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Understanding Obesity

Providing Excellent Weight Loss Results for Patients in Houston

Obesity is the most common cause of preventable death in the United States. More than one-third of U.S. adults (35.7%) are obese.

The U.S. Public Health Service's health indicator list recognizes obesity as a serious public-health problem. Obesity is associated with about 112,000 deaths each year in the United States relative to healthy-weight individuals. In fact, it is more harmful to your health than smoking and alcohol abuse.

Among the most significant health consequences of obesity are

  • Death and sudden death
  • Hypertension and heart disease
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Gallstones
  • Cancer
  • Bone and joint pains
  • Depression

The good news is that by losing weight, you can improve, prevent, or lower your risk for these weight-related health conditions. At First Choice Weight Loss, we bring together surgeons, physicians, psychologists, nutritionists, devoted nursing and staff that are committed to seeing you through every step of the process.

Definition of Obesity

Obesity is no longer considered a cosmetic issue. The World Health Organization (W.H.O.), along with National and International medical and scientific societies, now recognize obesity as a chronic progressive disease resulting from multiple environmental and genetic factors.

Obesity is measured by body mass index (BMI), a calculation that compares your weight (measured in kilograms) with your height (measured in meters, then squared). Using this calculation (BMI=kg/m 2), you can determine how physicians would classify your body's current size.

  • BMI of less than 24.9 is considered normal.
  • BMI between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight.
  • BMI of 30 or greater is considered obese.
  • Obese patients are placed in three classes, based on their BMI:
  • Class 1 = 30 to 34.9
  • Class 2 = 35 to 39.9
  • Class 3 = 40 to 49.9

Individuals with a BMI that is greater than 49.9 are considered super obese.

Causes of Obesity

The biological basis for severe obesity remains unknown. Numerous causes can contribute to obesity, such as:

  • Eating and social habits – Unhealthy diet, snacking between meals and too little exercise can all lead to weight gain.
  • Consumption of certain food types that, independent of caloric content, cause metabolic/hormonal changes that may increase body fat. These food types include high fructose corn syrup, processed grains, fat and processed meats.
  • Low intake of fat-fighting foods such as fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, quality protein
  • Stress and psychological distress
  • Heredity – you have a higher risk of obesity if it runs in your family.
  • Chronic sleep loss
  • Many types of medications

Whatever the exact causes may be, it is certain that morbid obesity is a complex disease.

The Costs of Obesity

The disease of obesity is extremely costly not only in terms of economics, but also in terms of individual and societal health, longevity, and psychological well-being. Due to its progressive nature, obesity requires life-long treatment and control.

The national cost of this disease is very high. Based on 1998 estimates, annual medical costs to treat patients who are overweight and obese were approximately 79 billion, or 93 billion in 2002 dollars and $147 billion in 2008. The personal cost of living with obesity can also be significant. Consider what you might spend on the following items:

  • Out of pocket healthcare expenses
  • Over-the-counter medication costs
  • Co-pays for doctor office visits
  • Co-pays for lab work
  • Co-pays for specialists
  • Co-pays for physical therapists/allied health professionals
  • Prescription co-pays
  • Employment inactivity costs (days of missed work)
  • Non-surgical weight loss programs

These expenditures quickly add up. You may find that dramatic weight loss can greatly reduce your weight-related costs.

Non-Surgical Treatments

The most common approach to weight loss is to eat less and also more sensibly, and to increase exercise/activity. This well-known approach is generally safe and beneficial for all patients. Other popular diet programs such as Atkins and the Zone diets have attempted to reduce weight by changing the types of foods consumed.

While millions of Americans try various diet, fitness and medication programs to treat their obesity, their efforts usually offer only short-term results. Medical studies show that if you are obese, you are not likely to achieve significant long-term weight loss through diet and behavior changes, alone.

Dietary weight-loss causes biological responses that persist long-term and contribute to weight regain. One of these responses affects energy balance. When a person loses weight, the body 'thinks' it is starving and energy expenditure is reduced in order to conserve calories. The reduction in energy expenditure with dietary weight-loss requires that, in order to maintain weight loss, the dieter eat even fewer calories than someone of equal body size who has never been on a diet. However, eating less is difficult following a diet because there are long-term changes in regulators of appetite that increase the desire to eat and the amount of food that can be consumed. Such diet-induced changes favor a positive energy balance and weight regain and, because the conditions responsible for the reduction in energy expenditure and increased drive to eat persist long-term, an individual will often not only regain all of their lost weight, but even more.

The Benefits Of Bariatric Surgery*

Weight loss surgery* will improve your health and allow for a better quality of life. As you lose excess weight, you will have more energy and feel proud of the way you look. Feelings of self-consciousness will be replaced by feelings of self-confidence. In addition, most health conditions associated with obesity resolve or improve following bariatric surgery*. It is important to remember that weight loss surgery* is not for everyone, but it is a tool to be used in conjunction with diet and exercise to achieve a healthier and fuller life.

If you want to lose weight now, weight loss surgery* in Houston may be the perfect answer! 1st Choice Weight Loss aims to find the perfect weight loss solution for each patient, so call (281) 888-7767 to find out if our services are right for you!

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1st Choice Weight Loss Program Includes:

  • Patients Are Carefully Monitored Under Our Physician's Care
  • Guidance by Our Staff Physician and Program Dietitian
  • Prioritize Real Food and Physical Activity
  • Not A Quick Fix, It Is Your Lifestyle Change!
  • Educational, Well-Balanced and Inclusion of Physical Activity Provides Long Term Benefits After Completion Of Program
  • Portion of Program Expenses May Be Covered By Insurance
  • Signature Meal Replacement and Supplements