Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Portion control is unquestionably important, especially with high calorie-density foods.  You have more flexibility to consume larger portions of foods that have fewer calories per gram, than those that pack a lot in each little bite.

That's why a huge bowl of green salad with one scoop of canned tuna or chicken breast (all of ~360 calories with olive oil dressing) is much more filling than one sandwich or burrito, which may have 600-900 calories.

So, the answer is to use both portion control and content control to stimulate you  brain's satiety (or fullness) center.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


If you still measure your food in dollars instead of calories, I hope you have enough money to waste.  Here are 3 bite-sized thoughts to chew on:

1.  Do you REALLY think that the 950-calorie fast food lunch with 1000mg of sodium only cost you ~ $3.99?!  Did you add the $20 co-pay for that cholesterol, high blood pressure or diabetes medication?

2. What makes you sick - excessive calories or dollars?  Do you know the real value of your food?

3.  Would you throw away $2000?  That's exactly what people with Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and other weight-related problems do every year by not taking control of their weight.  Hmm... $2000 - could have been a nice vacation.


After my daughter's soccer game last Saturday, I almost fainted when one of the parents whipped out cupcakes as a post-game snack. You can imagine my shock and horror seeing my daughter struggle with the impulse to have a bite of this "nicely" decorated cupcake with all the attributes of food coloring rainbow and 'slightly' sweetened frosting. And this is the child who knows that sugar is an addicting substance and knows how unhealthy this food is and my feelings towards it.

Do you think I confronted that parent on the spot? Did I raise a stink that my parental rights were being trashed and openly sabotaged?! Nope. I quietly hissed at my daughter to toss the cupcake into trash, while she was begging me for "just one lick". My wife had to drag me off the field as i was turning red. The thing that was bothering me the most really was that even the briefest of exposures to the very sweet stuff almost instantly resets the threshold for satisfaction of what's called a "sweet tooth". So it will take more of that sweet stuff to satisfy you in the future.

1 week later, my wife received an email from one of the parents on our soccer team which said: "CALL ME A CRAZY SOCCER MOM, BUT PLEASE TRY TO BRING REGULAR WATER, FRUITS AND VEGETABLES AND OTHER HEALTHY SNACKS FOR OUR KIDS"!

We were both happy and somewhat moved by the courage of this person and the realization that it takes some one to take a stand (even for something as natural as keeping our kids healthy).

Are your kids safe?


My patient, whom i treated over 2 years ago, returned to jump start his weight control program yesterday. Ever since his original weight loss of ~ 35 lbs and getting off 2 diabetes and 2 hypertension medications, he's been very vigilant about his eating patterns and exercise routine. As soon as he noticed a consistent weight regain, he took tangible steps to prevent falling back into the same destructive pattern and the exacerbation of his medical conditions.

So gratifying to see that now he looks at his health as something that's under his control,, something he can manage. (Of course, not having $100's in medication co-pays doesn't hurt either).

Do You know how to positively affect Your health?

Thursday, September 17, 2009


Today, i spoke with my long-time patient who came back to restart her weight loss program. We chatted a little about our summers, kids and the importance of keeping positive outlook; not doing anything out of fear, but rather to preserve or improve our sense of well-being. Suddenly, she looks right at me and just says - sometimes YOU JUST HAVE TO DO IT. Funny, i thought to myself - that's exactly the only thing I can't do for my patients - actually take the all-important first step. I can provide all the education and motivation in the world, but it is the person across from me who should eventually take action for any change to happen.

So, what ever made You just do it?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


You and your primary care doctor may be your best financial planners! Why? How long you live and how healthy you are when you age are directly related to how fit you stay. Gaining too much weight and not exercising will surely cost more in medications and medical care for high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, arthritis and others.

So, it really does pay to stay fit.


Positive emotions block the stress hormones that breakdown our muscles and deposit fat around the midsection. The easiest (and, possibly, the most enjoyable) way to fight visceral fat accumulation is to focus on positive emotions and consciously block the negative feelings. As silly as it sounds, even forcing yourself to smile will send a positive message to your brain and will cause the reduction in stress hormone production. The more muscle mass you retain, the higher your resting metabolic rate is (and the more calories you will burn, even at rest).

So, cheer up and enjoy your day.