What is medical weight loss? Medical weight loss differs from surgical weight loss, in that it does not utilize any type of surgical procedure such as gastric bypass or sleeve, lab band, or gastric balloon. While surgery is a good option for some, weight loss can be achieved without a procedure. Research has shown that permanent weight loss is most successful when a person commits to a structured program that includes regular visits often in a group setting. A highly trained team is essential to provide teaching and guidance with a research-based curriculum, combined with medical visits to monitor medications, blood tests, weight, blood pressure and general health concerns. High quality meal replacements are used to ensure rapid, safe and steady loss of fat, while protecting against loss of lean muscle. North Shore Weight Management uses the New Direction system, which is only available to physicians. The most important aspect of any program is the ongoing support once the weight is lost. Statistics reveal that many individuals will tend to regain after reaching goal weight, unless they continue within a strong maintenance program.
The New Direction System ulitizes a four phase approach:
- Screening This includes a comprehensive medical evaluation to determine that the New Direction System is appropriate for you. The physician will consider your medical history, medications and prior surgeries during this visit.
- Reducing This is the active weight loss phase of the program. This phase uses delicious, nutritionally complete meal replacements to put the body into a state of “ketosis”. While in ketosis, your body will utilize fat stores for energy, rather than carbohydrates. This allows a reduction in calories without increasing hunger. Most people can expect to lose between 2 and 5 pounds each week. Classes with our Registered Dietician meet weekly, and cover a broad spectrum of behavioral and lifestyle concepts to help you develop better habits. Our goal is to help you maintain your new weight for the rest of your life, with the skills you learn during our program. You will be seen for a medical visit as often as determined by the physician, depending on your medical conditions.*
- Adapting This phase gradually reintroduces grocery foods and typically starts when patients are within 5 to 10 pounds of their goal weight. Participants practice newly acquired eating, exercise, and lifestyle behaviors as they lose their last few pounds, so their new behaviors can become permanent behaviors. Classes continue every 2 weeks during this phase.
- Sustaining When you have successfully reached your goal weight, we will continue to support and guide you using relapse prevention techniques in our S.T.A.R program: Steps Against Regain. Patients typically will attend once a month.
*For individuals with diabetes, this may be initially as often as once per week. For most individuals the medical visits will be on average once per month.