Dear Ask The Doctor: Hello, thank you for taking the time to answer my question. I am an 18 year old male who is completely healthy except for being approximately 20-25 pounds overweight. I have battled with my weight my entire life and am from a family of large people. I'm heading off to college and know that maintaing a healthy weight is even more important during these next years. My problem is that I have become so disheartened by previous attempts to control my weight that I really don't know the best approach to take. My typical attempt is some type of new diet (no-carbs, low-fat, less than 1000 calories a day) paired with exercise (pre-cor machine and weights at the gym) three to five times a week. Every time I try this for three months or so, lose two to four pounds, and become disheartened by the lack of results. Basically my question is this -- what is the best way to lose and then maintain a healthy weight? Do I just need to push harder with diet and exercise or is there a certain approach that might work better. Should I turn to products like Alli (Orlistat) to help me with this problem? How can I shed some pounds and keep them off? Thanks so much!
Dear Patient: While each individual is different the general adviced and proven way to loose weight is to stick to healthy eating and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.Crash and new diets will help you reduce weight but will not help keeing that weight off. I would advice you to seek help regarding your diet from a professional dietician who will be able to guide you better after assessing your currrent diet. The general rule is to reduce fats and carbs and increase the protein intake. Moreover you will also need to start exercising vigourously the theory being you need to loose more enegry than that you are recieving through food. Alli can be taken however I would first advice you to start on this other method. You need to achieve a BMI between 20-25 which is considered normal. I hope this helps. All the best.