Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Weight loss requires blah, blah, blah...

A recent medical review teaches us nothing new. Yet, there is something important to learn from it.

In this month's issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, a review of data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), reveals the best strategies for losing weight. The methods, listed below, were significantly associated with losing up to 10% of body weight or more, at least in the short term, according to Jacinda Nicklas, MD, MPH, of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, and colleagues who published the review.

The methods were:

1. Eating less fat (5-10% reduction)
2. Eating less calories (5-10% reduction)
3. Exercising more (5-10% reduction)
4. Prescription weight loss medications (5-10% reduction)
5. Joining a weight loss program(5% reduction)

The review also identified that fad diets, liquid diets, diet food products, over the counter dietary supplements and herbs did not work.

There is nothing on these two lists that should surprise anyone.  Yet, there is a pattern to both lists that merits close attention.

The first list, other than the prescription medications, is a  list of things a person must do that requires effort and personal responsibility. It also requires sustained focus and attention. Eating less of something or doing more of something else requires a conscious effort. Even joining a program, requires a commitment of time and effort.

The second list identifies mostly short-term focus and basic abdication of responsibility. It's the low-road. You solely depend on some scheme perpetuated by someone such as adherence to a scientifically unproven fad diet, eating processed, often chemically heavy, diet products, or taking some unvalidated supplement that is purported to keep you healthy and help you lose weight, when in fact, at best it is ineffective, and at worst, is harmful to your health. HCG supplements recently proved that point. The facts say these diets and products are a sham and you probably know that based on past failures.

Yesterday, we welcomed over twenty new members to our LEAN (Lifestyle Education And Nutrition) Weight Loss Program. I made an effort to meet with each participant before the session began to deliver a message consistent with the findings above.

My message was that MDPrevent does not have a magic wand or pixie dust. I told each person that the key to his or her success would be sustained commitment. We offer no specific diet plans. Rather, we teach in detail what is good and bad for your health and your weight. We teach how to build your willpower by effort and planning. We teach how to engage in difficult conversation with would be saboteurs of your weight loss agenda. We provide valuable and useful information and teach how to put it into practice. The emphasis of our program is giving you the tools you need which you can put to work. Our program works for those who truly want to improve their health and shed unwanted and unhealthy weight.

When it comes to sustained and healthy weight-loss there simply are easy solutions. Even prescription medication cannot be taken indefinitely. It takes real effort to lose weight and even shortcuts like bariatric surgery fail if a new attitude is not adapted. The good news is that such effort pay-off. That was another conclusion of the study cited above. 10% weight loss can have a huge impact on your overall health.

Regardless if you think that being very overweight is a disease or a choice, you played a role in your weight gain and you must play a role to be successful in your weight loss. MDPrevent can give you the critical knowledge, the support, and the guidance you need to make changes. It's up to you to put it to good use.  I assure you that your meaningful efforts will be rewarded. The best part is that most insurances now cover our approach and as far as we know, no one else offers what we do. If you are tired of not succeeding, maybe it's time you came to us?


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