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Study Shows Close To 50 Percent Drop Out Rate With Weight Loss Clinics

Without question one of the most frequently used methods of overweight individuals looking to drop unwanted body fat is to seek the services of a commercial weight loss clinic.

While these clinics will vary in the treatment methods used, in order for the strategies to be effective, the individuals must complete the program.

Retention is an essential component to success, but many weight loss clinics struggle to keep their clients coming back. This has led many clinics to resort to strategies that produce rapid results, but not necessarily effective long-term weight management.

A recent study assessed this trend and published their findings in the Canadian Journal of Surgery (CJS).

More after the jump…

Here’s an excerpt from the story as reported in Science Daily News:

Researchers from the Department of Surgery at the University of Alberta and the Centre for the Advancement of Minimally Invasive Surgery at the Royal Alexandria Hospital in Edmonton, Alberta, found that over a six-year period almost half (43%) of the patients of a weight-management clinic funded by Alberta Health Services dropped out of the program before achieving sustainable weight loss.

The program involves 6 months of primary care, including education on strategies for treating obesity, nutritional counselling, smoking cessation, physical activity and mental health assessment to identify untreated conditions, such as depression, that may be barriers to effective weight management. Some participants also undergo bariatric surgery.

In a group of patients who are motivated enough to participate in a program like this, a 43% drop-out rate is surprising. “Identifying the factors that predict attrition may serve as a basis for program improvement and further research,” the authors state. Go to article.

One thing I found interesting with this study was that the drop out rate for patients receiving medical treatments like bariatric surgery, fell to only 12% on average. This seems to indicate that those individuals who are willing to undergo surgery are more committed to long-term results.

Certainly this doesn’t serve as an endorsement for bariatric surgery as there are risk factors and downsides to these potentially dangerous procedures. However, it does show that commitment is a major factor in long-term compliance.

Education and dietary planning are without question valuable components in an effective weight management program, but studies like this show that new strategies must be in order to help combat the obesity epidemic.

In my opinion, the missing component is the mental and emotional factors that accompany excess weight gain. The best dietary plans and exercise routines won’t be effective if the individual is stuck in a pattern of self-sabotage with negative thoughts and beliefs.

Desire and belief in one’s self remain the most important factors for personal change. Education, pills, powders, and the like won’t change a person’s belief systems.

Shane Doll is a certified Charleston personal trainer, fat loss expert, speaker, and founder of Shaping Concepts Personal Training Studios. He specializes in helping people achieve a body transformation with burst training exercise and whole food nutrition. You can receive a FREE no-obligations trial of his Charleston personal fitness programs and start experiencing the Shaping Concepts difference today.

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