Weight Loss Success after Bariatric Surgery
The only way to be truly successful in losing weight is to go into the process fully informed. Being fully informed can range from getting technical information provided by your doctor, aftercare instructions from your nurse, and even strategies to stay on course from your support group. But it can also mean simply understanding and accepting that there is a long journey ahead and that there will be ups and downs along the way. Despite the occasional roadblock, there are strategies to help you achieve success and to navigate this exciting new chapter.
- First of all, you need to be prepared to make changes in your life each and every day for the rest of your life. Physical and emotional changes will occur often. You must embrace these changes — not with fear, but with a healthy attitude of ‘change is good!’ Just as importantly, that change must come from a place of desire not obligation – meaning you have to want to make that change. Change can be uncomfortable at first, but remember it is a means to a very good end. Educate yourself and understand that changes aren’t about deprivation or punishment; healthy changes are a gift.
- Secondly, you must be your own cheerleader. You will be on this journey for a long time, and often, you will have to motivate yourself. You may have friends and family near you every step of the way, but losing weight is ultimately about overcoming challenges yourself.
- Thirdly, you must understand that weight loss is a journey. This is one of the most important lessons you’ll need to learn if you want to keep the weight off over the long-term. All the learning, all the lessons, all the changes you make along the way will be of little consequence if you don’t apply what you’ve learned along the long road – and the journey doesn’t end at your goal weight.
You haven’t taken the easy road. In fact, understanding the problem and taking steps to correct it is an admirable, and, let’s face it, a difficult decision. To remind yourself of how far you’ve come and to help others with their decision, we always encourage our patients to become advocates for excess weight loss and renewed health – bariatric surgery or not. Imparting some of the considerable experience you have gained over this process can help dozens of others change their lives too.
Remember, knowledge is power and understanding your body and mind, while implementing healthy lifestyle changes, is your greatest weapon against obesity. Millions of bariatric patients have fought and won the battle against excess weight, and with passion and dedication, you can, too.