Is it Possible to Eat Out and Still Eat Healthy?

It doesn’t take a nutritionist to figure out that many restaurant menu items come in large portions and focus more on taste rather than nutrition. That’s why Dr. Gayle M. Timmerman of the University of Texas at Austin led a research study on whether or not it’s necessary to stop eating out in order to lose or even maintain weight. Plastic surgery patients who undergo body contouring procedures like tummy tuck, liposuction, and post bariatric surgery are often concerned about maintaining their results, but making wise decisions while dining out is important for anyone who is trying to maintain or even lose weight.

Timmerman’s study divided a group of 35 women (ages 40-59) who ate out frequently into two sections: an intervention and a comparison group.  The women in the intervention group completed a 6-week Mindful Restaurant Eating program to learn how to make better menu choices. The comparison group did not complete the program and were instructed to continue eating how they would regularly. Although the study focused more on weight maintenance than weight loss, evidence showed that the members of the intervention group lost more weight. Researchers concluded that it’s not about how often you eat at restaurants, but about how you manage your eating habits when eating out.

Southern Plastic Surgery can help you make good food choices like those taught in the study’s Mindful Eating program. Since Dr. Whiteman often shares healthy recipes on his blog, we thought this would be a great opportunity to provide tips for eating out healthfully. See the tips below to learn more about making better menu choices:

  • Choose carefully– No matter where you choose to eat, some menu choices are always better than others. For instance, choose a grilled or roasted meat over fried.  Likewise, if you’re eating pasta, choose red-based sauce over white-based sauce for fewer calories.
  • Drink water– Soft drinks, juices, and even alcoholic beverages typically contain excess sugar and calories that can easily be avoided by drinking water.
  • Don’t forget the extras– When we say “extras” we mean those extra sauces and condiments. It’s important not to forget that these extras add extra fat and calories to your meal.
  • Make it special– Don’t be afraid to ask to substitute something on your order to make it healthier. The worst they can say is no, but most restaurants will be happy to accommodate you.
  • Eat mindfully and slowly– Although most people go out to eat to socialize and enjoy time with friends and family, you can’t forget to pay attention while you eat. Don’t let yourself get caught up in the conversation and eat all of the food on your plate. Take small bites, and pay attention to how you feel. Stop eating when you are full.
  • Don’t be ashamed of the to-go box– Many restaurants provide enough food in one entrée to eat over two or three sittings. Determine that you aren’t going to finish before you even start. Some people find it beneficial to ask for a box before they begin eating so that they will not go overboard.

Dr. Whiteman knows the important role health and wellness play in everyday life as well as plastic surgery.  He also knows that part of maximizing your health and wellness means getting out and enjoying life—that includes eating out! Stay tuned to his blog for more healthy tips, recipes, and plastic surgery news and updates.  Be sure to connect with him on Facebook and Twitter if you haven’t already.

Smoking Hinders Breast Surgery Recovery

Atlanta Breast LiftA recent article published by Dr. Anthony Youn on CNN.com highlights the dangers that smokers risk when lighting up after plastic surgery.  In his piece entitled “Smoking can make your nipples fall off,” Youn discusses cases in which a woman undergoing a breast lift refused to quit smoking and suffered complications including a loss of blood flow to the nipples.

Atlanta breast lift surgeon Dr. David Whiteman understands the fear that articles like this can strike into women looking to take on procedures like breast lift and breast reduction. For women who suffer from an aching back or are limited physically by larger breasts or who want to lift sagging breasts, surgery is still an option. Board certified Atlanta plastic surgeon Dr. David Whiteman wants patients to realize that complications like those mentioned in the article by Dr. Youn are rare in patients who adequately follow pre- and post-surgery directions from their surgeon.

Smoking constricts the blood vessels which was most likely the cause of the aforementioned patient’s complications. Before taking on any plastic surgery patient, Dr. Whiteman undergoes a thorough examination of each person’s medical and family history, as assessment of well as any risk factors that increase complications during a breast procedure.

Whether you’re looking to increase your breast size through breast enlargement surgery, reduce the size of your breasts through reduction, or lift sagging breasts as a part of mommy makeover surgery (which also typically includes liposuction and a tummy tuck), you can rest assured that Dr. Whiteman has both your best interest and safety in mind during all stages of the breast surgery process: consultation, pre-surgery, during the procedure, and plastic surgery recovery.

Stay up to date on the latest Atlanta plastic surgery news by following Dr. Whiteman’s blog and connecting with him on Facebook and Twitter.

Tummy Tuck vs. Liposuction: What’s the Difference?

Southern Plastic Surgery stock photoWhen many patients come to our Southern Plastic Surgery office for their first consultation looking for body contouring, they often ask me the difference between a tummy tuck and liposuction. Many people assume that the two amount to about the same thing since both can help improve contours abdominal area. While both tummy tuck and liposuction procedures can help clients eliminate the stubborn, exercise-resistant fat that often clings to the midsection, the two procedures are actually very different.

Liposuction can be used on more than just the stomach area, including areas around the face, legs, chest, flanks, back, arms and buttocks.  In tumescent and super-wet liposuction, a small incision is made and a liquid mixture of anesthetic, adrenaline, and salt water is injected in order to make the fat easier to suction. The liquid and fat are then drawn out through cannulas, or metal tubes used to remove fluid from the body. Liposuction can often be performed along with a tummy tuck in certain procedures like Mommy Makeover surgery. Ultrasound-assisted liposuction uses sound waves in addition to liquid injections to liquefy fat, and is most often used in areas like the face where careful accuracy is required.

A tummy tuck (or abdominoplasty) is reserved solely for the midsection and is a fairly major surgical procedure. During a tummy tuck, an incision is made in the lower abdominal region, weakened muscles and fascia of the abdominal wall are restored and tightened, loose skin and tissue is removed, and the stomach-area is flattened and tightened. Unlike a tummy tuck, liposuction does not address sagging skin that may come along with stubborn fat, which is why tummy tuck and liposuction are often used in conjunction for post-bariatric weight loss patients. For patients who do not need as much fat or loose skin removed, a mini-tummy tuck may offer the results they desire with less down-time afterward.

While both treatments are used to contour the curves of the body and re-establish the patient’s desired silhouette, each procedure is often better suited to specific patients. For example, patients who have recently lost a large amount of weight in a short period of time are often left with loose, sagging abdominal skin which can easily be removed with a tummy tuck. For patients who require less skin and muscle tightening and would like to just smooth and improve contour in a few areas, liposuction may be a better option. Schedule a free consultation to discuss your desired look with Dr. David Whiteman and determine which procedure(s) will best suit your needs.

Check out our before and after galleries of both tummy tuck and liposuction procedures to get a better idea of how the results can be beneficial to you. For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact us. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for updates and recent news.