“Surgery is not the easy way out”
People who may have tried and have not had success in defeating severe obesity simply by decreasing their caloric intake while increasing their amount of physical activity, should not feel discouraged.
When it comes to the effort it takes to lose weight, everybody has their own opinion, but make no mistake, it’s an “upstream battle”. There is no “easy way” to lose and keep the weight off permanently. Statistics are grim and consistent when it comes to this subject. Losing important amount of weight and keeping it off over the long term is extremely hard to accomplish. The only method that has proven to work effectively for long term weight loss is bariatric surgery.
There is plenty of scientific information to confirm this, but sometimes support to go ahead with bariatric surgery is not always there. We frequently hear from patients at our facility that friends, family, coworkers and the people close to them, refer to bariatric surgery as the “easy way out” vs. dieting and exercise alone. However, nothing could be further from the truth, surgery implies a lifelong commitment that involves nutritional support, exercise, and monitoring to ensure a good outcome.
Most weight loss procedures produce the majority of the expected weight loss within the first year after having the procedure, because of their ability to limit caloric intake and/or absorption, but if measures are not taken to ensure a healthier life style with all its implications, weigh gain can occur. This measures (or good life style changes) usually become second nature for most bariatric surgery patients. Make no mistake; if a person does not adopt good eating habits, weight gain will surely occur again.
Fear is another reason why people opposed bariatric surgery even if they call it “the easy way out”. Although no surgery is 100% safe, bariatric procedures have become routine surgery mainly due to the advances and standardization of surgical techniques, yielding results that are comparable to those of routine gall bladder removal.
The decision to go ahead with bariatric surgery is not taken lightly by any person that suffers from obesity, regardless of the obstacles he or she may have to endure to get the procedure. In our bariatric practice we have never meet an individual who hasn’t been on several weight loss diets, exercise plans with or without professional supervision, and the results are in most cases moderate to important weight loss and weight regain.
Weight loss surgery generates weight loss, but it is by no mean a magic bullet. Patients still have to work to make permanent lifestyle changes that are needed to maintain a healthy weight. The difference is that, with the benefit of bariatric procedures, losing large amounts of weight and keeping it off is now obtainable for most patients.