Deciding to have bariatric (weight loss) surgery is a serious,
life-changing decision. To reap rewards from weight-loss surgery, you
must commit to a new and healthier lifestyle. However, it's possible to
help determine your own success before you undergo surgery.
Bariatric surgery is not a procedure that affects your life for a
day, a week or even a few months. Ideally, it affects your lifestyle
forever. Those who begin making changes to their lifestyles before
surgery often see better results following surgery. The physicians and
staff of UnityPoint Health - Des Moines Weight Loss Specialists are committed to helping
those undergoing bariatric surgery understand what changes need to be
made, as well as the best ways to implement them.
Fight Food Cravings
A food journal may help patients see what they need to cut back on or
work on avoiding. It can also help patients identify the emotional
triggers which may lead to certain food cravings.
Being aware of your specific food cravings and attempting to manage
them before surgery can benefit you greatly afterward. Those having
surgery are required to attend a preoperative nutrition class taught by a
bariatric dietitian to discuss questions and concerns and learn about
pre- and post-surgery diet plans. Simple changes, such as avoiding all
soda and caffeine before surgery, can go a long way.
Making time for exercise is also a major lifestyle change required
for success with bariatric surgery. Exercising doesn't always 'feel
good' and it can be difficult, but patients who incorporate activity
into their everyday routines are more likely to be successful after
bariatric surgery in maintaining their weight loss. Even dividing
exercise into five minutes of walking six times a day is a good place to
Those undergoing bariatric surgery must also prepare themselves
emotionally. At our regular support group, patients can learn practical
lifestyle changes from those who have already had surgery. Old habits
die hard, but they can be changed.
Weight loss surgery creates a new lifestyle, a new adventure, a new
journey. The most important part of learning all these new things is
putting them into action, and those who do will achieve the greatest
For more information, visit www.icanlose.com.
Source: MyHealthLibrary, UnityPoint Health - Des Moines Weight Loss Specialists