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23rd July 2018

Some tips to help you take control of your body

Being overweight can be insufferable in hot weather. If the recent heatwave has made you determined to shed the pounds, then bariatric surgeon Mr Goldie Khera shares some tips adopted by his weight loss patients.

“With temperatures reaching the 30s in recent weeks, I have noticed many of my pre-op weight loss patients struggling to cope with day to day chores. If you are overweight, your body generates more heat and reduces its ability to cool down. Obesity is also one of the biggest risk factors for cancer of the breast, bowel and prostate. It also increases the risk of you developing diabetes and heart problems. Excess weight also puts a strain and damages your weight bearing joints like your knees, hips and back.

So, lots of reasons to take control of your body. Weight loss surgery is not the easy option and all patients are thoroughly assessed before they have the operation and must commit to changing their lifestyle for the best results – the procedure can’t help them lose weight all by itself. Some of the healthy choices they adopt post-operation are also good tactics for anyone with an excess weight issue:

  • Swap ready meals for homecooked versions. Patients of mine who have taken up home cooking have lost weight simply by understanding the ingredients going into their food.  Make the recipes in bulk so you can have them on hand in the freezer which will break the cycle of `I can’t be bothered to cook tonight’.
  • Instead of opting for diet versions of your normal fizzy beverage, drink fizzy or still water instead. I’ve noticed patients who have swapped their ‘full fat’ beverage for a diet version, lose weight more slowly than those who can swap to still or sparkling water.
  • Overweight people are often caught in a vicious cycle of knowing they need to increase their activity levels to lose weight but at the same time not wanting to exercise in public. Try to simply go from zero to a walk with friends twice a week will make a massive difference. Or opt for single sex only gym session or, if you have the funds, a personal trainer. Or workout at home – try the various `coach potato to 5K’ fitness apps available to download onto your mobile.
  • One of the newest and best motivators among my weight loss patients is a ‘Fitbit’ type device.  It can track your activity, exercise, food, weight and sleep – patients regularly send me their Fitbit progress charts!  I would also recommend that you find yourself a Fitbit buddy as swapping progress with a companion will help you to stick to your goals and give each other the motivation to succeed.
  • So, enjoy this rare glorious English summer. Allow yourself a treat but when you do, don’t feel too guilty about it as that can derail everything. Just try and maintain your long term weight loss and healthy eating  goals.

Mr Goldie Khera, laparoscopic and bariatric surgeon, holds a clinic on Wednesday evenings at The Montefiore Hospital, Montefiore Road, Hove. For more information about weight loss surgery, visit www.themontefiorehospital.co.uk or phone 01273 828 148.

First published in Brighton and Hove Independent on 20th July 2018.

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