Post Bariatric Surgery

You Had Weight Loss Surgery, Now What?

Follow Up After Bariatric Surgery

Woman on scale

Congratulations! You’ve had your bariatric operation and you’re recovering nicely. Now it is time renew your lifestyle. As the weight comes off, you’ll need proper guidance and motivation to make it stick for the rest of your life. More specifically, you’ll be changing habits and behaviors to support your weight loss surgery over the long term. Our team will help you to achieve these goals to become a weight loss surgery success story.

Weight loss surgery isn’t a miracle cure. For your surgery to be a true success, it’s going to take some work on your part. This starts with learning about your long term outlook.

Tips for Long Term Success

Attend each and every follow-up visit with the doctors and support staff
Eat smaller portions and listen to your “fullness” signals
Choose healthier foods for better nutrition. Proper nutrition is essential after weight loss surgery
Exercise regularly doing the physical activities you enjoy most

As You Lose Weight and Improve Your Health, Adjustment of Your Medication May be Necessary

Obesity-related medical problems will likely improve with a modest degree of weight loss after your surgery. With steady weight loss, you may require lower doses of medications for diabetes and high blood pressure. Our team of experts will monitor and adjust your medications as needed.

Nutrition Following Bariatric Surgery

Our dietician will help you make the food choices
that are right for you!

Dietician with patient

After weight loss surgery, your diet will require permanent changes, both in how much food you eat and in what foods you choose.

Specific dietary guidelines will vary according to which type of bariatric surgery you had. However, there are many aspects of a healthy diet that are appropriate for all post-op bariatric patients. Look for foods that are low in calories and high in nutrition, such as fruits, vegetables and lean meats. Remember, your food portions will be smaller than what you ate pre-surgery. Since food portions are reduced, it’s even more important that your food be nutritious and provide the minerals and vitamins necessary to promote good health.

Nutritional Supplements

Vitamin bottle

Nutritional supplements will become a mainstay in your diet. Even if you eat nutritious foods most of the time, supplements are still necessary for all patients who undergo weight loss surgery.

Multivitamins

All patients who have gastric bariatric operations should take a daily multivitamin supplement daily.

Iron

All women who are actively menstruating should take daily iron supplements in addition to the daily multivitamin.

Calcium

All patients who have had gastric bypass surgery (particularly women) should take a citrate-based calcium supplement daily.

Protein

If you are having trouble eating meat, including poultry, you may need to take liquid protein supplements daily until the consumption of meat is no longer difficult. The calorie content of these protein supplements should be discussed with the dietician.

Physical Activity

Couple walking with weights

To make your weight loss journey a lifelong success, you’ll want to get into the routine of doing some sort of physical activity every day. Choose a variety of exercises you enjoy, such as walking, bicycling, light jogging, swimming, aerobics or even some console fitness games.

It’s important to choose activities that you enjoy. It will help you treat your activity habit as playtime rather than a chore.

Exercise provides many health benefits and helps to maximize your weight loss. Regular activity not only burns calories, but it helps to preserve muscle tissue during rapid weight loss.

The recommended amount of exercise for bariatric patients is 30 minutes a day. If you’re not used to daily physical activity, this might sound like a lot. But you’ll be surprised how easy it can be.

Start small, with just 10 minutes per day (or whatever you’re physically able to do). Then slowly build up, adding another minute or two to your daily activity every few days until you reach the recommended 30 minutes. You might also try to exercise at the same time each day. The steady routine will help to reinforce it as a lifelong habit (just like brushing your teeth).

Think of weight loss surgery as a tool to jump start your weight loss and give you the leverage you need to build healthy, lifelong habits. So long as you follow the tips, nutritional advice and life changes we recommend, you’ll lose a significant amount of weight, and keep it off…for life.

Follow up with your health care team and monitoring certain blood tests are essential to prevent some of the long term complications of bariatric surgery. The following studies are recommended for most individuals. Your needs may be different so we individualize your care and monitoring.

Clinical Practice Guidelines for Healthcare Professionals

Clinical Practice Guidelines for Healthy Eating for the Prevention and Treatment of Metabolic and Endocrine Diseases in Adults: Cosponsored by American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists/American College of Endocrinology and The Obesity Society © 2013
Healthy Eating Guidelines Slide Presentation
Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Perioperative Nutritional, Metabolic, and Nonsurgical Support of the Bariatric Patient - 2013 Update: Cosponsored by American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, The Obesity Society, and American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery © 2013