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Back to Nutrition Center

Weight Reduction Techniques

Experts agree that the best way to reach a healthy weight is to follow a sensible eating plan and engage in regular physical activity.

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Common diets (Atkins, Ornish.. etc)
Obesity, hazards and complications
Caloric assessment calculators


Obesity is a chronic medical condition. Successful treatment, defined as the sustained attainment of normal body weight without producing unacceptable treatment-induced morbidity.

Experts agree that the best way to reach a healthy weight is to follow a sensible eating plan and engage in regular physical activity. Weight-loss programs should encourage healthy behaviors that help you lose weight and that you can maintain over time.

Behavior Modification

The principles of behavior modification provide the rationale behind many current programs of weight reduction. Typically, the patient is requested to monitor and record the circumstances related to eating, and rewards are designed to modify bad habits. Patients may benefit from counseling offered in a stable group setting for extended periods of time, including after weight loss.

Diet Reduction

Caloric intake is the cornerstone of obesity treatment. The fundamental goal is the sustained reduction of energy intake below that of energy expenditure. A wide variety of suggested diets exist that are designed to achieve this. For more on diet reduction click here!


Exercise is an important component of the overall approach to treating obesity. Increased energy expenditure is the most obvious mechanism for an effect of exercise. Current evidence suggests that exercise should accompany diet reduction and that exercise alone may not be enough. On the other hand, exercise appears to be a valuable means to sustain diet therapy. Exercise has many advantages besides weight loss, especially in the obese individual for its effects on cardiovascular tone and blood pressure. Because many obese individuals have not engaged in exercise on a regular basis and may have cardiovascular risk factors, it should be introduced gradually and under medical supervision, especially in the most obese individuals.


Unfortunately, drug treatment of obesity is rarely efficacious. Despite short-term benefits, medication-induced weight loss is often associated with rebound weight gain after the cessation of drug use, side effects from the medications, and the potential for drug abuse.

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Morbid obesity, defined as either 45 kg (100 lb) or 100% above ideal body weight, is estimated to increase mortality by as much as twelvefold in men between 25 and 34 years of age and sixfold between 35 and 45 years of age. Deaths from cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and accidents have been documented. In response to ineffective treatment using diet, exercise, and available drugs, surgical approaches have been tried. The potential benefits of surgery include major weight loss and improvement in hypertension, diabetes, sleep apnea,CHF, angina, hyperlipidemia, and venous disease.


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