Pharmacists May Be Best For Diet Supplement/Meal Replacement Education

Category: Healthcare Advances Written by Dr. Charles Shively / November 9, 2014

Many Considerations Should Be Evaluated

In today's health-conscious world, information is available from many sources. The internet offers unlimited information through key word searches and reveals information from worldwide locations. What may be the best source of accurate information regarding diet supplements/meal replacements for weight loss? Who remains the most trusted healthcare professional regarding medications and OTC supplements or remedies?

It we know...the community pharmacist. Initiating a weight reduction program using self-chosen products is probably not the best approach to ensuring success while eliminating other medication interactions and possible side effects. Many weight-loss plans do deliver...but don't keep the weight off once the plan is terminated. How is this good for the body's desire for equilibrium and stability? Your pharmacist can help you make the correct choice.

What Are The Choices?

Recently, the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American Heart Association (AHA) released this past year the findings of the Task Force on Practice Guidelines and the Obesity Society. Most pharmacists have reviewed this report. This major effort has been endorsed by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation, the American Pharmacists Association, the American Society for Nutrition, the American Society for Preventive Cardiology, the American Society of Hypertension, the Assocation of Black Cardiologists, the National Lipid Assocation, the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association, the Endocrine Society and WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease. This Task Force Report, with sixty-nine (69) pages and one-hundred seventy-three (173) references explores the impact of many different intervention options in obesity control: Reduced dietary energy intake, low fat approaches, higher protein approaches, low-carbohydrate approaches, glycemic load approaches, dietary pattern approaches (Mediterranean, Vegetarian and others), meal replacement, very low calorie diet approaches and more invasive approaches including gastric banding, gastric bypass, biliopancreatic diversion and laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy. This Task Force summation is available from

Should choices for weight loss be left to the casual observer or self-deciding individual? Why not involve your community pharmacist who knows more about your current health circumstance than any other professional?

Who Here Needs Weight Management?

As we age, we gain weight...often in the "wrong" places. Males and females reflect this weight gain often in different body locations...yet the impact on diabetes, hyperlipidemia and hypertension is constant. This Task Force created a "Treatment Algorithm"...or model for primary care of patients with overweight and obesity...which applies to the assessment of overweight and obesity and subsequent decision based on the algorithm assessment. This assessment includes some nineteen key steps to definition of the best approach to weight loss and by what approach. Weight loss is a complicated exercise and requires the involvement of community pharmacists...our often trusted "family member" support our instincts about what's best for weight loss success. Demographic and clinical characteristics to effect achievement of reduction in body weight with lifestyle and pharmacological interventions have been statistically validated, by weight loss amount, to reduce cardiovascular disease risks relating to diabetes, dyslipidemia and hypertension (blood pressure). Within each approach to weight loss, this Task Force was able to establish and assign a Strength of Evidence (high, moderate or low) to the impact of the weight loss approach on the key health markers.

It's All About Body Mass Index (BMI)

Overweight is defined as a body mass index (BMI) of 25 -29.9 kg/meter squared and obesity as a BMI of > 30 kg/meter squared. Many local pharmacies can determine this value for any patient/customer at no cost. Current estimates are that 69% of adults are either overweight or obese with approximately 35% obese. This latest data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys reports that for both men and women, obesity estimates for 2009-2010 did not differ significantly from estimates for 2003-2008. More than seventy-eight (78) million adults in the United States were obese in 2009-2010. The health bottom line from this obesity: It raises the risk of morbidity from hypertension, dyslipidemia, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease (CHD), stroke, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea and respiratory problems including some cancers.

Does Weight Loss Adjust Quality of Life?

Absolutely. As the expected lifetime age continues to increase, weight loss TODAY will add years to one's life expectancy and allow overall quality of life improvement en route to the final chapters in Life's Book®. Why not involve your pharmacist in the best approach to weight loss, including meal placement approaches?

As I like to say, "Let's Ride On" and "Thanks for Coming In Today".

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Thank for sharing!

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