DEAR DOCTOR K: I take medications for high blood pressure and high cholesterol. I am also obese, which is another risk factor for heart disease. Should I be on a weight-loss drug?
DEAR READER: You're right that being obese can put a heavy burden on your heart. It boosts your heart attack risk by about 60 percent. Diet and exercise are always the first steps toward controlling excess weight and other heart disease risk factors. When lifestyle changes aren't enough, doctors often prescribe medications, like statins for high cholesterol. But the medical options for weight loss are more limited.