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Successful Weight Loss Tips for Transplant Patients
by Linda Kelleher RD, LDN, LPN, CDE
Obesity is a common long-term challenge following transplantation. The
causes of post-transplant weight gain include genetics, being overweight
prior to transplant, excessive dietary intake, lack of exercise and the
side effects of steroid therapy (appetite stimulant and increased fat
deposition). Obesity also contributes to hypertension, elevated
cholesterol, diabetes and joint disease.
Therefore, maintaining a healthy weight is vital to your overall
well-being before and after transplantation.
Is one method of weight loss better than the others?
Yes, eating fewer calories than you burn is the key. There are a variety
of weight-loss therapies ranging from low-calorie diets, physical
activity, behavior therapy, drugs and surgery. But in the long run it's
burning the calories you eat that count. If you don't exercise, eating
approximately 1400-1500 calories per day is recommended, no matter what
One of the easiest ways to control calories is to cut back on the amount
of fat you eat. The National Weight Loss Registry reports most people
who succeed at weight loss and keep it off eat a diet with 20 to 30% of
their calories from fat and eat breakfast every morning. The average
American consumes approximately 36% of their calories from fat.
Begin with the knowledge that you don't follow a diet for 7 days, 7
weeks or 7 months. There are no quick fixes to losing weight. Your new
eating habits are the basis of your everyday food choices for the rest
of your life. A diet rich in vegetables, fruit, whole grains and low-fat
dairy products are the essence to healthy meal planning. This
inexpensive, low-fat, low-calorie way of eating leads to weight loss and
keeps it off.
To accomplish this goal we suggest these guidelines:
Adapted from 101 Weight Loss Tips (ADA)