The Best Approach to Weight Loss: Medical Versus Traditional

Date of Award

Summer 6-24-2024

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Exercise Science



First Advisor

Dr. Denise Howard


Medical weight loss is becoming increasingly popular throughout the United States. Celebrities are crediting weight loss medication as to why they look the way they do. Because of the appeal, more and more people are looking for a quick and easy approach to losing weight. With medical weight loss becoming so popular, it is important to consider whether it is a good approach. This study investigates which approach is best, medical weight loss, or a more traditional approach of eating in a calorie deficit with a well-balanced diet. This study will have participants split into three different groups: only medical weight loss, a combination of medication, and eating a caloric deficit diet with pre-packaged well-balanced meals, and a group only eating a caloric deficit diet with pre-packaged well-balanced meals. They will attend a weekly meeting to receive the pre-packaged meals (if needed) and use the InBody scan to receive their weight, BMI, body fat percentage, and skeletal muscle mass. They will do this for 12 weeks. After they have completed the 12 weeks, they will do one final InBody scan four weeks later to see how they have maintained their weight. This study aims to help people make a more educated decision on which path they would like to take with weight loss, giving a deeper understanding of the impact of weight loss medication compared to eating a caloric deficit with a well-balanced diet.

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