7 Ways to Shape Up for Summer
This just in: for the thousandth year in a row, “diet and exercise” is—and will always be—the best way to stay svelte year-round. We know the solution, of course, but getting there isn’t always as simple. How do we create nutritious meals around obstacles like diabetes and gluten sensitivities? What kind of exercises can we do when we have arthritis or we’re recovering from torn rotator cuffs? Are there any options for losing stubborn fat when months of dedicated diet and exercise still haven’t provided results? What do you do when there isn’t an app for that?
Dr. Bill Strowhouer, the Medical Director of Physicians Weight Control, may have an answer. The physician-supervised clinic has been helping people lose and keep weight off for 30 years. “What propels us above and beyond other weight loss programs is that every time our patients come in, they see a physician,” Dr. Strowhouer says. “We are extremely knowledgeable about different ailments, such as hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, premenopausal or postmenopausal symptoms, and depression. When you get a diet or workout plan at a gym, sure, the trainer knows how to interact with people—but they don’t know how to interact with diabetes or with a mother of three who just had a hysterectomy. We do.”
Map Out Your Meals
To lose weight, maintaining a caloric deficit is necessary. The easiest way to achieve this is with a mixture of reducing calorie consumption (diet) and increasing calories burned (exercise).
With rampant misinformation, trendy diets, and confusing nutrition labels, it can be difficult, if not impossible, to develop a meal plan tailored to your body’s precise caloric needs that’s also nutritionally sound. “We offer one- to ten-week physician-designed plans based on your medical history, goals, and body type,” Dr. Strowhouer says. The plans detail the exact foods and amounts that you should be consuming—all you have to do for success is stick to it.
“Many people ask which diet is the best, be it Atkins, South Beach, low-carb, or high-protein,” he says. “The best diet for you is the diet that you can live with.”
Stick to an Exercise Plan
Exercise, the second primary component of weight control, can be just as confusing as the dieting aspect for both avid exercisers and those who consider shopping to be cardio. Physicians Weight Control offers exercise plans for all levels of fitness. “We cater to people who don’t have a gym membership as well as people who go to the gym several times per week and still can’t get rid of stubborn pockets of fat,” Dr. Strowhouer says. “We even have walking plans for people who are very inactive.”
Add Extra Accountability
Inform friends or family members about your healthy lifestyle goals. Often, unhealthy food and lifestyle choices are enabled by those with whom we spend the most time, tempting us by ordering pizza or encouraging us to skip the gym and go out for drinks instead. Be clear about your new lifestyle and ask them to hold you accountable. Even better, team up with someone who has similar goals and keep each other focused with motivational text messages and support.
Stop Post-Dinner Snacking
Many people find it easy to stick to healthy habits during the day, but find themselves falling off track at night. A handful of chips turns into absentmindedly eating the entire bag in front of the television; a bite of cake becomes two slices. “Your body is in ‘slowdown mode’ at night,” Dr. Strowhouer says. “Most of the calories that you eat late at night will eventually be stored as fat because your body isn’t using that energy.” If you absolutely have to have a bite of something? “Fast-digesting carbohydrates like fruits are the best thing for you to have,” he suggests.
All the sitting that you do every day adds up—but all of your activity adds up too. By taking the stairs whenever possible, parking farther away from store entrances, using your lunch break to take a brisk walk, and doing bodyweight exercises in your living room during television commercials, you can burn hundreds of extra calories every week.
For patients who struggle with hunger pangs—even when they aren’t physiologically hungry—there is a solution. FDA-approved appetite suppressants can help patients stave off hunger and build better habits.
“There’s a huge difference between an over-the-counter dietary supplement and getting a prescribed dietary medication,” Dr. Strowhouer explains. “Dietary supplements don’t need to prove anything to the FDA. We only use medications that have withstood the test of time, and our patients have great success with them.”
If You Can’t Beat It, Zap It
We’ve heard a million times that we can’t “spot reduce” fat—but perhaps new technology has changed that.
“It sounded too good to be true,” Dr. Strowhouer says of Strawberry Laser Lipo, a cutting-edge and FDA-approved new treatment option for combatting stubborn fat. “Don’t confuse this with old-school lipo—this isn’t liposuction, it’s laser-induced lipolysis. Lipolysis is the body’s natural process of breaking down fat cells through diet and exercise. The treatment is non-invasive, painless, and has no downtime. It lasts 20 minutes, and most people lose at least 2 inches cumulatively in that 20 minutes. The laser breaks down triglycerides into component parts that are expelled out of the fat cell and excreted from the body through the lymphatic system—through perspiration
The results, he says, are immediately measurable after the procedure, with eight treatments being recommended in addition to consistent exercise and a healthy diet for optimal results.
Physicians Weight Control
5018 Medical Center Circle