There are so many weight-loss programs on the market today that target obesity. The question is, do they work — and for how long?
Some programs promote supplements you can buy at the store, while many play up portion-controlled food delivered to your door, and others offer weekly weigh-ins and meetings along with a diet and exercise plan.
But one weight-loss program offers more: Wellness Services at Advocate Condell Centre Club in Libertyville and Gurnee.
Wellness Services features components of the programs mentioned above, but also includes regular meetings with registered dieticians, clinical psychologists, physicians and exercise physiologists and stresses a long-term maintenance plan.
“Losing weight is the easy part, it’s keeping it off that is the challenge,” says Tricia Walker, manager of Wellness Services and Weight Management.
Most times insurance will supplement the cost of the program, and it is a doctor-referred program.
The medically supervised weight-loss program has three different programs to choose from — Very-Low-Calorie Diet, Low-Calorie Diet and Nutrition Exchange Program. They are designed to specifically target the degree of weight loss a person needs to achieve and in what time frame.
All programs are designed for people who need to lose 25 pounds or more. They also have three phases for each person to complete — Reducing Phase, Transition Phase and Maintenance Phase.
Each week, participants weigh in, get their vitals taken and attend an education class on nutrition or exercise. They get to meet with a psychologist and physician to see to their mental and physical needs, as well as a dietician and exercise physiologist.
For the next four months, we will follow two people who are in the program, Ervin Rogers of Crystal Lake and Sandee Abern of Buffalo Grove.
Rogers, 52, is in the beginning stages of the Very-Low-Calorie Diet, losing 89 pounds in 14 weeks. His goal is to weigh between 210 and 220 pounds, and he is about 67 pounds away from his goal. His starting weight was 376 pounds, and his current weight is 287 pounds. Rogers is 5-feet-10.5-inches tall.
“For me, it’s keeping off the weight, so the Maintenance Phase is very important,” Rogers says.
Abern is in the Maintenance Phase, having lost 58 pounds in six months, surpassing her 55-pound goal.
She has kept the weight off for three months and plans to walk in the Chicago Marathon in October.
“I don’t feel deprived at all, and there are no drugs with this program, which was very important to me,” Abern says. “I lost the weight in a healthy way.”
To learn more about the programs and set up a free orientation, contact Wellness Services at Advocate Condell Centre Club at 847-990-5770. Or go to
• This is the first installment of a four-part series that will follow two local residents, Ervin Rogers and Sandee Abern, as they continue their road to health and fitness.