The New Clinic in Hamilton- The Wharton Medical Clinic for Obesity and Weight Loss

Very sorry I couldn’t and didn’t write about my appointment with Dr. Wharton at the new clinic last week. I was crazy busy and then had the flu for the last few days.

The Wharton Medical Clinic for Weight Loss

Lots to report.
First- the new clinic. The old location was The Canadian Bariatric Clinic in Burlington at Walker’s Line and #5 in a nice medical building. Dr. Wharton and Dr. Berlingieri have gone their separate ways, presumably because they needed more space. I have only met Dr. Berlingieri at one of Dr. Wharton’s free lecture and I cant see how he will be able to continue without doctor Wharton. I do think the strength of the clinic is because of Dr. Wharton himself. You just cannot match his passion and enthusiasm. At first you are but freaked out and think this can’t possibly be genuine- who can get this excited about weight loss and helping people- but he really is that into it.

So the new clinic- Dr. Wharton is very excited about it. I have some reservation- the clinic is in an AWFUL location. It is just north of Hamilton General Hospital in the east end of hamilton. It is not a nice area. As a woman on my own I felt bit nervous and don;t think I would go there at night. I am being blunt. Maybe I am jaded n my safe middle class neighborhood but if you have been going to the old clinic at JBN medical in Burlington you will be taken aback.

However- he has gone to considerable effort to make the new office welcoming while be elegant. Hardwood floors, warmly painted walls and the comfortable chairs. His staff is terrific. I did not see any of the old staff from the Canadian Bariatric Clinic while I was there.

Despite Dr, Wharton taking off in a plane for short holiday in a couple of hours he was not rushed at all- He was was very excited about the new office and some of the services he will be able to provide.
They had a machine at Canadian Bariatric Clinic that measures your metabolism and cost 90.00. At the new Wharton Medical Clinic it is free for everyone- also a better machine.

Other new things- all patients get free sessions on emotional eating, nutrition and fitness with a specialist. I believe you get a session with each of the 3 specialist and after that there is a charge.
Bi-monthly bariatric checkups. I think this is the most importance difference- accountability. Before you saw Dr. Wharton about every 6-8 weeks and now you will see some one every two weeks to check in- weight, blood pressure and pep talk :-) . Will see Dr, Wharton every 6 weeks.

Would be curious to hear from others who have gone to the new clinic and what they think. I know some of the sessions will be gin groups of 10 so looking forward to meeting people.
Dr, Wharton did also tell me that he would be continuing his free lectures every 2 weeks.

He has also slightly modified his daily menus to give metabolism a boost and that will be something he talks about at your first appointment I am sure.

As always- if you are thinking of going- I am happy to answer questions as honestly as I can.

Next Set of Dr. Wharton’s Lectures and Free Food!

Dr. Sean Wharton of the Canadian Bariatric Clinic’s next set of free lectures is next week, Wed. March 26, 2008. You can go to his website and see exact times , dates, location, etc.

Have you been to one of his lectures? I am curious to hear what other’s think.

Canadian Bariatric Clinic’s Free weight Loss Lectures

If you are a patient at the Canadian Bariatric Clinic I HIGHLY recommend you go to one of these. If you have gone before and think it will be just the same thing -try going again. I have gone 3 or 4 times and yes some of it is repeated- however each time I have understood something at a deeper level or walked away feeling more motivated.

If you are just new to the weight loss “program” you really HAVE to go. There is no way for him to give you all this information in a 20 minute visit. Dr. Wharton talks about the importance of eating and what kinds of foods to eat and why.

I think if I had not forced myself to go to that 1st lecture, which I write in my post, Changing My Mind About The Canadian Bariatric Clinic( and lest you think I was always a cheerleader for the clinic- think again!) , I would be 40 lbs heavier than I am now… ( and with an undiagnosed thyroid issue) . It was at my first lecture that I “got it” and also was convinced that Sen was sincere in his efforts to help obese people and not just looking to make a quick buck or a name for himself. Dr. Wharton is an excellent speaker.

