Obesity Medicine can promote or improve overall health; family medicine practitioners Dr. Sree Gogineni of Capital Area Internal Medicine, offers obesity medicine services to residents of the Washington DC/Metro area. Call or request an appointment online with a qualified primary care physician who can help you lose weight safely and effectively — and keep it off.
Humans once lived in conditions when food was scarce and famines occurred with relative frequency. People who were able to gain or maintain their weight on less food were the ones who survived to pass on their genes to the next generation. Until the last 150 years, people were much more active than they are today; even when food was plentiful, a high level of physical exertion helped keep most people trim.
Most family medicine doctors use the body mass index, or BMI, as a measure to determine overweight or obesity. BMI is a mathematical calculation comparing weight to height, and it indicates how much of a person's weight is fat. The BMI is not as useful a tool in athletes, as someone who is very muscular may have a higher BMI since muscle weighs more than fat. A BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered “normal.” A BMI between 25 and 29.9 indicates overweight, and a BMI of 30 or above indicates obesity.
Although people who are overweight should lose and not regain weight if possible, it's important for those of normal weight not to gain. That's why weight management is important for everyone. As people age, the metabolism slows slightly, which increases the risk of weight gain. Older people also tend to be a little less active. Chronic problems like heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure are more common in those who are overweight, and excess weight causes stress on joints.
A healthy person who only needs to lose 25 pounds can safely diet without medical help in most cases. However, someone with a chronic condition like diabetes or heart disease may need more careful medical management. People who are taking medications may need the dose adjusted as they lose weight, or the medications could be contributing to weight gain. A primary care physician can also perform a medical evaluation to identify problems like low thyroid that may be contributing to weight gain. Call Capital Area Internal Medicine or request an appointment online with family medicine practitioner Dr. Sree Gogineni to take control of your weight.