Losing weight is an incremental process. Instead of diving into a brand-new exercise program and strict diet, take it one step at a time. Here, we outline four weight loss options that can build upon each other for lasting success.
1. Start with nutrition
Losing weight begins with taking a closer look at what you’re putting into your body. If you’re just starting out, consider downloading an app like MyFitnessPal to track your calories. Many people will start to see results after this initial step — just be consistent about measuring your food and honest about what you’re eating and drinking.
At Ochsner: Set and reach your wellness goals with one-on-one nutrition consultations at Ochsner Fitness Center. There, a registered dietitian can create a plan to help you reduce body fat, increase muscle mass and change your lifestyle. And make sure you download the Eat Fit app, which can help you find healthy options when dining out.
2. Add in exercise
Whether you’re shooting for 10,000 steps a day or contemplating personal training, being more active is the next step to losing weight. The key here is to make a realistic plan that incorporates both cardio and strength training.
If you’re just starting out, hitting the gym five days a week probably isn’t attainable or even a good idea. Instead, shoot for a consistent three-day-a-week plan, — one that you can achieve and feel good about. Always talk to your physician about what level and type of exercise is right for you.
At Ochsner: Ochsner Fitness Center’s four locations offer both personal training and group fitness classes to help members meet their goals. Start with comprehensive exercise testing to determine your individual needs.
3. Explore physician-supervised weight-loss programs
Ready for more support? Physician-supervised weight-loss programs offer personalized food and exercise plans, — all under the supervision of a physician. Plus, you’ll receive the education you need to lose weight and improve medical conditions related to your weight. Learn to make long-term lifestyle changes in the real world, including recipes, advice for eating out, handling stress without food and improving your exercise routine.
Plus, you’ll receive the education you need to lose weight in the real world, including recipes, shopping lists and advice for eating out.
At Ochsner: Ochsner’s physician-supervised weight-loss programs include comprehensive medical evaluations, regular monitoring and one-on-one support.
4. Consider surgical options
If your BMI is 40 or greater — or between 35 and 40 with weight-related health problems — your doctor may recommend weight-loss surgery as an option. But operations like laparoscopic gastric bypass (a procedure which creates a smaller stomach pouch that allows the food you eat to bypass most of your stomach and move directly to your small intestine) and sleeve gastrectomy (during which about 75% of the stomach is removed) are not magic bullets. Undergoing weight loss surgery can drastically change your life and improve your health, but only if you understand the lifetime commitment and responsibility.
At Ochsner: Patients interested in bariatric surgery are first required to attend an online or in-person weight loss surgery seminar. From there, a bariatric physician assistant or bariatric surgeon will take an extensive health history and assessment to determine if you’re a good candidate for laparoscopic gastric bypass, laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy or weight loss revision surgery.
Get personalized weight loss advice: Take our quiz to see which weight loss solutions fit your lifestyle and meet your goals.