treatment of obesity

Obesity is treated by losing weight, not coming back. Your goal is to reduce your BMI to what is appropriate for your age, gender, and height. But weight loss is what most people find difficult. Some may do so through healthy eating and exercise, some may need to change their medications, and some may require surgery.

Your doctor can help you decide what you need and what works best for your circumstances. Start with small steps and set realistic goals. Even losing 10% of your current weight can have significant health benefits. Small changes can make a big difference in your health. Your doctor may offer practical suggestions that do not require a complete change in your current lifestyle. In some cases, your doctor may refer you to a nutritionist. Probably a registered nutritionist. This person can give in-depth advice on food choices.

However, in extreme cases, diet and exercise alone may not be enough to help you lose weight. Your doctor may discuss prescription weight loss medications with you. These drugs are useful only when used in combination with a healthy diet and exercise.

Your doctor may also talk to you about whether you may be a candidate for weight loss surgery. This surgery (bariatric surgery) can help you lose large amounts of weight if you are overweight. As with prescription drugs, weight loss surgery is most successful when used as part of a long-term healthy lifestyle that includes diet and exercise. Some of the most common weight loss surgeries include:

  • Gastric bypass surgery.During this operation, your doctor will form a small sac in your upper stomach. Your small intestine moves from the bottom of your stomach to the new pouch. When you eat, the food you eat goes into the new bag and then into the small intestine, bypassing the stomach.
  • Laparoscopic adjustable gastric bandage (also called lap band). In this operation, your doctor will place a band, like a belt, around your stomach. Divide the stomach into two separate bags. There is a small channel between the two bags.
  • Biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch (also called gastrectomy). During this operation, your doctor will remove most of your stomach. Possible side effects include the inability to absorb all the vitamins and nutrients the body needs. Your doctor will closely monitor your progress after this operation.
  • Stomach sleeve.In this operation, part of your stomach is removed, which creates less space for food.

Your doctor can explain the different procedures, risks, decide if you are a good candidate for surgery and decide which procedure would be best for you.

Experts believe that you should not try to lose more than 2 pounds a week. Losing more than 2 pounds a week usually means losing water weight and lean muscle instead of losing excess fat. If you do this, you will have less power. And you will probably gain back your weight.

Losing weight is half the battle. Maintaining weight requires constant changes in your lifestyle. These include a healthy diet and regular exercise. Support from your friends, family or support group can help.