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Weight Loss- Myths & Realties


Being overweight is a genuine medical condition

A study by Monash University in May 2011 found more than 1.7 million Australians were obese – having a body mass index (BMI) over 30.

Importantly, we now understand this is not because of a lifestyle choice or a personal weakness. Scientists have discovered several genes, which predispose someone to obesity – including the FTO, PCSK1 and ENPP1 genes. This finally explains why obesity often runs in families and why, for the majority of sufferers, diet and exercise are simply ineffective.

It’s time to recognise that obesity is a medical problem and should be treated without guilt or prejudice. It’s why OClinic specialise in appetite regulation treatments through Gastric Banding and Gastric Sleeve Procedures.

Do I have Obesity?

If the extra weight you are carrying gives you a Body Mass Index over 30, then from a medical perspective you have obesity. Click here to go back to the home page where you can check your BMI using our calculator on the right hand side of the page

Obesity is often a result of excessive appetite

Patients with obesity frequently report being hungry all the time, or need big meal portions to feel satisfied. Hunger is regulated by the Hypothalamus- the part of the brain that controls the body’s metabolic mechanisms.

It is thought that the hunger-regulating part of the hypothalamus does not function correctly in people with obesity- it continues to stimulate hunger and food desire all the time, even when your body has plenty of energy reserves. Perhaps it is like the low-fuel warning light in a car constantly flickering on even though you’ve just filled the tank. This is frequently genetic, and promotes both overeating and poor food choices, and over time leads to obesity.

Another important observation is that people who are constantly hungry often seem drawn toward foods that are rich in calories. Such foods are often high in sugar and fat, such as chocolate, fried foods, and sweets. Treatment is highly effective by using appetite control procedures such as either the gastric band or sleeve.

Obesity may also be caused by emotional eating

Comfort eating by turning to food to cope with stress, anxiety and low mood is very common. Chocolate, ice-cream, lollies and chips are usually used as they give a temporary 'hit'. Psychologists believe that we are programmed from birth to be soothed by food- we have all seen the way a baby stops crying when put on the breast. Sometimes a serious or traumatic life event may trigger a person to revert back to using food to help feel better. Of course we all know that this doesn't really work logically, and often we might actually feel worse about ourselves after an episode of comfort eating. However emotions can be very powerful and at times control our actions.

Fortunately emotional eating can be overcome. At OClinic we treat patients with a combination of regular individual and group psychological counselling combined with physically limiting the amount of food that can be consumed during emotional episodes using the Gastric Sleeve. (we feel the Gastric Band is not as effective for this type of eating disorder as it does not restrict the intake of high calorie soft foods by contrast to the sleeve)

Whatever the reason for one's obesity, doctors all agree it must be treated because of the health risks associated with being dangerously overweight. Click here to read about health risks, or click here to read about our treatment options.

Why is obesity dangerous?

Having a serious weight problem is associated with a huge number of other medical problems. It adversely affects every body system, and has become the second highest cause of preventable death in Australia after tobacco smoking.

Data from Western Australia has revealed that obesity shortens average life expectancy by 4 years, whilst an American study has found that people aged 25–35 years who are severely obese are 12 times more likely to die early than those of a healthy weight. Click here for the report

The following are just some of the medical problems that are strongly associated with obesity:

Type -2 diabetes High Blood Pressure Sleep Apnoea
Heart disease Stroke Heartburn and reflux
Infertility and polycystic ovaries raised cholesterol breast cancer
fatty liver disease Gallstones Recurrent leg cellulitis
Osteoarthritis and joint pain bowel cancer bladder incontinence
Adult onset Asthma Blood clots blood clots
Abdominal hernias Depression migraine

At least 80% of people with obesity will develop at least one of these conditions, and 60% will develop at least three. These and many other reasons explain why being overweight is such a risk to your health.

For us the other major issue with obesity is reduced quality of life- Do you constantly feel tired, with simple tasks like walking up steps leaving you feeling exhausted? Does even light exertion make you sweaty and uncomfortable? Does thinking about your weight get you down and depressed? Obesity takes away a person's right to a happy and fulfilled life.

Fortunately obesity can now be treated. We specialise in appetite and portion control procedures combined with our renowned in-house dietary, psychological and medical support to help you get the best results possible.

Proven treatment that works.

OClinic specialises in two weight loss procedures, the Gastric Band and the Gastric Sleeve, and a range of other laparoscopic abdominal operations including removal of the gallbladder, repair of hernias, and hiatus hernia/heartburn surgery.

Our head surgeon is Dr Craig Taylor, who has personally performed well in excess of 4500 laparoscopic procedures including more than 2500 weightloss operations, making him one of Sydney's most experienced advanced laparoscopic surgeons. You will meet Dr Taylor on your very first visit to the clinic; he will carefully go through your medical history, explain your treatment options, and ensure you understand everything clearly.

If you are having one of our weightloss procedures, you will be closely supported by our whole team, not just around the time of your procedure, but for the months and years that follow. We will help you end the weight struggle- that's our commitment to you. Our approach works- we constantly monitor our results and continually strive to improve our service to you. Through our integrated team approach we are helping our patients achieve some of the best results in the world- our average Gastric Band patient is able to lose 62% of their excess weight, whilst our average Gastric Sleeve patient loses 72%, all with minimal risk of complications or problems.

To find out more, click on the following links: