For long-term weight management, regular exercise is essential. As you lose weight and become fitter, you will need to increase the intensity or length of exercise to keep burning the same amount of calories. Generally, we recommend 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week, such as jogging, fast walking, aerobics class, or swimming. The patient’s exercise regimen should include aerobic, strength, and flexibility exercises for the best results. Not only does exercise help you meet your weight loss goals, but it's also a wonderful way to clear your head and remove stress and anxiety
Patients who experience massive weight loss go through major lifestyle and physical changes. As a result of these big changes, some patients become more self-confident, while others may not adjust as readily to their new bodies. For many reasons, patients need access to mental health professionals who can guide them through the complex feelings and emotions they may experience.
Consider joining a support group for bariatric surgery patients. Not only do these organizations provide emotional support by helping you connect with others who have gone through weight loss surgery and have dealt with the same issues, but members can also give you practical tips on what did and didn't work on their personal weight loss journey. Do a short search on the internet to find one near you. If you don't feel comfortable attending a support group or meeting, confiding in a close friend or family member can also help you lose weight and meet your health goals.
Stress and Sleep
Successful stress management begins even before the surgery. Since stress can be a significant factor in whether or not patients follow their post-surgical diets and exercise plans, cultivating healthy habits before surgery can be critical to your ultimate weight loss success. Exercise and yoga or meditation are quite effective for lessening feelings of anxiety and stress. Finding healthy coping mechanisms is crucial to losing weight. Reading, meditation, and quality time with friends are excellent activities to engage in when you're stressed or anxious.
A good sleep routine is another factor in pursuing a healthy lifestyle, as inadequate sleep has been linked to weight gain. Ways to improve sleep habits include avoiding caffeine in the evening, exercising in the morning or afternoon, and planning a peaceful sleeping environment. Establish a regular bedtime and try to get an adequate amount of sleep every night.
A good sleep routine is another factor in pursuing a healthy lifestyle, as inadequate sleep has been linked to weight gain.
It is normal for patients to experience plateaus, where weight loss stalls or weight gain even occurs. However, it is important that you don’t let frustration lead to stress eating or other unhealthy habits that could undo your bariatric surgery's effects. Patients who have difficulty overcoming weight plateaus are encouraged to work with their local doctor and nutritionist, as well as their support groups. Consider the following tips when encountering a plateau:
- Increase your exercise level.
- Avoid sugar
- Focus on high-protein foods
- Eat only when feeling hungry
Alcohol and Smoking
Patients should generally refrain from drinking alcohol after bariatric surgery. Alcohol contains empty liquid calories with little nutritional value. In addition, after certain bariatric surgeries, your body absorbs alcohol more quickly, leading to higher blood alcohol levels. Patients who plan to undergo any surgery, including bariatric surgery, should quit smoking six weeks before the procedure. Smoking compromises circulation and interferes with healing. Smoking before surgery can also increase the risk of fatal blood clots, pneumonia and other complications.
Weight Loss Surgery Success Depends on You
The primary focus of weight loss surgery is to improve your health and reduce or eliminate high blood pressure, type II diabetes and other health problems. We can give you the steps you need for success after bariatric surgery, but ultimately, you must make the shifts in diet and other lifestyle changes. We're here to help you develop the required lifelong habits. Contact us today for more information.