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Category: Health & Wellness

Challenge the Stigma: Why Medication-Assisted Weight Loss Unlocks your Optimal Health

Recently I’ve added medication-assisted weight loss to my practice as a Nurse Practitioner, which has caused a bit of a ripple effect as some perceive this treatment as “taking the easy way out”. Achieving and maintaining an ideal body weight is not just about aesthetics; it plays a crucial role in overall health and well-being.

With the rising prevalence of obesity and its associated health risks, it’s more important than ever to understand the benefits of a healthy weight and the tools available to help achieve it, such as medication-assisted weight loss and lifelong wellness tourism programs, such as We Run the States.

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While lifestyle changes such as a balanced diet and regular exercise are foundational for weight loss, medication-assisted weight loss can be an effective adjunct for those who struggle to achieve their weight goals through lifestyle modifications alone. I’ve heard all too many times as a provider, the individuals who have tried the diet fads, calorie restrictions and ‘all the things’ and still struggle with weight.

With all the benefits of an ideal body weight, why is there still such a stigma in utilizing medication? This stigma often prevents individuals from seeking help and achieving their weight loss goals. It’s time to challenge these misconceptions and recognize that medication-assisted weight loss is a legitimate, effective, and medically supervised approach to managing obesity.

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Medication-assisted weight loss involves the use of FDA-approved medications that help reduce appetite, increase feelings of fullness, or decrease the absorption of fat. These medications can make it easier for individuals to stick to a calorie-restricted diet and achieve significant weight loss.

For many individuals, combining medication with lifestyle changes leads to greater weight loss compared to lifestyle changes alone. This can be especially beneficial for those with a significant amount of weight to lose or those with obesity-related health conditions.

Here are just a few of the benefits of medication-assisted weight loss.

weight loss
  • Reduced risk of chronic diseases
    • Excess body weight can lead to insulin resistance, high blood pressure, and increased cholesterol levels, all of which are risk factors for these conditions.
  • Improved Cardiovascular Health
    • Heart disease being the leading cause of Mortality in the United States.
  • Enhanced mobility and joint health
    • excess weight causing joint and back pain, contributing to poor quality of life, particularly in the older adult.
  • Better Mental Health
    • Maintaining a healthy weight can boost self-esteem, reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety, and improve overall mood and energy levels.
  • Improved Sleep Quality
    • Obesity is closely linked to sleep disorders such as sleep apnea.

By working with healthcare providers to develop a comprehensive, personalized weight loss plan, individuals can improve their overall health and well-being, leading to a happier, healthier life. Cultivating a culture of empathy and support is crucial. Understanding that each individual’s weight loss journey is unique can foster a more supportive environment, free from judgment and bias.

It’s time to recognize and respect the medication-assisted weight loss role in the fight against obesity.

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