Weight Loss with HEALTHeME

Weight loss and good health made simple

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Working with your doctor may help you lose weight.

Doctor visits help you lose weight.
A few recent studies found that talking with your doctor about your excess weight may help you shed those unwanted pounds.  One study found that patients were more motivated to lose weight when doctors talked with them about being overweight. Another study found that lifestyle counseling helped prevent additional weight gain in overweight patients.

This all sounds well-and-good but how many doctors actually talk to their patients about their weight? Not many. In one study, less than half of overweight people and less than two-thirds of obese people had a conversation about their weight with their physician. We know the health-related consequences of being overweight or obese can be serious, so why wouldn’t a doctor want to confront this issue head-on?

Well, there may be several reasons for the uncomfortable silence. It may be that physicians feel this is an “off-limits” topic and they don’t want to risk offending a patient. Another thought is that physicians are not trained to help people with weight loss. Whatever the reason, in many cases, the conversation just isn’t happening.

What can you do? If you have concerns about your weight, your first step is to bring it up to your doctor. Even if they aren’t comfortable helping you with your weight loss goals, they may be able to connect you to the appropriate resources. At the very least, your doctor should be able to do an assessment to determine if you are ready to begin an exercise program. Exercising even 10 minutes can boost your metabolism for up to 1 hour, which burns extra calories. Bet you can guess what that means? Yep, more calories burned means weight lost! Even losing 10% of your body weight can make a huge impact on your health.  So, talking about weight loss with your doctor makes sense for you, and your health.