Program Frequently Asked Questions

Get answers to common questions about how the CMWL program works.

 

CMWL Program FAQs

 

What’s the basic philosophy behind CMWL?
How do I find a CMWL center near me?
Does the CMWL program include weight loss surgery?
Is the CMWL weight loss program safe?
How does the CMWL program work?
How is CMWL different from other weight loss programs?
How do I know I’ll get good treatment from CMWL?
What kinds of foods can I eat on the program?
Does CMWL offer any prepared foods to help me lose weight or maintain my weight loss?
Do I have to exercise on the program?
Do I have to take weight loss medication?
Do I have to participate in behavioral counseling?
Do I have to be extremely overweight to consider CMWL?
I really only want to lose 15 pounds. What would be the best plan for me? How long will it take?
How much does the program cost?
Does my insurance cover any of the weight loss program's cost?
How quickly can I expect to see results?
How long do I have to stay on the CMWL program?
How often do I have to visit a CMWL weight loss center?
What happens after I lose the weight?

 

What’s the basic philosophy behind CMWL?
The Center for Medical Weight Loss (CMWL) is the largest network of non-surgical medical weight loss providers in the U.S. The company offers customized weight loss treatments administered exclusively by doctors and based on a proprietary program developed by Dr. Michael Kaplan, who is board-certified in internal medicine and bariatric medicine (the specialty dealing with weight and metabolism). CMWL physicians treat obesity as a chronic disease that needs to be managed long-term to be successful. Learn more about CMWL here.

 

How do I find a CMWL center near me?
To find a CMWL center, simply use our online Find a Center tool. Just input your zip code to find a CMWL physician in your area who can get you started on a weight loss plan that works for you.

 

Does the CMWL program include weight loss surgery?
No. The Center for Medical Weight Loss program is strictly a non-surgical approach to weight loss and weight maintenance. Read more about what medical weight loss is.

 

Is the CMWL weight loss program safe?
Not only are CMWL programs safe for weight loss, but they are effective in controlling, reducing, and even eliminating any complications, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease, that are associated with being overweight or obese. More than this, CMWL weight loss programs can help alleviate many of the other conditions that result from obesity, including arthritis, coronary artery disease, sleep apnea, persistent lymphedema (swelling in an arm or leg), lower extremity edema (abnormal accumulation of fluids), hypertension (high blood pressure), and high cholesterol.

 

How does the CMWL program work?
The program is structured in three main phases: Quick Start, Transition, and Maintenance. Each phase has four components – food, activity, behavior, and medication – that are personalized based on your unique goals and needs. The food and behavioral components are core to the program; activity and medication prescriptions are suggested when the doctor feels they are safe and appropriate. It’s important to understand that there is no ‘one size fits all’ with the CMWL weight loss program. Because you are unique, your CMWL doctor will create a personalized plan just for you based on your specific attributes and weight loss challenges. Find out more about the CMWL program and plans.

 

How is CMWL different from other weight loss programs?
There are two primary differences you will find with CMWL compared to most other weight loss programs. First, our weight loss program is physician-supervised. Our doctors, who are extensively trained in the medical science of weight loss, can treat your weight within the context of your total health profile. Because of this they have tools and resources that other programs do not, such as the ability to adjust medications hindering your weight loss progress. Second, our program does not focus on just one aspect of weight loss. We take a comprehensive, holistic approach that includes food, exercise, and behavioral modification. Weight loss and weight maintenance is a way of life. CMWL doctors understand this and will be there to support you every step of the way in achieving your goals.

 

How do I know I’ll get good treatment from CMWL?
Each of our CMWL physicians receives extensive clinical training in medical weight loss. All of our doctors are board-certified and are continually assessed to make sure you are receiving the safest, most effective treatment and care.

 

What kinds of foods can I eat on the program?
Each phase of the program provides a food plan based on daily calories. In the Quick Start and Transition phases of the program, your CMWL doctor will prescribe a Low Calorie Diet (LCD), which consists of highly nutritional, FDA-approved products designed to keep you healthy and balanced as you experience weight loss. As you move toward your weight loss goal and incorporate healthier behaviors into your lifestyle, you will begin to introduce more of your favorite foods into your daily plan with the doctor’s guidance. The goal is to help you achieve your life-long Maintenance phase while enjoying the foods you eat. CMWL has made this even easier by introducing 550-calorie Doctor’s Orders meals, delicious, nutritionally balanced dinners that fit into your busy schedule.

