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Mastering the Odds of Weight Management Success

Jan 11, 2018, 14:23 PM by Christopher Williams

John Before and After Weight LossThe perception of the general public is that very few succeed at long-term weight loss. Studies show that the majority of “dieters” regain all, or more, of the weight they lost after only three years. The overwhelming percentage of those regaining weight continues to climb in studies that followed individuals for five or more years after their initial weight loss.

In our Summer 2012 issue of GoodHealth, we introduced readers to John Demboski, who started his journey toward a healthier lifestyle in 2010 and lost more than 52 pounds during the first two phases of our medically-based Doctors’ Weight
Management Program (DWMP).

Phase 1 of DWMP focuses on achieving aggressive weight loss goals through weekly classes and coaching. On the more intensive track, participants use solely HMR™ meal replacements and are medically supervised (Decision Free®). Alternatively, participants see consistent weight loss on the other, less aggressive track (Healthy Solutions®) using HMR meal replacements plus fruits and vegetables, without medical supervision. HMR is the leading provider of medically-based weight management programs in clinics, hospitals and major medical centers throughout the country. Sansum Clinic is recognized by HMR as a Gold Standard Program, achieving the highest compliance and success of all HMR programs. Phase 2 of the program teaches maintenance strategies with continued accountability along with the use of some HMR meal replacements, lots of fruits and vegetables and incorporating other foods into the diet.

At the time, John committed to “sticking with the maintenance program so long as it continues to help me become a healthier individual.” Five years later, we thought we would check back to see how John has incorporated the support that the program provides to keep him on his path to success.

As a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP) professional and motivational speaker, John now uses many of the same principles and methods he learned through the Doctors’ Weight Management Program to offer advice for successful life and financial strategies. He explains, “If we can learn how to create and apply new habits in an environment that gives us regular measurable updates of our progression, i.e. proof of success (or failure); then we will be equipped to apply those same exact strategies used to lose weight, to accomplish our other goals.”

John points out that the program is about establishing a “journey mindset” to better health, rather than getting to a set weight loss goal. “As I think about what I learned in the program, I can break it into a couple of beneficial habits that apply to success in any area of life.” Those include:

The importance of keeping score — documenting the key metrics is critical. No data on our progress is deadly, but too much data can also be just as damaging to our success. Be like a pilot who has dozens of gauges to look at, but just keeps a steady eye on the key five dials.

Surround yourself with others who are on the same mission. They will hold you accountable, and push you farther than you would ever dream on your own.

Meet regularly to review success metrics both quantifiable and qualitative. This may be the hardest of all, but it is one of the most important strategies.

Have a mentor who is more knowledgeable than you in the area you want to improve and then listen to them and take their advice — especially when you don’t want to.

Invest in the outcome and results — magic happens when we put our commitment behind our words. Massive action always follows closely. 

When we fall down, make sure to pick ourselves up immediately. Learn from what happened wherever possible and avoid the defeating negative “self-talk.”

Today, John has lost a total of 100 pounds, but more importantly, he enjoys a healthier, more active lifestyle. “The bottom line is that one’s choices will alter the quality and fullness of life for all of those around them, and those effects can be amplified at any moment by the resulting inevitable consequences of poor health. I intend to live my life in such a manner and to never have to apologize for not having taken better care of myself.”

To learn more about the Doctors’ Weight Management Program, located at our Hitchcock Branch (51 Hitchcock Way, Santa Barbara), please call us at (805) 563-6190, email us at