One of the most common misconceptions is that bariatric surgery is the “easy fix” or “lazy way” to lose weight. But for those who have undergone bariatric surgery and have worked to maximize this life-changing opportunity, they can certainly attest that “easy” couldn’t be further from the truth.
Bariatric surgery is life-changing, indeed. It is an incredible innovation and approach to jumpstarting a life of renewed health and wellness. It offers an intense focus on ownership of your body and health and the choices you make to keep it strong.
Certainly, the surgery itself jumpstarts the process. Depending on which surgery you choose; the way you process and digest food will certainly change. But no matter which procedure, or how great your bariatric surgeon, there is no magic wand that keeps you from overeating, making poor food choices, or skipping your workout. These are all lifestyle choices, and how one chooses to behave post-surgery is the largest determinant of the success or failure of the procedure.
The only way bariatric surgery is “an easy fix” is if you look at it as the “fix“ as jumpstarting a new way of thinking. Sometimes we do need a little push. We need that spark that will fuel us on the way to the next large decision. Sometimes, that nudge, whether an investment of hope or an investment financially, forces us to continue forward toward the finish line. While certainly not an easy fix, planning, researching, and taking one’s health seriously for perhaps the first time in your life — and finally committing to having bariatric surgery — could, in fact, be the “magic wand” needed to re-commit to health and wellness.
So now you’re out of surgery and everything is done, right? Actually, this is when the real work begins.
After the initial high, seeing the numbers on the scale plummet from the post-surgery diet, comes reality. Weight will continue to drop, and it becomes a critical time to ride this wave of enthusiasm and self-love that many of us lost over time. By combining this new outlook with the post-op food and exercise recommendations, you start to build habits that work in tandem with the surgery that jump started it all. As you feel stronger and start to like what you see in the mirror, this feeling compounds. But certainly, there is nothing “quick” about it. You will have times where these changes are obvious, and others that seem like it all has just stalled. These are moments to connect with your bariatric surgeon and team, to reevaluate what you’ve been eating and doing. This, again, supporting the notion that bariatric surgery is a long-term lifestyle choice and commitment.
Also, “quick fix” is misleading because it implies that post-surgery you are done and on your own. By committing to bariatric surgery, and, in turn, our practice, you are forging a long-term, life-long relationship.
Our office is here for you and can offer support, guidance, and the experience to understand that the journey is ongoing. Even the existence of support groups prove that this is no quick fix. These are long-term relationships made for patients to support one another when times are good or when times get tough.
The Bottom Line
Our bodies are not only improving, but our minds are as well. This evolution takes time. It isn’t just numbers on the scale, but the knowledge that we are changing for the better and not alone on the journey.
If you are considering bariatric surgery, know that your life will indeed change. But it won’t be easy, and it won’t be overnight. If you are looking for that magic wand, this is not the option for you. But if you’re willing to commit and understand that bariatric surgery is the starting point for incredible transformation in your life, great things lie ahead.