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Surgery Works Where Diets Fail to Curb Obesity

Overweight people will almost never achieve long lasting weight loss through diet; only surgery will achieve that, claims a medical expert on weight loss.

So let's take a look at what's happening in the world of the surgeons fighting the obesity problem in some patients by putting them under the knife.

Long Term Solution

weight loss surgeryUniversity College London professor of obesity medicine Nick Finer, has found that the average in long-term weight loss that is achieved through diet by obese adults is 2-3 per cent.

This figure is so small as to be practically irrelevant.

This is because as people gain weight, their bodies "accept" the new level of weight, so that when the person loses any, it tries to restore those losses as soon as possible after the diet is finished.

Professor Finer is to set out these findings at the British Science Festival, being held this week. One of his suggestions will be that in order to tackle the obesity epidemic the best way, networks of obesity clinics would need to be set up to carry out large scale gastric bypass surgery programs. According to Professor Finer,

"What these figures show is that dieting is, for most people, completely pointless. Humans evolved in unpredictable environments where food was scarce and our bodies are programmed to maintain our body weight at all costs. When people become fat, their hormone and nervous systems adapt to the new weight and treat it as normal - so it is very hard for anyone to fight that by cutting their food intake, especially in a world where food is so plentiful. It means we have to look for new answers."

He also suggests that the initial target ought to be those suffering from severe obesity for such clinics. That would mean people with a body mass index (BMI) greater than 35. This would correspond, for an average size man, to a body weight of greater than than 101kg.

Spend Money to Save Money

While a solution such as this may appear drastic, it comes amid the soaring costs associated with treating diseases that are associated with being obese. These include type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease and hypertension (high blood pressure).

In the UK alone, treating diseases related to obesity already costs the National Hospital Budget over 15 percent of its budget.

It is well known now that when obese people lose a lot of their excess weight, their associated diabetes is often sent into remission. This then removes the need for them to take certain drugs, potentially saving the Health Service more money.

The surgery costs to the Health Service would be recouped inside a year because of the savings that would be made on not having to dole out prescriptions and reducing the number of hospital visits. People would also be able to return to work, providing a much welcome boost to the working economy and to companies all over the country.


Posted on Mon, 13 Sep 2010 in News | 1 Comments

1 thoughts on "Surgery Works Where Diets Fail to Curb Obesity"

Kitz says:

Love it! I'm actually pretty excited to see you hit on this issue of surgery for weight loss over dieting, as most people seem to keep banging their heads on a brick wall and never seem to get anywhere. Great post, thank you!