Weight loss Frequently Asked Questions

Why has my dieting not helped me lose weight?

The human body has evolved over thousands of years to survive long periods of starvation. Scientific evidence increasingly points to the problem that confronts dieters: cutting out calories changes your metabolism and brain, so your body hoards fat and your mind magnifies food cravings into an obsession. The human frame contains about ten times more fat-storing cells relative to body weight than most animals, even hibernating polar bears which have to endure long periods when food is unavailable.Our calorie-hoarding bodies have evolved strong mechanisms to stop weight loss, but weak systems for preventing weight gain. If you manage to lose 10% of your weight, your body thinks there’s an emergency, so it burns less fuel by slowing your metabolism.

Weight loss surgery cannot fully oppose these carbohydrate scavenging effects of the body. However it is able to partially change the hormones that affect hunger, and can decrease the total amount of food able to be taken in.

Am I eligible for weight loss surgery?

If your BMI is over 40, or you have a BMI over 35 with associated obesity related disorders (such as high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, sleep apnoea, arthritis) the Australian National Health & Medical Research Council recommends you have weight loss surgery. Some people who have had certain procedures on their gastrointestinal system may be unable to have certain types of weight loss operations. And some medical disorders make the procedures extremely dangerous. We will discuss these issues when you see us.

How will weight loss surgery help me?

There are multiple medical reasons why surgical weight loss shows dramatic improvements in your health. Most people we see however just want to lose weight to make themselves feel better about life, and to look better.

A recent article in "Forbes" magazine reports that being overweight may create a bias when looking for a job, affecting your ability to be hired as well as possibly your starting wage.

As well as making you feel better about life, bariatric surgery is associated with significant short and long term improvements in cardiovascular and metabolic diseases.

Which weight loss surgery is best for me?

This is a question which needs a proper discussion in our clinic. We offer a full range of weight loss procedures. Most people when we see them come in requesting a certain type of weight loss procedure. You must understand that of the 3 most commonly performed procedures, each will be more suited to certain people for various reasons, such as your actual BMI, specific medical conditions, prior operations, your ability to cope with potential risks of each procedure, and your lifestyle.

What will I be able to eat after the surgery?

Most people will be able to return to normal types of food a few weeks following the operation. There is a strict diet regime you would need to follow for the first 4 weeks following the operation. We will discuss this with you and give you a detailed information booklet when you have the procedure.You should notice that you feel full, or restricted, after smaller meals than you were previously used to. This is normal and the anticipated effect of weight loss surgery.

Some people notice “dumping” effects after weight loss surgery, this involves feeling flushed, dizzy, and weak after very sugary rich meals. This effect lasts for short periods following a meal and usually the body adapts and it doesn’t persist for more than a few weeks.

Some people experience intolerance to certain foods following weight loss surgery and their overall appetite changes. No-one can predict who this will occur with.

Will I need vitamin supplements after weight loss surgery?

It is extremely rare that anyone develops vitamin deficiencies after a weight loss operation. We do encourage you to take multivitamins however as you may dramatically reduce the intake of usual foods which contain the vitamins and minerals you would have previously been eating. We do notice that a large proportion of people we test before a weight loss procedure already are slightly deficient in certain vitamins. There is no harm in taking a daily vitamin supplement.

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