Friday, May 20, 2016

Don't Believe the Hype

The struggle to lose weight and improve one's health is nothing new. So, if you’ve followed or dabbled with a fad diet, you’re certainly not alone. And if you actually lost weight with one of them, the pounds probably didn’t stay off for long, did they? What happened? Even in our era of unparalleled knowledge of the human body, we are sometimes still uncertain about what works and what doesn't, although that’s changing. It all comes down to leading a healthy lifestyle that’s rife with physical activity and the right portions of food you enjoy.

But we all know this. Yet we still see similar trends and fad diets come and go. And while we now have a better understanding of what constitutes a healthy diet and lifestyle, people with significantly high amounts of weight to lose experience a great degree of difficulty in achieving their weight loss goals. Fortunately, bariatric surgery is the only approach proven to help people with severe obesity lose weight and keep the pounds off.

We at Dr. Feiz & Associates have a comprehensive understanding of the struggle that obese patients endure in their weight loss journeys. When diets fail and exercise doesn't seem to be helping, bariatric surgery, while not a cure-all or miracle pill, is actually proven to work.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Eye of the Beholder

It's a bit of a cliche to say that perception is everything, but it is an awfully big part of just about everything we do in life. At Dr. Feiz & Associates, we are particularly concerned with, naturally, how people perceive food and representations of food. We were thinking about this as we contemplated a picture of a pile of cheeseburgers and fries that accompanied a recent Facebook post.

Here's what interesting: While the picture clearly was meant to be less than appealing, it was before lunch and we found ourselves thinking about those cheeseburgers in a way that was clearly not intended. That, in a nutshell, is the problem that obese people have. We might know intellectually very well that certain kinds and amounts of food are very bad for us and, over time, will make us less happy as well as less healthy, but their short-term appeal overrides just about everything...even if we know the foods themselves might not even taste particularly good!

Fortunately, it's those kind of impulses that procedures like the gastric sleeve can help us deal with. Like all forms of bariatric surgery  it makes the available stomach area a great deal smaller, making overeating acutely uncomfortable. However, by removing roughly 75-85% of the stomach itself, it also greatly reduces the production of an appetite stimulating hormone called ghrelin. While patients still have to do a great deal of the work of weight loss on their own, reducing the number of powerful brain signals which cause us to be driven to eat food that we would be able to easily avoid if we were in our right mind, is an enormous help.

Friday, May 6, 2016

The Wonders of Water

We at Dr. Feiz & Associates try to do our best to stay on top of news and scientific breakthroughs in the weight loss community. One concern that has recently come up is whether the old adage of drinking more water prior to meals helps in dieting. In fact, a recent study in the journal called Obesity suggested that there may be some validity to this tip. In the study, men and women were placed on hypocaloric diets (1200 calories per day for women and 1500 for men). 30 minutes prior to each of their three daily meals, they were instructed to drink 500 ml  (2 cups) of water. Interestingly, while participants in both the water and non-water groups lost a significant amount of weight (11-17lbs) as a result of the diet, those who consumed more water before their meals actually lost an additional 4.4 pounds! So, in accordance with these findings, doctors may soon be recommending patients to consume approximately 2 cups of water prior to most meals. And because many people find themselves to suffering from the minor symptoms of dehydration, this may be a solid all-around health practice.

Whether you're seeking bariatric surgery options to reduce excess body weight, or are simply trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, we encourage all former, current, and prospective bariatric patients to follow health- and weight-loss related news. Remember, if you or a loved one is struggling with severe obesity, we're here to help.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Human After All

Ultimately, we at Dr. Feiz & Associates strive to help our patients cultivate a healthful and responsible relationship with food. The problem is that, in our industrialized, Western society, cheap and heavily-processed foods are often within reach, and this has led to unprecedented obesity rates that continue to rise worldwide. It doesn't help that advertisers have been trying to ritualize the consumption of French fries and get us hooked on sugar-laced cereals since the premier of Sesame Street. Many would be surprised to hear the fact that, while modern humans have walked this earth for approximately 200,000 years, for the majority of this time, our ancestors lived a hunter-gatherer lifestyle. This means that we were physically active about four to eight hours a day and ate a diet that consisted of various meats, fruits, berries, and nuts. We're not saying that obesity didn't exist at this point in human history, but it's safe to say that these people weren't dying prematurely from obesity-related health issues such as type 2 diabetes and heart failure.

