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9am with David and Kim -

View in ParlView

(generated from captions) Dick Adams is the Federal member

for Lyons. To reach his

constituents, he would spend day

after day in his car, eating take

away and finding it impolite to

refuse the morning and afternoon

tea, home made biscuits the good tea, home made biscuits the good

people offered him. Dick got

massive and something had to give.

He had lap band surgery in April

and the weight is no falling off

him, along with his trousers. A

firmly belted Dick Adams joins us

now from Parliament House. Good

morning to you both. Was there a

moment when you realised that lap

band surgery was now your only option? Well, it option? Well, it was one of the

options that I considered. I was

getting pretty uncomfortable with

my weight and found it difficult to

shed anything. My diabetes number 2

wasn't under control, my sugar

levels. And my joints were giving a

bit of pain which affected the way

I could exercise. So I had to make

some radical decisions. Let's talk

about it.

about it. I've got the device here

and I'm not sure if you can see us

there in Canberra. But can you

explain what the procedure is and

what it does to your body? I think

so. The procedure is pretty simple.

They put the ring, which you are

evidently holding there, I reckon,

and viewers could see on the top of

your stomach, and it restricts the

to your amount of food that you can take in

to your stomach. And the medicos

can regulate that by putting a

syringe in to that and drawing some

salt water off it or putting some

more in to it. And therefore

tightening or loosening it. It's a

pretty simple, it's a night in

hospital. A little X-ray the next

day to see it's fitted properly.

It's a pretty simple procedure. What difference has it made What difference has it made to you

so far? How long ago did you have

the surgery? I had it done on April

Fool's Day this year. Any

significance? I like to have

symbolism. And I thought it's made

a lot of difference in that sense.

And I've lost 20 kilos and I walk a

lot now. And I swim whenever I lot now. And I swim whenever I can.

Still a little cold to get in the

local river but I do that in the

summer. I guess you mentioned there

that you go for a swim and you've

started walking. The obvious

question is why couldn't you do

that 20 kilos ago? And have saved

yourself the operation? I think you

get to the stage where there's the

difficulties of obeseness that

makes it very difficult because of

the aches and pains probably in

your joints and injuries happen

very easily. Soft tissues and

things like that that go in you. I

think this is another scenario that

fits in to obesity that hasn't been

given much consideration. And I

think getting someone able to do

the exercise, simple exercise, only the exercise, simple exercise, only

30 minutes a day or something like

that on walking, swimming, or

simple activities in a gymnasium.

Gyms are not about all the people

that pump iron, I think we need to

get back to where gyms can be

activities in gyms are there, and I

know gymnasiums work on those

things for people who are not super

fit. And they have programs where

you can do a gym circuit in a program that could certainly assist you can do a gym circuit in a

a lot of people. Exercise is half

of the battle, the food intake is

the other. How much of a reduction

do you think you've so far made in

the amount that you eat every day?

Sure. It's really about what we eat

and we are what we eat and drink.

And I think that's the important

message. I think we've had a lot of programs over

programs over the years that a lot

of T-shirts and a lot of posters,

and I think the Federal Minister

has set up a task force of

preventative health. I think the

task force has a big role to play

but not in having another public

relations exercise. We know they're

not working. We know we have a lot

of people with diabetes 2 and a lot

of people with obesity and it's of people with obesity and it's

starting in our children. So we

have to do things a bit differently

so that we do connect and do give

people opportunities to change and

change the way they're living and

therefore give them an opportunity

to become more healthy. And to do

that I think we need some radical

changes. On a practical level, how

much less are you eating now? I'm eating a considerable eating a considerable amount less

and cpbg the size - Do you think

and cpbg the size - Do you think a

half or a quarter of what you were

eating? Hard to measure. I kept

away from measurements because

mainly through my career of

overweightness, trying to get a set

of scales that I could get on in my

bathroom was impossible. Unless I

went down to the store where they

weigh the bags of wheat weigh the bags of wheat or

something, you couldn't get weighed.

So, again, there's a market there

that I think has failed. So you can

get a piece of string or something

like that. I've put a couple of

suits in the back cupboard and

pulled out a couple of others that

fit me quite well and put in to my

wardrobe. So I'm doing it that way

more than sort of measuring weight

loss as it falls off me. loss as it falls off me. It is

about what you eat and I'm eat

aglot more vegetables and fruit. I

eat a lot of Tasmanian salmon and

ocean run Tasmanian trout. These

are great products. Lots of omega

oils in them. And also they're full

of protein. So you can eat a lot

less. But I think there's a less. But I think there's a

psychological issue to this that is

never talked about as well. I want

to talk to you about the lap band

surgery, I know you've approached

the Health Minister about making it

more available. Who currently is it

available to, who should it be

available to and can it fix all

problems? Surely, surgery is not

going to fix a psychological

think you have problem? No. That's true. And I problem? No. That's true. And

think you have to get yourself in think you have to get yourself

to a mindset if you're going to

have a lap band, I've heard of

stories of people melting chocolate

and these things to try and take in,

take things. They've got a

psychological issue and the food

intake that they're taking in. And

that may not be resolved by having

a lap band. I think lap band

surgery is out on the edge and we

need to say it is a tool need to say it is a tool that can

be used for people with diabetes 2

and people with hypertension and

high blood pressures where other

methods aren't achieving the goals.

So I think there is a limit to why,

to who could have it and the costs

of it. But it is a tool that could

be used more than it is at the

very low moment. And for people that are on

very low incomes and can't afford

to pay the full cost of it now. It

needs to be in the public area. But

it's like the food. I think to make

sure that people can eat the right

foods, in the right ways. And the

other thing I'm really passionate

about is labelling the advice that

people get prom medicos and they

get from dieticians does not relate

to what you pick up in a supermarket on

supermarket on a product. And we

need to make sure what's being said

at a medical level and at a

professional diet, dietician's

level relates to people when they

go tine a supermarkets or when

they're trying to buy foods. Some

labelling is just downright

misleading? It's hopeless. And it's

written in terms that is not

understandable by the general

public. The 99% fat free sounds public. The 99% fat free sounds

like it must be better for you,

doesn't it? It does. Is it or does

it fit in to what you need?

Everybody is different. And, again,

everyone's metabolism is different.

There's a lot of sameness but

everybody is different. Everybody

likes different things. And I think

these are things that we need to

deal with and I think in the past, the wrong side is

the wrong side is one of the

debates in labelling laws and we

need to revisit it as a society and

get it right. Absolutely. Well said.

In the nicest possible way, we hope

we'll be seeing even less of you in

the future. Thank you, kim. Well

done. You're a real inspiration to