Life After Bariatric Surgery
by Dr. Darren Glass
Life after bariatric surgery is not easy. Far from it, but well worth it.
The first few weeks after surgery, patients are adjusting to their new stomach anatomy and have to remain on a carefully controlled liquid diet. Their activity quickly advances back to normal. They may take a week or two off from work, but there is very minimal pain after a few days and there are no restrictions in activity for the motivated patient.
After a few weeks, we advance the diet to soft foods which includes things like tuna salad, egg salad, lunch meat, eggs, cheese and yogurt. Then over the next few months, we advance to normal foods – mostly meat, a little bit of cooked vegetables and very little else.
Exercise is encouraged. Patients are encouraged to eat their small meals slowly and regularly, even though they are not hungry, and to minimize snacking. Patients who do this faithfully will lose about 2/3 to 3/4 of their excess weight in the first year after surgery.
Along with this weight loss comes resolution of medical comorbidities such as diabetes, hypertension, acid reflux and obstructive sleep apnea.
Quality of life improves and patient satisfaction is excellent following surgical weight loss. Definitely well worth it!