Weight Management

Weight Management

A simplistic approach to weight loss of just trying to eat less is clearly not working as more and more people are finding it harder and harder to lose and maintain their weight.  Over two thirds of Australians now are overweight or obese and this is reflected all over the world. 

The simplistic message of just reducing calories you consume and increasing calories expanded in exercise is not sufficient.  At Parkside Specialists, we recognise that weight regulation is complex, involving an interplay between your biology and your environment and as such, management plans have to be more holistic and tailored to the individual.

What causes my weight gain?

Broadly, the biology of weight is determined genetically, epigenetically, hormonally as well as in the mesolimbic brain regions.  The hormonal contributors are listed in the Table below and we have very effective treatments for them today.

Some of the detrimental environmental factors we help you identify and modify that impact on weight include accessibility to calorically dense foods or foods high in sugars.  Other factors that impact on sleep like stress and technological influences that keep us from sleeping when the body needs it is also examined.  Last but not least, dysregulation of stress and sedentary lifestyle including long screen time is contributing to the problem which we will work with you to improve.

We find it important to deal with the psychological factors that impact on eating as well that can lead to habitual patterns of eating, comfort food eating and binge eating disorder.  

Last but not least, other contributing factors like medications that we use to treat other diseases that have adverse effects like weight gain can be modified with alternatives.

Teasing out the complexity and learning to overcome these factors is important and we will help you do this.  This is called the biopsychosocial model of medicine.

Hormonal Contributors to Weight Gain
Hypothyroidism
Cushing’s Syndrome
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Hypogonadism
Growth Hormone Deficiency
Menopause
Hypothalamic obesity
Weight Management chart

What are the treatments to help successfully treat weight loss?

The integration of lifestyle factors with medications that can help is vital.  The lifestyle factors we go through with you include nutrition, physical activity, sleep and stress regulation. 

Often these lifestyle factors can be facilitated by adding medications or therapeutic modalities to improve them.  For example, sleep can be poor because of obstructive sleep apnoea and improving it with continuous positive airway pressures can improve the restorative nature of sleep.  

Medications that directly impact on weight regulation are also necessary in many who have tried to lose weight with lifestyle modification alone but persistently suffer from weight regain. We recognise that every individual has a different set point in the hypothalamus that regulates weight and that though weight loss in the short term can be effected by eating less and moving more, in the long term, the body drags the weight back up to where the setpoint is in order to meet the demands of the environment.   

How long will treatment take?

We do not subscribe to quick fixes but want to give you the tools to have long term sustainable outcomes.  

This means there are no short cuts.  Together, we will find the right combination of modalities through multiple iterations of lifestyle change as well as medications to help you reach your goal weight.