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Medical Weight Loss for Kids and Adolescents

Do you treat kids or adolescents?

Absolutely! Dr. Payam Kerendian chose his original Residency training to be in Family Practice because he did not want to be limited to a certain patient population. A family practice physician is fully trained in the care of boys and girls in their childhood to men and women in their adult and even elderly years.

With Dr. Kerendian’s sub-specialty in the field of Bariatric Medicine or Non-surgical Weight management, he takes extra care and passion to be one of the authorities in handling the Biggest Epidemic that we are facing today: The accelerating rate of childhood and adolescent Obesity.

Do you treat kids/adolescent the same way you treat adults?

Absolutely not! Dr. Kerendian treats each patient with his or her own personalized plan which is tailored from an appropriate work up and evaluation. This individualization takes into consideration the age and gender of the patient.

How do I get started with Dr. Payam Kerendian treatment of my child?

  • Make sure your child is aware of the problem and consequences of his/her weight
  • Allow appropriate timing for visits
  • Make an appointment for original evaluation Phase:
    1. Comprehensive Blood Testing
    2. Computerized Body Impedance analysis for fat percentage
    3. Direct breathing analysis of metabolic rate and calorie intake ranges.
    4. Face to face consult with Dr. to review results and set a path and start any medical care (if needed)
      • 15 minute with parent or guardian alone
      • 5-10 minutes with parent/guardian and child
      • 30 minutes with child alone
    5. Minimum of four other visits (at 2 week or 4 week intervals)
      • These visits will be a fun interactive session with your child and Dr. Kerendian to imbed your child with some of the key educational facts in order to set a scientific knowledge base about weight related behaviors, nutrition, and activities.
      • Kids who attend these four visits will know more about nutrition and weight management than do 90% of the adults in the United States and have a better success rate in conquering obesity than those who don’t.
  • You will remain a lifelong patient for Dr. Kerendian. There is never an end date, unless you chose to do so.

Obesity In Children And Teens

What are the problems with Childhood Obesity?

The problem of childhood obesity in the United States has grown considerably in recent years. Between 16 and 33 percent of children and adolescents are obese. Obesity is among the easiest medical conditions to recognize but most difficult to treat unless supervised by a specialized physician. Unhealthy weight gain due to poor diet and lack of exercise is responsible for over 300,000 deaths each year.

What is childhood weight gain not to be taken lightly?

Obesity most commonly begins in childhood between the ages of 5 and 6, and during adolescence. Studies have shown that a child who is obese between the ages of 10 and 13 has an 80 percent chance of becoming an obese adult.

What causes obesity?

The causes of obesity are complex and include genetic, biological, behavioral and cultural factors. Certain medical disorders can cause obesity in children and adolescence. A physician who’s not specialized in the field of Obesity can easily miss appropriate workup of these issues.

What are risks and complications of obesity?

There are many risks and complications with obesity. Physical consequences include:

  • Increased risk of heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Breathing problems
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Behavioral problems

Child and adolescent obesity is also associated with increased risk of emotional problems. Teens with weight problems tend to have much lower self-esteem and be less popular with their peers. Depression, anxiety, and other psychological or psychiatric disorders can also occur.

How can obesity be managed and treated?

Obese children need a thorough medical evaluation by a pediatrician or family physician specialized in the field of non-surgical weight management to consider the possibility of a core cause. In the absence of a physical disorder, the only way to lose weight is to reduce the number of calories being eaten and to increase the child or adolescent’s level of physical activity. Lasting weight loss can only occur when there is self-motivation. Since obesity often affects more than one family member, making healthy eating and regular exercise a family activity can improve the chances of successful weight control for the child or adolescent.

Ways to manage obesity in children and adolescents include:

  • Start a weight-management program
  • Change eating habits (eat slowly, develop a routine)
  • Plan meals and make better food selections (eat less fatty foods, avoid junk and fast foods)
  • Control portions and consume less
  • Increase physical activity (especially walking) and have a more active lifestyle
  • Know what your child eats at school
  • Eat meals as a family instead of while watching television or at the computer
  • Do not use food as a reward
  • Limit snacking
  • Attend a support group

Obesity frequently becomes a lifelong issue. The reason most obese adolescents gain back their lost pounds is that after they have reached their goal, they go back to their old habits of eating and exercising, or that the appropriate physician never addresses their underlying core issue. An obese adolescent must therefore learn to eat and enjoy healthy foods in moderate amounts and to exercise regularly to maintain the desired weight. Parents of an obese child can improve their child’s self esteem by emphasizing the child’s strengths and positive qualities rather than just focusing on their weight problem.