For the estimated one-third of American adults who are obese or morbidly obese, the struggle with weight is a daily occurrence. When complications begin to set in, such as depression, diabetes or heart disease, the knee-jerk reaction might be to see the easiest, fastest solution. While weight loss surgery can provide the necessary boost to promote healthy, permanent weight loss, it’s not an easy road to take.
While popular misconceptions surrounding weight loss surgery make it seem like the “fast track” to a thinner, healthier body, there’s nothing simple involved in taking this path. While it is highly viable and largely safe courtesy of newer, less-invasive techniques, the reality is those who undergo bariatric surgery need to do so with their eyes wide open. This alternative weight loss options demands a lifelong commitment to produce results in a safe and healthy way.
What do bariatric surgery patients need to know?
• Insurance coverage isn’t guaranteed – While many private insurers understand bariatric surgery has long-term cost-savings benefits, not all companies have come on board. Patients are urged to check with their insurance providers to understand their costs. Many bariatric surgeons, however, offer assistance in this area to help make navigating insurance regulations easier.
• Dietary changes are a must – Once surgery is performed, the true benefits will hinge on how well patients keep up with necessary dietary changes. Meals will need to become much smaller and more nutrition dense to maintain health and weight loss.
• Exercise is critical – Patients who undergo weight loss surgery need to become active to realize the true benefits.
• Results aren’t permanent unless patients commit – The simple truth is weight loss surgery promotes eating less, but that doesn’t mean everyone follows the plan. Unless there is a real commitment, patients will find their weight can come back. It’s critical to follow a post-surgi8cal plan in the days, weeks, months and years after surgery.
Weight loss surgery can produce results where other options have failed. It is not, however, an easy alternative that will provide instant gratification.