Deborah De Santis-Moniaci Ph.D. Assistant Director, Kids Weight Down Program Clinical Psychology. Maimonides Infants & Children's Hospital of Brooklyn
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Host: Just going on a diet and nothing else, you can read books you can -- despite the biggest number of books coming every year actually to sell the stuff, they don't really work well because you need more than that. Exercise helps, behavior modification helps, doing alone may not work that's why a program that you are a part of, which happens to be one for childhood obesity makes more sense. Is that true? Female Speaker: Well, I do obviously. I work here, I go very strongly that is probably it does help. I think you are correct. Diet alone doesn't work. Even the word diet, all of a sudden makes people not want to do it. You know what we will -- Male Speaker: We will change the name to selective eating? Female Speaker: Right. We look at this as a lifestyle change and that's why I think a program really helps that's involving the whole family unit and it's not looked upon as a three-month commitment or two-month commitment but it's something that we are learning to do for this child's life. We are changing this kinds of eating for always, not just for a period of time that they are above where they should be from the normal weight. Male Speaker: So the philosophy put on the Kids Weight Down Program basically is a change of lifestyle and has got the family involved because you can't just do it alone. It's more than just reducing calories or controlling calories, there is some exercise, there is some life modification, how you think and how you react to stress and everything else of life. Is that true? Female Speaker: Absolutely, absolutely. I think it's really is a combined approach that's really about changing our behavior in the way it needs to and so that we are better able to change how we eat and change and increase our exercise. Male Speaker: There have been studies saying that things like Weight Watchers and all the other ones that best have a five, sometimes even more than 2% success rate after two years. If someone sticks to a program like you have the Kids Weight Down, what do you expect the success rate to be, someone that maintains it for a two-year period? What do you think that would be? Female Speaker: You know, studies have been done on program like ours for upto 10 years beyond when people complete a program and they are finding that these are moving towards the normal weight, individuals even upto 10 years thereafter. So we are seeing not only the change for two years -- Male Speaker: But what percentage if someone sticks to it would you say, you have success? Female Speaker: We are finding -- again, these are long term studies that have been done, 25%-30% of kids are now in the normal weight range. Male Speaker: It's five or ten times the other type of programs. Female Speaker: Absolutely. Male Speaker: We are not saying Weight Watchers is bad-- Female Speaker: Absolutely not. Again, we are not focusing on this being a diet, which is I think more of the approach that Weight Watchers use. This is a diet which again I think, registers in people's minds as this is for a specific period of time and then I will stop, whereas if you change someone's lifestyle, if you change their ability to go up, use the stairs instead of elevators, you know, walk, be more active in your general life, you are going to have longterm change. Male Speaker: Because probably the other promise is as good as the Counselor, you go to and there is some terrific counselors at Weight Watchers and there are some that maybe not as good. So would you have a probing made up of psychologist, nutritionist, and one like this, they are better suited they are more credentialing, more experienced and there is a better change of guarantee that they stick to it, then it might be more successful. Is that true? Female Speaker: That's what all the research tells us and obviously I feel strongly these programs, so that's what I believe.