Lifestyle Changes After Weight Loss Surgery
The benefits of weight loss surgery are not limited to the change in the number that shows up on the scale, but an entire lifestyle reboot. Surgery is just a puzzle piece in the grand scheme of weight loss – it is one tool in the toolbox. After weight loss surgery, there are many aspects of life you have to commit to changing including your diet, physical activity, and mindset.
Your meals might look a little different than before undergoing surgery. Bariatric surgery changes the way your stomach works; therefore, you have to be more conscious of what you are putting in it. Weight loss surgery does not mean you can eat a poor diet and still lose weight. A patient needs to be dedicated to eating a well-balanced diet. That means having a colorful plate of fruits and veggies, lean meats, fish, healthy fats, etc.
Changing your diet does not have to be daunting, it can be fun! You can take this as an opportunity to try new things, search for new recipes, challenge your food horizons and create some delicious and nutritious meals.
In addition to a healthy diet, a patient should perform physical activity to get their heart rate up and burn some extra calories. As you lose weight after bariatric surgery, you are also losing body fat – exercise helps turn that fat into muscle. But, remember that you also need to perform resistance training – weight lifting and bodyweight exercises amongst others. This helps build muscle and increase your resting metabolic rate.
Just like changing your diet can be a fun adventure, so can changing your exercise routine! There are endless possibilities when it comes to what activity you can do to work up a sweat. Depending on your physical ability, you can look into a variety of low impact exercises. Low impact exercises are things such as swimming, yoga, walking, and anything that is gentle on your body. They are effective, might take longer to see results, but ultimately avoid injury.
Regardless of what type of exercise you choose to incorporate into your regimen, anything is better than nothing! Do what makes you feel comfortable while increasing that heart rate a bit. You can talk to your doctor about where you should set boundaries and what your body is capable of.
Above all else, you should make sure you have a positive mindset about your journey. Be aware that weight loss is not a straight path. There will be ups and downs you need to be aware of and prepared for. If you approach weight loss with motivation and determination, it will be so much easier to achieve the previous two lifestyle changes.
Weight loss can be a very freeing experience. Not just because you were able to shed the extra weight, but because it can open doors for so many new opportunities in life. Surround yourself with positive people that want what is in your best interest. You do not have to do this alone! There are many support groups you can join to meet people who are going through the same things you are.
The Bottom Line
A weight loss journey does not end after weight loss surgery. It involves a commitment to a lifestyle change. It is not always going to be easy, but it will be rewarding. Be ready to jump into a healthy diet and strong exercise routine. The foundation of successful results is a healthy mindset. Know what to expect throughout your journey, set goals, and seek support.
If you would like to know more about what to expect after weight loss surgery, contact us to set up an appointment with Dr. Tsuda or Dr. Ryan. You can also take a look at our “Life After Weight Loss Surgery” page on our website to dig deeper into post-op expectations.