Is Weight Loss Surgery the Easy Way Out?
Obesity is a disease that receives a great deal of stigma in our society, and people can be quick to judge weight loss surgery. Perhaps you have heard that having weight loss surgery is an “easy way out?” The people who perpetuate that myth may say that bariatric patients are weak-willed, or that they are taking a shortcut. However, we are familiar with the work that each patient puts into their weight loss journey and we know that couldn’t be further from the truth!
Here are just some of the ways that Weight Loss Surgery takes work, from preparation to recovery:
- Acknowledging that obesity is a disease Each patient who walks through our doors has made the decision to take control of their lives. They have lost weight before, through countless diets and exercise programs, only to gain it back. They come to us not because they are weak, but because they finally have the strength to admit they need help.
- Research The decision to have bariatric surgery is not one taken lightly. Patients do lots of research to find a practice that will provide safe, effective care.
- Pre-op appointments Before having surgery, patients meet with dietitians, psychologists and other specialists to make sure they are ready for the lifestyle changes that bariatric surgery requires.
- Pre-op diet In the weeks prior to surgery, patients are on a strict liquid diet.
- Surgery Although bariatric surgeries are safer than ever, especially with a skilled laparoscopic surgeon, the decision to follow through with any surgery takes courage.
- Recovery diet After surgery, patients follow very specific instructions regarding dietary intake and they typically need to wait several weeks before eating solid food. They must put a great deal of care into their post surgery diet to get the nutrients they need to heal.
Exercise After the recovery period, patients need to start incorporating exercise. Many of them avoided exercise before surgery because they were uncomfortable in a gym, or they feared judgment if they exercised outdoors. They are now starting new routines and learning how to work exercise into their life.
- Lifelong commitment No one who gets bariatric surgery sees it as a quick fix. Each patient knows that they are not just getting a procedure, but rather they are starting a road to a healthier, more active lifestyle. Life after bariatric surgery requires dedication to mindful eating, increased activity and follow up care.
So why have weight loss surgery if it is so much work?
Patients who have had weight loss surgery report improved quality of life. They are able to participate in more activities with their loved ones, they no longer have to struggle with failed diets, and most importantly they regain their health. Obesity contributes to many harmful conditions such as Type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea and hypertension. Weight loss surgery improves or resolves those conditions in most cases. Additionally, people with obesity are at greater risk for many types of cancers and other life threatening diseases. Patients who shed excess weight through bariatric surgery can focus on their health without worrying about the complications and risk factors of obesity.
Weight loss surgery is not an easy out, and the people who undergo surgery are not giving up. Weight loss surgery is a powerful tool in the fight against the disease of obesity, and bariatric patients are brave people who have made a lifelong commitment to living a longer, healthier and more active life for themselves and their loved ones.
- BMI < 20
- BMI 20 - 24.9
- healthy weight
- BMI 25 - 29.9
- BMI 30 - 34.9
- BMI 35 - 39.9
- severe obesity
- BMI 40 - 49.9
- morbid obesity
- BMI > 50
- super morbid obesity
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