 

Does CMWL offer any prepared foods to help me lose weight or maintain my weight loss?
Yes. CMWL offers Doctor’s Orders, 14-day home delivery meal plans that are consumer-tested for taste and doctor-reviewed for nutritional and caloric value. They’re designed to help you lose weight on your schedule, eating the kinds of foods you enjoy.

 

Do I have to exercise on the program?
There is no requirement for exercise, but research consistently shows that exercise increases the likelihood of maintaining a healthy weight (and not regaining weight lost). Should you decide to pursue an exercise routine, with your doctor’s permission, the program will offer activity recommendations based on your body composition and physical abilities.

 

Do I have to take weight loss medication?
There is no medication requirement. However, if you consent, your doctor can prescribe a safe appetite suppressant to keep hunger at bay as you lose weight. Your CMWL doctor can also adjust any current medications you might be taking for another condition, but that may also be interfering with your weight loss efforts.

 

Do I have to participate in behavioral counseling?
Yes, behavioral counseling is essential and critical to achieving your weight loss goals. Without addressing your relationship with food, lifestyle habits, and the emotional barriers that may be preventing you from making progress, the program will be less effective in enabling you to reach your full potential. Your CMWL doctor is both your experienced one-on-one coach and greatest fan throughout the weight loss process.

 

Do I have to be extremely overweight to consider CMWL?
Programs at CMWL are not simply for people who are extremely overweight – they’re for anyone who is unhappy or feels unhealthy due to his or her weight. We will tell you if you don’t need to lose weight or if you don’t qualify for CMWL weight loss programs for any reason. Our first priority is your overall health and well-being.

 

I really only want to lose 15 pounds. What would be the best plan for me? How long will it take?
At your initial consultation, the physician will be able to let you know which plan is best suited for you and how long it will take you to lose weight on each of the programs. The decision on which program is right for you is made based on your age, medical condition(s), and motivation level. The physician’s goal is to find the program and plan that will work the best and be the most effective based on your individual needs. To get an idea of how long it will take you to lose the weight, try our weight loss prediction calculator.

 

How much does the program cost?
Program costs vary depending on the weight loss plan designed for you. Initial consultation fees generally start at $39.00, but vary by location. At your initial consultation you will receive a full Body Composition Analysis report and a suggested personalized weight loss plan from the doctor. There is no obligation to continue with the program following your initial consultation. Also, based on your initial Body Mass Index reading, certain portions of the program (mainly behavioral counseling visits) may be covered by insurance.  Contact your local center with additional questions.

 

Does my insurance cover any of the weight loss program's cost?
Starting in January 2012, Medicare covers obesity counseling and treatments for patients with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or above if they see a primary care physician with specialized training in obesity. United Healthcare, Oxford Health, Aetna, Emblem, Empire BlueCross BlueShield, GHI, and 1199 (hospital workers' union) are following suit, and other private health insurers may offer similar coverage at a future date. If you have Medicare or other health insurance, check with the CMWL physician in your area to see whether he or she accepts insurance and for more details on what your insurance will cover.

 

How quickly can I expect to see results?
Though it depends on your specific circumstances and health concerns, most patients lose weight within the first two weeks and continue to reduce their weight as they continue with the CMWL eating plans and behavioral counseling. Adding exercise to your routine can also help speed up your rate of weight loss.

 

How long do I have to stay on the CMWL program?
The length of time you may stay on any weight loss program depends on which program you are on, how much weight you need to lose and – most importantly – how motivated you are. As you know, weight loss is not about a "quick fix." When you move from the initial phase of any weight loss program to maintenance phases, the goal is to establish healthy eating habits you can follow throughout your life. The programs at The Center for Medical Weight Loss are comprehensive and include behavior modification and counseling, as well as exercise recommendations created to help you achieve on-going success.

 

How often do I have to visit a CMWL weight loss center?
Again, it depends on the requirements of your individual weight loss program. Initial programs usually require a visit every one to two weeks for progress measurements and behavioral counseling, but your CMWL physician will design a plan that makes the most sense for you and your weight loss goals.

 

What happens after I lose the weight?
After you reach your goal weight on The Center for Medical Weight Loss plan, you’ll enter the Maintenance Phase of the program. You’ll continue to visit with your CMWL physician as needed to help you maintain your weight loss and to ensure you have the best healthy eating, exercise, and behavioral strategies to keep off the weight – for good. CMWL Doctor’s Orders dinners are also designed to keep you eating healthy when you reach this stage of your CMWL plan.

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