I have also heard the nutritionist speak and although it can be a bit dry, you will learn something.

Free Food!

At my last appt. Dr. Wharton mentioned that a company, Beneficium Foods, is giving away samples of their high protein low calorie foods and snacks. I will check them out and report back!
At my first lecture Dr. Wharton had a table set up with veggies an dip and basket of apples, water- and was encouraging every one to eat. Must have been a very odd experience for most of us- who all weight in at 300lb+ range and have not had people asking us to eat for a LONG time! I know it was a bizarre experience for me.

Dr. Wharton is very big on giving away free stuff when he can- last visit he was giving out pedometers from Boost. I think he likes giving people options and help them succeed. I know that money is always tight at the clinic ( as they are funded by OHIP) and I was glad to see he has a “sponsor” for his lectures.

Bariatric Lecture Calendar


I have been travelling overseas and had no access to Internet- wanted to do a quick update. I saw Dr. Wharton at the Canadian Bariatric Clinic just before I left. Over all I am doing well. As expected no dramatic weight loss in last few weeks. I was up and down over November/December and took off about 8 lbs in January. Here in Mid-February I think I have “just”maintained. I am travelling all over the place and trying to watch what I eat. I did bring my magic bullet and protein powder as well as 3 cases of protein bars and they have been a life saver. I have not been able to weigh myself. Judging my my clothes I am doing fine, though.

My visit with Dr, Sean Wharton went well- he s very uplifting and encouraging. I also has measurements taken and lost 5 inches from my waist- which is now 41 inches hips are 55 inches.

I have received several e-mails from people just starting at Canadian Bariatric Clinic and seeing Dr. Wharton for the first time and they have found my posts helpful Some of the comments have been quite touching- I am very pleased to be of any support.

I was where you were 5 months ago…. every journey begins with that first step!

Update from Latest Visit To Canadian Bariatric Clinic

I am so immersed in Christmas stuff I never really did post about my last visit with Dr. Sean Wharton at the Canadian Bariatric Clinic in Burlington.
I spent 30 seconds- maybe less with Derek. You basically weighed me and punched something in computer. No discussion of any kind. He must have been late for his lunch . I am sorry to say this- but I don’t have a lot of confidence in his abilities.. he does seem a bit dazed and out of his element. He is not some I would confide

Dr. Wharton was his usual enthusiastic self. He is quite remarkable and passionate. I wonder what his motivation his in helping treat obesity- you just can’t fake that kind of passion.
We chatted for quite a while about the Meridia- I did ask if I could get some sleeping pills to help get some sleep- answer was resounding no. He said it could cause more problems then it would solve and give it a bit more time and the sleep issues might go away on their own, I had noticed I am not waking up so early any more. Can’t GET to sleep by can stay asleep Before I was getting to sleep at 3/4/5 am and wide awake at 7-8. No I can easily sleep until 10-ish.

Last couple of weeks have actually been better and sleep has been easier. So I am glad I didn’t go with any kind of a sleep aid. He did say that Melatonin was okay to try. I though I had some in medicine cabinet but I must have tossed.

Dr. Wharton was also quite encouraging about my weight loss. I have been quite down. I was on such a roll and really stagnated. 3 weeks ago i weighed in at 284 and later that night jean felt snug…. next morning I weighed 292. I do NOT know how that happened so quickly. The weight didn;t come off easily, either. I thought it might be a temporary fluctuation.. but nope.
So I am at 286 today. Lost 9 pounds in 6 weeks. I know I am on track and Dr. Wharton wants you to lose about a pound a week but the pounds were just MELTING away before :(

He also recommended I try the Detour bars and gave me sample of Boost liquid meal replacement for Diabetics to try.. ( yuk!)
He suggested increasing or make sure I get enough protein and that was key to cravings.
I admit I have been bad with the protein. The bars help A LOT.

