How do you personally define bariatric surgery success? If asked what are your long-term weight loss goals, you would probably give positive, upbeat responses. It would be a shock to hear that your intention is to gain back every pound you lost over the course of the next 5 years.
But it happens.
I recall how I felt during the first 6-months after my gastric bypass. I was never hungry or even thought about food. Whereas thoughts of eating had preoccupied my mind seemingly forever, it was glorious to be free of that monkey on my back.
That was back in 2003, and I have learned to control my eating in those ensuing years since my weight loss surgery. Statistically, I am what the medical community defines as a bariatric surgery success story. Even so, I still must protect against mindless eating or using food to soothe my emotions. The urge is nothing near as intense as it used to be, that is for sure. But it does take effort. Obesity is not only a physical disease. It is linked to our emotional and mental bodies.
Unfortunately, any bariatric surgery fails in the long-term when not followed-up with a weight loss maintenance plan. Persons who fail to make the necessary changes after bariatric surgery frequently regain much of the weight they have lost, particularly around the 5-year mark.
BUT… knowing what we need to do can quickly overturn the impulse to do what we want to do. We can reprogram our conditioned responses to food, which likely led to us being morbidly obese, with new positive bariatric eating habits.
The following are a few of our most recent opinion pieces to help you on your path to permanent weight loss after bariatric surgery. Read, “Bariatric Surgery is Just the First Step.”
Bariatric Eating Made Simple
When we change our anatomy through bariatric surgery, many of those old dietary rules and plans can do more harm than good. For our bariatric tool to work best, we need to be very aware of what we eat to get proper nutrition. There are three simple points that you need for smart bariatric eating. Read, “Bariatric Eating: Getting Back on Track.”
Drinking and Eating after Bariatric Surgery
How long we should wait before and after eating to drink again? There’s a lot of confusion around drinking and eating after bariatric surgery. It’s important to separate fact from fiction when it comes to drinking and eating after bariatric surgery. Get the Top 5 Tips in “Eating and Drinking Do’s and Don’ts.”
Push Back Against Emotional Eating
Emotional eating is an attempt to erase discomfort with food. Many people use food to relieve stress only to find that it is not much of a solution. Emotional eating will not provide the long-term remedy we want. We need to shake off failed coping mechanisms and try something new. Read, “Steer Clear of Emotional Eating.”
Bariatric Surgery Success: The Bottom Line is You
I sometimes look at very thin people and wonder if they feel the way that I did during those first 6-months after bariatric surgery when I never thought of food. At the same time, I am filled with gratitude for being able to defeat my obesity and related diseases. It was not easy — and that is what makes it so wonderful.
Know this: Permanent weight loss is real. I am living proof of that (read my story). So are the many patients we have profiled in Patient Stories living proof of bariatric surgery success — no matter which obesity surgery they chose.
I am a bariatric surgery success story. And you will be a bariatric surgery success story, if you choose to be.
If you like this article, please check out: Bariatric Weight Loss “How to Get It Done!”
Living larger than ever,
My Bariatric Life