“So you have taken the easy way out”
This is a familiar saying that our patients tell us they have been subjected to hearing from family and friends. In reality nothing could be further from the truth. The decision to have bariatric surgery never comes lightly. It is never the first decision but comes after years of failed dieting, conversations with health care professionals and a lot of education and preparation by the patient. Although bariatric surgery is the best tool we currently have to combat obesity it is not an easy way out. The surgery tool is only as good as the patient’s management of it. The surgery will assist with valuable hunger management and portion control but to be successful long term, correct dietary choices, regular exercise and addressing strategies for non-hungry eating are still require lifelong commitment.
So next time anybody suggests you are taking the ‘easy way out’ then please educate them so that others do not suffer this ignorance and bias.
Is committing to Bariatric surgery the easy way out or the beginning of your weight loss journey?
Choosing life saving surgery
If you have arrived at the decision to commit to weight loss surgery, you didn’t arrive there overnight. The increase on the scales would have crept up over the years. The physical pain, comorbidity issues and unhappiness associated with increased weight gain would also have affected your life over a long period of time. By the time someone commits to weight loss surgery it is not cosmetic decision, it becomes a life saving operation.
An Australian national study in 2018 revealed 67% of Australians are overweight or obese. This includes a staggering 74.5% of men and 60% of women. It is clear that if you rate in these statistics, you are not alone. However, that is probably exactly how you feel.
What is comorbidity
This is a medical term which refers to the presence of one or more additional conditions co-occurring with a primary condition. The comorbidities associated with obesity are not only very serious but life threatening. They can include
- Type 2 diabetes
- Fertility issues
- Heart disease
- Sleep apnea
- Gallbladder disease
- Certain cancers
- The list is long..
Obesity is not a lifestyle choice, it is a chronic disease and comorbidities that accompany it require constant treatment and monitoring.
Support is available
Talk to family
If you struggle with your weight and you are part of a family, chances are other members of the home are struggling too. A healthy lifestyle needs to be a change everybody commits to. If you have tried a range of treatments with your family it is also ok to have a conversation with them about weight loss surgery. It will have ramifications on the family so it may be a good idea to do the research together to see how it will affect everyone.
Plan your weekly meals together. This is a great way of connecting with each other and giving everyone a chance to choose their own healthy favourite meals. Cooking together is also a great family pass time.
Talk to a friend
A good friend will always be there when you need them. Why not get them to start an exercise routine with you? Maybe start off with walking one day a week together or perhaps try a Zumba class? Whatever form of exercise you decide on, make sure it’s fun and enjoyable. This will help you maintain the continuity.
Consult your GP
Our GP’s are not just there for us when we are struck down with illness. They are a reliable source when it comes to prevention and advice. Make an appointment and ask your doctor’s advice on weight loss strategies and available support.
Your doctor will also have information on the costs of procedures and alternatives to up front expenses associated with this type of surgery. There are options through medicare and private health insurance. Discuss this with your healthcare professional because if it is the cost of surgery has been making the decision for you, there may be other options.
Join a support network
One of the hardest things to do when tackling a problem is joining a group to help you. No one likes being the new person in the room or attending a group for the first time. If you choose to join an online support group you can build relationships without having to meet anyone face to face.There are numerous ways to get support when you are tackling a problem. Facebook has many groups that can provide support, as well as exercise groups, emotional support and healthy recipes groups.
It can be hard to join a group but remember, there’s strength in numbers so the more people you connect with, the chances are you will have a wider support base.
At North Eastern Weight Loss Surgery, we specialise in helping people who are unable to maintain a quality of life that makes them happy and healthy due to obesity. We have a specialised program that incorporates psychologists, nutritionists, doctors and a range of support to help you achieve your dreams of a healthier life.
If you would like to see if you are a candidate for weight loss surgery, or for more information on what to do next, get in touch with us today