Enough talking…what are we going to do about obesity? This week, I will get a little “personal” and share a bit more about my battle against obesity. I hope you will be encouraged and better equipped to take action while having a little fun along the way. Over the past few weeks, we explored the disease of obesity and its causes, subtypes, related conditions, and pillars of treatment. Now we will jump feet first into the evidence-based, patient-centered care of obesity with a little less talk and a lot more action!
I have obesity…the complex, chronic, relapsing, multifactorial disease we have talked about over the past month. As of this writing, I weigh 262 pounds and stand at 5’ 10” which equates to a body mass index (BMI) of 37.6. As discussed in the video, a BMI of 25-29 is diagnostic for pre-obesity and greater than 30 is diagnostic for obesity. While BMI is useful for measuring populations, it is not as specific for individuals. Body composition analysis is a more accurate method of measuring body fat, lean muscle mass, and water. I share some of my results in today’s video, as well as my resting metabolic rate (RMR).
Your RMR is the number of calories your body uses at rest. Think of it as the amount of energy needed to maintain your current weight if you just stayed in bed all day. Knowing exactly how many calories you burn at rest is helpful because we can customize individualized eating plans for weight loss based on your metabolic rate. The RMR also predicts how many calories you burn with moderate exercise, which helps us develop customized fun physical activity plans. Knowing your body composition and RMR establishes a baseline and informs our way forward.
Lastly, we look at diagnostic laboratory tests. In my case, my metabolism is slow because my brain and thyroid gland do not communicate well, so I need to take thyroid medicine. The rest of my testing was fairly normal, but most importantly, there was no indication of insulin resistance, which is one of the multifactorial contributors to obesity. Armed with all of the data, our team formulated an obesity treatment plan, and my journey of the next 50 pounds begins!
Our future videos in this series will focus on the pillars of obesity treatment with real-life applications. We prepare meals, explore different exercises, and practice some mental wellness techniques to help overcome obesity. I’ll share the ups and downs of my treatment plan and encourage you to do the same. But whatever we do, let’s do it together because together, WE CAN DO THIS!
Thomas George, Jr., DNP, CRNP, FNP-C