If you are overweight, do not feel alone; there are millions of Americans like you around the country who are trying to find weight loss doctors to help them reach their weight loss goals. Medical weight loss is designed primarily to assist any patient with his or her particular weight loss objectives, whether to shed extra pounds quickly or for the last stubborn 10 pounds. Everyone is different, but most medical weight loss is used to treat everyone from patients who have heart problems to patients who suffer from high blood pressure. The majority of weight loss doctors focus on a patient’s overall health and well-being before recommending a weight loss regimen.
Types of Doctors
There are a few different types of doctors and specialists that provide medical weight loss doctors services. Bariatricians, also known as obesity medicine specialists, are physicians who specialize in helping obese individuals to manage their weight. Bariatricians perform physical exams of the body and recommend diet and exercise programs for their patients. Often, geriatricians work with other health professionals to create an individualized weight loss plan for their obese patients. Some bariatricians even offer surgery as a weight loss option, although this is a very last resort for obese individuals.
Obesity medicine specialists in other areas work closely with geriatricians. These medical weight loss doctors are certified by the board of obesity medicine specialists. Certified obesity medicine specialists attend specialized training programs that prepare them to counsel patients who need to lose weight and to counsel them on how best to do so. They learn to evaluate the medical, social, psychological and environmental factors that contribute to an individual’s weight problems. They are trained to evaluate diagnostic guidelines such as the Body Mass Index or BMI.
About Medical Assistants
Another type of medical weight loss doctors is the medical assistant. Medical assistants assist doctors in providing quality patient care. These medical assistants help doctors in performing routine tasks such as measuring body fat, blood pressure and pulse rate; ensuring patients take their medications correctly; preparing patients for examinations; helping patients understand their health risks and symptoms; assisting in minor surgeries; and carrying out other related tasks as needed. Some states allow assistants to get training on the job, although certification is not necessary in most states.
Aside from geriatricians, there are other types of obesity medicine specialists. For instance, some obesity medicine specialists work in hospitals or clinics and treat patients who have extreme weight loss needs. These medical weight loss doctors generally focus on a specific procedure such as bariatric surgery, which can help an obese person loses up to seventy percent of his/her excess weight. (This is still far less than the number of overweight people who need to lose up to ninety percent of their excess weight.)
Providing The Best Care
Bariatricians and obesity medicine specialists work closely with each other to provide patients with the best care. A good bariatrician ensures that his/her patient follows healthy lifestyle changes such as exercise, diet and weight loss medications. For instance, a geriatrician will recommend that obese people try to lose at least five pounds a week through a proper diet and workout program. In addition, these medical weight loss doctors will often counsel patients on healthy lifestyle changes such as maintaining regular brushing and flossing, quitting smoking, avoiding fatty foods and drinking plenty of water.
Obesity medicine specialists can treat patients who have heart disease, diabetes and high cholesterol, as well as individuals with other serious medical conditions. These doctors may also work with individuals who have already tried diet and exercise programs and have failed to lose weight. For these individuals, they may refer their patients to bariatric specialists to ensure proper weight loss after heart disease, diabetes or other conditions.
Bariatricians and other medical weight loss doctors receive specialized training in nutrition and body mechanics. These doctors are recognized by the American Board of Nutrition and the American College of Nutrition. They are expected to maintain high standards of personal hygiene and engage in a daily regimen of physical activity for the comfort of patients. Bariatricians work closely with bariatric surgical teams in hospitals and clinics. These medical specialists assist in coordinating all aspects of the surgery, including post-operative nutrition and lifestyle changes.