Frequently Asked Questions

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About the Tuscaloosa Weight Loss Program
 

Can I start the weight loss program if I have health problems?

Since we are a medically supervised weight loss clinic, your health is our number one concern. Our staff will carefully review your medical history and make certain that any given program is suitable for you. Our team will work with your primary care physician to make sure you receive the best quality of care.

Can I start a weight loss program if I am currently taking medications?  
Yes! At Tuscaloosa Weight Loss Center, your current medications will be cross-referenced. Only products that are compatible with your current medications will be recommended. 

How old do I have to be to go on a weight loss program?
At Tuscaloosa Weight Loss Center we promote a healthy lifestyle. Therefore, we cater to individuals of all ages. We offer programs designed specifically for adolescence, teenagers and adults. 

I’ve lost weight on numerous diets but I haven’t been able to keep it off. Why not?
Because most commercial diet centers only concentrate on you losing weight. They give you a particular mixture of products – pre-packaged foods, supplements, a pat on the back, etc. A very small number actually help you identify the behaviors that led to your weight gain. Our program will help you overcome and manage those behaviors while enjoying a diet of pure, wholesome foods coming directly from the land. Throughout the program, you will receive professional help and will be accountable for your decisions. 

What should I look for in a weight loss program?  
The primary concern in choosing a weight loss program is your health. If you are overweight or obese, it would be sensible to enroll in a clinical weight loss program. Obesity is a serious health problem which has physiological, psychological and social affects. Health professionals, such as dietitians, psychologist, exercise physiologist, nurses and doctors are available to you in a clinical program. This team of professionals will be able to monitor weight loss and give expert advice concerning the dietary affects of other health problems. Any program should be initiated with a full health assessment by a physician. 

How long will the program take?   
The diet phase lasts as long as it takes you to reach your desired weight. On the average, women lose about two - three pounds a week, men about four - five. However, everyone is different and results may vary based on a number of factors, including an individual’s personal weight history, body composition and level of physical activity. The maintenance phase is at least 12 months after weight loss is completed. Although patients are learning while in the weight loss phase, the experience comes in the maintenance phase. Behaviors are learned, therefore must be practiced repeatedly to become a part of daily life. Therefore, this amount of time is essential to create long-term behavioral changes to make sure you keep the weight off. 

Will your program make me thin?    
Our objective is your health. Tuscaloosa Weight Loss will give you the support you need and teach you skills for managing your weight and improving your appearance. A healthy lifestyle promotes healthy behaviors. Healthy behaviors lead to an enhanced quality of life. 

What if I am too busy to come to the center once a week, can I still be in the program?   
Since personal coaching and support is proven to be an important part of your weight loss success, we ask for your commitment in making the time to come in for frequent visits. It is imperative that we see you on a regular basis to ensure that you receive the appropriate guidance, monitoring and motivation you need to reach your weight loss goals. 

Can’t I just take a diet pill?    
It is true that medications are useful in the treatment of obesity. However, it is our opinion that relying on a medication for weight loss is not a replacement for learning effective behaviors. Learning how to maintain a healthy weight with education in proper nutrition, exercise and behavior management can never be replaced by a pill. We want our clients to learn how to effectively adjust to a lower body weight, therefore diet suppressants are only used during Phase I when necessary. 

Should I Just Have Bariatric Surgery?      
Gastric bypass surgery is not a cure for obesity. It is an effective tool for the severely obese, however, surgery does not cause long-term behavioral change. Without effective behavioral modification, there can be significant regain. There are no second opportunities if you regain after surgery. There are also significant medical risks associated with surgery—nutritional deficiencies, surgical complications like intestinal obstructions, bleeding, and even death. 

How do I know if I need Tuscaloosa Weight Loss Center?       
If you have been given the diagnosis of obesity (see our BMI calculator) or your weight is affecting your health, the combination of medically-supervised weight loss and long-term behavioral counseling offered by Tuscaloosa Weight Loss Center is the successful way to manage your new weight. If you’re still not sure, request more information by telephone (205-633-3669) or by e-mail: tuscaloosaweightloss@gmail.com

If your program is successful, why do you have repeat clients?       
Although it is possible to lose weight and maintain a 100% loss, and some patients do, many people have resistance to the new behaviors that will make weight maintenance possible. Their level of commitment is not yet sufficient to learn and maintain these behaviors. This can lead to frustration and feelings of failure, often followed by loss of contact with the program and regain. At Tuscaloosa Weight Loss we want our patients to understand that, whether they had to interrupt weight loss before reaching their goal or have experienced regain, they are always welcome to return to the program. 

