What Is Bariatric Surgery?


After unsuccessfully trying to lose weight several times by Keto or a hardcore workout, an affordable weight loss surgery might seem like a more realistic option. But before you decide to go down the bariatric surgery route, you first need to touch base with the important things that go into the process. The bariatric surgery procedure is generally safe and can help you achieve success if you’re trying to lose weight. That said, to be prepared, you first need to be prepared for the physical and emotional issues that come with the procedure.

Getting surgery is a big deal for almost anyone. Apart from making sure that you’re healthy for the procedure, your emotional state is just as vital if you’re trying to reach your target weight. But before we start going through the essentials, let’s first touch base with the procedure itself.

What Is Bariatric Surgery?

Contrary to popular belief, bariatric surgery is not a cosmetic procedure. People certainly hope that they would look better after the surgery but only looking good is not the goal. Apart from looks, bariatric surgery hopes to improve a person’s life overall. Some of the most common procedures are:

  • Lap band, success rates of up to 47%,
  • Gastric sleeve, success rates of up to 80%,
  • Gastric bypass, success rates of up to 85%.

However, even though these procedures can support weight loss, you’ll have to incorporate certain lifestyle changes into your daily routine to ensure you get the best possible results. There’s also a common misconception that patients who do go through the procedure regain their weight, which is not true!

The truth is, most of the people who do go through a bariatric surgery procedure in Alabama maintain their weight successfully for the long-term. More than 85% of all patients lose the weight they intend to and are able to maintain 50% of their weight loss.


Physical and Emotional Issues

Even though an affordable weight loss surgery is safe and loss-less threatening than obesity, it is still a dramatic change in a person’s life. There are dietary restrictions that a person has to follow, and if you’re obese, the changes might seem too drastic at the start. While some of these restrictions like not drinking water with meals can be basic, some can be pretty dramatic. But perhaps, the greatest challenge of all is the emotional issues one has to deal with after an affordable weight loss surgery.

Any person who is opting for a bariatric surgery procedure has used food in the past to cope with emotional problems. Once you’re done with the surgery, your relationship with food can never go back to normal.

And that is okay!

While several people might not want to accept it, their cure is simultaneously the reason for their pain, too. While having unhealthy food might suppress what you feel, for the time being, it later adds to your anxiety and depression of consuming unhealthy food on the daily. This further pushes you down into the abyss of depression which can be notoriously hard to leave. While the bariatric surgery procedure can bring detrimental modifications that you might find hard to adapt to, we assure you you’ll start to see the positive impacts of these changes in due time!


Pre-Requisites for Bariatric Surgery

Advocating and Persuading

Before you decide to go down this path, you need to be completely sure that it is the path you want to take. The people who do go through an affordable weight loss surgery procedure have to face the trouble of persuading their family and friends that this procedure is appropriate for them. But apart from these relationships, the important person you need to persuade is your doctor!

To be considered for bariatric surgery, your general physician has to recommend the procedure. To do this, you’ll first have to submit at least records of six months which show your weight and your attempts to lose it.

Once the doctors are on board, your insurance provider can authorize the payment.


Building Support

Going through bariatric surgery and its side effects can be challenging for any person, which is why you need to have a support team that can motivate you through the process. This can consist of family members, friends, professionals, acquaintances, and any other person who you think can motivate you to go through the process with your chin up. Six months before the surgery, your surgeon will put you on a weight-loss regime to ensure you’re in the best shape possible for the surgery.

Additionally, you might also require the help of a therapist to deal with the fears and frustrations that may arise.


1. Keep Your Expectations Realistic

First and foremost, before you through the process, it is important you have realistic post-surgery expectations because wild expectations for the procedure often leave people feeling disappointed. The procedure will make you thin by all means, but you’re not going to wake up after the surgery feeling 50 kilos lighter. Bear in mind that if you’re trying to lose weight, bariatric surgery is not an immediate answer to weight loss; it’s more of a tool people use to make their stomach smaller, which gives incredibly impressive results. Don’t get demotivated if you can’t see the same results everyone around you has had with the procedure. Everyone going through the process has a different body, lifestyle and dietary habits. Because of this reason, our bodies react to the procedure differently. Additionally, it also depends on the kind of bariatric surgery procedure you go with.

Experts suggest that after you’re done with an affordable weight loss surgery, you’ll have to go through a weight-loss regime for at least a year to see desired results. It is imperative that you understand that even though bariatric surgery makes weight loss easy, it still requires some time and effort on your behalf. Follow your doctor’s recommendations religiously and try to stay as physically active as possible. Having a clear path to follow can make you stay on track and not give up.  


