Friday, August 21, 2009

Lifestyle Modification with Medical Counseling Can Lead to Weight Loss

Lifestyle modification — including diet and exercise changes — is known to be the most utilized weight loss method. However, lifestyle modification doesn’t lead to long term weight loss for many obese persons. But a recent study done at the University of Kentucky shows that lifestyle modification -- specifically diet change -- utilized with medical supervision can lead to quite respectable weight loss for obese persons. And there may be ways to maintain the weight loss long term.

The study-participants' diet was modified with the use of meal replacements. And medical supervision was combined with the meal replacements. This combination enabled obese-study participants to lose up to 16 percent of their initial body weight. The participants in the medically supervised program “lost an average 43.4 pounds in 19 weeks.” The meal replacements in the study were shakes, entrees, and bars.

Indeed, it has been shown before that the use of meal replacements can lead to weight loss. Among shakes, entrees and bars, specific examples of meal replacements include Lean Cuisine and Healthy Choice packaged meals. The packaged meals enable a dieter to simply pick up a meal without having to worry about the calorie or nutritional content. And this can be quite convenient. Moreover, a 2003 Pub Med report indicated that meal replacements can be employed safely to enable one to lose weight and maintain the weight loss.

Still, maintaining the weight loss -- even with meal replacements -- can prove to be difficult. But modifying a lifestyle so that appropriate meal replacements are selected and used for the long term can be aided with external reinforcement from medical weight loss counselors. Bariatric centers can provide ongoing counseling to help the obese person continue to make the best choices and stick with a diet program. And long term counseling can be an important offering for a weight loss or bariatric services provider.

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