The Road to Bariatric Surgery
Surgery Isn’t Your Only Option
By: Dr. Aaron Wenzel, MD
“…Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”
– ROBERT FROST
70% of ALL Americans are stuck.
The latest statistics state that as a society, 7 out of 10 Americans, regardless of age, race or gender are overweight or obese.
Odds are, if you have a weight struggle, your weight is going up 5-10lbs every year, no matter what you do.
And if that’s you, you have “tried everything” before and failed…
Cabbage soup diet? Nailed it.
Juice cleanses? Been there, done that.
Commercial diet programs like Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, and Nutrisystem? Yep. You’ve tried those, too. Some you’ve tried more than once. Heck, you may even be a “Lifetime Member”…
The truth is, you’ve tried many things — no doubt — but you haven’t actually tried everything.
You’ve heard the advice over and over again, from your family or friends or even your doctor – “just eat less and exercise more!”
This advice sounds good in theory, but it just isn’t working for you.
What about Adkins? Check.
Low Fat? Check.
Vegetarian? Sounds boring.
Vegan? Uh, not interested.
Year after year, despite your best efforts, your weight continues to climb.
It is a never-ending cycle of…
“Try this diet, try that diet”
“Eat less, exercise more”
“Take this pill, take that pill”
Only to see your weight go up along with your frustration.
So what options are you left with?
Well, if you’re like the 70% of Americans who are desperate to lose the weight and keep it off, you might be exploring the option of bariatric surgery.
Before you head off to the surgeon’s office, there are a lot of things to think about.
The truth is, weight loss surgery is an option for some…
But, the decision to have surgery should be explored very carefully.
I mean, after all, this is a major surgical procedure we’re talking about here.
There are medical risks, recovery time, complications, not to mention the financial considerations (most surgeries cost about $20,000 with varying degrees of insurance coverage).
Afterall, The American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgeons (ASMBS) says that you may lose 60% of your excess weight in the first six months after surgery…
And that you could lose up to 77% of your excess weight overall in the first year alone!
5 year data suggests that after surgery, you should maintain about 50% of their weight loss.
Statistics like that may seem enticing, but weight loss after surgery data is skewed when you look more closely.
First of all, it depends on the procedure you get.
There’s Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass — it gets the best results, but is the most intense procedure and has the worst safety profile.
This procedure reduces the size of your stomach.
The surgeon cuts down the stomach into a smaller “pouch”. The new stomach is connected to the small intestine which “bypasses” the larger part of your original stomach.
Your new stomach is now smaller, and so is the amount of food it can hold.
And then we have the Gastric Band — it is by far the safest option, but frankly, has too many failures and just doesn’t work very well…
This procedure reduces the size of your stomach using an adjustable band which is placed at the top of the stomach.
While this option is not permanent, a second surgery is required to remove the band. The band also needs to be “filled” or adjusted regularly at the doctor’s office.
And, about 30-50% of patients need a second surgery to fix problems with the band..
Then there’s the Gastric Sleeve — it can have results nearly as dramatic as Roux-en Y, but has a much more promising safety profile.
Also known as Sleeve Gastrectomy, most of your stomach is removed with this procedure and shaped like a banana. The smaller stomach holds only a small amount of food.
This is the fastest growing type of weight loss surgery and THE ONLY SURGERY I WOULD EVER RECOMMEND to one of my patients.
But, weight loss surgery comes at a price.
There are many potential complications that could arise such as
- Blood clots
- Bowel obstruction
- Dumping syndrome, causing diarrhea, nausea or vomiting
- Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)
- Leaks in your gastrointestinal system
- Stomach perforation
Whoa. This doesn’t seem like an easy solution anymore, does it?
And although it is an option for some, it’s honestly not the best option for most…
It just isn’t.
I’ve been taking care of failed surgical patients for a long time.
Folks who did it years ago — thinking that they’d come accross the ultimate weight loss solution — but have now, in fact, out-eaten their surgery.
Quite frankly, this isn’t meant to be a discussion about whether you should or shouldn’t get surgery…
It’s meant to only inform you of what your options are and be a valuable resource for you as you consider your options.
Bottom line: it’s a BIG commitment. And one that should not be taken lightly.
The challenge is — surgery or not — we’re fighting an uphill battle to find truth.
The lifestyle changes after surgery can sometimes be the hardest part of the whole journey.
You will still need to learn how to figure out nutrition and your relationship with food.
You will still need to learn how to figure out your psychology.
You will still need to learn how to implement a safe fitness plan.
You will still need help to set realistic goals and WIN.
AND you will need a TON of support along the way.
But, what if there was a solution that WASN’T surgery?!
Surgery is not the answer for our Bariform clients.
There is an answer that isn’t “eat less and exercise more” or “your only option is surgery”.
Some of our clients have lost over 200 pounds — without surgery!
So, what’s the answer then?
I’ve created this FREE TOOL, where I break down my biggest secret for you!
Go here to find out more.
In this free training, we establish that the Holy Grail of Weight Loss is that all carbohydrates, plus or minus fiber, are SUGAR.
Which means that when you eat carbohydrates, we get the benefit of fiber being free and going into the toilet, but all the rest of the carbohydrate that is left is just sugar.
These are the hidden sugars!
Did you catch that?
We consume hidden sugars every day!
Why is this such a big deal?!
In order to lose weight, you have to stabilize your blood sugar. Your body can’t normalize it’s blood sugars on it’s own.
When you eat things that are sugar (whether “free” or “hidden”), they raise your blood sugar, adding fat to your body and blocking weight loss!
All Excess Sugar Is Converted Into Fat!
All of it!
And that is NOT GOOD.
Interested in learning more? Check out our free training video for details
Be on the lookout for my next post on The Road to Bariatric Surgery real soon.
Till then, take back the control in your life that you so desperately deserve by deciding to make your health a must!
All my best — Dr Wenzel, MD