NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ — Dr. Kavita Kewalramani or “Dr. K” as she is known to all her patients, is a board certified internist in New Providence who also offers a Medical Weight Loss Program at her practice on Central Avenue. For the past year she has offered her multi-disciplinary program for sustainable weight loss. Beginning in 2018 she will launch two more programs — one that targets Nutrition in Diabetes, a second that focuses on Heart-Healthy Nutrition.
“The weight loss program has four basic components, a one-on-one with me, with follow-ups, then weekly group sessions, weekly meditations sessions and a monthly cooking class,” Dr. K said. The new programs will follow the same model.
Each program is three months long, and during that time, participants will learn how to reduce stress, set and achieve dietary goals for their specific condition and how to meditate. In the monthly cooking class, they will learn new ways to shop, chop and make delicious meals to manage their lifestyle changes. The three month program starts at $300 and includes the weekly group sessions and meditation sessions and monthly cooking class.
For those who want to jump-start their new way of eating, Dr. K also offers meal replacements.
The 2018 launch of the two new nutrition programs is a result of the epiphany Dr. K had while treating diabetic patients and those with heart disease or hypertension. “I realized when I was trying to manage a diabetic patient and started asking them what they were eating, I found out their diet was typically a high carbohydrate and high fat diet. I was thinking to myself, ‘I can give more medication, but there’s a better solution to this,’” she said.
When she was treating 30-year-olds, who had as many as three chronic illnesses with just medication, she decided their disorders could be better addressed with nutrition and exercise. This led her to her solo practice. Now, she has extra time to spend with her patients to educate them on how to reduce the number of pills they take and increase their quality of life — in other words, to focus on wellness.
Her solution was to address the whole life of her patients, not just address the numbers presented after a series of tests. To Dr. K, patients are not just a set of blood pressure readings, blood tests results and the tracings from an EKG. Her patients are so much more than that — they are individuals who experience stress, often eat at odd hours, or too much, or the wrong foods and who aren’t aware of how their behavior may contribute to their chronic medical condition. Dr. K said she wants to address the whole patient — what they are doing and what they are not doing.
“As physicians in medical school we don’t learn a lot about nutrition, believe it or not. We don’t learn about what patients should eat. I went back to Columbia University (after completing her masters there in Public Health) and now at every visit I talk about diet, exercise and stress management,” she said.
Dr. K’s approach to her patients mirrors her approach to her own life -- stop, evaluate and be mindful.
So, it is no surprise she also is a believer in mindfulness meditation, “Studies have shown that mindfulness mediation changes the stress centers of the brain, stabilizing your sugars, reducing your heart rate, your blood pressure, and anxiety,” said Dr. K.
Along with all her programs she offers and takes a weekly guided meditation class. “Studies have shown that mindfulness meditation can be a very effective tool in weight loss as you focus on mindful eating and reduce stress eating.”
K Primary Care and Nutrition Center is located at 571 Central Avenue in New Providence.