Weight loss epidemic takes over Vanderhoof

Weight loss epidemic takes over Vanderhoof

Weight loss epidemic takes over Vanderhoof

Most Canadians struggle with dieting as they’re unable to get into the routine of sticking to one specific diet

Christina Millington

Healthier lifestyle changes are at the forefront of twenty-twelve.

Most Canadians struggle with dieting as they’re unable to get into the routine of sticking to one specific diet, or it being a lack of willpower to make it a lifestyle change.

Dr. Douwetee Coetzee, a physician at the Omineca Medical Clinic here in Vanderhoof heads the weight loss program Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings with her fellow colleagues, Dr. Michael Makin and Dr. Shani van der Spuy.

“Everyone has tried at least one diet in an effort to lose weight,” she said. “This is one that they can see maintaining.”

Coetzee’s vision was to construct a healthy program that doesn’t revolve around a stigma that discourages patients to stick to a healthy way of life – rather a physical or nutritional change that will have the support and encouragement of others with the same ambition.

With intent to back the program with facts and the confidence in knowing it is possible to maintain, Coetzee decided to partake in the clinic and experience the ups and the downs that patients may have to face while on this path to a healthier self.

Coetzee has recently lost 30 pounds with the program.

“Its your basic low calorie, low carbohydrate, low fat lifestyle change,” reassures Coetzee.

“We want to stay away from saying it’s a diet.”

The goal for the program is to medically monitor and target health abnormalities patients may be struggling with.

“Patients come together as a group,” Coetzee said. “It helps patients stay motivated.

The 12 week program started in January with a huge response from the community and surrounding area.

Dr. Du Toit, a physician out of Valemount, BC facilitated the program that became viral across North America when patients health abnormalities diminished with evident weight loss results in over a 100 Valemount residents, losing a combined weight of 3,269 pounds last year.

“Its incredible with the pounds that have been lost to date,” Coetzee said.

Patients that are involved with the weight loss program are generally dealing with diabetes, hypertension, and lipid abnormalities or told they need to lose weight.

“Its not a quick weight loss plan,” says Coetzee. “It needs to be a change of lifestyle so it’s maintained after the 12 weeks.”

Its not a diet that you can pick up on and do it yourself and your own leisure.

“The program needs to be monitored and adjusted accordingly depending on the patient and their needs,” says Coetzee.

Patients are required to go through extensive testing to be sure they can withstand the program and stay committed without complications – “there are no exclusions.”

“I couldn’t have done this without the group,” says Coetzee. “I needed a change in my eating habits in order to be successful and they inspired me.”

The testing process consists of blood sugar, fasting blood sugar, thyroid stimulating hormone, cholesterol profile (lipid profile) and liver testing.

According to online reports, the program has benefited many of those dedicated to its success, as diabetics are no longer on medication, obese people who have lost 100 pounds and are now runners.

Jennifer Little, assistant manager at the clinic couldn’t be happier with the success rate since the program started back in January.

“We have had a tremendous response,” she said. “Patients are seeing results. Significant results.”

The purpose and motivation behind this program is to improve patients overall health with the hope they continue with follow-up sessions with family physicians to maintain their progress and future goals.

Fight for life and be a healthier you.

For more information about the weight loss program contact: Jennifer Little, assistant manager at the Omineca Health Clinic at (250) 567-2201