It's About More Than a Number on the Scale

For people living with obesity, the importance of losing weight is not just about cosmetic appearance. Maintaining a healthy weight has a significant positive impact on your physical health, mental health and quality of life. With a body-mass index (BMI) in a healthy range, your body can function effectively and efficiently, which is the foundation you need to have more energy, feel better and be inspired to get back to your favorite activities.

Losing just 5% to 10% of your total body weight can drastically improve your overall health by improving or resolving obesity-related health problems such as elevated blood sugar, hypertension, high cholesterol, sleep apnea and joint pain. Most people see weight loss benefits very quickly after reaching and maintaining a healthy BMI.

Controlling Obesity Improves Overall Health

People living with obesity are at an increased risk of developing significant health problems. Excess weight leads to complications with multiple systems in the body, including the cardiovascular, endocrine and reproductive systems. Beyond the physical-health challenges caused by obesity, many people also suffer from mental-health challenges, self-esteem problems or social isolation. Our goal is to work with you to explore opportunities for weight loss so you can thrive physically, emotionally and socially.

Maintaining a healthy weight can improve or reverse the effects of a wide range of obesity-related conditions, including:

Elevated blood-sugar levels can lead to type 2 diabetes. People with type 2 diabetes have an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, nerve damage, circulation problems and vision complications.

Excess body weight strains the cardiovascular system and can result in high blood pressure, heart disease, coronary artery disease, heart attack, irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia) and stroke.

Elevated cholesterol levels can lead to hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) which is a primary cause of heart disease, heart attack and stroke.

Obesity is directly related to obstructive sleep apnea, causing snoring, pauses in breathing and decreased oxygen circulation in the body. Living with OSA increases the risk of cardiovascular disease. It can also lead to daytime drowsiness, which may cause challenges at work or school and can contribute to car crashes and other accidents.

Excess abdominal fat squeezes the stomach and digestive system, causing acid reflux. When stomach acid travels backwards, into the esophagus, it can cause painful conditions, including inflammation of the esophagus, difficulty swallowing, ulcers and cancer.

Living with obesity can lead to mental-health problems including depression and anxiety. Many people who need to lose weight are unable to get out and participate in activities with others or may suffer from diminished self-esteem.

Excessive body weight puts increased pressure on the joints, which can cause a breakdown of cartilage. Without sufficient cartilage in the joints, bones rub against each other, and joints become stiff and painful, known as osteoarthritis. Loss of mobility can occur because osteoarthritis makes it more difficult to walk and move around.

When excess weight applies extra pressure to the urinary system, incontinence can occur. This results in an involuntary loss of urine during physical activity, coughing, sneezing or laughing.

Women with obesity have increased levels of testosterone that can lead to irregular menstrual cycles and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), which is a leading cause of infertility. PCOS also causes excessive hair growth on the face and body.

Men with obesity have low sperm counts and decreased levels of testosterone, which can cause impotence. Many men in their 20s and 30s who need to lose weight do not have sufficient sperm count to conceive a child.

Also known as syndrome X, metabolic syndrome is a group of risk factors including high blood pressure, high blood sugar, unhealthy cholesterol levels and excessive abdominal fat. People with metabolic syndrome are at risk for heart disease, diabetes and stroke.

People with obesity have an increased risk of migraines. Although migraines are not life-threatening, the throbbing headache pain, nausea and sensitivity to light or sound can greatly reduce quality of life.

Obesity can cause circulation problems that lead to venous stasis disease, characterized by varicose veins and swollen legs. Because of poor circulation, people with venous statsis disease may experience painful ulcers, rashes and thickened, itchy skin.

A build-up of excess spinal fluid that accumulates in the brain is known as pseudotumor cerebri, which causes headache, buzzing in the ears, dizziness, nausea and vision loss. Weight loss can relieve this condition.

Experts used to believe the increased risk of cancer from morbid obesity was limited to breast cancer. The evidence now shows that obesity greatly increases the risk of multiple forms of cancer including pancreatic and colon.

NewStart: A Different Approach to Obesity Management

If you struggle to maintain a healthy weight and are facing obesity-related challenges, we are here to help with our customized, science-based program. Forget what you know about outdated weight-loss strategies, stories of failed surgical intervention from past decades, and the myth that diet and exercise work for everyone. Weight loss specialists know more about obesity medicine today than ever before, and the latest findings have led to progressive treatment options that succeed where earlier options failed.

Popular culture is full of “quick fix” ideas for weight loss, but the reality is that obesity is a chronic, progressive disease that often requires specialized medical or surgical treatment for long-term control. The obesity-medicine physicians affiliated with the NewStart Program use a science-based approach to work with your individual genetics, physiology and hormonal pathways to identify the best solution for you.

Understanding Your Weight Loss Options

Medical, Surgical or Combination Treatment

Each patient has unique needs, and an effective weight-loss plan should be tailored to meet individualized goals. One patient may need more significant intervention early in the process, while another may decide on a less-invasive approach.

Both medical and surgical weight-loss interventions require education and lifestyle modifications for sustained success. Neither medication nor surgery can control obesity without making changes to the behavioral, environmental and emotional causes of the disease. The NewStart Program’s obesity medicine specialists guide the entire process to ensure patients have the knowledge, tools and momentum they need to be successful. We want you to experience the best possible life after weight loss.

Who is a candidate for medical weight loss?

People with body-mass index (BMI) greater than 25 may consider medical weight loss options. Some medications are indicated for people with BMI greater than 25, while others are intended for people with BMI greater than 27 with at least one or more obesity-related medical conditions or a BMI greater than 30.

Who is a candidate for surgical weight loss?

Bariatric surgery is usually appropriate for people who meet one of these qualifications:

  • BMI greater than 40
  • BMI greater than 35 with one or more obesity-related medical conditions

Let's Get Started

We hear the same comment from many of our patients: “I wish I had done this sooner.”

The first step is scheduling an appointment for an evaluation with an obesity-medicine specialist. Our experienced, compassionate providers will review your medical history and discuss options for managing obesity so you can live a healthier, vibrant life.

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