What About the HCG Diet?

If I had a penny – okay, maybe a dollar – for everyone who asked me about the HCG diet, I’d be ready for retirement! Locally here in Austin, we had a couple people within our medical community do the HCG diet and lose a dramatic amount of weight, which fueled the fire. In my practice, I have had multiple patients try (outside my advice) different versions of the diet- some shots, some sublingual, some pills- and though all lost weight quickly, virtually all regained it in the same time span. Reading the medical literature to find some evidence-basis … Read more

Scary Mosquitoes & West Nile Virus

Bzzz….swat! The mosquitoes are particularly annoying this time of year, and now we have more to worry about than an itchy red arm- the West Nile Virus (WNV) is spiking again. In fact, the 1118 cases of human West Nile viral infection that have been reported to the CDC in 2012 mark the highest number of cases since the recognition of this disease back in 1999. Unfortunately for my neck of the woods, over 75% of the cases have occurred in Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana, Oklahoma and South Dakota, including 41 deaths. That’s the bad news. The good news is that … Read more

Is it a New or Old Weight Loss Drug?

This month I am talking about obesity & weight loss. By our human (and American) nature, we would all like a quick fix to solve our weight issues. This summer, the FDA approved not one, but TWO new weight loss drugs.  My last blog addressed lorcaserin (Belviq), and today’s focus is really something old in a new package.

Qsymia was FDA approved in July 2012, and it is a combination of two older drugs that have been used independently to help with weight loss: phentermine and topiramate. Phentermine is an appetite suppressant, and was half of the infamous fen-fen (a … Read more

A New Weight Loss Drug!

Have you heard that the FDA approved not one, but TWO new weight loss drugs this summer? Hooray! Our problems are solved, right? Are there still overweight doctors out there? Well…yes, there are, so that should give you a clue that these new drugs are not miracle workers.

Today I will focus on the first drug approved. Locaserin, brand name Belviq, came out in June 2012. This drug will decrease your hunger and increase your feelings of satiety (feeling full after a meal). Locaserin works within the serotonin system (like the antidepressants such as Prozac) but targets a specific receptor … Read more

Which Diet is Best for Weight Loss?

Now there is the million dollar question, right? Interestingly, despite billions of health care dollars being spent on “diets”, there are not recent high level studies in the medical literature to support touting one weight loss diet highly above all the rest. In 2001, there was a scientific review of popular diets by Freedman, King, & Kennedy, that concluded “low fat, low calorie diets are the most successful in maintaining weight loss.” Note- this is in MAINTAINING weight loss, not LOSING weight. Ultimately, as should come as little or no surprise, CALORIC BALANCE is the major determinant of weight loss, … Read more