The number of obese persons in the U.S. raises and obesity comes at a pack with multiple health problems. However, one of the most important consequence derived from obesity is the increased risk of suffering from a heart disease.
A new research led researchers to conclude that overweight persons who show signs of developing a heart disease should be sent for “intensive behavioral counseling”. A couple of symptoms may turn overweight persons into candidates for the new recommended procedure. High blood pressure, high cholesterol, ‘metabolic syndrome’ or increased blood sugar levels are among the indicators.
The United States Preventive Services Task Force commissioned a study involving a review of 74 studies focused on medical interventions to change lifestyles.
“My message for patients would be that we have the ability by changing our behavior to modify our risk for heart disease and stroke and your doctors can help you do that,” Dr. Michael L. LeFevre, the chair of the Task Force, told Reuters. “The most important thing that we can do right now is have you lose some weight, be more active but just offering that advice and giving you a pamphlet, we don’t really find any evidence that that’s helpful.”
Fortunately, the rate of hospitalization for patients with heart diseases significantly dropped during the last decade, according to another recent research. Without any medical breakthroughs in the last decade, most of the success can be attributed to adjusted health care and healthier behavior.
Intensive behavioral counseling involves large well-funded health organizations
An intensive behavioral counseling would involve a period of several months or even a year. During that time, the patient would be offered personalized sessions with nutritionists and other experts, while doing routine exercises. According to the study, the method will have long-term benefits. Even if the recommendations do not come as a shocker, the Task Force may have the possibility to further transmit the idea to government agencies.
The study’s lead author, Dr. Jennifer S. Lin of the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research in Portland Oregon, underlines that this principle would be face difficulties during implementation, because of the lack of resources in the health system. She advocates for resource allocation specifically for such a program of intensive behavioral counseling, as it produces long-term health benefits, albeit incremental. Only large scale organizations have the resources and logistics to offer this type of counseling at the moment, Lin added, according to Reuters.