Monday, November 14, 2011

Gastric bypass: A way out!


Been there, done that!

You’ve been on diets most of your life. There’s nothing you haven’t tried: low calorie, high protein, food delivery, detox, etc. We name it, you’ve done it! You’ve been doing that same dance every time: you go on a diet, you lose weight and then you regain it all with a cherry on top.

You’re sick and tired. And it hits you! Surgery is your last resort. It’s the only way for you to lose that weight you’ve been carrying all those years.

So what’s the deal with the gastric bypass? Well, let’s find out all about it together…

First of all, please tell me what’s a gastric bypass?

It is a weight loss procedure involving two major events: cutting the stomach leaving a little pouch that contains smaller amounts of food; bypassing a large part of the intestine which reduces the amount of fat absorbed. There are many ways to perform a gastric bypass but the most common one is called Roux-en-Y.
If an image speaks a thousand words, how about a video?! (Don’t worry, it is just a simulation. You can watch it freely, there’s no blood involved!)



Who’s eligible for this surgery?

Cutting out one’s stomach is neither practical, nor cheap. Thus, not everyone can or even should do it. Every case is studied carefully by a medical team in order to evaluate whether the patient should undergo the surgery or not. In general, patients with a BMI of more than 40 or more than 35 with risk factors (diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, etc.) should consider it.

What’s going to be my diet after the surgery?

When you’re allowed to start eating after the surgery, you only get to have liquids. Your meal will consist of foods such as sugar free Jell-O, fat free broth, decaffeinated tea and coffee, anis, etc. for a couple of days. Quantities as little as 30 mL should be consumed every 15 minutes.

The next week, you will be able to add 0 fat milk and yoghurt and sugar free pudding. The frequency of meals decreases to 6 meals per day. 120 mL of liquids are consumed at each meal in a period of 30 minutes.

Then, in the next two weeks, you will consume pureed food at a frequency of 4 to 5 meals a day. Every meal is around 90 to 120g.

After that, you will slowly progress towards solid foods.

It is very important to eat slowly and chew well. Also, avoid overeating as it may lead to throwing up.

Give me the good news first!

Can you imagine eating less than half of what you usually eat and being full?
That’s what the gastric bypass does to you. You will feel an early satiety because the pouch is so small (20-30 mL) it cannot contain large amounts of food. Your calorie intake will decrease significantly. Eventually, you will lose more than 50% of the excess body weight.

In addition to that, losing that much weight can help improve many conditions you may suffer from such as asthma, gastroesophageal reflux disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obstructive sleep apnea and type II diabetes.

Just think that you weigh 50 kilos less! You’re moving around much easier and being able to perform any task you want to. You’re more comfortable inside your body.

Hit me with the bad news!

Just like any surgery, a gastric bypass has its risks. The surgical procedure may produce excessive bleeding, infection, blood clots, lung or breathing problems, leaks in the gastrointestinal system and rarely death.

On the long run, there may be problems like perforations, ulcers, hernias, gallstones, nothing a good doctor can’t handle.

Malnutrition may occur as the intestinal absorption of many vitamins and minerals is reduced. Deficiencies in vitamin B12, calcium and iron may occur. That’s why a supplement is always prescribed.

Another problem you may come across is the Dumping Syndrome. It “occurs when the contents of the stomach empty too quickly into the small intestine. The partially digested food draws excess fluid into the small intestine causing nausea, cramping, diarrhea, sweating, faintness, and palpitations. Dumping usually occurs after the consumption of too much simple or refined sugar.”


What happens in real life?

Theory is amazing! However, in real life, everything’s totally different. Let’s see what M.Z. has to say about her experience.

“I had tried everything, all types of diets ever since I was a little girl. I had reached 115kg and I was only 22. I had a BMI of almost 40. I felt like my weight was preventing me from doing what I wanted in my life and being the person I wanted to be. So I thought to myself, something should be done. I can’t let this thing be an obstacle in my life. So I went to Dr Maher Hussein in AUBMC and after a long inquiry, I did it! And I consider it was my best option. The recovery was a bit painful but then you carry on with your life.

Dr Hussein has a technique where you can allow yourself small quantities of sugar and alcohol without suffering from the dumping syndrome. Besides you can’t throw up if you ate more than you should. However, I can’t tell you I don’t get sleepy when I overeat.

I lost 38 kg in 15 months and I’m still hoping for some more. The thing is: you can’t rely only on the gastric bypass. Dieting and exercising become very important after a certain point. Even though I’m still struggling with that thought, I’m well aware that this is what I need to do to reach my desired weight and shape.



Most important of all, I should always be careful to take my supplements because if I don’t - and believe me at first I didn’t – I lose all the energy and become incapable of performing the necessary tasks during the day.

I recommend this surgery but only to people who really need it because after all, it does change your life!”

Gastric bypass is an amazing surgery. Although it has many risks, it can give outstanding results. However, it is a life changer and in my opinion, one should only leave it as a last resort. 

21 comments:

L.D. said...

Great post and best of luck to M.Z.! You can do it :)

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
buy xenical said...

I hope I'm not bursting any bubbles but the risks seem to outweigh the benefits. I still opt for the slow but sure methods of weight loss. Great read though.

Anonymous said...

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all-on-four said...

I have to agree that this procedure looks risky. This should only be used as a last resort if other safer alternatives don't work.

Juan Fernando said...

I've came across some journal in the sleep dentistry sydney clinic that eating lots of sweets before going to bed can be a factor to having sleep apnea. Can anybody concur to that? I'm not sure of that anyway but I follow it to the letter just to be safe.

gastric balloon said...

The information you provided here's extremely precious. It turned out a really pleasurable surprise to have that waiting for me while i awakened today. These are constantly to the issue and simple to be aware of. Thanks quite a bit for the valuable ideas you've got shared in this article.

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