Elaine Waite from Sioux Falls has reason to smile. After years of struggling with her weight and yo-yo dieting, she's finally found success with Optifast. A medically supervised weight management program.
Elaine says, " I wasn't hungry. I was never hungry. Going back to regular food is a little bit of a transition because it's so much easier just to do the product but never at any point did I say oh, I don't want to eat that."
Every Tuesday Elaine goes to the McGreevy Clinic at 69th and Western in Sioux Falls for support group. She loves it. Rarely misses it.
Elaine says, "it's nice to find out I'm not the only one that likes to overeat on occasion or has lapses. Chocolate is my obstacle. And it puts you in that supportive yet competitive spirit."
For the first 12 weeks people in the Optifast program get to eat any of the Optifast products 6 times a day. There are soups, bars and drinks. That equals 960 calories a day. That equated to Elaine losing 45 pounds in 4 months but even more came off.
"I lost 80 pounds. With Christmas it went up a little and then came down but 80 pounds in a year," She says.
Optifast success hinges on changing the bad habits that lead to weight gain in the first place.
Susan Weaver is Certified Nurse Practitioner and is involved in checking up on the clients. She says, "Lifestyle change is a tremendous part of this program. They deal with a behavioral specialist on a weekly basis, deal with dietitian an exercise specialist. It takes a whole team to make this work. So many of the people who come in here have either diabetes or hypertension or both and are on a number of medication. After the weight starts to come off, they tend to start coming off their medications. It's great to see them get healthier and achieve goals they never thought they could."
Elaine is a great example of that. She is breathing easier these days. She no longer has heart palpitations, high cholesterol or high blood pressure.
Elaine says, "I feel wonderful. I just feel like I belong in places again. I get compliments from people all the time, I just I feel good."
The Avera Optifast Program is one of the few in the country that offers an outreach program.
People who live outside of Sioux Falls can still participate in the support group sessions by calling it on a conference call and research shows it has seen great results.
For more information go to www.averamedicalnutrition.org or call 605-322-3091