A  A  A   Print
Choosing a Safe Weight-Loss Program

Choosing a Safe Weight-Loss Program

The not-so-secret secret to weight loss is to burn more calories than you eat. You can do this safely and effectively by eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Although many people can lose weight on their own, others believe they'll be more successful if they enroll in a weight-loss program that provides support, information, and specific diet and exercise guidelines.

Keep the following suggestions in mind when checking into weight-loss programs.

Essential elements

All weight-loss programs should encourage healthy behaviors that help you lose weight and maintain the weight loss over time.

They should include:

  • Eating plans that reduce calories

  • Guidelines for regular physical activity and/or exercise

  • Tips on how to make healthy behavioral changes

  • Slow and steady weight loss of about 1/2 to 2 pounds a week

  • Direct medical supervision, if you'll be following a very low-calorie diet

  • Plans to help you keep the weight off after you have lost it

Questions to ask

Gather as much information as you can before deciding to join a program, and seek answers to the following questions:

What does the weight-loss program consist of?

  • Does the program offer individual counseling and/or group classes?

  • Do I have to follow a specific meal plan or keep food records?

  • Do I have to purchase special food, drugs or supplements?

  • Does the program encourage me to be physically active and offer advice and support about different exercise programs?

  • Does the program help me make healthful behavioral changes?

What are the staff qualifications?

  • What types of weight-management training, experience, education, and certifications does the staff have?

  • Does the product or program carry any risks?

  • Are there risks related to using recommended drugs or supplements?

  • Does a medical professional oversee the program?

How much does the program cost?

  • Are there recurring costs, such as weekly attendance fees, or costs of food and supplement purchases?

  • Are there additional fees for a follow-up program or to reenter the program for follow-up after you lose weight?

What results do participants typically have?

  • How much weight have the usual participants lost and how long have they kept it off?

Losing weight with the help of a program can be expensive, but is often more effective than trying to do it on your own. Getting answers to your questions can help you decide the best way for you to reach and maintain a healthy weight.

 

The third-party content provided in the Health Library of phoebeputney.com is for informational purposes only and is not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease, or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your physician. If you or your child has or suspect you may have a health problem, please consult your primary care physician. If you or your child may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 or other emergency health care provider immediately in the United States or the appropriate health agency of your country. For more information regarding site usage, please visit: Privacy Information, Terms of Use or Disclaimer.

Follow us online:

© 2014 Phoebe Putney Health System  |  417 Third Avenue, Albany, Georgia 31701  |  Telephone 877.312.1167

Phoebe Putney Health System is a network of hospitals, family medicine clinics, rehab facilities, auxiliary services, and medical education training facilities. Founded in 1911,
Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital (the flagship hospital) is one of Georgia's largest comprehensive regional medical centers. From the beginning, Phoebe's mission and vision
has been to bring the finest medical talent and technology to the citizens of Southwest Georgia, and to serve all citizens of the community regardless of ability to pay.