Canadian Bariatric Clinic- Dr. Sean Wharton 2nd Visit

Had my second visit last week. I met a different “bariatric technician” named Derek who was a little less monotone than Christina. To be fair the clinic gets 15+ new patients a day so must be difficult to keep the information fresh.

I spent about 20 mins with Derek, who was quite kind and gentle- though he admitted he was new to the field. He went over my diet journal and made some comments. I think what happens is he inputs into computer and Dr. Wharton takes a quick glance at it.

Met Dr. Wharton for a few minutes and was given a meal plan. By this- told how many calories to have in a day and what the makeup of those calories should be… At least 90 g of protein and 30 (!!) grams of fiber.
I am to stick to a 1500 calorie plan although I may just do an 1800 calorie one.

I also asked him a bit more about the Meridia- he told me that it was not true that the Meridia boosted metabolism as I was told by my family doctor. He also stressed again the importance of eating slowly.

I am not sure how much to share on this blog0 some of the details are deeply personal. One of the things I discussed with the Doctor was my relationship with food. That I felt I did not eat from hunger or pleasure or comfort- but more out o anger or self-mutilation. This is something I will need to think on. I don’t eat a lot- but I do binge every once in awhile .. so my weight has crept up over the years- about 3 lbs a years for the last 10 years. I so have some eating issues and he recommended I see their on staff Bariatric psychiatrist. So I will think about it.

Canadian Bariatric Clinic- Dr. Sean Wharton 1st Visit

I mentioned that I was going for more first appt. with Dr, Wharton at the Canadian Bariatric Clinic. I was sure what to expect- but several forums had led me to believe that he was very quick to push the Opti-fast program and drugs. The clinic was very busy and to be honest I was put off by the amount of business going on- scales and cases of Optifast were being sold like crazy- there was quite a bit of traffic of people purchasing things from the receptionist and this troubled me- ALOT.

The wait time was much longer than I expected. On a positive note- staff cam out often and were friendly to returning clients patients. There chairs where extra wide and comfortable.

I first saw some sort of intake worker- her role was never explained to me. She rhymed off what felt like a “speil” she had said a thousand times in a quick monotone. At this point I could see no difference between a Jenny Craig office . The selling of stuff from behind the counter was just so unprofessional and it got worse. I had to pay a mandatory 100.00 to receive their special binder and take test using a calorimeter which checked your metabolic rate. Also I had to buy a scale – the ones I saw flying from behind the counter- a whopping 130.00. I filled out a lengthy medical history and chronicled my weight loss attempts and history.

I did express my concerns to Christina that from what I could see it looked like they were positioning themselves to be the next Dr. Bernstein … she was polite and friendly but she did say it felt like a slap in the face. She said that the scale was difficult to find and that it was really a service they were providing patients. I then said- if you were doing a service than the scales would be provided at close to cost and were they- she said “no” and did admit that in that regard it was a business. She made great effort to tell me they were like a family here.

I was weighed and measured and goals were discussed, etc then asked to go back to waiting room to wait for Dr. Wharton. she also explained some of their available services- a psychiatrist ( covered by OHIP) , kenesieoligist (not covered and 65.00) and nutritionist (not covered).

I waited about another half hour – again staff were very friendly and many came out to waiting room to greet patients by name.

I finally went into Dr. Whartons office. He gave me quick medical exam- checking for swelling, rashes and enlarged liver as well as listened to my heart and chest.

I spoke with him for about 10 minutes- not a lot about treatments, etc was discussed- basically had to journal my food, he talked about the importance of understanding food , relationship of carbohydrates , proteins and was adamant that the key was understanding calories and nutrition. And before I left he advised that I attend his lecture coming up on Wednesday.

I left feeling a bit like every other program i have ever tried.. and felt like this was just another business aiming to make money off of weight loss. I also wanted to give it a chance- i have been wrong before about first judgments and after all- this was a bit of a last stop for me before getting weightloss surgery ( WLS) . Nothing else has worked.