Why I am not having weight loss surgery
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
A lot of people have asked me lately, since I have health insurance, why don't I just have weight loss surgery?
The answer, for me, is very simple. If I can eat right and exercise, I don't know of any good reason to go under the knife.
The most important components of weight management are eating right and getting enough activity. People who have weight loss surgery still have to learn how to do those things. Surgery is not a substitute. Almost everyone I know who has had weight loss surgery, has still had trouble with weight since their surgery.
I've been adopting a healthier lifestyle slowly over the last year, especially the last 7 months. In that time, I have learned how to make healthier food choices, how to manage my health problems, how to get more activity, and how to make a habit out of these things. It's been slow going, but those are not things that happen overnight. I'm not an expert, but I'm still learning.
A year ago, I was taking about 6 different prescriptions that totalled a couple thousand dollars pre-insurance. Now, I'm only taking one medication, my thyroid pill, which I will likely need for the rest of my life. Some of these changes are due to dietary changes, some of these changes are due to a combination of diet and exercise. And at least 2 drugs are gone because I switched from pharmaceuticals to using CPAP (breathing machine) for my sleep apnea.
I no longer have high cholesterol and I don't have to take a cholesterol drug to be able to say that. There is no surgery in the world that can do that for a person. The ONLY way I could achieve that is through diet and exercise.
I no longer have high blood pressure, and I don't have to take medications to be able to say that. One could argue that weight loss surgery could result in lower blood pressure simply from the weight loss, but diet and exercise do just as well, and have the added benefit of managing weight.
Since I have been eating healthier, people have noticed my skin and hair look different, I don't get sick as often, and I generally "feel better."
Since becoming more active, I can now take the stairs, lift heavy boxes, and walk further distances without becoming winded. My mood has improved.
The best part of all of this is that I am learning how to enjoy eating anything I want, as long as it is in moderation. I've even started to dislike foods that are really bad for me, like fried food.
So when someone asks me why I don't have weight loss surgery, I also wonder, Why don't I have something inserted into my body or changed inside my body, possible side effects and more medications, and an extremely restricted, low calorie diet? Why don't I do all that, even though I lost 11.5 pounds last month from diet and exercise alone?
I don't need it!