Episode 19: AMA Live | New Patients, Distance Program & Pregnancy Weight

Dr. Simonds and Michelle Kennedy, NP-C are back to answer your questions about weight loss, diet and more. They stream live every 2 weeks from our Raleigh office.

Q: What are the benefits of a keto diet beyond weight loss?

A: Great Question! There are many amazing benefits to the keto diet beyond weight loss. The keto diet has been around for a long time and has been used to treat seizures and diabetes. As a matter of fact, insulin actually wasn’t discovered until 1924, therefore the keto diet was how we treated type II diabetes. Urine dipstick tests and blood tests for diabetes weren’t around at that time, so medical students had to taste the urine for sweetness to diagnose diabetes.

Luckily for Dr. Simonds and the entire medical community, we’ve come a long way in testing for diabetes. They further realized that removing starch and sugar from the diet caused a reduction in blood sugar. Other than weight loss, removing carbohydrates from the diet helps with diabetes, blood pressure and lipids. It can also help with focus, mental clarity and may also have some anti-aging benefits too. Obesity is a very inflammatory disease and the keto diet is a very powerful, natural way to treat inflammation in the body.

Q: What can I expect if I’m a new patient?

A: The first appointment is 45 minutes to 1 hour. We have great office hours and 2 locations available, in Durham and Raleigh. The initial appointment is longer because we will provide you with a full metabolic assessment. This includes gathering your medical history, any medications that you are taking, diet history, physical evaluation and treatment plan development. We will come up with a full treatment plan together that includes a dietary plan and prescribe you weight loss medications (that we will provide you from our in-house pharmacy). Then, we have patients return for follow-up visits every 4 weeks.

We do not require any type of contract or have expensive upfront costs. Treatment plans are highly individualized and we do not push you into a diet that you do not wish to do. We want to set you up for success and are super flexible in our approach.

Read more on our website about New Patients

Q: I’ve been sidelined from working out due to a bad leg injury and gained a lot of weight. Will dieting help me if I can’t work out like I used to?

A: The great news is, that you don’t have to work out to lose weight. Your diet is more important for losing weight, so it’s important to keep your diet under control. If you’re having a difficult time controlling your appetite, contact our offices. We have many tools that can assist you with appetite control including appetite suppressants and medication. We know it’s easier said than done, which is why we are here to help.

Q: I see websites that offer phentermine for purchase online. What should I be aware of before taking it?

A: Phentermine is a controlled substance, available only by prescription from a licensed medical provider. It is illegal to sell phentermine online unless it is through a credible online physician. Be wary of purchasing phentermine online as it can be very dangerous and you do not know what you are actually purchasing. Remember, there is no shame or guilt in seeking help for weight loss and we’re here to help you succeed.

Q: After having my third child and heaviest weight gain recently, I am worried this time I won’t be able to get the weight off easily. How soon after pregnancy can I start a weight loss program with you?

A: As soon as you are done nursing, we will be able to prescribe you weight loss medications. We will discuss and provide you with the best treatment plan for you.

Q: Can you tell me more about your distance program?

A: We require patients to come into the office for the very first visit to establish a patient relationship. We realize that sometimes it’s just not convenient for patients to come into the office for their monthly visits due to distance, work, and other factors. The distance program is for follow-up visits and entails phone sessions and sending us your progress. We are also able to ship your weight loss medications to you at normal cost plus a flat rate shipping of $15.00. We find that this is a super convenient way for patients to keep up with their visits and continue their weight loss journey.

Read more about our distance program on our website

More from Dr. Simonds…

It’s important to keep yourself safe during these times. We are inundated from the news outlets about covid-19 but it’s important to realize that the news outlets are not obligated to provide you with all of the information. They’re not obligated to tell you everything and provide you with the entire picture.

There’s plenty of information in the medical literature that supplements can make a huge impact on how your body reacts to Covid-19, whether it reduces symptoms or even the severity of the disease if contracted. Specifically, Vitamin D3. Consuming 5000 units daily can have a big impact on your health. Covid-19 gets inside your cells and replicates itself once the body is infected. Zinc is helpful in stopping this from happening and you should be taking at least 50mg daily. Taking 250mg of Quercetin will further help transport the zinc across the cell membranes. People infected with the virus are experiencing a loss of taste and smell due to their zinc levels dropping while the body tries to fight the virus. There is strong evidence in the medical literature that these supplements can be helpful.