Losing weight can be very difficult. When someone who is obese, with a BMI of 40 or above, is looking to lose more than a quarter of their body weight, they often turn to bariatric or weight loss surgery. Bariatric surgery is an effort to promote healthy weight loss when diet and exercise haven't worked or when you have serious health problems because of your weight (Mayo Clinic). In order to qualify for bariatric surgery, you must first meet certain medical guidelines and make lifestyle changes that will help you on your weight loss journey.
A bariatric patient, one year post surgery, said:
“I just ran my first 5K and I would never have been able to do that a year ago, I’m going to live a longer life for my child and self, my life is better because of this.
People often think weight loss surgery is a short cut to being thin and the truth of the matter is that it couldn’t be any less true.
It’s a tool to help people who don’t naturally lose weight easily.”
Weight loss is about a lifestyle change, not just the numbers. The real goal of weight loss is becoming healthier, living a longer life and helping reduce any chronic health issues you may have due to the excess weight. Obesity is linked to over 60 chronic diseases such as: type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, cancer, shortened life expectancy and more. “The surgery is not a cure. Weight management care is long-term and requires life-long follow up,” said Colleen Tewksbury, PhD, MPH, RD, LDN from pennmedicine.org. You may be required to participate in long-term follow-up plans that include monitoring your nutrition, your lifestyle and behavior, and medical conditions (Mayo Clinic).
There are 3 types of bariatric surgery:
Gastric Bypass Roux-en-Y(roo-en-wy) Surgery - the capacity of the stomach is reduced by creating a smaller stomach pouch with tiny outlet to reduce the speed at which food leaves the stomach.
Sleeve Gastrectomy - about 80% of the stomach is removed, leaving a tube-shaped stomach about the size and shape of a banana.
Biliopancreatic Diversion with Duodenal Switch - a Sleeve Gastrectomy with a second step bypassing the majority of the intestine by connecting the end portion of the intestine to the duodenum near the stomach.
Make sure to speak with your doctor to see which surgery is best for you. And, Franciscan Health has a whole department dedicated to Bariatric Surgery | Franciscan Health with even more information to help you.
Let the Fitness Center help you on this weight loss journey every step of the way because sometimes, you need help reaching your goals. We offer Nutritional Counseling and Personal Training to help with taking AND keeping the weight off. Our team is here for you during your pre- and post-surgery times.
Bariatric surgery - Mayo Clinic
Bariatric Surgery: Gastric Sleeve vs. Gastric Bypass | My Bariatric Life
The Realities of Bariatric Surgery: What We Don’t See on TV - Penn Medicine