How Much Weight Can You Expect To Lose After Bariatric Surgery?

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Bariatric surgery has several objectives, which include reducing appetite and eliminating health risks related to excessive weight. However, most patients have one primary goal in mind: losing weight.


Average weight loss with bariatric surgery will vary from patient to patient, but most individuals who go through surgery will lose 100 pounds or more, normalizing BMI and putting weight back in a healthier bracket. However, there are many factors that go into your weight loss, including lifestyle changes, adherence to diet, and exercise habits.

How Bariatric Surgery Works


Contrary to the colloquial name, weight loss surgery does not actually remove body fat or weight. Many patients expect to wake up from surgery with hundreds of pounds shed, but that’s not how bariatric surgery works.


Most bariatric procedures — including gastric bypass, gastric sleeve, and lap band — are designed to shrink the stomach, removing portions of the digestive tract to limit food intake. In time, this process will decrease the patient’s appetite, leading to reduced calorie intake and result in weight loss.


In addition, your body will no longer be able to digest foods the same way after surgery, restricting what you can physically eat once surgery is completed. 


How Patients Lose Weight


After bariatric surgery, patients are required to keep to a drastically altered diet. Many foods that lead to weight gain, including chips and snacks, fast food, and products high in carbs, sugars, and fat, are no longer permitted to be consumed.


Instead, patients are required to eat healthier options and natural, nutrient-rich alternatives. Regular exercise is also an expectation after surgery, furthering weight loss goals in conjunction with a reduced appetite and healthier diet.

Calculating Average Weight Loss


On average, weight loss with bariatric surgery is about 60% of a patient’s excess weight. What this means for you, however, depends entirely on how much weight you have to lose.


For example, if you are a woman measuring 5’5″ in height, your target weight is likely around 140 pounds. If you weigh 300 pounds currently, your excess weight is 160 pounds. 60% of 160 is 96 pounds, which is the amount you can expect to lose through surgery.


This average takes into account a wide range of patients, including those who do not adhere to lifestyle expectations. If you exercise often, monitor your diet consistently, and follow the rules provided by your doctor, it is entirely possible that you will lose more than your expected weight loss.


Losing weight after bariatric surgery isn’t immediate, but eating right and exercising regularly can help you see the results you’re looking for. To learn more about the average weight loss with bariatric surgery and how Olde Del Mar Surgical can help you achieve your goals with compassion and support.

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