The Medical Weight Loss program is a multi-faceted program for patients that may not meet the criteria for weight loss surgery. If your body mass index (BMI) is lower than 40 but you still have 20, 30, or 50 pounds or so to lose, medical weight loss is a good option to improve one’s health. Obesity-related conditions such as high blood pressure, pre-diabetes, or metabolic syndrome can often be resolved with our medical weight loss program.
People suffering from chronic obesity-related conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes/prediabetes, sleep apnea, or metabolic syndrome are also good candidates for medical weight loss.
Medical Weight Loss: What to Expect
We understand weight loss is personal, and have enhanced our services to offer a non-surgical approach based on the individualized needs of every patient. Gender, age, activity level, genes and more all play into one’s body composition, so our comprehensive program sets you up to be successful in your weight loss journey.
Patients referred to the program receive some of the same great benefits as our surgical patients, including nutrition counseling, behavioral classes such as the Psychology of Eating and My Hungry Head, as well as the expertise of our clinical specialists and appropriate follow up care to help them succeed. Most insurances are accepted.
In addition to physician followup, you will meet with the clinical team at the Center for Weight Management. Registered dietitians will provide nutrition counseling and will have several diet options including physician-guided meal replacements and self-maintained diets.
These diets include whole food, plant based, Mediterranean, or a high protein/low refined carbohydrate diet. The team keeps a close follow up on patients to ensure they are up-to-date on labs and nutrition appointments. Physical activity plans and behavioral counseling are also included to give patients a comprehensive toolkit for success.
Before your Consultation
Before your first visit, several tests, screenings, and other measurements that may include an EKG, urinalysis, blood panel, body composition analysis, and other vitals will be given so your medical history and results can be discussed at your first visit.
What to Expect at Your First Visit
Dr. Supriya Rao leads the new Medical Weight Loss Program at the Center. Certified in obesity medicine, she meets with patients to help design a plan based on their individualized needs and medical history. She stresses the advantage of a medically supervised program is that patients get the whole picture of what is going on in their bodies that may impair their ability to lose weight. If necessary, weight loss medications may be prescribed. This first visit will take about a half-hour, where she will review factors that contribute to your weight such as:
- Metrics from your lab work, ekg, and other tests
- Health history
- What you currently eat and at what time
- Any current prescriptions you take
- Sleep hygiene
- Hydration habits
- Work habits and stress
- Exercise and activity levels
A strong emphasis is placed on lifestyle and what changes need to be make for you to be successful, and what has not worked and what has worked in the past.
Patients typically go once a week for the first several months of the program. After medical testing and consultation, Dr. Rao creates an individualized diet and exercise plan with an emphasis on accountability, education, and support. She will work with you to develop your goal weight. The plan may include prescriptions for weight loss medications if necessary, and patients may choose a quick start approach with meal replacement options, or more of a slow and steady phased approach to lose 1-2 pounds a week.
At weekly check-ins, you benefit from the comprehensive expertise of our Center for Weight Management and Bariatric Surgery team. You may meet with a nurse practitioner, medical doctor, registered dietitian, or a behavioral therapist during your journey. They will monitor weight loss, and ask answer any questions regarding your plan.
When your goal weight is achieved, you transition to monthly meetings. During this phase, providers will establish the maintenance stage of your diet and make any calorie or exercise adjustments necessary to help you maintain the loss.
This is the overall wellness phase where you have met your goal weight. For some patients, medical conditions such as pre-diabetes or high cholesterol may be resolved in individuals who have lost 30 pounds or more and have made significant changes in their body mass index (BMI). The doctor may request additional testing to get an updated health picture of liver function and other conditions that may have been present at the beginning of the program.