Obesity is a growing problem in the UK. A quarter of UK adults are obese, and this proportion could rise further with our increasingly sedentary lifestyles paired with greater accessibility of unbalanced ready meals and fast food compared with fresh produce. With many of us moving less due to sitting at desks at work, getting around by car and spending more time on the sofa instead of up and about, we burn fewer calories. Most of us know that on a basic level, the key to losing weight is simply eating less and moving more, so that on a daily basis, calories taken in amount to less than calories burnt.
But in reality, many factors can stand in the way of this change in lifestyle, including time constraints and lack of motivation. In addition, several medical conditions as well as certain medications, can make weight loss harder to achieve.
We all know how difficult it is to lose weight, and that is why many people attend group sessions such as Slimming World or Weight Watchers to motivate them and this can be extremely successful in many cases. Other people however prefer a more individual approach and it is for these individuals a weight management programme in a clinical setting is the answer.
Common treatments for obesity include healthy eating, increased physical activity, behaviour changes but if appropriate, prescription weight loss medications can be added. If medical intervention is considered appropriate, Dr Sally recommends the use of Saxenda. This a prescription only drug, which necessitates a consultation with Dr Sally in one of her clinics before you can use this medication.
Saxenda contains Glucagon-like peptide (GLP-1), which is a naturally occurring hormone released in the gut after eating. Receptors in the brain are activated when GLP-1 is released, letting us know when we are “full”. Saxenda contains a synthetic copy of GLP-1, which gives us the sensation of being full, even when you have not eaten.
To assess whether it is appropriate for you to take this drug, a medical history and examination will be undertaken by Dr Sally to ensure you have no contraindications to this treatment. Should the drug be deemed appropriate she will then explain how the drug works, how to administer the drug and will explain any potential side effects you may experience. The main recognised side effect of Saxenda is nausea but this can be overcome by using the drug in the evening and this in approximately 80-90% of our patients resolves the problem. It is also an interesting fact that as the dosage is increased the symptoms of nausea reduce.
You will be supplied with all the necessary equipment at the consultation and a series of appointments will be made so we can monitor your journey and progress. You will also be advised on the protocol of dosage (you will increase the dose weekly for a period of 4 weeks before you reach your maximum and maintenance dose). You will be regularly monitored during the first 16 weeks of treatment.
Only this week we had 3 patients for their scheduled review and in just 2 weeks they have respectively lost 8lbs, 10lbs and 1 stone!
Using Saxenda sounds an easy solution . However, it is imperative that dietary advice is followed and one increases their physical activity on a regular basis. It is for this reason that Dr Sally has teamed up with Charlotte Forde, (a personal trainer) who also writes regularly for Wirral Life and Paula Mohin (a nutritionist). Charlotte and Paula share the concerns regarding the growing level of obesity that is becoming increasingly obvious within the population. Paula is available to offer expert dietary advice which will ensure you will be eating adequate but nutritional foods during your journey to lose weight.
Dr Sally quotes: “One must take into consideration this is a prescription only drug which is prescribed for people who have a BMI of 30 or above (obese) or 27-30 with comorbidities (suffering with conditions such as heart disease, arthritis, hypertension, dyslipidaemia, type 2 diabetes).
This is not for someone trying to become a size 6 or 8 to fit into their little black dress for Christmas.”