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Is Gastric Bypass Surgery Right For Me?

Significant and lasting weight-loss can be a difficult thing to attain, and for some people it can be next to impossible to accomplish on their own. If you have attempted to lose weight and feel that you have extinguished all options, one procedure you may have considered is gastric bypass surgery. But how do you know if it is right for you? Can you afford it financially? Can your body and mind handle the drastic changes required by the procedure?

Gastric bypass is not for everyone. It carries with it potential health risks and requires you to make drastic dietary and lifestyle changes for the rest of your life. Because of this, you will be required to go through an in-depth evaluation process to see if the surgery is right for you. Some of the criteria reviewed prior to gastric bypass surgery are the inability to lose weight with diet and exercise, a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher, and serious health issues such as diabetes, sleep apnea, and/or high blood pressure.

Financially, gastric bypass is one of the more costly surgeries carried out. Most insurance companies will typically only cover part of the cost of the surgery, or not at all. Before you begin the proceedings for gastric bypass surgery, check with your medical insurer to see if they will cover the procedure or what type of pre-approval they require. Aside from the cost of the actual procedure, you will also need to adjust your budget to include a significant change in your diet.

Although a bariatric diet is typically broken into four segments depending on what stage of the healing process you are in, you can expect to be limited to mostly soft foods and liquids for a few months following surgery. You will also be required to take bariatric vitamins for life in order to meet your body’s nutritional needs. Chewable calcium citrate tablets, as well as bariatric protein bars, are a good way to get the nutrients you need quickly and efficiently.

Another aspect to keep in mind is certain psychological and physical conditions which can inhibit weight loss and prevent you from being considered for the surgery altogether. This procedure can increase or worsen certain health issues, including heart problems, kidney stones, blood clots, and liver disease. If you, or even your family, have had a history of these health problems, you may be put through a thorough physical examination to determine if you can still follow through with surgery. Although there is no age limitation, gastric bypass surgery is recommended for people between 18 and 65.

Some mental health conditions can cause people to be more prone to weight gain, or even make it difficult or impossible to adhere to the lifestyle change required by gastric bypass surgery. These conditions may include, but are not limited to, binge-eating disorders, alcohol or drug abuse, depression, as well as disorders related to anxiety caused by sexual abuse. That is not to say that these conditions will prevent you from having gastric bypass surgery, but you will want to make sure that you have received proper treatment and management before the procedure.

Before you decide whether this is the right option for you, you must know that gastric bypass surgery is not a miracle cure for weight-loss. It takes commitment and hard work to maintain the lifestyle change that the procedure requires. If you cannot adhere to the strict lifestyle, including taking bariatric supplements daily, you can run into health risks. This should never be the first option over diet and exercise. If you do determine that gastric bypass surgery is the right option for you, talk to your doctor thoroughly to see how you can proceed with making these changes in your life.

Julia is a freelance writer representing a bariatric vitamin supplement retailer.

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