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Prescription Without The Pharmacy

After several months of noticing consistent weight gain, a thirty-five year old woman decides to visit her doctor. She is amazed that the extra weight seems to have come from out of the blue and proclaims her diet has never been a problem before now? She wondered if it could be her thyroid (a frequent complaint of her mother’s). Or maybe pregnancy? Even worse, could it be some chronic condition? And, forget about what it could be, what could the doctor give her to lose the weight and regain her energetic zest? After a thorough checkup and confirmed lab results, the doctor found nothing of concern, but did write Mary a prescription – one mile of walking per day, five times a week.

This action is not so absurd. According to the Archives of Internal Medicine, more and more doctors are being encouraged by their industry’s board of superiors to write prescriptions of exercise for their patients, especially those with obesity issues. And fortunately, they are conceding.

The estimated figure of premature death rate resulting from obesity-related afflictions (heart disease, diabetes, etc.) is 300,000 per year. This equates to healthcare costs of up to $90 billion! There would be a substantial drop in these cases if patients would participate in physical activity. Not only would it help to lower their body weight, it could among many things, lower high risk factors of heart disease such as high cholesterol and hypertension.

Since individuals seek out medical advice long before they consider assistance from a personal trainer, the measure argued the importance of doctors condoning the use of exercise to assist with obesity problems. With the medical field supporting the notion of a fitness program, it serves as reinforcement for the general population of Americans to make exercise an essential part of their lives.

Guidelines included discussing the following topics with the patient:

•Assessing BMI and explaining what the results mean
•Referring to general nutrition of good health
•Suggesting an approximate 500 calorie decrease in the person’s diet
•Writing an actual prescription (nothing beats instruction in black and white form)
•Giving Lifestyle amendments to expend calories, such as taking stairs instead of elevators or walking during a lunch break
•Recommending a pedometer and a minimum of 10,000 steps per day
•Introducing the benefits of strength training, and how to get started

As the subject in our story discovered, metabolism begins to naturally slow down as we age, but there are actions we can take to help the situation. You do not have to wait for your doctor to write you a prescription for treatment. You do not even have to hit the local drugstore to obtain over-the-counter medicine. Exercise is a therapy that is always accessible to you and nothing beats the resulting quality of life that it has to offer.

About the Author

Sherri Dodd is the creator and author of Mom Looks Great - The Fitness Program for Moms. She is an ACE-certified Personal Trainer and Lifestyle & Weight Management Consultant with over fifteen years of exercise experience. She has lectured to groups of 100+ people on her fitness plan and is a freelance writer on the topics of fitness and general nutrition as well as the humorous side of motherhood.

Sherri L Dodd