Recommendations for Weight Management
Guest: Tanya Turner – Registered Dietician
Host: Dr. Linda Austin – Psychiatry
Linda Austin: I’m Dr. Linda Austin. I’m interviewing Tanya Turner who is a
registered dietician with the Weight
here at the Medical University of South Carolina. Tanya, we have a lot of podcasts on many
different topics, including diet and nutrition, that I would refer our
listeners to. But, in this, let’s focus
on some of the things that you recommend or help people with over at the Weight Management
Center, for example, the
use of protein, supplements, shakes, powder supplements, etc. Tell us what you generally recommend and why.
Turner: We definitely recommend meal
replacement supplements as an option for a weight loss program. One of the main things about them is that
they just help you get focused on, you know, maybe your meal spacing versus
what you’re actually eating. When I
recommend a supplement, whether it be a bar or a shake, one of the biggest
things is you want to make sure that it has some balance to it. So, you’re looking for it to have a certain
amount protein. And we at least
recommend a bar or a shake that has about 12 to 15 grams of protein with some
carbohydrate, as well as adequate fiber, so that it’s not just strictly a
protein shake or protein bar, that it’s actually more of a meal replacement
Linda Austin: And, specifically, what
brand do you recommend?
Turner: Over at the Weight Management
Center, the bars are made
by Robard. The shakes are made by
HMR. For over-the-counter products, we
recommend EAS, as well as the Myoplex Lite, and some of the South Beach
Linda Austin: How about the issue of
preservatives in those supplements, is that a concern?
Turner: For somebody who’s trying to
lose weight, I think more of the concern is controlling the calories and making
sure that you’re getting a balance. The
bars and the shakes are fortified, so it’s not something, obviously, you’d want
to do for the rest of your life, in terms of a balance. But it does give you adequate vitamins and
minerals. As for the preservatives, I
usually take the stance that it’s the patient’s choice whether or not they
really want to be consuming that many preservatives or processed foods in their
Linda Austin: For those who choose not
to go that route but do want a sense of just not wanting to have a lot of
choices and having a really a basic snack where there’s calorie control, what
do you recommend?
Turner: Anything that’s really going to
be almost prepackaged and calorie-controlled, if they don’t necessarily want to
do a shake or a bar, if they feel those supplements are too rigid, even keeping
things as basic as, you know, I’m going to do one certain type of lunch,
whether it be Lean Cuisine or Healthy Choice, that type of thing, or
preplanning your calorie level at each of your meals.
Linda Austin: So, in other words, you
have to do that when your tummy is full, not when you’re ravenous?
Turner: Exactly. Usually after you’ve had a meal and you’re
pretty satisfied, then you can start preplanning for the next day.
Linda Austin: Right. When you have a little guilt on board too,
that probably helps.
Linda Austin: How about timing and
spreading out of carbs and proteins throughout the day, do you have any
Turner: In general, we definitely
encourage people to eat more regularly than the average person probably
would. Initially, we really would like
you to eat within about two hours of getting up in the morning. That’s going to get your metabolism started. And then you really don’t ever want to go
much longer than about four hours without consuming something. The reason being, it takes about four hours
for things in your stomach to be completely digested. At that point, you should be getting very
when you look at that balance, like I said with the bars or shakes, we really
look at having an adequate amount of carbohydrate and protein as a combination
so that you’re getting energy, but also staying more satisfied.
Linda Austin: Any other tips,
recommendations, that come to mind that your patients have found especially
Turner: I thing the other thing is
looking at, if you are doing all food versus the supplements, or even when
you’re doing the supplements, making sure there’s adequate fiber. That is something that keeps you more
satiated for a longer period of time. We
usually recommend for something to have at least 2.5 grams of fiber or more per
serving so that you’re staying more full.
Linda Austin: How often do you recommend
folks should weigh themselves?
Turner: Every single day.
Linda Austin: Everyday?
Turner: Everyday. First thing in the morning, preferably before
you have anything in your system, just because, then, it’s more of constant.
Linda Austin: Because?
Turner: Research has really shown that
if you weigh yourself on a regular basis, you really start to see how your body
not only trends, but you start to see, you know, if I do eat something and I
see a fluid fluctuation, how it will go up and down, just makes you very aware
of what your body is doing. Also, if you’re
weighing yourself everyday, you can, hopefully, if you’re trying to stop or
prevent weight gain, catch it within a day or two, versus a week or two later,
if you’re only weighing once or twice a week.
Linda Austin: Are there any little sort
of mischievous habits that people have that you see commonly catch up with them
in ways that they would not expect? I’m
thinking of things like a latte at Starbucks, where you’re thinking, oh, it’s
just a coffee drink. What are some sort
of sneaky little problems?
Turner: We see a lot of hidden
calories. And it could be something as
simple as the coffee in the morning where they’re putting, maybe, Splenda, but
then they’re putting two or three creamers in it. Those creamers will add up over time. Other things are, you know, small pieces of
cheese, or mayonnaise on a sandwich, that maybe you don’t think a whole lot
about, as well as even, you know, a candy dish somebody may have at work,
walking by and grabbing a piece of candy.
Little things add up. And it
really doesn’t take much more than, you know, ten to fifty calories extra, on a
daily basis, to see a weight gain over a year.
Linda Austin: Last night my husband and
I didn’t have any food in the house and thought, well, we’ll just have a little
pizza out of the refrigerator. And I got
this little package of pizza for one that was, I mean, a pretty scrawny little
thing. It could not have been more than
five or six inches across, and it was labeled for one. It had 770 calories though. And that’s just for a little pizza. That doesn’t count the salad or anything else
with it, the little chianti on the side, or whatever.
Linda Austin: It is shocking how, if
you’re not aware, calories can really sneak in where you don’t expect them.
Turner: Especially with packaged food,
or if you’re dining out, the calories add up so quickly. People don’t even realize it. They think they’re getting something healthy,
like a salad, and then there’s the added cheese and croutons, or even just the
little bit of protein that’s on it. They
may have eight ounces instead of the four ounces that they need. It definitely adds up quickly.
Linda Austin: Tanya, thanks so much for
talking with us.
Turner: Alright. You’re welcome.
If you have any questions about the services
or programs offered at the Medical University of South
Carolina or if you would like to schedule an
appointment with one of our physicians, please call MUSC Health
Connection: (843) 792-1414.