Mama June: From Not to Hot premieres Feb. 24 at 10 p.m. ET on WEtv.
Mama June: From Not to Hot premieres Feb. 24 at 10 p.m. ET on WEtv.
Don't shoot the messenger, I'm sharing this for my blog's historical reference because it's AMAZING INFORMATION -- and even if you "don't agree," because it's not your experience, it's science!
“Bariatric surgery is probably the most effective intervention we have in health care,” says Laurie K. Twells, a clinical epidemiologist at Memorial University of Newfoundland. She bases this bold claim on her experience with seriously obese patients and a detailed analysis of the best studies yet done showing weight-loss surgery’s ability to reverse the often devastating effects of being extremely overweight on health and quality of life.
“I haven’t come across a patient yet who wouldn’t recommend it,” Dr. Twells said in an interview. “Most say they wish they’d done it 10 years sooner.” She explained that the overwhelming majority of patients who undergo bariatric surgery have spent many years trying — and failing — to lose weight and keep it off. And the reason is not a lack of willpower.
“These patients have lost hundreds of pounds over and over again,” Dr. Twells said. “The weight that it takes them one year to lose is typically back in two months,” often because a body with longstanding obesity defends itself against weight loss by drastically reducing its metabolic rate, an effect not seen after bariatric surgery, which permanently changes the contours of the digestive tract.
In reviewing studies that followed patients for five to 25 years after weight-loss surgery, Dr. Twells and colleagues found major long-lasting benefits to the patients’ health and quality of life. Matched with comparable patients who did not have surgery, those who did fared much better physically, emotionally and socially. They rated themselves as healthier and were less likely to report problems with mobility, pain, daily activities, social interactions and feelings of depression and anxiety, among other factors that can compromise well-being.
Equally important are the undeniable medical benefits of surgically induced weight loss. They include normalizing blood sugar, blood pressure and blood lipid levels and curing sleep apnea. Although bariatric surgery cannot cure Type 2 diabetes, it nearly always puts the disease into remission and slows or prevents the life-threatening damage it can cause to the heart and blood vessels.
Even in the small percentage of patients who ultimately lose little weight after surgery, significant metabolic benefits persist, according to findings at the Cleveland Clinic. In a study of 31 obese diabetic patients who had not lost a lot of excess weight five to nine years after surgery, a “modest” weight loss of just 5 to 10 percent resulted in a reduction of cardiovascular risk factors and blood sugar abnormalities, Dr. Stacy Brethauer and colleagues reported.
For the two most popular surgical techniques — the gastric bypass and the gastric sleeve — “the metabolic benefits are independent of weight loss,” Dr. Brethauer said in an interview. Both methods permanently reduce the size of the stomach. However, the gastric band procedure, which is reversible, lacks these benefits unless patients achieve and maintain significant weight loss, he said.
Furthermore, as a study last year of 2,500 surgical patients at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Durham, N.C., found, those who underwent bariatric surgery had lower overall death rates up to 14 years later than comparable patients who did not have weight-loss surgery.
Experts in the field regard the reluctance of some medical insurers, including Medicaid programs in many states, to cover the cost of bariatric surgery as a penny-wise, pound-foolish position. Failing to reverse extreme obesity can end up costing far more per patient than the typical $30,000 price tag of bariatric surgery — sometimes even millions of dollars more.
Counter to popular impressions that most people treated surgically regain most or all the weight they lose initially, the latest long-term research has shown otherwise. In a decade-long follow-up of 1,787 veterans who underwent gastric bypass, a mere 3.4 percent returned to within 5 percent of their initial weight 10 years later. This finding is especially meaningful because the researchers at the V.A. center in Durham were able to keep track of 82 percent of gastric bypass patients, a task too challenging for most clinics.
The study, by Matthew L. Maciejewski and colleagues published in August in JAMA Surgery, found that 10 years later, more than 70 percent of surgical patients lost more than 20 percent of their starting weight, and about 40 percent had lost more than 30 percent. Gastric bypass, an operation called Roux-en-Y, resulted in a somewhat greater weight loss at 10 years than the newer gastric sleeve surgery and significantly more than the adjustable gastric band (Lap-Band) surgery, which “has fallen out of favor in the last two or three years,” Dr. Maciejewski said.
Bariatric surgery, regardless of the method used, is also much safer nowadays than it was even a decade ago, said Dr. Jon C. Gould, a surgeon at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee who wrote a commentary on the V.A. study. However, he noted, the surgery is “vastly underutilized,” to the detriment of patients’ health and the nation’s health care costs.
“Less than 1 percent who would qualify for bariatric surgery are actually getting it,” Dr. Gould said. “Although the vast majority have health coverage, insurance companies and many Medicaid programs put it out of reach for most people by demanding that they already have several obesity-related health conditions and are taking a slew of medications to control them.”
