If you or someone you know is struggling with obesity, it’s hard to know where to turn or what to do about it. Thankfully, obesity is treatable and can be addressed in a variety of ways.
Here is a little bit about what obesity is and what treatment options are available to you to use in a safe, healthy way on your weight-loss journey.
Obesity is classified as a person having a body mass index (BMI) of 30.0 or higher and is diagnosed only by a healthcare professional. It’s a curable disease that has multiple forms of treatment, depending on the health needs of the patient. There are many serious obesity-related illnesses to be aware of, including:
- — Diabetes
- — Gallbladder disease
- — Heart disease
- — High blood pressure
- — High cholesterol
- — Osteoarthritis
- — Depression
- — Sleep apnea
- — Heartburn
- — Stroke
- — Cancer
Obese vs. Overweight
If an individual has a BMI of 25.0 to 29.9, they’re considered overweight. This can be a major health concern. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean the individual is obese (as that BMI starts at 30.0). Overweight individuals should be aware that their current weight can lead to more weight gain as well as other health problems, including obesity, if not addressed.
Severe obesity (or morbid obesity) is classified as someone who weighs more than 100 pounds over their healthy body weight for their height and their BMI is greater than 40. These individuals have the greatest risk for serious health problems and should seek the advice of a medical professional for help.
Causes of Obesity
Obesity is not caused solely from overeating — there are many different causes of this disease that vary greatly from person to person. These causes can include a high-fat diet, a sedentary lifestyle, genetics, a health condition, an injury that limits mobility, the use of certain medications that cause weight gain, environmental factors, sleep deprivation and more.
Treatment 1: A Diet That’s Designed for Your Body Type
The first approach to losing weight that many people start with is a strict diet plan. By reducing caloric intake, eliminating certain foods that are high in fats/sugars/additives, and starting a high-fiber/low-fat diet, obese individuals can start to experience healthy weight loss.
For some, this may be the main treatment needed to see results. However, for many, it’s not enough. Plus, many people cannot sustain their diet plan long-term and end up binge eating as a result. Or, there may be other factors that are contributing to the person’s weight gain and dieting may not be enough to offset those.
There are also risks associated with “crash dieting” (an attempt at losing weight very quickly, often using extreme, unhealthy measures) to be mindful of, including new health problems, vitamin deficiencies and failure to keep off weight long-term. Fad diets like keto or Atkins may end up depriving dieters of essentials vitamins, which can lead to having to buy supplements to accommodate.
Treatment 2: Increased Physical Activity
As many of us know, the more active we are, the more calories we’re able to burn. According to the CDC, 60 – 90 minutes of moderately intense activity is recommended most days of the week for exercising. The advantage of increased physical activity is that you’re helping increase the rate at which you burn the excess calories being stored in your body. Getting exercise through things like walking, gardening, swimming, climbing stairs, etc. are going to help you see better results than remaining sedentary most of the day.
On its own, this can be a very time-consuming process — especially if the individual’s diet hasn’t been altered. To lose just one pound of fat, 3,500 calories must be burned. Another disadvantage to only relying on physical activity to combat obesity is that anyone who isn’t used to exercising regularly is at a higher risk for injury or other health risks. Strenuous activities should always be consulted with a physician before performing.
Treatment 3: Surgery
Depending on the needs of the patient, surgery for weight loss can involve removing part of a person’s stomach (making it smaller) or it can bypass part of the digestive system. Having a surgical procedure can help not only with weight loss but also with reducing other health risks like diabetes, high blood pressure and other obesity-related illnesses.
This option is highly invasive — it is, after all, surgery. There are always negative side effects that could be associated with surgery, including lengthy recovery times, unanticipated expenses, complications, etc. Plus, although this option may be necessary and helpful for some severely obese individuals, it’s important to note that some insurances will require patients to enroll in a medically supervised weight-loss program prior to scheduling surgery to ensure the patient is taking an active part in making a long-term change in their lifestyle.
Treatment 4: Medically Supervised Weight Loss (*Our Pick)
At Olympia, we believe medically assisted weight loss is the best option. Why? It combines several treatment types listed above (done correctly) to form one powerful weapon against obesity — replacing weight-loss medication with specially formulated vitamin injectables or oral supplements that are designed to help reduce appetite, build muscle and promote a healthy immune system.
When a balanced diet and a manageable exercise plan are paired with vitamin injectables that can help patients healthily drop weight, the potential for significant weight loss opens up. Contact a weight-loss specialist at Olympia today to learn more about a medically supervised weight-loss plan that’s right for you.
If medical supervision is performed by a professional physician, there shouldn’t be any disadvantages associated with this form of treatment. This is because the physician plays an active role in the monitoring and adjusting of treatment based on how the patient is responding to the treatment.
Finding the Right Treatment for You
Each body is different and has its own unique needs. The best thing to do is review and further research your options, and then consult with a physician on what treatment might be best for you.
At Olympia Pharmacy, we offer a range of compounded medications that are designed to help you reach your weight-loss goals. Whether you’re a patient seeking treatment yourself or a physician in search of a trusted weight-loss program to offer your patients, Olympia can help. Learn more about your options by contacting a weight-loss specialist today.