Whether it’s a new year’s resolution or coming to the realization that shedding some weight will help you live longer, it can be a very challenging endeavor. We all have heard it before….watch what you eat, exercise, get surgery, take some diet pills, use semaglutide injections, buy a lock for your fridge! No matter which route we go, there will be some challenges along the way but with perseverance you can be successful. Let’s break it down to understand how all these things can lead to weight loss which at the end of the day will help you Feel Good & Look Good in Los Angeles.
Let’s start with the most drastic measure to lose weight: SURGERY! There are several options now. Gastric resection, Gastric Sleeve, Lap Band, which are all great options to lose weight. They shrink the amount of space you have to take in food, and so you feel “full” faster. Sounds great right? Unfortunately these come with a lot of downsides too. You will have to be on a “special” easily digestible diet for a long time. Having worked in the emergency department, I have seen first hand the many complications that have occurred: surgical seams falling apart letting food contents escape the digestive tract into the abdomen, stomach ulcers, bowel obstruction (intestines unable to allow food to pass through), and of course wound infections and scars. All this said, surgery may still be a proper option for some people.
What about Liposuction? That’s not a “real” surgery, right? Yes, Liposuction is still a surgical intervention, although it is less invasive than the above methods. Here a small wand is passed under the skin, but NOT into the abdominal cavity. This wand, then, can start breaking apart the fat and vacuuming it out from under the skin. Ok, this sounds amazing doesn’t it? Minimally invasive. You go home the same day. You’re not at risk for ulcers and bowel obstructions. Well it still carries some negative aspects. Most importantly there is still a risk of infection. The port sites may leave a scar. Even though a lot of the fat gets sucked out below the skin it may leave behind small blobs of fat that can make the skin look uneven, like a cobblestone road. Additionally, what a lot of people don’t realize is that you don’t just have fat under the skin of your belly. INSIDE the abdomen itself, the intestines have a large web-like network called the omentum, and this network is home to many large fat deposits. This is called visceral fat. Visceral fat is inaccessible to liposuction, so you will still have to engage in a proper weight loss program to get rid of the visceral fat to keep your belly from sticking out.
So now we leave the invasive methods to discover other ways to lose weight that don’t involve knives. How about the actual diet, what you eat. This is actually super important. The whole idea behind those surgical methods was to reduce the amount of calories taken in. When there is excess in nutrients, the body will try to store it for times of famine. When there is deficiency of nutrients, the body will then rely on its stored energy for fuel. It’s a simple concept and very important. The hard part is readjusting your body’s automatic senses to realize it doesn’t need as much food as you have been consuming in the past. Your body WILL eventually adjust so that you feel full with less food. During the weight loss period, you will have to endure some challenging times as you will need to operate in a negative energy state, or pretend like it’s a time of famine so you can burn off the stored fat. Once you have achieved your goals, then you can increase your food intake to a maintenance level. Just remember, you will eventually be able to go back to eating out with your friends at a restaurant and being “normal”. You just have to sacrifice for a period of time to get there.
So what is the best diet program to be in? The hallmark of an effective diet is killing the carbohydrates. This is one of the most important features in getting the body to lose fat instead of make fat. Carbs are the easiest fuel to consume for the body, readily converted to glucose. Excess glucose is readily turned into fat for storage. If you reduce the ability of the body to have access to glucose, it is then forced to use an alternate fuel.
When the body does not have glucose as an option for fuel, it starts converting protein into ketones. Do you see where we are going with this? By now everyone has heard of the term keto or keto diet. This is exactly where it comes from. By starving the body of glucose as a fuel source, you prevent it from making fat. As the body turns fat into glucose & ketones for fuel, it also tries to add extra fuel by converting protein into ketone fuel as a supplement. Why is this important you ask? If you don’t give the body extra protein to chew on, it will start chewing on itself. You will start using your own muscles as a fuel source.
Our research of diet options brings us to the medical weight loss program offered at Refresh Med Spa L.A.. We have developed a program where by having good nutrition from proper protein sources that also carry the many micronutrients you will need, you will ensure that the ketogenic state allows efficient fat conversion to glucose, all while preventing loss of muscles. Why do we need these muscles? Muscles are a main consumer of glucose, so the more muscle mass you have, the more glucose you can burn off. Got an idea what is next?
Exercise. Ugh! Isn’t there a way to lose weight without exercise? Not if you want to lose weight efficiently and get to your goal weight quicker. You don’t have to go bananas or join the gym necessarily, but you cannot just sit there like an inanimate mushroom and expect to burn fuel. Your muscles that are efficient fuel burners will do that very effectively when their fuel source is restricted to ketones and broken down fat. As long as your provider determines it is safe for you, an aerobic exercise that brings your heart rate around 130 for 30 to 60 minutes will make a drastic difference in your weight loss journey. This could be as simple as a fast paced walk.
Having a great weight loss team as your support, plays a crucial role in your success with loss and maintenance of weight. The medically guided program we offer at Refresh Med Spa L.A. helps to bring all of the individual components of the weight loss journey together so that you can have the highest degree of success. We will determine food goals, prescribe medications if necessary, and also coach you with proper activity. Although medications such as Semaglutide (Ozempic, Wegovy, Rybelsus), Tirzepatide (Mounjaro), or even phentermine can be helpful in weight loss, they may not be appropriate for everyone. We invite you to make an appointment at our L.A. weight loss center for an evaluation with our medical experts and determine which will be the best route for you.