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.

Friday, April 1, 2016

The Best Medicine?

It's definitely true that obesity and bariatric surgery are no laughing matters. On the other hand, since it is April Fools Day, it might be a good time to look at the benefits, including the health benefits, of a sense of humor.

Such sources as WebMD have referenced a number of studies which found that laughter appears to have some of the same benefits as exercise, including boosting the heart rate and burning some extra calories in a healthy manner. There may also be some benefits in terms of blood sugar and immune response. Since we all know that humor releases tension, it's not surprising that there may also be benefits in terms of relaxation and sleep.

These are not small matters for anyone -- particularly those of us struggling with obesity and it's many health impacts. At the same time, it's important to keep things in perspective. At least right now, the impacts of laughter can't be quantified in the same way that, say, a gastric sleeve can. Also, it can be easy to overstate these matters. The laughter and health connection was first seriously suggested in the 1980s by writer Norman Cousins, who was dealing with a seemingly incurable and very painful condition.  He found that laughing hard watching old Marx Brothers movies and "Candid Camera" TV shows seemed to reduce or even eliminate his pain for an hour or two, allowing him to sleep.

Cousins himself was careful not to exaggerate what he had noticed, but the results were frequently exaggerated -- to the point where many people seemed to believe that the writer had laughed his way out of cancer. In reality, while his condition did improve, taking time to laugh was just a small part of a detailed health regimen -- and the condition he suffered from wasn't actually cancer!

Nevertheless, there's no denying that, while we can't yet prove that laughter adds years to your life, we can be pretty sure that, as the old saying goes, it adds a lot of life to your years. We at Dr. Feiz & Associates heartily recommend it!