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MOVE! Weight Management Program

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George Velez - Nov 2023

Photo of George Velez shaking hands.

Regaining His Health and Wellness

VA’s own Dr. George Velez took advantage of his opportunity to build a healthier lifestyle with the help of MOVE!.

With the support and accountability of the MOVE! team at the VA Healthcare System of the Ozarks in Fayetteville, AR, George established healthy eating and physical activity habits.


A Fresh Start

In his position as Medical Center Director/CEO for the VA Healthcare System of the Ozarks, and also as a Veteran receiving care at this facility, George has the unique opportunity to see all the levels of care provided to Veterans. In 2022, George faced "diminishing" health. "I was always tired," he recalls, "and my knees were at the point of needing surgical interventions." Additionally, George was informed by his provider that he was pre-diabetic, as well as suffering from pre-hypertension and an elevated level of lipids. His provider recommended the MOVE! Weight Management Program as a first step to improving his health and wellness

[MOVE!] was truly a team effort.
Dr. George Velez
Photo of hiking boots walk the trail

Trusting the Team

After starting MOVE!, George began to appreciate how the program emphasized small, manageable changes that added up to great improvements. Unlike the fad diets he had tried before, MOVE! offered George strategies to achieve lasting change to his eating and physical activity habits. In addition to these lessons, George credits the support of his MOVE! team for helping him progress throughout his weight management journey.

Healthy and Empowered

Since starting MOVE!, George has lost over 70 pounds. He has embraced a pescatarian diet and a new, active lifestyle that includes one hour on five days each week of cardio and strengthening exercises. Thanks to these changes, he shares that his health and wellness have improved dramatically. "I have stamina and vigor," he explains, and is "off all…medications." He now regularly hikes long distances on the weekends, and proudly shares that he feels "full of energy and vigor to continue [his]…noble mission of caring for our nation’s heroes…our Veterans."

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