HSC 3211: Case study #3
1) In light of the new results, discuss the increased importance for Patient X to start a diet, quit smoking and increase physical activity in line with his doctor’s recommendations.
It is very important for Patient X to start a diet, quit smoking, and increase physical activity. This patient has a history of hypertension, for which he is already on medication. To reduce blood pressure, it is essential to follow a diet that is low on salt intake. One of the best diet plans for people with hypertension is DASH. “The DASH diet eating plan has been proven to lower blood pressure in studies sponsored by the National Institutes of Health”. Also, every cigarette he smokes per day will increase his blood pressure, so he needs to quit smoking as soon as possible. A lack of physical activity is another factor that is increasing his risk of hypertension. Studies show that even doing some moderate exercise regularly can significantly improve a person’s blood pressure, and put them at lower risk of hypertension. Patient X is also diabetic, which makes it even more vital for him to make these changes in his life. His fasting glucose is higher than 126 mg/dL, showing that he is diabetic. Having a proper diet, along with exercise, will help him control his blood sugar levels, and decrease his weight. Right now he weighs 245 lbs, making his BMI 35.2. This puts him in the severely obese category! This is very dangerous to his health in every way and he needs to reduce weight as soon as possible. Furthermore, smoking is already harmful to any human, but for diabetics, it specifically causes his blood sugar level to go high. This is another reason why he needs to quit smoking.
Starting off with his triglycerides, 310 is considered high. This is the form in which most fat exists in our bodies, which ties in to the obesity factor. The best way to fix this is having a healthy diet, and regularly exercising. His HDL level is 29, which is so low that he can be at high risk of heart disease. Finally, his LDL level is 170, which is also too high. Diabetics are usually told to aim for LDL levels of 100 and below. All these factors show Patient X how essential it is for him to change his lifestyle, especially with the three factors of having a healthy diet, quitting smoking, and becoming more active.
2) Describe some approaches that might make Patient X employing these new behaviors more likely.
The best way for him to lose weight is by choosing any diet plan that he will be able to regularly follow. This will encourage him to check his weight daily and work on the way he looks. He will be more likely willing to work on his image when he realizes that his weight is causing him many problems and affecting his whole body. Adding a little exercise into his daily routine would be easy if he found someone to do it with. It doesn’t have to be much because even moderate exercise is sufficient enough. He would rather be consistent then do a lot for a week and then stop. In the case of smoking, there are many ways that can help him quit eventually, including looking for alternatives. He can make a list of when he smokes the most, and find other ways to fill those times. Drinking water helps a lot of people suppress their crave for smoking as well.
3) Describe the desired outcomes after 6 months.
It is not easy for a person who is so terribly overweight to lose a huge amount. However, even as little as 5-10 pounds makes a huge difference in a person who is diabetic. We also have to keep in mind the fact that patient X will be starting their diet. The combination of keeping a healthy diet and performing daily exercise should help the patient lose 5-10 pounds by their next visit. Furthermore, reducing a few pounds will help lower his cholesterol levels, which are so high at the moment. It should also help with his hypertension because with the combination of the medication he is on; along with the weight loss should help reduce his blood pressure from before as well. If he carries these changes through the following six months and more, these changes will begin to look more prominent.