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I Wish I Had Less Muscle Mass…

I Wish I Had Less Muscle Mass… …said no 80 year old EVER! This is a topic I’ve discussed often in these pages, and I suspect I will return to it often in the future. The more I research the topic of longevity, the more I appreciate the importance of muscle mass. We all understand, at least at an intuitive level, that ‘frailty’ is a big source of disability and unfortunately death in the Elderly. But that understanding becomes much more concrete when it’s backed by facts. Let me share an astounding statistic that captures what I am talking about
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Making Resolutions Stick: The Power of Default Behaviors

Given this is the time of year for resolutions, I figured I would chime in with my own suggestion for how to be successful with whatever your resolution is: Make the desired behavior (your resolution) the default behavior. Eventually, we all lose the battle with willpower (the main reason resolutions, and diets for that matter, often don’t work). So, rather than have a daily battle with willpower I suggest simply creating a rule and following it. You’ve been following rules your whole life, so let’s hack that system to our advantage. Consider a common resolution: "Lose 20 (or 30) pounds
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The Truth About Hair Loss After Bariatric Surgery

Embarking on the path of weight loss surgery is a transformative journey. It's not just about shedding pounds; it's about embracing a new, healthier lifestyle that includes proper diet and exercise. At Garden State Bariatrics in New Jersey, we are committed to the well-being and success of our patients. A crucial aspect of achieving your weight loss goals is understanding how nutrition affects your body during this transformative process. Key Considerations: Protein Intake and Rapid Weight Loss Similar to the challenges faced by those struggling with obesity, rapid weight loss and dietary restrictions after bariatric surgery can trigger changes in
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Playing The Long Game for Weight Loss Success

By Dr. Michael Bilof I’ve been thinking lately that to really succeed at something… like really, truly succeed you have to play the “Long Game”, not the short game. Since our interest in these pages is health, fitness, and longevity, let me put it in those terms. The ‘short game’ is the crash diet: you get some results (sometimes even good results!) but they never last, not really. You lose 20 lbs. in 6 weeks, but as soon as you stop the unsustainable diet you gain those 20 lbs. back plus 10 more over the next 3 to 4 months…
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How to Avoid Weight Regain After Bariatric Surgery

You did it. You worked hard to meet the requirements necessary for undergoing bariatric surgery. You had the procedure and got through recovery. You quickly shed pounds in the year after surgery, and were keeping up with your post-surgery diet. But… First you hit a plateau, and now the pounds have started to come back. At this point, some patients want to give up. Don’t let this be you: you can get back on the right track, and we’re here to help. Why Do Patients Regain Weight After Surgery? Weight regain after bariatric surgery is not uncommon. While sometimes a
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Bariatric Surgery vs. Weight Loss Medications: Comparing Costs and Long-Term Results

As obesity rates continue to rise, more and more people are seeking effective solutions for weight loss. Two popular options are bariatric surgery and weight loss medications. While both approaches aim to help individuals shed excess weight, there are significant differences in terms of cost and long-term sustainability. Read on to explore the efficacy, financial implications, and sustainability of bariatric surgery compared to weight loss medications, and to learn more about the potential benefits and drawbacks of each approach. The Financial Burden of Weight Loss Medications Weight loss medications have gained popularity as a non-invasive alternative to bariatric surgery. Studies
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Medical Weight Loss in New Jersey

By Dr. Michael Bilof Last month I did a brief overview here of the medical research on the new ‘wonder weight loss drugs’ that are on the market. In case you did not read it or didn’t know there are new ‘wonder drugs’ in our midst, the 2 drugs are Semaglutide (brand name Wegovy/Ozempic) and Tirzepatide (brand name Mounjaro). The take home message from the research literature is that these drugs are effective for a significant number of the patients who take them (at least half in most of the studies) and, more importantly, they are relatively safe. Since we
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Wegovy vs. Weight Loss Surgery

By Dr. Michael Bilof Unless you live under a large rock or never go on social media, you have no doubt heard about ‘miracle’ weight loss drugs. They are indeed quite effective. The two drugs getting most of the attention are semaglutide (Wegovy) and tirzepatide (Mounjaro). I will not get into the technical weeds of how they work, other than to say that they both appear to have a rather pronounced effect on appetite. That is, they decrease the patient’s appetite—eat less, lose weight! What You Need To Know About Weight Loss Drugs If you’re reading this you probably don’t
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Blue Cross Blue Shield Expands Bariatric Coverage in New Jersey

At Garden State Bariatrics, we are dedicated to empowering people to live healthier lives—which is why we are excited to share news that will allow us to help even more people find weight loss success in New Jersey. Many health insurance plans offer some coverage for weight loss surgery, but each insurance plan has their own guidelines. Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) of New Jersey, which covers approximately 2.7 million people, has updated and expanded their bariatric coverage. New BCBS Guidelines for Bariatric Surgery in New Jersey Horizon BCBS of NJ recently announced that bariatric coverage will be available
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Exercise, the Best Medicine

By Dr. Michael Bilof If exercise were an actual ‘medicine’ it would probably be the best medicine for longevity that we have. First off, let’s start with the simple premise that the human body was designed for motion—NOT to sit in a chair staring at a screen all day. Given that modern life has so little physical activity baked into it, we have to generate that motion and activity… that’s ‘exercise’. Walking is a basic (and very effective!) form of exercise. Thirty to 60 minutes of walking several times/week, preferably outside, is wonderful for physical and mental health. Whether you
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