Maintaining a healthy weight begins at home. While simple carbohydrates are easy to grab, taste good and fill you and your family up, they also lead to weight gain.
“When we get used to eating carbohydrates, we tend to crave them, and seek them out. A high carbohydrate diet is one of the top reasons for the high obesity rates across the nation,” said Dr. Steven Foley, OB/GYN, with Prowers Medical Center Clinic.
If you want to lose weight, or help your kids maintain a healthy weight, cut back on carbohydrates, including white bread, tortillas, white rice, noodles, pastries, cakes, cookies, chips, soda and sugary drinks. By increasing protein (lean meats, fish, eggs, beans, nuts) and vegetables at mealtime, you will be giving your kids the gift of a lifetime of good eating habits and a healthy weight.
“The top three dietary changes you can make to lower your risk for being overweight or obese are eating less carbohydrates, increasing your protein intake, and decreasing your serving sizes,” Foley said.
Adding regular exercise to the mix helps you maintain your weight. According to the American Association of Pediatrics (AAP), kids should be getting a full hour of exercise each day. Remember, a lot of things count for exercise outside of organized sports, including riding bikes, walking the neighborhood, shooting baskets and playing at the park or in the yard.
“At first when you offer other foods rather than carbohydrates, your kids might turn up their noses. But the sooner you start and the more you encourage them to eat less carbs, the lower the chance they will become addicted to carbs now and in the future,” Foley said.
Family Weight Loss Program at Prowers Medical Center Clinic
If you have been struggling with weight loss for a long time, it could be time to try something new. One option is getting medical help. Dr. Steven Foley has created the Family Weight Loss Program, and he is helping people lose weight via diet, hormone balancing and medication. Despite being an OB/GYN, he helps women, men and children of all ages.
“It is very rewarding to hear patients say I’ve helped change their lives. When someone loses 50 pounds and has the appropriate level of hormones, they feel a lot better,” Foley said.
His interest in developing a weight loss program began several years ago when working with women and teenage girls with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)—a condition that causes weight gain, irregular menstrual periods, acne and excess hair growth in women.
“With PCOS, your body is set up to gain weight, especially around your abdomen, basically due to insulin resistance. It can start at a young age—even age 10 or 11—so catching it early works best,” Dr. Foley said.
Besides PCOS, there are other medical reasons for weight gain, including an imbalance in insulin levels, thyroid levels and hormones, plus other medical conditions. That’s why Dr. Foley does a thorough blood work up for adults right from the start to kick off your individualized, medically-focused weight loss program. Once started, you will likely come in each month until your goal weight is achieved.
Dr. Foley works with several teenagers and finds them a pleasure to work with, since they are willing to make dietary and exercise changes. He also works with men to help balance testosterone levels.
“After age 30, men’s testosterone levels start falling. Low T is a common condition and is associated with weight gain, especially around the abdomen,” Foley said.
To make an appointment with Dr. Foley, call (719) 336-3179; to see another medical provider at Prowers Medical Center Clinic, call (719) 336-6767.