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Dr. Monica Edwards, a Primary Care physician, with WJOL radio

Dr. Monica Edwards, an internist, says one of the reasons why weight is a problem in the U.S. is because we live in a world of excess. Knowing how important weight is for her patients' health, she calculates the BMI for all her patients. Looking at a patient's diet, she says first you have to look at the person's life, whether they work the night shift, or are a new mom.

Once you understand this, then you can set goals. She advises against fad diets because they won't last. It's about taking small steps, working toward a healthy, balanced diet. She says it's true that after losing about 10 percent of body weight that the body has mechanisms to fight further weight loss. This made sense during prehistoric times because it would be dangerous to lose too much weight.

But now we are surrounded by food, and this mechanism works against us. However, it is possible to lose weight once you reach this plateau. It takes determination in watching your caloric intake. Most people say they don't have time to get any exercise in, but there are different ways to do this. She advises her patients to get a pedometer because it helps to squeeze in some extra walking.

Really, losing weight is a marathon, not a sprint. Setting goals is very important. Obesity puts you at higher risk for a wide variety of illnesses.

Bariatric surgery has truly been beneficial for some patients who are obese. She has seen patients undergo this surgery and then they get their blood pressure and diabetes until control.

For more information or to make an appointment, please call 888-LUHS-888 (888-584-7888).

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Evie Polsley
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