I assume most of you have heard the news (it was on the front page of the Star Ledger) but James Gandolfini (aka "Tony Soprano") died this week. He was born in Westfield, NJ, graduated from Rutgers University and of course is best known for his role as the head of a NJ crime family on the iconic HBO series "The Soprano's".
For the record I loved that series, it was always fun for me to watch (as someone who has lived his whole life in NJ). It was entertaining to see places I've been to or are familiar with. I would highly recommend renting the DVD's if you have never seen the series.
However as a physician and specifically a bariatric surgeon I wanted to look at this from the medical angle…..
If you haven't been following the story, let me get you up to speed (in case any lawyers are reading, let me start with a disclaimer…I never treated James Gandolfini as a patient, in fact I never met him and everything I am writing I read in a newspaper or other source), now with that out of the way…..
James Gandolfini was 51 years old!! Let that sink in for a minute…FIFTY ONE years old!! He was rich. He was famous. He presumably had access to the best medical care money could buy…and he died at 51 from a heart attack!!
I have included several pictures of him in this newsletter to make a particular point…Mr Gandolfini was almost certainly Morbidly Obese (again I never treated him as a patient) but I can say with almost complete certainly that he was Morbidly Obese. I don't know what other risk factors he had for a heart attack..whether he had High Blood Pressure, Sleep Apnea or Diabetes and I don't know his family history. But I can say this….. the most easily reversible risk factor for a heart attack he had was his weight. If he had a gastric bypass 10 years ago would he still be alive today, no one can say for sure, but I have to think it would have helped his chances of still being with us.
Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of American men, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). At 51, Gandolfini was 13 years younger than the average male heart attack victim, but about one in 10 heart disease deaths occurs in people under the age of 55, the federal agency says. Obesity is a key risk factor for heart disease, and people with an "apple-shape" body are particularly prone, according to the National Institutes of Health. Click here for the NIH article .
I spend a great deal of time when I talk to patients about the risks of surgery (which is entirely appropriate) but I think it also appropriate to consider the risks of NOT doing the surgery (like having a fatal heart attack at the age of 51). There is absolutely no doubt (and I mean NO DOUBT) that if you are morbidly obese the best thing you can do for your own health is to lose weight. There is also no doubt (and again I mean NO DOUBT) that if you are morbidly obese the most effective way to lose weight is bariatric surgery.
If you are reading this it means you have had surgery with us or have at least come to our office to find out about having surgery. If you have not had surgery but are still "on the fence" I would ask you to consider what happened to Mr. Gandolfini. Since he is famous we all heard about it but there are thousands of people who die prematurely under similar circumstances every year that you never hear of….please don't be one of them.
From the Gut... by Glynn Fluitt
Mr. Fluitt is a patient, member of the Century Club and graciously contributes his thoughts and insights as a patient, a champion and an advocate for us all!
Revisiting Your Firsts!
When I was on the train today I was sitting in a 3-seater with a couple of other folks. I wasn't in the middle, but we were crowded into the bench seat.
When it came time to show my monthly pass I was able to reach around to my back pocket to retrieve my wallet. Without hitting anyone or contorting myself into any weird positions. It made me say to myself, "I wasn't able to reach so easily to get my wallet 4 years ago!". It made me think about my old "list of firsts". And it made me smile.
So I began wondering how many new "firsts" I'd had recently. I can't think of many, so maybe I need to start the list up again. Hmmmm!
If you don't remember my "list of firsts", let me remind. After my surgery I started keeping a list of things I couldn't do prior to surgery. This kept me very enthused about my weight loss and kept me grounded and thankful for the opportunities this was giving me.
For instance, the first time I could tie my shoes from a seated position without having to heft my leg up into my lap. The first tine I was able to USE my lap! The first time I did a 5K. The first time I road my bike 10 miles. The first time I played basketball with my son. The first time I climbed Bear Mountain. The first time I was able to sit in a booth at a restaurant.
The list goes on, but it has waned over the years. This weekend I rode my bike 10 miles. Took me an hour, and it was my first lengthy ride of the season. Over the weekend I was laying out in the backyard reading a book in the grass. I remembered being unable to get up from the ground in years past without major assistance. The learned agony was still there, but I noticed that I was able to pop up off the ground rather spryly.
I think it is time for me to rekindle my list of firsts. This will not only help inspi
re my weight loss, but perhaps even push me to things I might never have tried before. Not, for instance, bungee jumping. But perhaps I'll try to join a tennis league this summer. I wonder if there is one nearby.
I'll let you know how it goes. Meanwhile, think about doing your list of firsts. You'll be surprised how encouraged and great you'll feel about gaining (or regaining) control over your weight and health.
