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Freshman 15 to COVID 15, a new trend has doctors concerned

Freshman 15 to COVID 15, a new trend has doctors concerned

Dr. Kern Brar tells us how to make small changes to improve our lifestyle.

A new trend has doctors concerned. They’re calling it the “COVID 15”, similar to the Freshman 15, when first year college students gain an extra 15 pounds in a new environment.

“A lot of physicians are concerned about our long-standing patients who started gaining weight and what’s causing it.” Internal Medicine Physician Dr. Kern Brar said he noticed this trend in his patients and also in his family and friends. “I realized a lot more people are working from home. We were indulging in more happy hours, eating more because we were stressed. We started eating more often and more unhealthy. Gyms were closed along with restaurants but fast food drive thrus remained open. Some local healthcare workers were unable to leave the hospital to get fresh food and we turned to pizza or sandwiches as staples of our diet.”

Dr. Brar works at Tri-City Primary Care and said the COVID 15 will have lasting effects if not addressed.

“It is very concerning because weight gain is linked to chronic diseases and increases the risk of developing diabetes, cancers, or cardiovascular disease, which leads to strokes and heart attacks,” he said.

Dr. Brar has worked with hospital patients for the past 10 years and said once you have a debilitating stroke or heart attack, it may be too late to reverse the course. He is encouraging anyone concerned about their weight to come into his office and try out a brand new tool to address health.

“Behind us we have the Fit 3-D machine and it’s a state of the art 3-D body composition scale. You get on it, it takes 2-3 minutes, rotates you slowly and tells you where you are starting. Learning your current fat percentage, lean body mass and any weight you may have put on can be much more motivating when you see it on paper.” Dr. Brar said.

This initial reading provides a baseline to create an action plan. Dr. Brar is providing all patients a free Fit 3-D initial reading to help them create an accurate status of their health.

“I think it’s important for everyone to realize daily habits make a big difference and small tweaks to your lifestyle can make huge improvements over time.” Dr. Brar said these small improvements can truly change your life.

“We’ve been blessed to have multiple patients trust us with their health who started with uncontrolled diabetes with an A1C of 11 or higher who decided to change their habits and within four months were off diabetes medications and significantly reduced their risks for developing chronic diseases. I get very happy when my 87-year-old patient comes in and tells me he is able to get down on the floor with his grandkids and he has less pain in his legs and back” he said.

Dr. Brar said Internal Medicine is his calling and he is grateful to help people improve their life. If you would like to schedule an appointment with Dr. Brar click here.