Weight Loss Options
At its core, weight loss is a matter of eating less and moving more. Unfortunately, successfully losing weight and managing it long term isn’t as simple as this equation makes it seem.
Weight loss surgery is a tool that removes some of the difficulty associated with limiting food intake and eventually becoming more active. However, weight loss surgery is not the only option available for weight loss. It is often useful to be aware of all options so you can choose the one that best suits your lifestyle and weight loss experience.
Common Weight Loss Methods
When it comes to losing weight, there are many different programs to choose from. Unfortunately, not every program is as successful as another. Here is a basic outline of the different types of programs you’ll come across as you embark on your weight loss journey.
When considering weight loss programs, look for details like:
- Medical supervision
- Ongoing support and guidance
- Behavioral counseling for long-term lifestyle changes
- Personal fitness training or guidance
- Recommended dietary changes
At-home or conventional weight loss programs are typical dietary plans. These weight loss plans often incorporate some form of elimination diet, meaning they require you to limit your food intake greatly, or encourage you to cut out a particular food from your diet. These weight loss plans often do not require any physician supervision, and are generally based on temporary behavioral and dietary changes.
While popular, conventional weight loss diets are not typically successful for long-term weight loss. Though you may lose weight at the beginning of the diet, it is common that you will re-gain the weight as soon as former habits are resumed. The common result is a cycle of weight loss and weight regain commonly referred to as yoyo dieting.
Medical Weight Loss
Medical weight loss plans are physician-guided weight loss programs. These plans rely on a calorie restriction diets similar to conventional weight loss programs, but they are more successful because of physician supervision, expert behavioral guidance and advice, and prescription weight loss medications.
Here are the most common features of medical weight loss programs:
- Meal replacement programs
- Low or very low calorie diet plans
- Weight loss medications such as appetite suppressants
Weight Loss Surgery
Weight loss surgery is the most effective method for long-term weight loss. Types of weight loss surgery include:
- Sleeve gastrectomy
- Gastric bypass
- Lap Band surgery
Weight loss surgery is different from other methods of weight loss due to the physical alterations made to the stomach and/or digestive tract. Bariatric surgery procedures encourage weight loss by restricting how much food the stomach can hold at one time. Some procedures also change the amount of nutrients that can be absorbed into the bloodstream, thus further encouraging weight loss.
As you consider which weight loss method is ideal for you, think about your history with obesity and what weight loss options have or haven’t been successful for you in the past. Always consult with a weight loss physician before starting any new weight loss program.