Trick or Treat, Lose or Eat

By Adam Glasgow - 10/7/2011

At the end of the month the choice may be just that stark especially with little goblins gathered at your front door. Fortunately during the rest of the month and even rest of the year the choice is far more nuanced. More on that later.

The other day I had a bandster in my office extremely frustrated that he wasn't losing weight and in his words "succeeding with the band." "I am a success in everything I do. I am a VP at my company. I have had 3 promotions since I joined the company and twice been voted executive of the year. I have a wonderful marriage and fantastic kids. I am a 5 handicap golfer and I can sail my 38 foot boat all by myself. Why I can't I lose weight with the band." The answer is that one has nothing to do with the other. My patient has many skill sets but none that are particularly well suited to losing weight. Being a good golfer or sailor has as much to do with being a good husband and father as it does with losing weight-nothing! The talents that make you an accomplished professional are no help when it comes to weight loss. In my opinion, Bill Clinton was an excellent President and a lousy husband. Michael Vick is a fantastic quaterback but not a very good animal rights advocate. We can all excel in one arena and totally flop in an other.

Weight loss and weight maintenance with the LapBand require that we acknowledge we can't do it alone. The band is just a tool and to use it properly we need frequent follow-up with the clinical team including the Nutritionists and maybe even the Psychologist. We need to accept and follow "the rules." We need to make good choices, get exercise, and be in tune with our band so that it offers portion control, satisfaction, and calorie restriction. Far too often I encounter underachieving and disappointed bandsters who thought that they could "do it alone" or "bend the rules." In November, it will be 6 years and almost 1000 patients (I think I am at 978 right now) since I started banding. One of the most consistent themes among successful bandsters is that they make good choices, increase their baseline level of activity, come for frequent follow-up, and have a well adjusted band.

Coming to Support Group or joining the Wednesday night on-line chat group are excellent ways to interact with other bandsters. You will meet some very happy and successful bandsters but also likely some of the 20% who underachieve. You can learn from both groups. Jane Sylvestre one of fabulous Nutritionists offers a fantastic 6 week course titled Back on Track designed to help bandsters get the most out of their band experience. There is still time to register. Just call the office to do so.

I hope it is apparent that no one is born a successful bandster just as no one is born a star athlete or concert pianist, or even a competent parent, spouse, or friend. You have to practice to be good at something and it takes time. Just because you don't feel your band is working for you or vice versa-don't despair. It takes time to master weight loss with the band. The "team" is here to help you. Let us.

Last month 55 "family" members participated in the Norwood Day 4 mile Run/Jog/Walk. It was fantastic. Congratulations to all who participated. I think our youngest runner was Jen Larrabee's son Brandon who at age 2 ran a blazing first several blocks. We also had some really young folks who rode in strollers-now that is the way to enjoy a race. The oldest participant shall remain nameless but he/she was 60 +. We plan to exercise together again in the spring at the Walpole Day 5K. I really hope you will join us.

As for Halloween-nothing wrong with a little candy in the house for a few days for the little monsters but after that get rid of it. You don't need it and they don't need it.

As for losing vs eating remember they aren't mutually exclusive. The goal with a band is to eat good foods just in smaller quantities. You shouldn't feel the need to go on a liquid diet or restart the Grapefruit diet just to lose weight with your band. A properly adjusted band should allow you to east most foods comfortably just in smaller portions.

If you have been coming regularly and are happy with your success-congratulations! If not-let's get you in for a visit and the sooner the better. I look forward to seeing you all soon. I am always available by email and on my cell phone 508-801-7018.


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