FALL RIVER — It’s a little bit Zen, a little bit medicine, and a whole lot of weight loss.
That’s the new Medi-Weightloss Program office that recently opened at PrimaCARE. The program comes with a prescription for healthy eating, exercise, and counseling, all under a doctor’s care.
It is intended for people who are overweight, obese, and those with metabolic syndrome, diabetes or at risk for developing diabetes.
“It’s not your typical doctor’s office,” said Dr. Tamer Yacoub, medical director of the Medi-Weightloss Program at PrimaCARE and a specialist in internal medicine, endocrinology, and diabetes and metabolism at PrimaCARE.
Yacoub said he started the program because a proven medical weight loss program was lacking for patients who can’t seem to lose the pounds on their own and are jeopardizing their health.
“I’ve been treating diabetes for the past 22 years,” Yacoub said.
He’s seen numerous people struggle with trying to improve their blood sugar numbers, while also battling the side effects of being overweight, like high blood pressure and cholesterol — making it a deadly combination of ailments called metabolic syndrome.
“Fall River is quite unique,” Yacoub said. “It has the highest prevalence of obesity and diabetes in Massachusetts.”
He said the epidemic is “only growing,” and while patients in the past typically developed Type II diabetes later in life, he’s now seeing patients in their 20s and 30s.
Yacoub became board certified in obesity medicine and with his new skills and knowledge, he started the Medi-Weightloss Program at PrimaCARE, a national program created by physicians with more than 100 offices in 25 states.
The individualized program, covered up to about 80 percent of the cost by most insurances, will be run by Yacoub with two nurse practitioners, a medical assistant and an office manager.
When a patient visits the office, they will be weighed, and receive nutrition counseling, body composition testing, fitness recommendations, and screenings for cholesterol, blood pressure, and diabetes.
While it is a grocery-based program where patients prepare their own healthy meals, today’s busy lifestyle is taken into account with the addition of Medi-Weightloss brand snacks, shakes, protein powder and some meals available for purchase.
The Medi-Weightloss program also offers recipes on its website.
The office opened nine weeks ago, and patients have already lost more than 1,200 pounds.
That’s good news for patients, Yacoub said there are some “200 diseases associated with obesity,” including diabetes, sleep apnea, arthritis, heart disease, and some types of cancer.
“Our job is not only to help them lose the weight, but maintain the weight loss,” Yacoub said.
To learn more about the program, contact the Medi-Weightloss Program office at 774-365-4542 or visit PrimaCARE, Building 1, suite 309A, or online at www.mediweightloss.com.
Email Deborah Allard at email@example.com.
Overcoming obesity: New weight loss program at PrimeCARE offers a way out for many – News – Wicked Local Fall River