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The down & dirty on women's wellness
Green Fat reduction....?
Sustainable & Safe Weight Loss
Green Fat reduction....?
Sustainable & Safe Weight Loss
July 2, 2021
America runs on Dunkin, maybe not on the West Coast, but the sentiment & implication is the same. We are a culture of immediate gratification. By the time we decide we want or need something, we would prefer it already be done. We are a collectively impatient country. We want what we want when we want it & we want it now. This has led to a fast food nation & to a public health epidemic of adult & childhood obesity that continues to grow & shows no signs of slowing. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted some of the true problems with the epidemic of obesity, as we have seen people suffering from obesity have monumentally higher rates of complications & staggeringly high rates of death related to COVID-19 when they have become infected as compared with patients who do not struggle with obesity. This is, in part, a function of the underlying conditions that are associated with obesity, but it is also related to the cause of the obesity in the first place, as we continue to see that those things that lead people to become obese are themselves independently associated with worse outcomes when an affected patient has COVID. Because of this, we have had a big national media discussion that has castigated, as usual, people for their obesity & has continued to urge people to lose weight, piling on more guilt & shame about our weight than we already had surging on a daily basis through our brains, which has led to some fixation for many on their need to eliminate excess fat & has increased interest in fat reduction treatments.
Let us be clear:
We are very fat-focused in America, probably because peripheral fat (the fat that we squeeze & Spanx up & try to stuff into our clothing) is readily visible & so we make the cognitive leap that what we see is what we get & that fat itself is the entire forest, the entire problem, our enemy. The fat is the trees, though, & we, even (or maybe especially) in medicine, are mostly missing the forest. Fat is a symptom of an underlying problem that has caused our bodies to gain weight. When we focus on the fat, we treat the symptom & do not correct the problem, which can create more & bigger problems.
There are many fat reduction treatments, ranging from the most invasive--bariatric surgery & liposuction—to the least invasive—Noom. Between the extremes, there is cool-sculpting, body-wrapping, warm-sculpting, fitness fanaticism, & any variety of dieting you can imagine. Throughout their lifetime, the average American adult will go on 129 different diets in an attempt to lose weight. The end result is not usually sustainable weight loss. The same is true of most fat reduction treatments, particularly those with a mechanism of action that destroys or eliminates fat cells (e.g., liposuction, coolsculpting, kybella).
Fat is not actually just an aesthetic nuisance. Rather, fat tissue (adipose) is a dynamic organ that has many functions other than insulation in the body. It is our bodies’ stored energy—our freezer full of food for the winter. Fat tissue itself produces a wide range of hormones & is filled with an intricate system of tiny blood vessels that deliver hormonal signals throughout the body. Our adipose is constantly communicating with—sending out signals & receiving them—the rest of our body. Our hormones produced outside of our adipose influence what our adipose does & our adipose influences what the rest of our body does. It is actually quite a complicated physiologic interchange.
In our office, we have long-resisted treatments that reduce peripheral fat tissue because they are destructive, & we know that treatments that kill fat cells cause systemic harm. We watch our patients elect to have such treatment & suffer consequences of the treatments, including increased weight gain & unwanted asymmetric fat deposition. We completely understand the temptations of these treatments: the speak straight to the heart of our desires for immediate gratification. LOSE FAT NOW! Who wouldn’t want to do that?
We have been committed to assisting our patients in identifying the underlying cause for their bodies’ desires to accumulate excess adipose tissue. We offer a highly effective, individually tailored medical weight management program that boasts amazing results (ask Sarah—she has lost & kept off nearly 100 pounds following her personally curated program). This program is not a quick fix, however. Instead, it is a deep dive into individual health & a slow & steady correction of processes that have gone awry to ensure that the weight loss is sustainable & does not return. People who engage in our weight management program are thrilled when they look back on their cumulative loss but are often impatient, as they wanted results last year & have difficulty with the tedium of the process of correction. They often want faster, bigger, better results before they have even begun the program & the gradual change of sustainable weight loss can seem utterly glacial, which can serve as a discouraging force. Enter the Emerald.
We are committed to first doing no harm in all arenas of healthcare, & we are committed to next doing good. Finally, there is a treatment that allows us to offer targeted fat reduction as a service that fits that bill. The Emerald laser is a 532nm laser with 10 distinct diodes that emits cold laser beams (meaning: they do not have thermal energy & are not painful) specifically designed not to harm the fat cells but to allow them to open & release their contents into the interstitial space, effectively liquefying stored fat & making it immediately available for the body to use as energy. This process results in volume decrease in desired areas but also leads to systemic circumferential reduction, as the remaining (now healthy) fat cells begin to send different signals to the body's other fat cells, encouraging them to behave similarly. This mechanism helps diminish dysfunction in the fat cells, improving cholesterol results & decreasing insulin resistance while also recalibrating the body's energy storage processes. It's not just an aesthetic treatment--it's a metabolic treatment with long-lasting (& life-saving) effects!
Most people are candidates for Emerald laser treatment, as there are very few potential adverse responses & there have been no documented ACTUAL adverse outcomes, & the treatment can be repeated ad nauseum, indefinitely, until the end of all days. However, it is generally our recommendation, as with all conditions, that you endeavor to discover the source of the weight you gained (we promise, it wasn’t quarantine itself that put the weight on you) that you are wanting to eradicate in order to ensure that the weight does not simply return as a function of an underlying problem that hasn’t been corrected. We find it more effective to always treat the forest, & we are thrilled that we can now also use a safe, literally green method to target those trees.