How To Avoid Slipping Into Old Habits After Bariatric Surgery

A doctor measuring waist of an overweight man.

Bariatric surgery is a surgical solution for those who are looking to lose weight but are unable to shed the extra pounds – more often than not due to extreme obesity, or medical conditions that prevent weight loss from happening. These surgical options include altering the digestive system of the patient to reduce appetite, introduce a feeling of fullness after small portions, and to prevent binge eating. However, surgery is only one aspect of the weight loss journey. It is meant to aid a patient, instead of presenting itself as an all-round solution.

Most patients struggle with making massive lifestyle changes that come with the weight loss journey, as well as new changes that they need to make post-op. Here are some tips and tricks to avoid slipping into old habits after you’ve had a bariatric surgery.

Staying Hydrated

Dr. David G. Davtyan and many other medical practitioners – will tell you this: staying hydrated is important. Not only does it have an improvement on one’s metabolism, but it is also key in ensuring proper recovery. The aim is to drink anywhere between 48 ounces to 64 ounces of water per day. Having a smaller stomach can make this difficult, since drinking water also creates a feeling of fullness. But setting small hourly goals to achieve this is an important aspect of a healthier lifestyle.

Create A Post-OP Support System After Bariatric Surgery

The journey of weight loss can be a daunting one, and extremely discouraging on many instances. One of the most difficult aspects is struggling with self-image, commitment, and celebrating small achievements that don’t seem like anything. Having a support system is vital in remaining positive about your personal growth, and your own body.

Not only should you create a solid support system in your personal life (with loving friends, coworkers, and family), but also have an ongoing medical support. Have a solid connection with your post-op medical team (your doctor, your nutritionist, your therapist, your fitness trainer). There are also many post-op support groups for others who are in the same situation is you, and being around others can be a great way to keep your chin up and staying motivated.

Avoid Snacking And “Grazing”

Snacking between meals is one of the worst things you can do. Eating unhealthy foods between meal times can change when you’re supposed to “feel full”, and impede any kind of weight loss. Instead, you should be reducing the amount of carbs and loading up on all kinds of vitamins and proteins instead. Most doctors suggest that your new diet should include a healthy amount of fruits and vegetables.

Excessive protein should be avoided in order to add on calories, but the minimum amount has a massive positive impact on your body. Only resort to protein shakes and supplements if your doctor or nutritionist prescribe you. Otherwise, natural sources of protein are good at doing the job!

Addressing Alcohol And Drugs

Alcohol and drug consumption are an impediment to good health, regardless of any kind of weight issues you may have. However, it can especially lead to weight issues, and even pose as a risk in your journey. If you have an alcohol and/or drug problem (and the first step is recognizing the problem), then your doctor will help you get on a recovery/weaning program even before your surgery. This is not only to improve your health (both physical and mental) but to also avoid any risks with surgery. Including a psychiatrist or therapist in your support system is also key to dealing with the struggle of remaining sober after your surgery.

Fitness Regimes

No healthy weight loss journey is completely free of a fitness regime. While fitness does not have to mean having a six-pack of abs or bulging biceps, having a healthy amount of exercise is important to lose weight sustainably. Work with your nutritionist and trainer on setting up a graduating routine with attainable goals. Success isn’t necessary on the first try, and set-backs are normal! But the key is to keep pushing forward.

At the Weight Loss Surgery Center of Los Angeles, we bring to you personalized consultation and tailor-made weight loss program under the expert guidance of Dr. Davtyan. Visit our website for more information.

Posted on behalf of Dr. David G. Davtyan MD, FACS, FICS

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