What Is Medical Weight Loss?

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If you have tried to lose weight through standard channels such as eating a healthy diet and increasing the amount of physical exercise you are getting but have had little success, medical weight loss may be for you.

The phrase medical weight loss is used to describe a scientific and medically-based program conducted under a qualified doctor’s supervision. The objective of medical weight loss is to assist overweight and obese patients in improving their health through losing weight and sustaining their weight loss long-term.

What Is Included in A Medical Weight Loss Program?

Medical weight loss usually consists of:

Individualized planning and support from a doctor to ensure safe weight loss.
Medical intervention based on patient body composition tailored to work with their metabolism.
Support from nutritionists, therapists, and possibly other health professionals to affect behavior and lifestyle changes.
Medications administered in pill, injection, or patch form to help patients with appetite control, and fat metabolism, and safely accelerate weight loss.
Vitamin and mineral supplements.

Forms Of Medication To Help With Weight Loss

Weight loss medications most commonly come in the form of a pill or injection:

  • Some medications are taken daily and others are taken weekly;
  • Some injections are available in the form of pre-filled syringes or injection pens that are made to be used one time and then properly disposed of;
  • Some injections come in the form of multi-dose pre-filled injection pens that use a new needle attachment for each injection.

Who Is A Candidate For A Medical Weight Loss Program?

Individuals who have a BMI over 30 or individuals who have a BMI over 27 and also have one or more health issues that are related to obesity such as type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure.
Individuals who will be diligent in following the diet and exercise programs that accompany your individualized medical weight loss plan.
Individuals who are willing to make long-term lifestyle changes in order to become healthier.
Individuals who do not have a health condition that would prevent them from using certain forms of medication for weight loss.

How Much Does Medical Weight Loss Cost?

The cost of a medical weight loss program will vary by patient and be dependent on several factors including the type of support options being used (dietician, therapist, fitness professional, etc.), the type and dose of medication, and if insurance is accepted for any portion of the program or medication.

What Are The Benefits Of A Medical Weight Loss Program?

Losing weight lowers the risk of high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and other serious and often life-threatening health issues.
A customized plan for weight loss based on your body’s metabolism is created for each individual.
Losing weight under the supervision of a doctor ensures that weight loss is done safely.
Using medication to help with weight loss in conjunction with a monitored diet and exercise program helps boost your efforts resulting in more significant weight loss.
Access to a dietician, medical weight loss specialists, and other medical professionals, provides a holistic and more balanced approach to weight loss.

Take the first step on your journey to a healthy life

IBI Healthcare Institute provides an unmatched patient experience and outstanding results. You matter to us.

Medical Weight Loss FAQs

What is a medical weight loss diet?

A medical weight loss diet is a guideline of the types of foods and the quantities that should be eaten in conjunction with your personalized weight loss program and is typically given to you by the bariatric and medical weight loss center you are working with.

This diet normally is structured around a reduced calorie intake that includes no processed foods, no sugar, few starches, reduced salt, and is high in protein and green leafy vegetables.

How successful is medical weight loss?

Medical weight loss can be very successful if it is used as a tool like it is intended to be. Taking medication to help alleviate hunger and boost metabolism coupled with a large support system, will go a long way to help patients lose weight and keep it off. These are just tools that can help boost the effort that is put in by the patient.

If the patient puts in very little effort, then they will find very little success with their program. Likewise, if the patient puts forth a significant amount of effort and follows their diet and exercise program diligently, they will find great success with medical weight loss treatments.

What can I expect at a medical weight loss consultation?

At your first consultation, your medical weight loss doctor will find out as much as they can about your personal and family medical history. The doctor will talk with you about your goals, ideal weight, and current lifestyle and then formulate a realistic plan to help you achieve those goals.

You may also undergo some testing to determine the appropriate medication that will work best for you. Otherwise you may be asked to return after going to your primary physician with the information necessary.

You will get to know the doctor and many of the medical support professionals and determine which ones you will need to make your program successful.

Are medical weight loss programs safe?

Medical weight loss programs are safe when run by board-certified doctors who specialize in weight loss.

How does the medical weight loss program work?

Under a doctor’s care, you are evaluated and given medication to help with your weight loss efforts. The doctor will provide you with a restricted-calorie diet and an approved program of exercise/physical activity for you to follow while also using the medication.

Normally, you are required to participate in monthly support sessions and check-ins with a dietician who will help keep you on track.

You will have monthly appointments to meet with your doctor, discuss your progress and make any dose adjustments to your medication. Typically medication is administered in the lowest dose available and over 5 months the dose is raised each month until the maximum is reached.

Take the first step on your journey to a healthy life

IBI Healthcare Institute provides an unmatched patient experience and outstanding results. You matter to us.