lose-weightMore and more people are opting for bariatric surgery to help them lose weight. It is particularly common in the morbidly obese, and in those who have tried and failed at various traditional weight loss methods. One of the greatest advantages of this type of surgery is that it is hugely successful, allowing people to lose weight very quickly. However, surgery is always invasive and some people may not feel the disadvantages warrant this risk. Others are so heavy that they cannot have surgery safely before they lose weight. For these people, the gastric balloon may be an option.

Weight Loss with the Gastric Balloon

The gastric balloon is offered either as a standalone procedure that is in place for six months, or as one of a two part procedure, whereby full surgery is offered after six months. Either way, the goal, and this is achievable, is for people to lose at least 70% of their excess weight through these interventions. This is not to be confused with 70% of total body weight, of course.

Just how much weight someone loses, however, depends on a variety of factors, one of which is how well someone can cope with the procedure that is offered to them. The body has to react in a positive way to the fact that the digestive system has changed. The gastric balloon is a restrictive procedure, and this can be quite difficult to deal with. Forcing yourself to eat much smaller portions is harder than you may think.

Sometimes, therefore, it can take longer for someone to lose weight than they initially hoped for. In fact, the full results are usually not visible until about two years after the surgery, and it isn’t until five years after the procedure that people are classed as having achieved all they can achieve – so long as they haven’t put weight back on. In that case, the procedure would be deemed a failure.

Why Weight Loss Can Take So Long

There is one main reason as to why results can sometimes take long to appear, and that is because it is incredibly difficult to beat the habit of a lifetime. If it were easy to break a bad habit, you would have done it a long time ago. The added difficulty is that people who are obese have multiple bad habits, all of which have to be broken. These habits include:

  1. Eating the wrong things. Processed food is readily available, cheap, and easy to cook. It is also very bad for you.
  2. Eating too much. We get used to eating certain portions, and it is all too easy for those portions to become too large.
  3. Not moving enough. This is particularly due to our lifestyles today, which means that we spend most of our time sitting down.
  4. Having an emotional relationship with food. Food is not our friend, it is our source of energy and nutrition. Do not see it as anything else.

Breaking these four habits is a necessity for any medical weight loss intervention to be successful.