Weight management consultation

Obesity is a very serious threat to public health, with 36.2% of Singaporeans from ages 18 to 69 reported to be overweight, according to a 2017 report from the Ministry of Health. Unmanaged weight poses numerous health risks that negatively affect quality of life. This includes a higher risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, heart diseases, certain cancers, and even depression.

Weight consultations can help an individual lower his or her risk of obesity and its associated health problems with the help of a medical expert.

Why Is Weight Consultation Important?

Weight management isn’t just about losing weight; but rather, it is more concerned about improving and maintaining the overall wellbeing of an individual long-term. Consultations with a nutritionist, dietician or doctor can help:

  • Assess the cause of weight gain. Aside from eating habits and lifestyle, weight gain may be triggered by factors like genetics, medications, and health conditions such as hypothyroidism, hormonal imbalance or insulin resistance.
  • Address the cause of weight gain. Once the root cause is pinpointed, it will be easier for the doctor to recommend a diet, exercise regimen or other forms of treatment that will help bring the body back to an ideal weight safely, effectively and sustainably.


Should I Seek Weight Management Consultation?

Whether for personal or medical purposes, it is crucial for one to seek expert advice first before undergoing diet and workout programs. This not only guarantees progress and results, but ensures safe and effective methods as well. Below are some situations when weight management consultations are most important:

  • Body mass index (BMI) is higher than 30.0, thereby indicating obesity and an increased risk of chronic and acute illnesses.
  • Pre-existing physical or mental conditions are impeding fitness goals and weight loss success.
  • Individuals are considering weight loss aids, medicines and major procedures to meet body goals.
  • Current diet and fitness regimens are not delivering desired results.


What Can I Expect During the Consultation?

A typical face-to-face consultation starts with the consultant gathering information from the patient, which includes:

  • Present diet and lifestyle
  • Family and medical history
  • Pre-existing health conditions (physical and mental)
  • Current medications
  • Body measurements (BMI, height, weight and body fat percentage)
  • Weight loss goals
  • Previously undertaken weight loss programs and treatments (if any)

The doctor may also order blood tests and imaging tests to screen out hormonal and cardiovascular issues. Based on these findings, a dietary plan and exercise regimen will be created to suit the patient’s desired goals and present health condition. The appointments following the initial consultation will focus more on monitoring progress. The patient may also be tasked to keep a diary to record his or her weight loss and fitness journey.

Surgical Procedures for Obesity

In some cases when obesity is extreme (having a BMI of 40.0 or higher), or if the patient suffers from chronic weight-related conditions, bariatric surgery may be advised. Commonly known as weight loss surgery, this procedure is designed to either limit a person’s food intake or reduce the body’s calorie absorption, or both. It can be done in various ways, including:

  • Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass Surgery – A small pouch is created and cut from the stomach, then connected directly to the small intestine’s jejunum. With this procedure, food and liquid will go to the small pouch after consumption, bypassing the larger portion of the stomach. This effectively limits the amount the patient can eat. From the pouch, the digested contents will go directly to the jejunum, bypassing the duodenum to prevent the absorption of calories.
  • Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding (LAGB) – In this procedure, a small pouch is created in the stomach by placing a silicone band or belt around the upper portion of the stomach. Similar to a gastric bypass, this method limits the patient’s food intake, enabling him or her to feel full quicker. The band can be adjusted to allow contents to pass through the stomach slower or faster.
  • Sleeve Gastrectomy – This procedure involves removing a large part of the stomach, leaving only a small portion for food and liquid to be temporarily stored.
  • Duodenal Switch – This method is another variation of the gastric bypass in which a sleeve gastrectomy is first performed. The newly formed stomach will then be attached directly to the duodenum.

Digestive Centre specializes in metabolism, digestive and nutrition conditions, offering various treatments for long-term weight management. Headed by Dr. Shanker Pasupathy, we also provide bariatric and metabolic surgery for weight loss, including gastric bypass, banding, sleeve and balloon. For more information about our services, or to book a consultation, contact us at 6737-5388.