it is only truly effective if the weight loss is maintained. A Very Low Calorie Diet (VLCD) combines behavior modification and nutrition education to provide rapid, medically-supervised weight loss with long-lasting results. It is the education and patient empowerment provided to patients on a VLCD that is paramount to long-term success.
If you aren’t practicing obesity treatment in your health practice, you may be ignoring a huge elephant in the room. Physicians can sometimes be hesitant to open that door because of many reasons: lack of knowledge on how to implement weight loss; not having enough time or resources; or maybe you have been so busy treating other chronic conditions that you haven’t even considered obesity treatment or that it could actually be the cause of many of your patients’ ailments.
By now, the need to prioritize obesity treatment in health care is widely accepted. Not a single state met the 2010 Healthy People goal of a 15% obesity rate. Instead, obesity rates have steadily climbed, with over one-third of American adults being obese, and with the United States ranking as one of the most obese countries in the world. And with obesity rates rising, so do the rates of comorbid conditions, such as diabetes, hypertension and heart disease.
In the beginning of a weight loss journey, many patients think they’ll lose 40 pounds and look like Cindy Crawford. They fantasize about hitting the beach in the smallest bikini they can find to show off their new body and celebrate all of their hard work. One thing that weight loss patients are sometimes unprepared for, however, is that they still may need to deal with some body image issues after weight loss. One such issue is excess skin.
Every year, weight loss centers see a huge influx of dieters eager to lose weight on January 2. Not much effort needs to go into getting people through the door when weight loss is top of mind for New Year’s resolutions.
In our culture, we often associate happy childhood experiences with unhealthy behaviors or foods. Who can forget summers filled with ice cream, lollipops secretly passed to you by grandparents, getting the first warm cookie out of the oven, or even licking the cake batter out of the bowl?
On February 2, 2018 — Groundhog Day — Pennsylvania's most famous woodchuck, Punxsutawney Phil, made his annual prediction. Unfortunately, in his infinite wisdom, he announced six more weeks of winter. And that means six more weeks of potential winter weight gain!