Health & Wellness

Guest Column

The Role of Meal Replacements in Weight Loss

30c70d408ac8d1837cd7_weightloss-copy.jpg
30c70d408ac8d1837cd7_weightloss-copy.jpg

Obesity is at epidemic proportions in the U.S. and in other developed and developing countries. The prevalence of obesity is increasing not only in adults, but also in children and adolescents. We all know that obesity is a significant risk factor for various chronic illnesses, most importantly heart disease and diabetes, but also cancer and osteoarthritis, liver and kidney disease, sleep apnea, and depression. Clearly significant benefits could be expected from interventions to prevent or reduce obesity.

Studies have shown that significant improvements in disease risk could be attained with moderate weight loss (5% to 10%). Research has also shown that approximately 20% of overweight individuals are successful at long-term weight loss which is defined as losing at least 10% of initial body weight and maintaining the loss for at least 1 year.

There is no single answer to weight loss. However, reports indicate that meal replacements can offer an effective option for losing weight in patients who are obese or overweight. A traditional lifestyle intervention using meal replacements can be especially effective for weight control and therefore reduction in risk of chronic disease in the physician's office setting.

Sign Up for E-News

The main finding in a study done by Ashley et al, “Meal Replacements in Weight Intervention,” was that the use of one or two meal replacements daily promoted significantly improved weight loss and maintenance compared with a traditional diet plan. This finding is particularly encouraging because the markers for disease risk were improved in many patients. Therefore the study concluded that incorporating a meal replacement strategy into a traditional weight management program can improve food choice behavior and nutrient adequacy, while following a reduced energy intake.

Meal replacements work on a concept called “stimulus narrowing.” Clinical studies show that when people are given very few food choices, or even no food choices, it is easier to decrease the amount of calories they consume each day. By taking away the selection and preparation of foods, and reducing the vast array of available foods, people lose weight. The benefits of this type of diet are in the reduced calories, complete nutrition, and perhaps most importantly, in the ability to stick with the diet.

But meal replacements alone may not be sufficient. They have to be combined with behavioral, dietary and exercise counseling. Therefore it is important to join a comprehensive meal replacement program which offers support groups where patients share their concerns and experiences with other patients in the same journey. These groups can be very therapeutic for many patients. In addition, giving handouts and exercises for patients to complete at home helps patients learn about their own eating styles and behaviors and therefore helps them not only lose weight in the short term but also keep the weight off in the long term. 

At K Primary Care & Medical Nutrition Center, our comprehensive meal replacement program combines meal replacements with group counseling, mindfulness meditation and cooking classes. Please call 908-206-4676 to learn more about our meal replacement weight loss and nutrition programs.

References:

1. Meal Replacements in Weight Intervention: Dr. Judith M. Ashley, Sachiko T. St. Jeor, Suzanne Perumean-Chaney, Jon Schrage, Vicki Bovee

2. Weight control in the physician's office:

Ashley JM1, St Jeor STSchrage JPPerumean-Chaney SEGilbertson MCMcCall NLBovee V

3. Long-term weight loss maintenance.

Wing RR1, Phelan S.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer. Click here to submit a Guest Column.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Scotch Plains/Fanwood

Summer Life Guard Job Opportunity in Union County

April 10, 2018

UNION COUNTY, NJ - Summer lifeguard positions are available at Union County’s public swimming pool, the Walter Ulrich Memorial Pool at Rahway River Park in Rahway.

“Union County’s Ulrich Pool provides our youth and adult summer job seekers with an opportunity to enjoy working outdoors in the fresh air all summer long while sharpening valuable life skills including leadership, ...

Why We Keep Kosher

Why We Keep Kosher

This week's parshah, Shemini, introduces the Torah's dietary laws. Animals must chew their cud and have split hooves to be kosher, fish need fins and scales, and a list of forbidden fowl is enumerated.

To those of us in Jewish education, it is a continuing source of disappointment that so many Jews still believe the kosher laws to be outdated.

New Jersey’s Out-of-Network Bill Is a Huge Blow to The Middle Class

April 8, 2018

Dear Editor:

As Trenton currently looks to balance the budget, once again it’s our state’s hardest working citizens who will be left holding the bag. This time, though, it will be the hardworking office and ancillary staff from our small business private medical practices. 

A bill called “The Out-of-Network Consumer Protection Bill” ...

Helping Teenagers Deal with Prom Night Stress

April 18, 2018

Prom can be one of the most exciting times for your teenager but at the same time one of the most stressful. 

It can also be very stressful for parents as they prepare themselves to accept that their teenager is graduating and soon going away to school, while planning a weekend away after prom night. Going to the Shore for the weekend or somewhere overnight has become more of the ...

Greta's Run Online Registration Ends 4/20 (video)

April 19, 2018

Greta's Run is more than just a race. Join us and see why! Online Registration ends 4/20 at 11:59 p.m. Register and donate today at gretasrun.com

Run, walk, roll and volunteer with us this Sunday, April 22. The start and finish are at Roosevelt Intermediate School, 301 Clark Street in Westfield, NJ. All proceeds benefit people with special & adaptive needs in ...

Upcoming Events

Thu, April 19, 5:00 PM

Scotch Plains Public Library, Scotch Plains

Teen Cooking Class: Instant Pot Recipes with ...

Arts & Entertainment Education

Sat, April 21, 10:00 AM

Cranford Community Center, Cranford

"All About Owls" Nature Presentation with The ...

Arts & Entertainment

Sat, April 21, 11:00 AM

PetSmart, Millburn

Dog Adoption Event

Other