The point is, in order to take up or lead a healthy lifestyle, we need to reevaluate our habits, lifestyles, and diet and consider their impact. We can take up new activities to reconnect with our biology, such as going on brisk, 30-minute walks a couple times a week to activate our metabolism and boost our mood. We can spend weekend hours prepping large batches of healthy foods to take with us to work during the week to avoid the detrimental temptation of fast food and its processed counterparts. We can read books by authors like Michael Pollan and learn more about how our ancestors prepared meals, and where the ingredients came from. In this digital age, we have more access to information than ever before. We just need to make use of it.

So, whether you're seeking bariatric surgery options to help undo some of the impact of obesity and other civilization-related health concerns, or simply looking for coaching services to control your eating, we're here to help.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

The Power of Habit

At Dr. Feiz & Associates, we avidly keep up with scientific research and developments, especially those that pertain to weight loss and nutrition. On this note, we'd like to underline the importance of adopting eating habits and weight loss behaviors that can lead to success. Of course, the most effective practices are often the hardest to establish, especially on a long-term basis. But some of these habits can be easy to start implementing. For example, one thing we may recommend post-bariatric surgery patients is to habitually weigh themselves to ensure that they're meeting their weight loss goals.

One way to instill such a habit is to associate it with a current habit. For example, when it comes to regular weigh-ins, consider buying a scale and using it every time you brush your teeth. Another habit linked to weight loss is, of course, controlling our eating. It can feel tempting to have just one or two more bites of a meal or dessert before we stop. In such cases, we may advise some patients to always ensure they have a low-calorie option handy in the refrigerator, such as celery sticks or apple slices, so that they have something to munch on instead. Sometimes the attraction to food is more about the mouthfeel rather than filling up, so this can be effective way to satisfy such a craving.

We at Dr. Feiz and Associates look forward to helping you attain your weight loss goals. So, whether you're considering a gastric sleeve procedure or the Lap Band, get in touch with us for a consultation to find out which option is best for you.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Let the Good Times Roll

For reasons that are probably all but genetically coded into us, whether we're talking about the traditional birthday cake, a Thanksgiving dinner, or a wedding buffet, we humans associate eating and celebration. Of course, at Dr. Feiz & Associates, we're primarily concerned with helping severely obese people learn to eat a great deal less than they have become accustomed to Even but there's no denying that our inborn association between good times and eating perhaps just a little bit more of high-calories foods than is good for us can complicate attempts at weight loss.

The good news is that a bariatric surgery can help to greatly diminish the nagging need to overeat, and will make truly excessive overeating on any occasion quite uncomfortable. Still, many of us find it difficult to say goodbye once and for all to the kind of feasting we might well associate with celebrations going back to early childhood. The trick is to try and uncouple the unhealthy act of overeating from the very healthy impulse to enjoy good times with the people who matter the most to us. That's a little bit easier said than done, which is why many patients find psychological and nutritional support to be very helpful After all, a Lap Band or a gastric sleeve can start the job of weight loss, but the patient has to finish it.

Friday, April 8, 2016

No Reservations

Honestly, is there anything more enjoyable than a hearty, home-cooked meal? Unfortunately, in a world where we often find ourselves working longer days with less free time, cooking an entire meal can sound downright daunting. Whether you've had bariatric surgery or are still considering it, cooking even simple recipes from whole, even organic ingredients is a great way to reestablish a healthy and natural relationship with food. Besides, maintaining a healthy lifestyle means not being afraid to try something new.

So, one of these days, why not try making a pizza or an artisan salad from scratch? You may be surprised at how your creations compare with those served up at fast food or traditional restaurants. There are multitudes of food blogs, YouTube channels, and cook books available at the library to fuel your inspiration. Additionally, follow our Dr. Feiz & Associates page on Facebook or Google+, because we often share links to high-quality, low-calorie recipes from every corner of the Internet.

We believe that cooking your own meals, along with other health habits such as exercise is a great way to help control obesity. Of course, if you or a loved one is struggling with severe obesity, don't hesitate to get in touch with us at Dr. Feiz & Associates - it may be one of the most importance decisions you can make.