Obesity Statistics for Mexico and the U.S. Point to Increasing Need for Bariatric Procedures in the Latino Community, says Dr. Feiz and Associates

Leading surgeon and fluent Spanish-speaker Dr. Michael Feiz is ready to help Latinos and Mexican-Americans put the burden of severe obesity behind them

Sep 12, 2013, 16:05 ET from Dr. Feiz & Associates

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- If you've been thinking of obesity, and the need for such procedures as lap band surgery and gastric bypass, as a particularly American phenomenon, think again. Just south of our border, Mexico's obesity rates are now the world's highest, creeping ahead of the U.S. with 32.8 percent in comparison to 31.8 percent in the United States. U.S. citizens of Mexican and Latino descent are also showing somewhat higher rates of obesity than Anglo-Americans. This is not good news for anyone, but leading bariatric surgeon Michael Feiz, M.D., F.A.C.S. is finding that more and more Latino patients are inquiring about sleeve gastrectomy surgery, lap bands, and other procedures. A fluent Spanish-speaker featured in a recent news segment on Univision, the widely respected weight loss physician is equally able to discuss la manga gastrica or gastric sleeve surgery – it's just a matter of the patient's preference.

The likely causes of the increase in Mexico's weight issues are, it appears, very much the same as they are here in the United States. Just as in the U.S., today's increasingly technological and sedentary lifestyle means that Mexicans are getting less exercise than ever before. Moreover, increasingly inexpensive high calorie snack food – both domestic and imported from los Estados Unidos – has become a daily fact of life in Mexico. Finally, the massive popularity of consumption-friendly U.S. culture and such iconic sugar-laden beverages as Coca-Cola in Mexico, where fresh potable water is sometimes hard to find, has added to the problem. The impact in the Mexican-American population is easy to see as youngsters and grown-ups who migrate to the U.S. find themselves in the world's junk food capital.

Even so, not all of the news is bad. More and more patients of Mexican and Latino descent are finding their way to the offices of Dr. Feiz and Associates to learn about the genuinely lifesaving possibilities of bariatric procedures. While severe obesity can lead to innumerable health problems that are ruinous both to the length and quality of life, procedures such as the gastric sleeve alter not only the size of the stomach, but the hormonal signals to the brain that create the impossible-to-ignore feelings of hunger that drive overeating. Moreover, both the sleeve and the adjustable and fully reversible lap band allow patients to consume all or most of the same foods as they did prior to treatment. While weight loss surgery patients will need to relearn old eating habits and consume much smaller quantities than they did before, they can still enjoy their favorite regional delicacies.

Of course, bariatric procedures must be performed by a highly skilled surgeon. Dr. Feiz is among the nation's best regarded bariatric practitioners and has received numerous honors. Most recently, he was named 2013 Castle Connolly Top Doctor in the Beverly Hills region. Aside from his ability to speak fluent Spanish, Dr. Feiz is known for his sensitivity to the very individual situation of each of his patients, who come from a broad diversity of cultures and ethnicities.

To learn more about bariatric surgery and to inquire about a free seminar in English or Spanish, please call 800-868-5946 or visit www.drfeiz.com.

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SOURCE Dr. Feiz & Associates