OPTIFAST Meal Replacements

If you have tried conventional weight management and either aren't candidates for or choose not to have weight loss surgery, meal replacement programs may be an option.

Gundersen's customized meal replacement program uses nationally recognized OPTIFAST® products for weight loss. Medical and nutritional assessments are done to ensure the safety of the participant during the program. The meal replacement programs are ten months long and consist of three phases.

Phase 1 - Active weight loss phase: The participant is using primarily supplements for their nutrition and weight loss is more rapid.

Phase 2 - Transition phase: The patient gradually replaces the supplements with real food and decreases the number of supplements used each day. Weight loss tends to slow slightly during this phase but continues at a medically significant rate.

Phase 3 - Maintenance phase: This phase does not mean that no more weight will be lost. In fact, weight loss continues at a medically significant rate during this phase. This is the phase that is "maintained" if further weight needs to be lost.

Two options are offered for the meal replacement program:

Full Fast

OPTIFAST® supplements are used for all meals and snacks throughout the day. The low calorie level requires extensive medical monitoring. During this option, the patient will meet with the medical oversight and have labs done every other week for the full duration of the program. This option may require other medical testing at the expense of the patient.

Modified Fast

The modified fast option is used most frequently. It consists partly of OPTIFAST® supplements but also incorporates some "real" food. This option allows for flexibility with family meals, meals out, social outings, etc. The slightly higher calorie level requires significantly less medical monitoring and the patient will see the medical oversight approximately three times throughout the program. Lab testing is done at the discretion of the medical oversight.

For both the full and modified fast options, you will meet with a registered dietitian weekly for the first month, and then every other week for the duration of the program. You will work on developing healthy lifestyle habits for long-term success. They will also develop a healthy relationship with food and skills in meal planning, physical activity, regulation of hunger and fullness and self-monitoring.

Love + Medicine

Every day, Gundersen Health System delivers great medicine plus a little something extra—we call it Love + Medicine.

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