There are often many misconceptions and myths surrounding bariatric surgery. When considering weight loss surgery, advice from a doctor is most important. However, it’s always wise to read more about the topic so you feel informed and empowered even before your first appointment.
Understanding more about the procedure and knowing what is expected can help you know if bariatric surgery could be right for you. It will also help you better understand how to stay committed to the healing and recovery process for the very best results.
Here are eight important facts about weight loss surgery that you should know:
1. Weight Loss Surgery Changes the Size of the Stomach
Most bariatric procedures work by reducing the size of the stomach or removing part of it. This helps lower the amount of food you are able to eat and helps you feel fuller, faster.
2. Bariatric Surgery is Safe
The risk of serious complications from the surgery itself is quite low — lower than for gallbladder surgery, for example. Yet, the long-term health benefits are positively life-changing. Bariatric patients tend to live longer than people with severe obesity who don’t have surgery. While any surgery does come with some risks that your surgeon will explain to you, bariatric procedures drop a person’s mortality rate by 40 percent, according to a New England Journal of Medicine study.
3. Not Everyone is a Candidate
Bariatric surgery isn’t for everyone; however, the requirements have changed recently to make it available to more people. Under the new American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) guidelines, patients with a body mass index (BMI) over 35, regardless of any health-related issues, are eligible for weight loss surgery. People with a BMI over 30 are also eligible if they haven’t been able to achieve substantial or long-term weight loss. Check out our blog here to learn more.
4. There Will be Dietary Restrictions
It’s important to start eating healthier before surgery by eating the same diet you will need to eat after surgery. Eating smaller portions and meals with fewer carbs and more protein is recommended. You’ll be asked to adopt this diet before surgery, so it’s not new to you as you recover.
5. The Benefits Are More Than Just Weight Loss
A healthy weight can make a big impact on your whole health. In addition to feeling better, shedding excess pounds may reduce the risk for many serious conditions in the long run, including heart disease, high blood pressure, and Type 2 diabetes.
6. Scarring is Minimal
One fear often attached to weight loss procedures is that there will be a large permanent scar, when in fact, most bariatric surgeries are minimally invasive and leave only a few small incisions.
7. Most Patients Keep the Majority of the Weight Off
Weight loss varies from person to person. However, most bariatric patients maintain a long-term weight loss that’s half or more of their excess weight. This significant, lasting weight loss is very different than the results from dieting alone.
8. The Right Program is Important
Our care doesn’t end when you leave the hospital. You’ll have the support of the entire AdventHealth system to ensure your long-term success with nutritional guidance, support groups and more.
At AdventHealth, our weight loss solutions help you build a healthier body, mind and spirit. And when you’re ready to make a change, our team is ready to help you get started. Click here to learn more about our personalized bariatric and weight loss options.