About obesity and your health

What is a healthy weight for me?

This is a tough questions to answer. Even though many people talk about weight, what really matters is how much of your body weight is fat. The body mass index (BMI) is an approximate measure of body fat. It is based on your height and weight. A BMI between 19 and 25 is considered a normal amount of body fat. If someone’s BMI is 25 to 29.9, that person is said to be overweight. A person is said to be obese if this or her BMI is 30 or higher. The higher your BMI, the greater your risk for diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, arthritis and certain cancers. 

How can i lower my BMI?  
The best way to lower your BMI is to reduce the total number of calories you take in and to be more physically active. Long-term success is not about finding the “right” diet. It’s about identifying your behaviors that have contributed to taking in more calories than your body needs. It is also about making a plan to develop healthier eating and physical activity habits. For example, you may eat when you’re under stress rather than when you’re hungry. Choosing another activity to do when you feel stressed, such as taking a walk, may help you break the habit of eating at those times.

Why is physical activity a big deal? 
Physical activity builds muscles, so even if you don’t lose pounds, you will look and feel better when you are more active. Being active also reduces your risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes, even if you are overweight.  

I'm thinking about becoming more physically active. What's the best kind of activity? 
First, ask your family doctor if there is any kind of physical activity that you should not do. Being more physically active doesn’t mean you need to have a formal or complicated exercise program. Remember that the best kind of activity is the kind that you’ll keep doing. Whatever activity you choose, try to do it for at least 30 minutes per day on most days of the week. 


Aerobic exercises such as swimming, walking or jogging, raise your heart rate and help burn calories. The longer you exercise, the more fat your body will burn. Walking can be very helpful even if you don’t walk fast.

Light weight training also has many health benefits. It helps add muscle mass to your body. Muscle burns calories faster than fat does. 


How can I change my eating habits? 
Change them one at a time. For example, start by training yourself to eat without doing anything else at the same time. Focus on enjoying the taste and smell of your food by eating more slowly. Don’t watch TV, talk on the phone or drive a car while you eat

What's so bad about foods that are high in fat and added sugar?  
Foods that are high in fat and added sugar have lots of calories. Fat has almost twice the calories of carbohydrates and protein. Also, compared with calories that come from carbohydrates or proteins, calories that come from fat are more easily used by your body to make body fat. 

Why is skipping meals not helpful?     
Though skipping meals may work for a while, it backfires in the long run. When you skip a meal, you are likely to get too hungry, and then you may eat too much at once. 

What can I do when my friends or family members pressure me to eat?   
Sometimes a direct explanation and a request for support are enough to get people to understand that you’re trying to improve your health habits. If that doesn’t work, telling them it’s your “doctor’s orders” may do the trick. If not, you may have to avoid those people until you feel comfortable enough with you new habits to handle the pressure. 

Will diet drugs help me to lower my BMI?    
Used with a doctor’s supervision, certain medicines can help some people lower their BMI. However, they are not the secret to long-term weight loss. Easting a more healthy diet and being more physically active are the way to lose weight and keep it off. 


What is Metabolic Syndrome?        
Metabolic syndrome is commonly associated with overweight (central obesity) insulin resistant diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol. Although most people have never heard of it, this syndrome is quite common; it affects about one out of every four adults in the United States. Metabolic Syndrome often progresses to type 2 diabetes – and treating the syndrome can help prevent this form of diabetes. 

If you think you may have Metabolic Syndrome, it is important to discuss the possibility with your doctor so that you can undergo the appropriate diagnostic tests. Treatments for Metabolic Syndrome involve basic lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, eating a healthier diet and increasing your activity level. Your doctor can help you develop a specific plan for making the necessary changes.