Effective weight management requires a paradigm shift in the way healthcare professionals treat obesity, according to Lee Kaplan, MD, PhD, director of the Obesity, Metabolism and Nutrition Institute at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. In his presentation at the Pediatric Academic Societies 2018 meeting, Dr. Kaplan told delegates, “obesity is a disease,” and must be treated with pathophysiologic processes, just like type 2 diabetes and other chronic diseases. Like diabetes, obesity is never “cured,” patients can “still have the disease of obesity, even though they no longer meet the definition of obesity by our measurements,” Dr. Kaplan explained. Physicians who treat obesity often take a history to identify triggers for eating, exercise patterns, stress levels, sleep patterns and related circadian rhythm imbalances, and any drugs that can promote obesity. “We take that history in detail and then we say to the patient, ‘eat less and exercise more’,” with little understanding of the biologic basis of obesity or its heterogeneity. The body defends a fat mass just like it defends a mass of red blood cells, Dr. Kaplan explained. Since obesity is a pathophysiologic state, the treatments used to modify this state need to be physiologic in nature to drive down the elevated fat-mass set point that propels people to overeat, Dr. Kaplan explained. Currently, treatments for obesity include a healthy diet, exercise, stress reduction, improved sleep health and the re-establishment of normal circadian rhythms, antiobesity medications that promote weight loss, and bariatric surgery. However, there is an enormous variability each antiobesity intervention, according to Dr. Kaplan, who, along with his team, is exploring the potential of a genetic risk score to help determine the likelihood of an individual’s response to a particular therapy.
There is so little which is actually understood about the human body and how it performs its daily functions. There is even less understood about obesity, or why operations for obesity work as they do. Frankly, no one currently KNOWS the answers. No one!
The good news is that we do KNOW that currently the best and most effective treatment for the DISEASE of obesity is Bariatric surgery. Its no different than heart disease or Cancer. Its deadly, and should be treated in effected individuals, PERIOD!
Call us, We can Help! It’s what we do.
Dr Bertha and the Team at NJBI