Decorative Accent Squares

Stefanie C. Cruz

Allentown • Lost 62 pounds
Medical Weight Loss (VLC - Very Low Calorie Diet)

Stefanie C. Cruz

For anyone looking for the right weight loss program to suit their specific needs, know that there are many options through St. Luke’s and there will be one right for you.– Stefanie

When I was younger, my weight ballooned twice and both times I was able to lose the weight through diet and exercise. Then it happened again, but this time, it wasn’t such an easy task. I tried multiple methods and all of them only seemed to work for a short time and did not deliver the much needed, ongoing results for substantial weight loss. I knew that I needed to do something, but I just wasn’t sure what. Diet and exercise worked the first two times when I was in my early thirties but now that I was over 40, it wasn’t the same. I was incredibly strict with my caloric intake and trying to exercise several times a week, but the weight just stayed the same.

After a ton of online research and multiple failed attempts at fad diets, I read information from the St. Luke’s website that finally made sense and seemed like a viable option. After my initial consultations with the St. Luke’s doctors, I knew I was not a candidate for weight loss surgery. Even though I had a lot of weight to lose, I didn’t have any secondary health issues so my insurance would not cover the surgery.

I decided to try medical weight loss and Sagar Mehta, MD and St. Luke’s dietitian, Amber, were with me from that point on, every step of the way. The entire team of physicians, dietitians, behavioral health specialists and exercise physiologists worked together to help me reduce excess weight and guided me through the process of losing weight via a very low calorie diet which put my body in a state of ketosis. From the very beginning, it was a simple plan to follow and it worked. The weight consistently came off every week and I was more and more inspired to continue my journey.

In six months, I lost over 60 pounds. At that point, after a discussion with my St. Luke’s team, I decided to switch to a less-restrictive program for the remaining weight I wanted to lose. Even now, Dr. Mehta and Amber are continuing to help me achieve my ultimate goal in a safe and natural way. I have nothing but positive experiences with the St. Luke’s medical weight loss staff.

It’s still challenging to be in social settings and to learn to adapt to foods and drinks that would coincide with my diet rather than splurging on foods that I love. I just kept focusing on my success and reminding myself that one meal isn’t worth derailing my progress. Now that I’ve lost so much weight, I can exercise on a regular basis and play with my granddaughter without being winded. I like bike riding, jogging, walking, swimming and I’ve walked miles and miles on vacation without any issue. When I lost weight, I gained my health, self-respect and confidence.

For anyone looking for the right weight loss program to suit their specific needs, know that there are many options through St. Luke’s and there will be one right for you. Whether it be surgery or medical weight loss, don’t hesitate. It’s difficult to lose weight without assistance, but don’t be afraid to take that first step and make a change. You will regain control and everything in life will improve.