Researchers at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai found that trying to tackle obesity only by exercising and dieting is not a method that shows results in all people. Scientists also believe that obesity is not a disease, as previous studies described it, but a risk factor that may lead to future health problems.
So, study authors recommend that doctors treat obesity depending on their patients’ risk of future health problems from it. Researchers also suggest that physicians should move beyond just advising patients to go on a diet and exercise regularly. Instead, they should focus on the mechanisms of the body that make it hard for obese people to lose the extra pounds.
According to the background information of the study, when people try to lose weight, their body senses the deprivation and starts to believe that it is going to starve. So, the it signals the brain to slow down the calorie burning and start stockpiling additional fats in the event that things get even worse. As a consequence, people start having high-calorie food cravings after they stop dieting and gain their lost weight back with some extra lbs to it, explained the researchers.
This mechanism was very useful to our ancestors to preserve body fat and prevent them from dying when there was not enough food around. But for an already obese person this mechanism is their worse nightmare, although many people are not aware that the body works against them some times.
Study authors said that this simple mechanism is the cause why 80 to 95 percent of obese patients do not lose weight just by exercising and/or dieting.
“In people who have been obese for many years the body weight seems to become biologically ‘stamped in’ and defended,”
Researchers also recommend that doctors should start prescribing weight-loss medication, as well as encouraging obese patients to go for a bariatric surgery, rather than only suggesting dieting and regular exercise.
However, the new study’s authors are aware that the current obesity medication and medical procedures are far from being absolutely safe and effective. That’s why they recommend that patients should combine them with diet and vigorous physical activity.
“We recommend the use of lifestyle modification to treat individuals with sustained obesity, but it should be only one component of a multimodal treatment strategy,”
Yet, doctors should weigh very carefully the benefits and risks of drugs and surgery against the risks of complication in obese patients, according to the study’s conclusions.
Image Source: Nutrie Health
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