For example, he said, to be covered for bariatric surgery, Wisconsin Medicaid requires that a person with dangerously high blood pressure has to be taking three or more medications for it and still not have a normal pressure.
He cited a further deterrent to bariatric surgery: “a perception that it’s dangerous and doesn’t work,” beliefs countered by the research findings cited above. Most of the surgeries are now done laparoscopically through tiny incisions.
Given the well-documented safety and effectiveness of bariatric surgery, it is now increasingly being performed in people whose obesity is less severe — those with a body mass index (B.M.I.) of 35 or perhaps even less — but who have a metabolic disorder like Type 2 diabetes related to their weight.
In recent years, the profession has promoted what Dr. Gould calls “centers of excellence,” where 100 or more bariatric operations are usually done in a year. Practitioners at these centers “learn from experience, share their knowledge and push for quality improvements,” he said.
Dr. Gould suggested that people interested in bariatric surgery seek out programs that have been jointly accredited by the American College of Surgeons and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, which have combined forces to promote quality control.
While experts agree that money would be better spent on prevention than treatment, Dr. Twells pointed out that “we have yet to find a way to prevent obesity, and people whose health is compromised by their weight deserve to be treated by the most effective method we have.”
Bariatric Advantage Multi Chewy Bite Strawberry Watermelon
I tore into this package IN PARTICULAR out of all the bags that came my way - and all I am going to say right now because I am sleep deprived and losing my mind is Y - E - S.
These little foil-wrapped multivitamin chews may very well solve my problems and save the world. (Am I allowed to say that? I DON'T CARE. I AM TIRED.)
Bariatric Advantage? Please create caffeine vitamins so that future reviews make sense.
These little fruity-chew-Starburst-esque bites have nearly all the multivitamins a bariatric patient needs, in two chews. They ARE Starburst-esque. You unwrap a little square of fruit "candy" out of shiny foil wrapper, and it's reminiscent of candy, just slightly. The taste is at first, berry, then watermelon. There is a slight touch of vitamin, but not much as it's masked greatly by the fruit flavorings. The taste profiles have improved a lot in the last few years.
Check it out:
Multi Chewy Bites have been formulated to deliver a spectrum of essential nutrients to help address nutrient deficiencies common with pre- and post-surgery bariatric patients.* Available in two great flavors: Dark Cherry and Strawberry Watermelon. Individually wrapped in 60-count bags.
I am impressed.
If you have been following me since Ye Olden Days Of WLS (I had roux en y gastric bypass in 2004, and I've blogged and been on social media since 2005), you will know this is my second go 'round with this product. (Or here is to hoping it is the same product I adored back in days of old.)
Proti Wafers. I think I called them "Sugar Wafers, Only Better" in my very first review which I can no longer find.
Sent to me from netrition, I have a box of Proti Wafers in my choice - vanilla.
Netrition's site reads:
Proti Nutrition Proti Wafer Squares are great tasting, high protein squares that will satisfy your hunger. Proti Squares offer a rich taste at 200-210 calories a serving.
The stats -
Ingredients: Protein blend (milk protein isolate, hydrolyzed gelatin, whey protein isolate, pea protein isolate), wheat flour, fractionated palm and palm kernel oil, sugar, fructose, milk ingredients (skim milk powder, while milk powder, butter fat), cocoa butter, unsweetened chocolate, soy lecithin, soy flour, sunflower oil, water, natural and artificial flavors, salt, sodium bicarbonate, sucralose (non-nutritive sweetener), corn flour.
In each box, you receive five packs of two wafer-bars. Each packet contains two wafers.
The best way to describe these bars: old-fashioned sugar wafers. I can't think of anything else when biting into them. Except these have a chocolate base, and a chocolate drizzle, dressed much fancier than the stacks of sugar-cookies I ate as a kid.
The biggest difference? These pack 15 grams of protein per 200 calorie serving. That's pretty super for a snack food. Early in my weight loss surgery life, I will admit to being psychotically wary of the carbohydrate, fat and sugar content of this product, but now, I find it is a great balance.
I've been food journaling.
Here is the damage.
That's about 1500 - 1700 calories a day, with nearly everything in my apathy diet included.
I am remaining in the 170 - 173 pound spot. Obviously, this calorie range keeps me squarely in this weight range. (I have been here for a year and a half?)
I go from 170 to 175. I get excited to see 1-6-9, and then, poof, right back into 170's. I have always shared (in my BBGC support group) that I believe in 10 - 12 calories per pound maintains my size.
Which also means, if I am EVER going to shake off this excess, I must drop back the calories OR ramp up my daily activity by at least 500 - 700 calories per day.
HUGE APATHETIC SIGH FILLED WITH TOAST. "BUT I DON'T WANNNNNNAAAAAA EAT LESS." I have become way too comfortable with over-eating. I can eat me some 1700 calories with ease. I can polish off a bowl of Anycarbs! like nobodies business. