If you are seriously want obesity help and are considering weight loss surgery, you must begin preparing for your appointment. Talking honestly and openly with your doctor is one of the best things you can do for your health. As you consider taking this important step in your personal transformation, you have some homework to do:
- Make up your mind that you'd be an active participant in your own care.
- Meet with your primary care physician.
- Learn a lot from your bariatric surgeon about weight loss help.
- Get some valuable input from a mental health provider, a nutrition specialist or a dietitian about obesity help.
Prepare for your appointment by thinking about your needs and goals for treatment. You can also write down some questions for your doctor about weight loss help. Here are some suggestions:
- Why can't I kick obesity by myself?
- Are there treatment options that help with obesity and other health problems?
- What other health problems come with obesity?
- Does counseling help?
- Is there such a thing as a weight-loss medication?
- Would treatment take a long time?
- How can I help myself?
When you see your doctor for weight loss help, expect to answer a lot of questions, especially those related to activity levels, eating, thoughts, moods and symptoms. You may be asked questions such as:
- How much activity do you get in a typical day?
- During what periods of your life did you gain weight?
- What are the factors that you believe affect your weight?
- How is your daily life affected by your obesity?
- How is your mood affected by your weight?
- What diets or treatments have you used to try to lose weight?
- What other medical conditions, if any, do you have?
- Do you have any family members with weight problems?
- What are your weight-loss goals?
- Are you ready to make changes in your lifestyle to lose weight?
- What do you think might prevent you from losing weight?
- How committed are you to getting obesity help and losing weight?
- What medications or over-the-counter herbs and supplements do you take?
If you have several days or weeks before your scheduled appointment for weight loss help, you can start making some changes to your eating and activity levels as you begin the journey to lose weight. Start making healthy changes in your diet, such as eating more fruits, vegetables and whole grains and reducing portion sizes. Eat breakfast!
It would also be good before you get obesity help to track how much you're eating or drinking each day so you'll get a sense of how many calories you're consuming. It's easy to underestimate how many calories you actually consume every day.
Try increasing your activity level. If possible, take some walks. Otherwise, simply try to get up and move around your home more frequently. Start gradually if you aren't in good shape or aren't used to exercising. If you have any health conditions, or if you're a man over age 40 or a woman over age 50, talk to your doctor before you start a new exercise program.
Support and Coping
A doctor or therapist can provide weight loss help by improving your coping skills. Consider these tips to cope with obesity and your weight-loss efforts:
- Journal. Write in a journal to express pain, anger, fear or other emotions.
- Connect. Don't become isolated. Try to participate in regular activities and get together with family or friends periodically.
- Join. Join a support group so you can connect to others facing similar challenges in your quest for weight loss help.
- Focus. Stay focused on your goals. Overcoming obesity is an ongoing process. Stay motivated by keeping your goals in mind. Remind yourself that you're responsible for managing your condition and working toward your goals.
- Relax. Learn relaxation and stress management. Learning to recognize stress and developing stress management and relaxation skills can help you gain control of unhealthy eating habits.
Try Stress Reduction Techniques Like Lifestyle Changes and Home Remedies
Your effort to overcome obesity is more likely to be successful if you follow strategies at home, in addition to formal obesity help:
- Stick to your treatment plan. Changing a lifestyle you may have lived with for many years can be difficult. Be honest with your health providers if you find your activity or eating goals slipping. You can work together to come up with new approaches.
- Take your medications as directed. If you take weight-loss medications or medications to treat obesity-related conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes, take them exactly as prescribed. If you have a problem sticking with your medication regimen or have unpleasant side effects, talk to your doctor.
- Learn about your condition. Education about obesity can help you learn more about why you became obese and what you can do about it. You may feel more empowered to get weight loss help, take control and stick to your treatment plan. Read reputable self-help books and consider talking about them with your doctor or therapist.
- Enlist support. Get weight loss help from your family and friends. Surround yourself with people who will support you and help you, not sabotage your efforts. Make sure they understand how important weight loss is to your health. You might also want to join a weight-loss support group.
- Set realistic goals. When you have to lose a significant amount of weight, you may try to lose too much too fast. Don't set yourself up for failure. Set daily or weekly goals for exercise and weight loss. Make small changes in your diet instead of attempting drastic changes that you're not likely to stick with for the long haul.
- Identify and avoid food triggers. Distract yourself from your desire to eat with something positive like calling a friend. Practice saying no to unhealthy foods and big portions. Eat when you're actually hungry — not simply when the clock says it's time to eat.
- Do meditation, yoga or tai chi, if your doctor says it's OK.
- Keep a record. Keep an activity and food diary. This journal can help you remain accountable for your eating and exercise habits. You can discover behavior that may be holding you back as well as what works well for you. You also can use the journal to track other important health information such as blood pressure, cholesterol levels and overall fitness.
Your appointment for weight loss help with one of our bariatric surgeons is the first step in what can be a lengthy process. Read more here for the Step-by-Step Process you must complete to gain approval for weight loss surgery.
Frequently Asked Questions
You probably have a lot of questions about obesity help, weight loss surgery and what it means for you. Read more here to see a list of the most frequently asked questions at Emory Decatur Hospital's Comprehensive Weight Loss Center or call and speak to one of our professionals at 404.501.LOSE.