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5 Common lies people tell themselves when considering weight loss surgery

5 Common lies people tell themselves when considering weight loss surgery

With New Year’s resolutions the name of the game at the moment, weight loss is most likely on the minds of many. In fact, a YouGov poll taken in December 2014 showed that weight loss was by far the most common resolution, at 35% of all respondents; 2015 was no different, with a Marist poll showing weight loss remaining on top.

One of the ways that people may consider losing weight is by undertaking surgery, but there are numerous risks involved. When dealing with something as complicated and sensitive as weight loss, sometimes people may feel like they have no hope other than surgery, even going so far as to convince themselves that it is the best option, even when it’s not. Let’s take a look at 5 of the most common lies people tell themselves when moving towards a decision to have weight loss surgery to meet their goals.

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“I’ve tried everything”

Losing weight is not just a physical challenge, but a mental one as well; being in the wrong mindset and taking shortcuts will not help you in the long term. Remember that weight loss is not easy: it takes time, effort, and sometimes major lifestyle changes. Consider whether you have really put in the hard work before you move straight to weight-loss surgery.

“I have bad genes”

Recent research has shown that genetic predisposition to obesity does exist, but that exercise can nearly completely counteract any genetic effects. This means that even if you do have a genetic predisposition to obesity, with exercise and a healthy diet you should still be able to lose the weight. The study’s lead author noted that “we’re not complete slaves to our genetic makeup and really can make a big difference to our future health by changing our behaviour,” so don’t rely on your genes as an excuse.

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“It’s a low-risk surgery”

Even though studies have backed up the relative low risk nature of bariatric surgery, consider whether putting yourself at risk is the right thing to do in your circumstances. One factor to think about is that even though the surgery itself may be low risk, any time that you have surgery performed, you risk becoming a victim of medical negligence or accident. A firm of medical solicitors carried out research on more than 1000 negligence cases, which revealed that surgical negligence was the most common type of medical negligence they dealt with, at 30% of all cases.

The most common consequences of surgical negligence in a failed bariatric surgery were:

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“I fully understand the risks and did the research”

The main issue here is that most of the risks involved in weight loss surgery are unpredictable accidents – so no matter how much research you’ve done, you can still be vulnerable.

It’s also important to ensure that you’ve considered long-term risks, and numerous flow-on effects are still being found to affect patients even years after surgery. For example, a recent study from Taiwan found that bariatric surgery could cause nutrient loss from bones, and lead to an increased risk of bone fractures down the line. Another recent study found that weight-loss surgery could cause “stress and anxiety, and changes in hormones,” both of which led to an increased risk of self-harm for bariatric surgery patients. These types of risks are hard to predict and may not be listed as “risks” in many pamphlets or websites about the surgery.

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“I need it”

Most doctors recommend surgery only to patients who:

  • Have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or more. This would be about 100 pounds overweight for men or 80 pounds for women;
  • Have a lower BMI (but are still obese) and have a serious health problem related to obesity, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, severe sleep apnea, or high cholesterol;
  • Have tried unsuccessfully to lose weight by other means; and
  • Fully understand the risks.

If you still want to move forward with the procedure, make sure you visit another doctor and look for a second opinion before and after the surgery.

Whatever you decide to do, ensure that you have all the information before you proceed, and consider whether you really have exhausted all of your other options. It can be too easy to view weight loss surgery as more minor than it truly is, especially with rates of bariatric surgery increasing rapidly. Just because it may look like “everyone else is doing it,” it doesn’t mean it’s right for you.

Featured photo credit: Daniel Oines via flickr.com

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considering weight loss surgery 5 Common lies people tell themselves when considering weight loss surgery

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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