Q: I exercise 5 times a week, and spend over an hour each day at the gym. I have good muscle tone, and I spend at least half my time doing cardio, but I still have trouble losing weight. While I feel pretty good, my doctor says I am still very overweight. He says I am still 100 pounds over my ideal body weight. I have some palpitations, so he does not want me taking any supplements. He said I could consider weight loss surgery, but there are some new medications that I could also try. I am in favor of the medications, but I forgot to ask him what is available, do you know?
A: It sounds like you are exercising a good amount. An hour five times a week is certainly an adequate amount of time to spend toning your muscles, and increasing your cardiovascular endurance. I always recommend to my patients that they try and burn a minimum of 300 calories each time they go to the gym. If you are physically able, this should not be too difficult. Many of the newer machines with give you the amount of calories that you burn over time if you enter your weight into the machine.
As far as weight loss is concerned, obviously a good diet, which is low in carbs, and lower in calories is important, but if you have tried multiple times with diet and exercise and are still unable to lose weight, your doctor is correct. The weight loss surgeries have become much safer over the past few years. There are also newer weight loss medications on the market. One such medication is Belviq. This is a good medication for you as you have some heart symptoms with the palpitations, and this medication has very little cardiovascular risk. It basically decreases your appetite, but it does not have the same side effects as some of the older weight loss medications.
Watch this video for more information on Belviq on VideoMD.