They say timing is everything, and in April 2011, Howard Jardine was eager to change his life. Weighing in at 405 pounds, he decided it was finally time to join Lahey’s Medical Weight Loss program. Looking back, Howard says it was one of the best decisions he has ever made, as he found support from a team that encouraged and motivated him throughout his weight loss journey.At 405 pounds, Howard was the heaviest he had ever been, and the heaviest that he wanted to be. He was starting to feel the strain that the weight was causing on his relationship with his five-year-old daughter, and he didn’t want to miss out on her milestones. Howard’s mother was overweight and suffered a stroke at age 49. She passed away years later due to complications from the stroke. Howard did not want his own daughter to suffer the same devastating loss.Howard started the program by seeing a social worker to ensure that he wasn’t gaining weight because of depression, which commonly plays a factor in rapid weight gain. When depression was ruled out, Howard met with Theresa Piotrowski, MD, and dietician Ismini Soteropoulos, MS, RD, LDN, from Lahey’s Medical Weight Loss program. Dr. Piotrowski and Ismini started Howard on an 1,800 calorie daily diet, which he continues to follow.Howard needed guidance and support when he first started his weight loss journey. Dr. Piotrowski and Ismini worked with him and educated him about healthy food choices, nutrition, and food preparation. With help from his wife, Howard began to dramatically improve his eating habits, and within two weeks, he started to see results. “I was able to get over those two weeks, and then it was just pretty much easy from that point on.”The program helped Howard succeed. Because he met with Dr. Piotrowski and Ismini every two weeks, he wanted to make sure he always gave them positive results. Howard’s life has been significantly impacted by this program in a positive way. “I was glad that this program was available, and I was able to go to it, join up, and be successful,” Howard said. He couldn’t be happier.“Since losing 100 pounds, things have been so much easier, to be able to get up and down the stairs. I can go out and play with my daughter, with her riding the bicycle and me following behind. A few times I’ve had to jog to keep with her. I just never would have been able to do that a year ago,” Howard said.In the past 18 months, the Medical Weight Loss team has worked with Howard every step of the way to bring him closer to his goal. The strong relationship he has built with the team, along with his never-ending determination, guided him to where he is today. Since joining the program, Howard has lost 125 pounds, and he continues to work with Lahey’s Medical Weight Loss team toward his goal weight of 250 pounds.
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