General Questions

What is bariatric medicine?

Bariatric medicine (or obesity medicine), is the branch of medicine dealing with the management of obesity and its related complications. This entails everything from diagnosis, treatment, prevention and maintenance, within the scope of conventional medicine. 

A bariatrician is a physician (MD) with special training and expertise in obesity and weight management. Physicians from different disciplines can pursue this complex field of medicine.

In general, there are commercial (non-medical) weight loss programs, and medical programs. Obesity is a chronic disease, resulting from a disorder in energy metabolism. It is often associated with a number of other chronic conditions. Bariatricians usually work with other health professionals as a team, and deal with obesity in scientific ways in the context of conventional medicine. Commercial programs often lack the medical knowledge required to deal with complex impairments at the cellular level. They are often based on the "calorie in vs calorie out" concept, which is only the surface of multifactorial metabolic derangements, and are not able to manage the medical problems associated with weight disorders.

MBC offers a program designed within the context of the latest Canadian, American, and International guidelines for management of obesity. It is physician supervised, scientific, evidence based, focused on fat loss and muscle preservation (as opposed to weight loss only), sustainable, individualized, affordable, and includes flexible meal plans.

Yes and no. Depending on eligibility, some patients are fully covered and others may be partially covered by HIBC (BC care card). Since this is medically necessary, many extended health plans do cover the costs. Furthermore, the initial consultation as well as the first 3 months is FREE for everyone.

Dr. Vala's Bariatric Program consists of 2 phases. The first one is Weight Loss phase which is about 6 months (variable based on the individual's response). This is designed to achieve your target weight, fat percentage, and ideal metabolic profile. The second phase is Weight Maintenance phase, which is ongoing, focusing on relapse prevention and maintaining your ideal targets.