Battle of the Buldge

Battle of the bulge continues for 50 percent of the Canadians!

Some months ago, I wrote about my own ever increasing girth and my struggle to lose few pounds. I received the following advice from one of the readers:

“It is my experience with ever increasing girth and the reduction of, to eliminate all things white, e.g. white flour, white rice, white fat (turns white when cold and solid), and white sugar (both refined and artificial). I quit sugar to eliminate my migraines (it worked) and lost 34 lbs. in a year. Hope it helps. Good luck, if you try it, that is.”

A good piece of advice.

Losing weight takes time. This point was driven home to me by a cartoon I saw in one of our humor magazines. A kid asks his friend, “How come your mom is so grumpy?” The friend replies, “She’s been on a diet for a month and all she’s lost is her patience.”

You probably remember the story of Melodie Garland published in The Medicine Hat News in May. The headline said: Determination and commitment leads to weight loss success. Garland lost 75 lbs in over a year with a strict diet and exercise. She also attended a local support group.

An article in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) says, “Although 29 percent of the men in the U.S. and 44 percent of the women describe themselves as trying to lose weight, only about 20 percent report restricting caloric intake and increasing physical activity simultaneously, despite recommendation indicating that this combination is effective.” Well, Garland falls in that 20 percent group. She did the right thing.

What else?

In June, the Medicine Hat News wrote a story about the work done by my general surgical colleague, Dr. Carl Nohr. The article had a headline: Winning at the losing game. Nohr does gastric by-pass surgery. His patients lose more than 100 lbs rapidly and are extremely grateful to him for giving them their life back.

In the article, Nohr warns that surgery is not without risks. He says, “People who have a bypass have no protection against being overweight anymore than you and I. This is not a license for people to eat any amount or whatever they feel like. It is more a way of giving them a chance to be like an average person.”

What about pills? No magic pills to lose weight? None.

Obesity is a multi-factorial illness, says Nohr. It is a blend of genetic, metabolic and environmental factors. It is notoriously difficult to treat. There is no one magical solution to obesity. Which ever method or program you chose, you have to work hard for every pound you lose. And have to work harder to maintain the weight loss.

Losing weight isn’t easy but it can be done. Go on a diet (reduce income), exercise regularly (be a big spender), have determination and commitment, give it a good try and be patient. If it does not work then join a support group.

If that does not work then see a psychologist or psychiatrist for behavioral treatment. If that fails then see Nohr. If he accepts you then have bypass surgery and continue with diet, exercise, determination, commitment, patience, and try and try again………….. Winners never quit and quitters never win! The battle goes on!

Now, where is my mirror? And get me Dr. Nohr please!

Start reading the preview of my book A Doctor's Journey for free on Amazon. Available on Kindle for $2.99!

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