Medical Science

Obesity Prevention: A Screening

“A pre-obesity/obesity screening is an important step for disease prevention and healthy living because it leads to early diagnosis and prompt treatment, reduces obesity-related comorbidities, and improves one’s quality of life.” 

– Unraveling Obesity Team

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” 

– Benjamin Franklin

“Without comprehensive treatment, adults with overweight continue to gain weight, moving steadily into the obesity (BMI 30-39.9 kg/m² ) and severe obesity (BMI ≥ 40.0 kg/m²) categories”…….Evidence indicates that the detrimental effects of excess weight on morbidity and mortality begin at lower BMI categories. Therefore, identifying at-risk patients who have overweight (BMI from 25.0 to < 30.0 kg/m²) and initiating treatment earlier may interrupt the progression toward further weight gain and the development of obesity-related comorbidities”

– Kushner, R. F., & Primack, C. (2020). Overweight: The Overlooked Risk Factor. The Journal of family practice, 69(7 Suppl), S51-S56.

“People in the overweight category are more likely now than 30 years ago to continue to gain weight and develop obesity. These trends make it clear that early intervention efforts are needed, at lower BMI ranges before patients cross into the obesity classification.”

– Kushner, R. F., & Primack, C. (2020). Overweight: The Overlooked Risk Factor. The Journal of family practice, 69(7 Suppl), S51-S56.

Obesity: A Science Mystery

Obesity, whether in adults or in children, is a public health crisis leading to its current global epidemic. And, it needs to be treated as any other emergency…Childhood obesity places a heavy burden on children. When we break the “vicious cycle of childhood obesity”, then adult obesity and its sequelae can be prevented…We can help fight childhood obesity and put an end to this public health crisis and global epidemic, by taking action now and creating an opportunity for the children to have “a different today for a better tomorrow.”

– Asham, N. (March 2019). Childhood Obesity: Help Children Have “A Different Today For A Better Tomorrow”. Medium.

“You can unravel the mystery of obesity and crack your personal code only when you understand the science of obesity management and use the four-pillar approach as the treatment protocol.” 

– (Nina) Nermeen Asham

“Leptin, also known as the “hormone of energy expenditure” or the “starvation hormone”, has a role in body fat mass, appetite, and energy expenditure; and with other genes it affects hunger and satiety through the central nervous regulation. The LEP/leptin receptor system (LEPR) is involved in this process so a deficiency would lead to obesity in the first few months following birth. The LEP gene works with Ghrelin, the “hunger hormone” or the “appetite-stimulating hormone”, and both of their receptors are in the same area of the brain. The level of ghrelin increases before meals and decreases after meals; and, it is one of the reasons for snacking and overeating. In addition, ghrelin is released in times of stress, which explains the cause of emotional eating and potential weight gain. Both leptin and ghrelin are involved in weight maintenance. Furthermore, leptin resistance and increased ghrelin lead to obesity.” 

– Asham, N. (March 2019). Childhood Obesity: Help Children Have “A Different Today For A Better Tomorrow”. Medium.

The key to treating obesity, this disease of being overweight, is to block those abnormal signals before they get to the brain.” 

– Dr. Craig Primack

Four Pillars of Obesity Prevention

“There are four keys or pillars of medical weight loss management. The pillars are 1. Dietary modification 2. Activity or exercise 3. Behavior modification 4. Medications. Visualize a chair with four legs. If you lean back and try to balance on two of the legs, you can likely do it for a while. Soon enough, you will fall. On a chair with three legs, you may stay balanced longer. However, the more stress you put on the chair, the more you notice it rocking, and eventually, you will also fall. With a complete program (four legs on your chair), you can put a lot more stress on the system and remain seated much better than you can on less than four legs.” 

– Swanson, E., & Primack, C. (2017). Behavior Modification: A Patient and Physician’s Perspective. Advances in therapy, 34(3), 765-769.

“Trust real medical science, not pseudoscience, not patents, and for sure not magic.” 

– Dr. Craig Primack

“Dr. Robert Ziltzer and Dr. Craig Primack, authors of the book, Chasing Diets: Stop the Endless Search and Discover the Solution, emphasize that for a weight loss program to be successful and sustainable, it must be comprehensive having four essential components, namely medical management, nutritional or dietary change, activity plan, and education. They explain this using their chair analogy as follows, ‘Any time you omit any one of these four components your plan is more likely to fail. Think of it as four legs of a chair’.” 

– Asham, N. (Nov 2019). Vital Signs for the Growing Obesity Crisis. Medium.