Think of a specialized Auto Show. Sleek, shiny displays of all the latest scientiﬁc gizmos designed to analyze and supercharge your ride. Experts on hand to tell you what’s new in racing fuel technology, eager to explain about every imaginable additive and how to get the most out of your engine. Now if you imagine the vehicles being discussed are human bodies, and the fuel topic is nutrition, you have the Obesity Medicine Conference Dr. Stehouwer and I attended during the third week of April in Seattle.
We’re all pretty concerned about the vehicle we’re driving through life. We only get one model. Although some damage can’t be repaired, we are blessed in this medical age with being able to make innumerable repairs, and even swap parts and accessorize. If our bodies are cars, then doctors are mechanics. We aren’t in the repair business in our ofﬁce however, we’re more about pimping your ride. We want it to run smoother and look better. We know your vehicle will look better because there will be a nicer smile on your grill when your sleep apnea goes away along with your back and knee pain, and your eyes light up with the extra energy you feel in the middle of the afternoon.
To get the most out of your vehicle, we want to help you make sure you’re getting just the right blend of fuel. Towards that end, the lectures we heard, and the studies discussed conﬁrmed what we’ve been telling patients. (The exception being a study that showed not shying away from saturated fat might actually be beneﬁcial, especially for endurance athletes – see the article about our Ribbon Cutting) We found a company offering a service that analyzes your DNA and predicts how your body will react to different dietary components. There’s also a machine that calculates your exact resting energy expenditure rate (rather than just an estimate) by measuring your exhalation levels while sitting in a chair doing nothing for 10 minutes. In the lectures we saw all sorts of charts and graphs. It was data central, because the doctors attending wanted evidence, not theory. And as we were watching and listening I was really struck by the power of some of the graphs. Pictures really do say a thousand words sometimes. So, I started to put the facts of our practice to paper when we got back to our ofﬁce.
We are still so very young, we don’t have much data yet to display, but the trend is already obvious. After seeing us, people begin to lose weight. But, just as weight loss plans are not one-size-ﬁts-all, we expected to see some anomalies, and we did. Our success rate will not be perfect, but that doesn’t mean the information we’re giving out is wrong.
In the end, we can help you mix the right blend for your engine, put in additives, and we can give you all the supportive gadgets you can dream of, but you’re still driving the car. One of the dangers of driving, for those of us who have been driving for awhile, is that it gets too easy. We drive on auto-pilot. We don’t think about details, we just follow the same old routes. But think about that; that’s the driver’s problem, not the car’s. The dictionary deﬁnes Driven as: “having a compulsive or urgent quality” or “propelled or motivated by something.”
One of the presenters made the statement that people can lose weight on any diet for the ﬁrst month, because any time people really pay attention things change. The key is in keeping the motivation; maintaining that compulsion and urgency. We’re here to be your pit crew. Not just once a month for your follow-up visits, but anytime you have a question or concern. Call, email, or simply check in on our website or Facebook page. We vow to keep our sites changing and fresh, putting up new articles and recipes every week. I’ll also keep you posted on our updated data, and hopefully get some better looking graphs in the very near future!
Remember, your car (body) is being driven, but you’re doing the driving. What happens to your body doesn’t just happen beyond your control – you are behind the wheel! Don’t go on auto-pilot, don’t set the cruise control, and don’t ignore the check engine light. And if you’re the line on the graph that looks like it took a wrong turn, you can always get re-routed. You’ve got support.