Support after Weight Loss Surgery
Weight loss surgery is just one step on your weight loss journey, and although it’s a big step, you’ll need ongoing support and accountability to reach your goals and maintain your health. We will remain your partners, helping and encouraging you along the way. Below, we describe the follow up and support after weight loss surgery that we provide to you.
The modifications made to your gastrointestinal tract will require permanent changes in your eating habits that must be adhered to for successful weight loss. Post-surgery dietary guidelines will vary by surgeon and procedure. Generally accepted dietary guidelines for gastric bypass and laparoscopic adjustable gastric band patients are provided below, but the guidelines you are given may be different. Always follow your surgeon’s healthy eating instructions.
- When you start eating solid food, it is essential that you chew thoroughly. You will not be able to eat steaks or other chunks of meat if they are not ground or chewed thoroughly.
- Don’t drink fluids while eating. They will make you feel full before you have consumed enough food.
- Omit desserts and other items with sugar listed as one of the first three ingredients.
- Omit carbonated drinks, high-calorie nutritional supplements, milk shakes, high-fat foods and foods with high fiber content.
- Avoid alcohol.
- Limit snacking between meals.
For ongoing nutritional support, a dietitian is available by appointment in our office to help you address dietary guidelines and challenges, answer questions, and help you stay on track and maintain your healthy weight.
Support groups provide an excellent opportunity to discuss your personal and professional weight loss issues. Most patients learn, for example, that weight loss surgery will not immediately resolve existing emotional issues or heal the years of damage that morbid obesity might have inflicted on their emotional well-being. Our support group will assist you with short- and long-term questions and needs. Ongoing post-surgical support helps produce the greatest level of success for many patients.
Although the short-term effects of weight loss surgery are well understood, there are still questions to be answered about the long-term effects on nutrition and body systems. Over time, you will need periodic checks for anemia (low red blood cell count) and your levels of vitamin B12, folate and iron levels. Follow-up tests after surgery will initially be conducted every 3–6 months or as needed, and then every 1–2 years. Of course, if you have questions or experience symptoms that may indicate a complication or concern, you should call us immediately.