Patients sometimes ask, “Why am I obese? What have I done wrong?” And frequently, we’ll find that there is a family history of obesity that definitely ties into their illness of obesity. This leads to a conversation about something called ‘Set Point Theory’. This theory basically states that your adult weight has a ‘set point’ or a point where it hovers around. This set point is a weight you may battle with causing you a great deal of frustration.
Many times, patients will go on different non-surgical dietary plans and they will often lose weight. However, in the long-term, they tend to gain weight, yo-yoing around that certain ‘set point’. You may be able to relate. That weight is what we call the ‘set point’ of their body. It’s basically what we think of as an evolutionary mechanism for a certain weight that their body is set at.
It is just about impossible to actually change your set point without changing the physiological metabolism of your body. And weight loss surgery is about the only way that you can actually lower your set point to a new level. By changing the physiology of the way your food is digested and performing surgery on your stomach, we can actually lower your ‘set point’ to a new level.
You may wonder as many of our patients have, “Am I going to feel starved after I have weight loss surgery?” However, after weight loss surgery, as your set point weight comes down, your appetite drops in addition to you not being able to eat as much food. This is exactly what happens after the sleeve gastrectomy. With this procedure, the hormone level in your blood stream called ghrelin will drop. Ghrelin stimulates your appetite. Thus, as mentioned, after surgery, your appetite decreases and you eat less since it is a restrictive type procedure. This is how you lower your set point weight. On average, your set point weight will lower by about 60% of what your excess body weight is at the time of surgery. So, if you were about 100 pounds over your ideal weight prior to surgery, you would lower your original set point weight by about 60 pounds.
If you would like to talk about your specific situation and goals, we invite you to reach out to us at and schedule a consultation.