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When Your Doctor Prescribes Weight Loss

When your health’s at risk, it’s time to get serious.

Take the Initiative With Your Doctor

What should you do if your doctor has not prescribed weight loss, but you wish your doctor would to give you that extra motivation to lose weight? Go ahead and schedule an appointment to discuss weight loss for health reasons. If you’re nervous, it might be helpful to bring along a supportive friend or family member, and to write down your questions ahead of time.

And how about if your doctor only prescribed weight loss for something that’s bothering you, like osteoarthritis in your aching knees, instead of addressing the condition? Remember that weight loss itself often does resolve a number of medical conditions, so your doctor may be trying to take a conservative approach. If you aren’t comfortable with the recommendation, ask whether there is something you can do to help solve your medical condition while you’re working on your weight loss.

Weight Loss for Health Reasons: What Are the Options?

When you need to lose 50 pounds or more, it can seem like an impossible task. While weight loss isn’t easy, the good news is that there are a number of ways you can successfully work toward your goal.

Diet and Exercise

“The best technique for losing weight is to lower your calories, but not too low, and to increase your physical activity with a starting goal of 30 minutes at least five days a week, increasing to 60 minutes,” Smithson tells WebMD. “This is the foundation of losing weight.”

Whether you’ve tried to lose weight in the past or this is your first attempt at weight loss, it is helpful to consult a registered dietitian for advice on the types and amounts of foods you should eat. A dietitian will work with you to design an individualized diet program that works for your lifestyle, preferences, and health needs. Some dietitians will even make trips to your home to help you create a home environment that can help you lose weight.  

If you’d rather not consult a dietitian, or if your insurance won’t cover the visit, there are other options available, including commercial weight loss programs. If you choose to go this route, experts recommend choosing a program that has proven successful for many people and is backed by scientific evidence. These types of programs will also provide you with a supportive community of people who are also working toward weight loss.

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