The treatment of obesity can be carried out with a diet to lose weight, exercise and even medication prescribed by the doctor to help reduce appetite and cravings for food. In some cases, bariatric surgery may be indicated, as it reduces the area of absorption of food in the gastrointestinal tract, which leads to weight loss.
The main objective of these treatments is to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, preventing the development of complications related to obesity, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, gastroesophageal reflux and even impotence or infertility, for example. Know the complications of obesity and how to avoid them.
The treatment of obesity must be carried out by a multidisciplinary team composed of an endocrinologist, nutritionist, bariatrician and a physical trainer, since more than one type of treatment is generally necessary. In addition, it is important to take psychological support to identify behaviors that can cause food compulsion and to help not give up treatment.
The main treatments indicated for obesity are:
1. Changes in the diet
The first step, both to treat and to prevent obesity, is to make changes in the diet, including a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, vegetables, fiber and water according to the advice of the doctor and the nutritionist.
These changes in the diet allow you to control the consumption of calories ingested during the day, which must be less than what is spent, to maintain the body’s metabolism, being calculated according to the usual diet, the amount of weight that is need to lose, in addition to age, sex, height and current weight.
Use the calculator to find out how many calories you burn per day:
Constant weight loss in the long term is considered the safest way to lose weight and the best way to maintain it, since drastic changes such as extreme diets or wanting to slim down very quickly can give immediate results, but you will probably regain the weight in a short period of time. See a diet to slim down in a healthy way.
2. Practice physical activity
The practice of physical activities, such as walking or swimming, for example, is an essential part of the treatment of obesity, as it helps to increase the body’s metabolism, favoring energy expenditure and calorie burning, facilitating weight loss.
The ideal is that, in order to lose weight, to perform 150 to 300 minutes of physical activity per week, being essential to have a medical evaluation before starting the exercises to know the state of health, in addition to receiving the orientation of a physical educator to avoid injuries such as tendinitis or muscle strains, for example. Find out the best exercises to slim down.
In addition, small changes in life habits, such as reducing the use of the car or opting for the use of the elevator instead of the stairs, for example, it helps to move more the body, burn calories and lose weight.
3. Medicines for obesity
The use of drugs to treat obesity are indicated by the doctor when the person has a BMI greater than 30kg/mtwoBMI greater than 27kg/mtwo and who have other related illnesses such as diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure, in addition to cases of people with any type of obesity who cannot slim down with diet and exercise.
The main drugs indicated in the treatment of obesity are:
- appetite suppressantssuch as sibutramine or amfepramone, they act directly on the center of satiety on the brain, decreasing appetite, reducing calorie consumption throughout the day and helping to lose weight;
- Grease absorption reducerssuch as orlistat, which acts by inhibiting some enzymes in the intestine, which blocks the absorption of fats from food, reducing the amount of calories ingested during the day;
- CB-1 receptor antagonists such as rimonabant, which acts directly on the brain by inhibiting the appetite, increasing satiety and decreasing food compulsion;
- thermogenicssuch as ephedrine, which act by accelerating metabolism and making the body spend the accumulated grease as the main source of energy.
In addition to these medications, there are others that are used in the treatment of other diseases that can help fight obesity, such as the antidepressants fluoxetine, sertraline or bupropion
Medicines for the treatment of obesity must be used only under medical advice, and they require regular attention and follow-up, due to the risk of collateral effects, such as increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, headache, diarrhea, changes of mood, irritability, anxiety or insomnia, for example.
4. Bariatric surgery
Bariatric surgery is indicated by the doctor in cases of morbid obesity, it is decided with a BMI greater than 40 mg/mtwou moderate obesity, with a BMI greater than 35mg/mtwoin people who have diseases caused by obesity such as diabetes, apnea, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, cardiovascular diseases, stroke, arrhythmias or osteoarthritis.
The main types of bariatric surgery are:
- gastric band: an adjustable faja is placed around the stomach, reducing its size and helping the person eat less;
- gastric bypass: a reduction in the size of the stomach and alteration of the intestine is carried out, which is directly linked to the small stomach, which reduces the person’s capacity to eat large meals, leading to weight loss. See how is the recovery from gastric bypass surgery;
- biliopancreatic diversion: it takes place through the removal of a large part of the stomach and the union of the stomach with the final part of the small intestine;
- vertical gastrectomy or sleeve gastric: removal of the left part of the stomach is carried out, as there is a decrease in the capacity of the stomach to store food. Find out how the vertical gastrectomy surgery is performed.
The type of surgery indicated for each person is selected according to the needs and the procedure that best suits. Another treatment option is the placement of a temporal gastric balloon by endoscopy, being indicated as an incentive for some people to reduce food consumption for a period of time.
Advice for not giving up on treatment
The treatment for obesity is not easy to carry out because it involves the change in eating habits and lifestyles that the patient has had throughout his life, so some advice to help him not give up on the treatment can be followed:
- Establish weekly goals that are possible to achieve;
- Ask the nutritionist to adjust the diet if it is very difficult to comply with;
- Choose a physical exercise that you enjoy and practice regularly;
- Record the results, recording measurements on paper or with weekly photographs.
It is important to remember that there are free weight loss programs carried out by university hospitals or the public health system, which will depend on each country.
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