The Idaho Weight Loss (IWL) Method

3 Phases of Weight Loss Management

We help patients navigate back and forth among the phases as needed for disease control.

Phase 1

Active Weight Loss

Phase 2


Phase 3

Long-term Maintainence


The first visit to our Boise medical weight loss clinic introduces you to our bariatric obesity treatment program. This is typically a longer appointment; there is much information we need to obtain from and convey to you. You may be in the office for up to 2 or 2.5 hours. After the first appointment, most patients will return for a follow-up visit in 2 weeks to review lab work and address any problems or concerns. Subsequent appointments are much shorter (typically under 20 minutes).

Most patients are seen monthly in our Boise medical weight loss clinic during the active weight loss phase. Some programs require their patients to attend weekly appointments. We recognize that with the demands of modern life, weekly visits can be burdensome. For the vast majority of our patients, monthly visits are adequate for successful progress. We adapt this monthly schedule within our Boise bariatric obesity program as needed to accommodate travel, other health issues, and need for accountability. Some patients benefit from more frequent follow-up.

The duration of the active weight loss phase is variable, but the average span is 6 to 9 months for a first-time patient.


In transition, we start to shift focus away from active weight loss and toward future weight maintenance. During this time, medication doses are gradually reduced and spaced out. The time between visits is also slowly lengthened. Patients continue to practice the nutritional and life-style changes they have learned during active weight loss, but with a bit less accountability and oversight from our clinic.

The transition phase can last from 6 weeks to 12 months.


The maintenance phase starts once a patient demonstrates they have established good long-term life-style and metabolic changes. Some patients may be completely off weight loss medications, while others may require a small maintenance dose. By this time, our clinic will have established an individual range of weights for self-monitoring at home. This range comprises a patient’s CARE Plan and it will be explained in detail during transition. Monitoring weight allows reassurance that a patient is continuing to manage their overweight/obesity or early evidence of a disease flare requiring additional treatment. Relapses of overweight and obesity are common among both medical and surgical weight loss patients. Idaho Weight Loss aims to be a safe place for patients to return whenever needed.

The maintenance phase lasts indefinitely. The aim is to continue maintenance unless/until a return to active weight loss is warranted.