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Monongahela Valley Hospital Weight Control and Wellness Program Yields Healthy Results

In the two years since Monongahela Valley Hospital (MVH) introduced its Weight Control and Wellness Program, dozens of people have realized their targeted weight loss and many others have reduced or eliminated their need for medications.

According to Hiram Gonzalez, M.D., an MVH surgeon who is director of the Hospital’s bariatric program, 73 percent of the people who have completed the program or had bariatric surgery were able to quit taking their medication for diabetes and 34 percent of the participants eliminated their hypertension medications. 

“We are very satisfied with the results,” said Dr. Gonzalez. “People who carry extra weight are prone to other health problems such as heart disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, elevated cholesterol and many others. People who choose our program are taking the first step to a healthier life.”

More than 35 percent of adults are categorized as obese. Obesity has been clinically classified as a disease by the American Medical Association because it can reduce life expectancy and quality of life. If obesity rates continue on their current path, it is estimated that the number of new cases of Type 2 diabetes, coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, stroke and arthritis could increase tenfold by 2020.

MVH’s Weight Control and Wellness Program includes a team of physicians and clinicians who evaluate a person based on his or her age, gender, lifestyle, diet, culture and amount of physical activity. A multidisciplinary team then designs a personalized plan that includes nutrition counseling; medically supervised weight loss with recipes, food journals and helpful tips; home-based physical activity; fitness and healthy cooking classes; and possible bariatric surgery.

Each month, Dr. Gonzalez hosts information sessions at Monongahela Valley Hospital. The summer sessions are scheduled for June 6, July 11 and August 8. All programs are free and begin at 6 p.m.

For more information, contact MVH’s Community Relations Department at (724) 258-1333.

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