2. Try Not to Do it Alone

Support is everything when you’re going through a bariatric surgery procedure. Seek the help of a primary care provider and let them help you develop long-term goals. These goals can help you stay motivated in the long run and you’ll also be able to keep track of all weight-loss milestones. The multidisciplinary team that will be in charge of the procedure at Alabama Bariatrics has extensive experience of bariatric surgeries under their belt. Utilize their experience and use their knowledge to your advantage!

The idea behind bariatric surgery can seem daunting to anyone, which is why you must start with baby steps. Rather than wanting to learn everything about the procedure at once, look at the options you have and pick a few resources at one time. Some of the first steps that you can take are:

  • Look for a virtual support group (since we’re all socially distancing)
  • Attend online seminars on the affordable weight loss surgery topic
  • Religiously follow the weight loss plan developed by the professionals

3. Find Food Addictions And the Importance of Exercise

If you’re addicted to certain kinds of food, you’ll have to let the healthcare provider know before you go through the surgery. A mental healthcare provider can often help you identify the role a certain food is playing in your life and find healthy alternatives. When you get a smaller stomach, even though you might be thin, they’ll still be some emotional needs you may have, which you previously fulfilled with food.

Most people that develop an eating disorder use food as a way to cope with emotional stress. But with that said, this is a short-term way of managing problems related to mental health, which later amount to something way more severe. Knowing how important it can be to eat healthy food, you’ll be able to make food choices that let you stay healthy and make you feel a lot more active during the day. Learning this is vital before an affordable weight loss surgery because:

  • The food intake you have will be restricted in the first few months
  • You’ll have to eat slowly; a small meal should take you up to 20 minutes
  • Having a healthy diet is essential! Chugging down unhealthy food is not going to help your cause

You can also consider working with a dietician to help develop a meal plan for your day. Sometimes, people are also discouraged by the amount of exercise it can take to burn a few calories. This might sound unbelievable at first, but saying no to a large order of fries can mean the same as saying no to walking five miles. But additionally, we don’t only burn calories when we start exercising. We manage our blood sugar levels, reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, decrease the risk of heart disease and help improve our sleep.

When we sleep well and our general mood is better, we eat healthier food and don’t eat as often, too. You don’t have to buy expensive gym weights to improve your muscular and strength endurance; a healthy diet will do that for you! To get started, do sit-and-stand repetitions on your favorite chair, pushups on your kitchen counter and make dumbbells out of used milk jugs. Fill the jugs with water and empty them when you’re done using them.


4. Seek Help for Depression

Bariatric surgery is effective 80% of the time, but it takes dedication and ultimate focus to keep that weight off your body. It’s imperative that your emotional energy and your physical strength go hand in hand to help you achieve your goals. After you’re done with the surgery, your body will be recovering and eating will be restricted. If you’re depressed, it can be even harder to stay on track since several obese and depressed people use food as a medicine.

If you’re having problems staying positive, talk to your doctor or your counselor about maintaining a positive attitude throughout the recovery process. The professionals at Alabama Bariatrics have been doing this for several years and are there to help!


5. The Risks Associated With Addictions

Tobacco, alcohol and different kinds of drugs can reduce your body’s ability to lose weight, regardless of whether you’ve had bariatric surgery or not. Alcohol has many calories and decreases your inhibitions, which makes you a lot more susceptible to unhealthy food. You’re also going to start feeling the intoxicating effects of alcohol a lot more heavily after the surgery. One drink will put you over the legal blood alcohol limit for driving.

Additionally, tobacco can cause certain complications too. Tobacco can increase the risk of surgical complexities, ulcers, and respiratory problems. People who start smoking after they’re done with the surgery can develop irritation in their stomachs. If you can’t stop smoking, talk to your doctor about a plan.


An Affordable Weight Loss Surgery Will Impact Your Life Positively

The bariatric surgery procedure can improve your life and is an effective strategy that can help you lose weight and then sustain that weight loss for a long time. The benefits of an affordable weight loss surgery can be:

  • Better cardiovascular health
  • Remission for type 2 diabetes
  • An improved blood pressure
  • Reduced depressive episodes (complete relief in some cases)
  • Getting rid of sleep apnea
  • Joint pain relief

With all of this said, always keep in mind that bariatric surgery is the beginning of your weight loss journey, not the end. You’re still going to have work ahead of your after you’re done with the procedure but we promise you that it’ll be worth it!

To get started on your journey of weight loss and a depression free life, bariatric surgeons in Alabama like Alabama Bariatrics can ensure the process is smooth. To know more about how we go through the procedure, click here, or call us today on 256-274-4523.