Lighten Up

Dave & wife

Southcoast’s Weight Management Program transforms lives

David Markowski, of Mattapoisett, still gets uneasy when he approaches a booth in a restaurant. Before he lost 130 pounds, booths were difficult to enter and uncomfortable to sit in.

“The world is designed for people 250 pounds and under,” David says. “Most people don’t look at weight limits on chairs. I did.”

The security manager for Lockheed Martin lost his weight in six months by working with the Southcoast Health Weight Management Program, which is supervised by a doctor and a registered dietitian. Weekly classes and one-on-one meetings with dietitian Susan Oliveira, MBA, RD, helped him build a new relationship with food.

Paths to weight loss

The Weight Management Program is for people with a body mass index of 30 or more who want to lose weight without surgery, Oliveira says. Dr. Jessica Inwood, who is board-certified in obesity management, is medical director of the program, which works with patients with or without appetite-suppressing drugs.

Patients choose one of three paths to weight loss:

  • Full meal replacement program with only OPTIFAST bars, shakes and soups for 12 weeks and a six-week transition to regular food
  • Partial program with OPTIFAST supplementing a structured meal plan for 12 weeks
  • 12-week Three C’s for Success program using regular foods with guidelines for portions, nutritional balance and what to eat at certain times of day

All three programs include weekly classes and weight checks, with medical monitoring for the full OPTIFAST program. The sessions in Wareham, Dartmouth or Fall River teach patients how to read food labels, order healthy restaurant meals and prepare simple, low-calorie meals at home. Patients learn to recognize and manage the eating triggers in their lives, and the importance of at least three hours of exercise a week.

Patients lose an average of 20 to 50 pounds, depending on the program and “what the person puts into it,” Oliveira says. Full meal replacement with OPTIFAST leads to the most weight loss.

Learn how Southcoast can help you meet your weight-loss goals at Southcoast Weight Loss.