The Anna Maria Island Sun Newspaper

Vol. 11 No. 15 - January 12, 2011


Lose weight, feel great at Premiere

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

Debbie O'Leary, Veronica Oberle, Dr. Jack Pfeilsticker,
Penny Gonci and owner Sandy Brown are ready
to help you lose weight.

The start of a new year always has the anticipation of fresh beginnings and new challenges. As you welcome 2011 and the adventure of what may lie ahead, you may also be welcoming a few extra pounds you didn't have a couple of months ago. If this is a challenge that is starting to haunt you, there's a place that could help you face your demons.

Premiere Weight Loss Center is in the business of helping people lose weight, but to Gary and Sandy Brown and their staff, it's a lot more than just a business – it's a passion and one which with they have personal experience. Sandy Brown is a registered nurse with 35 years experience in the dialysis industry, both as an owner with her husband Gary of dialysis centers and in the nursing field.

After retiring, both the Browns put on the standard retiree's 20 to 40 extra pounds and started working with the counselors at Premiere Weight Loss. When the business was available to purchase the Browns decided they missed helping people as medical professionals, and purchased it in January 2010. In September 2010, they purchased a new building and relocated the business.

The medically supervised program that is offered at Premiere Weight Loss is structured to provide the infrastructure to accomplish weight loss goals quickly and safely. Dr. Jack Pfeilsticker, a general practice and urgent care, physician oversees and consults with clients and is available on premises during Premiere's hours of operation.

In addition to Dr. Pfeilsticker and his medical assistant Penny Gonci, there are two diet counselors, Debbie O'Leary and Veronica Oberle who have both worked and been certified in a variety of medical fields.

Premiere's system is broken down into three phases. During the first phase, the emphasis is on acute weight loss managed through diet, exercise and prescribed medications, including FDA approved appetite suppressants. The second phase is the transition phase with adjustments to the diet plan and discontinuance of medication. And the third phase is the long term maintenance phase offering support and guidance to maintain ideal weight. The success of their program is evident based on the 50 to 60 people who come into their facility daily during the winter months.

Sandy Brown points out that Premiere Weight Loss Center is the most affordable of any medically supervised program in our area. It frequently does pro bono work for charitable organizations and offers discounts to medical professionals, as well as police and fire department personnel and teachers. It's also not uncommon for the staff to work with individuals who have chronic medical problems like diabetes and high blood pressure. In the future they also hope to be able to offer weight loss programs for children and group programs.

Premiere Weight Loss Center's official open house will be on Feb. 15 as part of the Manatee Chamber Business After Hours program between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Sandy Brown emphasizes that Premiere Weight Loss Center is not just about weight loss, it's about wellness, support and consistency. So if you need help with those demons, let the professionals at Premiere Weight Loss take one of the challenges of the new year off your plate, along with some of the extra food.

Premiere Weight Loss Center

4701 Manatee Ave. W. Bradenton, 941-827-0024

Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday: 9 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Friday: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Visa and MasterCard


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

2010 - Looking for balance

Investment Corner


In my final article of 2010 I suggested a few resolutions to consider implementing in your portfolio planning. An important part of the investment process is reviewing what has worked and not worked for you, and the beginning of a new year is a traditional and appropriate time to do this.

Your review should be done in the context of determining if the fluctuation in market prices forced your portfolio out of the balanced allocation you desire for your personal objectives and risk tolerance. In other words, if equities did really well and bonds performed poorly, your allocation to the bond portion of the portfolio may now be underweight compared to your target for the overall plan. The process of reducing overweight portfolio segments and buying more of those which are under-weight is called rebalancing.

Rebalancing is shown by virtually all studies to add somewhere between 0.5 and 1 percent to a portfolio's performance over time when completed on a regular basis. I recommend an annual rebalance, or perhaps more often, if dramatic price changes have caused an out of balance condition.

Most major asset classes performed at average to above average rates in 2010, continuing 2009's recovery from the severe financial crisis and recession we experienced. The notable exception to this performance picture is the asset class known as cash and cash equivalents. Cash type investments have a characteristic of not fluctuating in price due to their short maturities and generally high quality (or outright guarantee). Treasury bills, money market funds and certificates of deposit are the most commonly used vehicles in this class.

Due to the Federal Reserve's current policy of holding its Federal Funds Rate target at 0 to 0.25 percent, all short-term interest rates have been very low for over two years now. While we don't expect cash investments to be top-performers, except when recessions and financial crisis hit, during a period of large gains by other asset classes, such as in 2009 and 2010, it is possible your cash equivalents may now represent a smaller piece of your portfolio than you desire (unless you took a very conservative stance following the financial crisis of 2008-2009).

Rebalancing at the present time may well involve taking some profits in the equity, bond and REIT sections of the portfolio, which have performed well in the last two years, and placing the proceeds of these sales in the cash section of the portfolio. Yes, I understand that the money you move to cash will hardly earn any return at the moment, but it is also unlikely to lose any value when the next stock market correction takes place. We don't know when this will take place, but when it does, this rebalancing exercise will be the opposite – taking money that was safe from decline in cash and buying additional equities, which have now shrunk in proportion to the overall plan.

Note how rebalancing is a forced buy low, sell high strategy, which if applied in a disciplined manner will prevent your portfolio from ending up overweighted in the most over-valued assets and susceptible to the inevitable correction which strikes all overvalued market segments eventually.

The target allocation you rebalance to should be personalized for your objectives and will perhaps vary widely from the best allocation for your friends or relatives. In my next article on the 26th, we'll discuss some of the ways to determine an appropriate allocation strategy.

Tom Breiter is president of Breiter Capital Management, Inc., an Anna Maria based investment advisor. He can be reached at 778-1900. Some of the investment concepts highlighted in this column may carry the risk of loss of principal, and investors should determine appropriateness for their personal situation before investing. Visit


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