Follow me @BariatricDude
And let me know if you want to hit the tennis ball around with me.
MARISOL'S NUTRITIONAL CORNER
Our South Jersey Patients have been Enjoying the Incredible Nutritional Counseling of Anna since May 2009- our Seasoned Registered Dietician from our Bayville Office! Marisol and Anna will be sharing their Recipes in the Nutritional Corner…
Here are two Delicious Quick recipes From Anna!
Makes 4 Cookies
4 tsp butter substitute
2 scoops vanilla or chocolate protein powder
8 tsp granular Splenda or liquid Splenda
About 3 tsp water or as needed
In a microwavable bowl heat the butter for 20 seconds or until melted
Mix with either liquid or granular Splenda and the protein powder
Make sure it is mixed well. It will be very dry
Gradually add water about 1 tsp at a time until you can form the mixture into a ball and is not too sticky to handle
Keep the dough ball in a bowl and microwave on High for 15-30 seconds or until the dough puffs up.
Don't over cook or it will come out dry.
Cool and eat!
If microwaved for 15 sec the cookie will be chewy; 30 seconds and the cookie will be dry and crumbly.
Nutritional for 1 Serving (4 Cookies):
Total Fat 5gms
Total Protein: 13.5g
One or Two Egg Whites (egg whites make pancakes fluffy and light)
1/8 teaspoon of Cream of Tartar for each egg white you are using to whip
1 Egg Yolk
1 cup of Low-Fat Cottage Cheese
1 Tablespoon of Soy Flour
1 Splenda packet
Egg Whites should be at room temperature before whipping
Whip Egg whites with Cream of Tartar to form stiff peaks
Stir together one egg yolk, 1 cup of low fat cottage cheese, 1 tablespoon of soy flour and a Splenda
Cook on a griddle until brown
Serve either with fresh fruit or greek yogurt or low carb syrup
The entire recipe contains 40grams of Protein and 9 carbs
Click Here for More Recipes to Enjoy!
Upcoming Free Informational Seminars
The next Free Informational seminar at our Millburn office is on Wednesday June 26th starting at 6:30pm. Dr.Yurcisin leads the discussion on weight loss, your surgical options and if 'Bariatric Surgery is Right for Me? Please be sure to invite friends to attend – promise it makes a difference
to Pay it Forward! If you cannot make the June 26th seminar, be sure to check out future dates on our website: Click Here to see Upcoming Dates!
In This Issue From the GutMarisol's Nutritional CornerEnd Quotes
This Designation is the 1st line of Defense for All Patients when looking for a Certified Center of Excellence Bariatric Surgeon. GSBWC has proudly been Certified since we began our practice.
CLICK HERE to Share Your GSBWC Journey on Obesity Help!!!!
More About Us
GSBWC Office Happenings
JUNE 2013 Team Happenings!
Pardon our Appearance in our Millburn Office – we are Expanding the Office, adding new offices and Appreciate your Patience while we Freshen Up The Office and Add new Areas for Patients and Our Services!
Kaitlyn and Dominga Celebrate Birthdays June 24th and June 27th… Happy Happy Birthday!
people in arms
Help your friends, family and colleagues join the 1% club and permanently cancel their membership in the 99% club.
" Never believe that a few caring people can't change the world. For, indeed, that's all who ever have" — Margaret Mead
Free logoPATIENT CORNER
Pay It Forward 2013
We will adding a new section to our website:
BIZ BUZZ?? (Please Help Us with a Great Name for the New Section on our website dedicated JUST to Patient's business):
allowing patient's to list their businesses on our site! We know so many up to good things, creating businesses and taking on their dreams and want to give you an opportunity to let others know what you are up to in life!
If you are interested in your business being featured on our website, please email Laurie at: firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.
THE FREE VOUCHER ASK HOW YOU CAN PAY IT FORWARD!!!
Upcoming Dates and Locations of Support Group in Your Area:
Next Support Group at ACC in Livingston, NJ is July 10th from 6pm to 7:30pm. Support Group attendance and participation is an important part of keeping and maintaining your health and weight goals!
Thanks For Trusting Us with Your Health!
"I love hearing people laugh" — James Gandolfini
"And in the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your year" —Abraham Lincoln
"Don't ever save anything for a special occasion. Being alive is the special occasion"-Author Unknown
"As you grow older, you'll find the only things you regret are the things you didn't do"— Zachary Scott
" Do it now! can affect every phase of your life. It can help you do the things you should do but don't feel like doing. It can keep you from procrastinating when an unpleasant duty faces you. But it can also help you do those things that you want to do. It helps you seize those precious moments that, if lost, may never be retrieved." — Napoleon Hill
Yours in Good Health,
Michael Bilof, MD
Basil Yurcisin, MD