Lifestyle Changes After Weight Loss Surgery: Here’s What You Need to Know

Weight loss surgery will change your life — but how exactly? Learn more about what to expect after bariatric surgery.

If you’ve decided that weight loss surgery is right for you, you’ve probably done your research and have a good idea of what the procedure entails. A bariatric surgeon will reduce the size of your stomach and change how your body absorbs nutrients — so you’ll consume less food and shed those stubborn pounds for good.

But what happens after that? Learn more about the changes you’ll need to make to your lifestyle after bariatric surgery.

What Will Change After Bariatric Surgery?

After weight loss surgery, you’ll have to pay attention to portion size and diet, but this means more than eating healthful meals. Eating a diet high in protein is key to staying healthy and maintaining weight loss success after surgery. Protein helps build lean muscle, kick your metabolism into high gear, and burn more calories during your workouts. You should try to incorporate lean meats like turkey or tuna and protein-rich grains like quinoa into your diet as much as possible. 

Also, since your stomach will be smaller, it’ll be harder to get all the nutrients you need from food alone. If you weren’t taking one already, expect to start taking a complete multivitamin along with calcium, iron, and vitamins C, D, and B12 to keep your body strong and fight nutritional deficiencies. 

In terms of exercise, you should expect to start working out more fully after weight loss surgery. Exercise supercharges weight loss results, improves cardiac health, and can even help you live longer. However, you’ll need to spend a few weeks healing your body after surgery, so don’t expect to jump into high intensity exercise right away. Start with short walks and gradually increase intensity and duration. The goal is to work out at a moderate intensity for 150 minutes each week, with an equal balance of cardio, strength training, and flexibility training. 

If you’ve suffered from weight-related health conditions like type 2 diabetes, poor heart health, fatty liver disease, or disrupted breathing, you should see those issues fall away after weight loss surgery. As such, you might not have to take as many medications as you used to. In fact, a study from the American Society for Metabolic Surgery found that people with severe diabetes were able to cut their direct medical costs by 65 percent, about $1,872 per year. This is an amazing lifestyle change to be able to make, but be sure to wean yourself off of any medications under a doctor’s supervision. 

Lifestyle Benefits After Bariatric Surgery

The good news is that all of the changes you make after bariatric surgery will also translate into amazing lifestyle benefits. You might find yourself sleeping more soundly now that any breathing issues have been resolved and waking up more energized and refreshed. During your workouts, you’ll likely find yourself moving more dynamically now that you’re slimmer and more mobile. From a mental and emotional standpoint, you can expect to feel more confident and able to participate in sports and activities you weren’t able to enjoy before. 

One of the best ways to prepare yourself for the lifestyle changes you’ll need to make after surgery is to talk to someone who has been where you are now. Weight loss surgery support programs are an invaluable resource, and they’ll help you make a smooth transition after surgery. You’ll get to make new friends, build an emotional support network, and pick up a few tips and tricks for maintaining positive changes along the way.

For more information about what to expect before and after weight loss surgery, contact us at Long Island Laparoscopic Doctors. We’ll walk you through your treatment options and help you get started on your journey to a healthier, happier you.