Most People Keep the Weight Off After Bariatric Surgery

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Posted: February 20th, 2020
keep the weight off after bariatric surgery

Bariatric surgery is the key to jumpstarting your weight loss journey, and keeping excess weight off for good. Here’s how: 

 

What’s the most important benefit of weight loss surgery? We’d have to say — longevity. You’ll be able to log more time at the gym, stay youthful for years to come, enjoy exciting new activities, and of course, live longer. In fact, 62 percent of patients who had type 2 diabetes before undergoing weight loss surgery showed no signs of the disease six years later. 

For many obese patients, the key to unlocking a longer, healthier life is keeping the excess weight off long-term, and that can be challenging. Luckily, bariatric surgery can help.  

Recent Study Highlights Bariatric Surgery’s Durability

The assumption that most people regain weight after bariatric surgery is a myth. Up until recently, studies that sought to examine the long-term durability of weight loss surgery only tracked gastric bypass patients for up to three years, which isn’t a very long time at all. As a result, many people have unfairly written off weight loss surgery as a quick fix. 

A 2016 JAMA Surgery study reveals the truth — most people keep the weight off for years after bariatric surgery. Over 10 years, the study’s 1,787 weight loss surgery participants only gained back seven pounds on average. Dr. David Arterburn, a senior investigator at the Group Health Research Institute in Seattle, found that the participants gained a little bit of weight during the first few years after surgery, and then they “actually plateaued and maintained their weight loss and even lost a little more weight over the next few years.” 

Weight loss surgery tends to be more effective than lifestyle changes alone because the procedure changes your body’s relationship to food. Bariatric surgery is not just about making your stomach smaller — it also reduces your urge to eat, reworks your digestive tract, and helps you feel fuller faster. These fundamental changes are much stronger than diet and exercise, even though those factors can also be helpful.

Tips For Keeping Your Weight Down After Surgery

All of that being said, weight loss surgery is not a silver bullet. You’ll still need to work hard to keep your weight off and maintain healthy habits along the way, but bariatric surgery increases your chances of success. If you want to maintain your weight loss after surgery, keep these five tips in mind. 

  • Don’t Feel Guilty: During the first few years after surgery, it’s natural to regain a little weight. Instead of feeling discouraged, double-down on your commitment to weight loss.
  • Check-in Frequently with Your Bariatric Team: Seek professional help to keep you on track.
  • Avoid Snacking: Constantly grazing actually stops you from feeling full and those extra calories can add up. Stick to your post-surgery nutrition plan.
  • Reach Out To A Support Group: Weight loss is a team effort. If you need someone to hold you accountable for your weight loss goals, don’t hesitate to reach out to friends or family.
  • Try Again: If you fall off the wagon, just get back on again. Remember that weight loss is a journey that’s bound to have ebbs and flows.  
 

Shed Those Excess Pounds For Good

If you’re tired of watching your weight go up and down, now might be the time to make a change. Contact the weight loss professionals at Long Island Laparoscopic Doctors today! We’ll walk you through your bariatric surgery options and help you get started on your journey to a new you.