What used to be called weight loss is now commonly referred to as weight management in response to humankind's ubiquitous struggle to stay slim. The world is home to over 2.1 billion people who are overweight or obese, and only about 5 percent of those who try non-surgical methods to shed pounds will be successful in keeping that weight off. We are biologically designed to store fuel as fat, an evolutionary adaptation that enabled our ancestors to survive when food was scarce. However, now that we are surrounded by easily attainable food, this characteristic has become an impediment. Fortunately, there are surgical options available to assist with obesity reduction.
What is Bariatric Surgery?
Bariatric weight loss surgery works in two ways: food intake restriction and caloric malabsorption. Restrictive surgery, such as the Lap-Band method, reduces the stomach capacity from its usual 4-6 cups to 1 cup, making you feel full sooner so you'll eat less. Malabsorptive procedures involve rerouting the path that food takes once it leaves the stomach so that it skips a portion of the small intestine and in doing so reduce the opportunity for calories to be absorbed. Some surgeries, such as the Roux-En-Y Gastric Bypass, do both.
Benefits of Weight Loss
Improved physical health via weight reduction is just one of the many benefits of weight-loss surgery. There is also a tangible positive psychological impact. In fact, a study involving laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding patients revealed positive impact in all areas reviewed, including life appreciation, feeling of personal strength and relationships with others. Another study involving over 4,000 postoperative patients demonstrated significantly greater reduction in depression and anxiety when compared to controls who participated in diet and exercise alone. Improvements in psychological well-being begin even before postoperative weight loss, likely due to the patient's new-found sense of control over their own lives and abandonment of previous feelings of futility regarding their health. Weight-loss surgery gives them new hope.
If you've struggled to lose weight and not been successful, and you meet the BMI and health status qualifications, you might be a candidate for bariatric surgery. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor and take the first step to becoming yet another patient who experiences the positive impact of this weight management strategy.
Read more about post-bariatric body contouring in San Antonio here:
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