After undergoing a weight loss procedure, there are many ways in which your lifestyle habits and activities will need to change in order to ensure that you heal properly and begin a successful road to recovery. At Foothills Weight Loss Specialists in Knoxville, we are here to help you every step of the way. Learn some of what you can expect after a weight loss procedure below.
Reduced Activity in the Weeks After Surgery
As with many types of surgery, you will not be able to immediately return to the activity level you may have been accustomed to prior to surgery. Your surgeon’s recommendations for returning to work and resuming exercise or everyday activities will depend on your physical condition and status of your recovery, form of activity and type of procedure. Always be sure to abide by your surgeon’s recommendations to avoid complications.
Pain After Surgery
Some patients experience discomfort or pain in their abdomen a few days following surgery. However, this is typically temporary and is often likened to the type of soreness from a strenuous workout.
Potential Side Effects or Complications
With any surgery, you should be aware of potential side effects and complications. Our surgeons will discuss your risk factors and the complications associated with your specific surgery far in advance. Some side effects and complications may include:
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Low blood sugar
- Dumping (syndrome causing nausea, weakness, sweating, fainting, and sometimes diarrhea)
To learn about additional side effects, risks and complications, visit our post here.
Changes to Your Diet
Post-surgery guidelines are important for bariatric patients. Because your gastrointestinal tract has been surgically modified, you will need to make changes to your diet and eating habits to successfully lose weight. Dietary guidelines will vary depending on the type of procedure you’ve had, and you should always follow your surgeon’s guidelines.
After a weight loss procedure our surgeons often recommend:
- Eating smaller, more frequent meals. Avoid large meals.
- Chewing your food thoroughly. While this may seem simple, it is very important when you are cleared to eat solid foods.
- Eating protein-rich foods first, whether that means your protein shakes or meats, beans, seafood, nuts, eggs, etc., once you return to eating solid foods.
- Not drinking fluids while eating. It’s important to get enough nutrients in your system first, and fluids will make you feel full before you’ve eaten enough.
- Avoiding foods and drinks with high sugar content.
- Omitting certain foods and drinks completely. These can include carbonated drinks, high-calorie nutritional supplements, milk shakes, high-fat foods and foods with high fiber content.
- Limiting snacking between meals.
- Avoiding alcohol.
Taking Bariatric Supplements
Supplements are essential part of your post-surgery success, because they ensure that you’re getting adequate vitamins and minerals in your diet. After surgery, it can be challenging to get enough calcium, B12 and iron, which is why supplements are helpful. See what our surgeons have to say about the role of bariatric supplements here.
Initially, your surgeon will recommend activity restrictions to make sure you recover fully from your procedure. While bariatric surgery does help you lose weight, that does not mean that exercise is not needed. Not only is exercise important for your overall health, but it is a key to success in bariatric surgery patients. Be sure to ask your doctor when you are cleared for fitness activities.
At Foothills Weight Loss Specialists, we offer the number one bariatric app, Baritastic. This robust app will help you schedule and log your exercise to meet your weight loss goals. Learn more about it here, and check out a variety of other apps we recommend here.
Taking Birth Control and Avoiding Pregnancy
Because of the demands pregnancy places on the body, bariatric patients are strongly advised to avoid pregnancy the first 16 to 24 months after surgery.
If you are currently affected by obesity and would like to discuss how weight loss surgery could help improve your health, please contact the team at Foothills Weight Loss Specialists in Knoxville at (865) 984-3413 or visit our Seminar webpage to learn about our free monthly bariatric seminars.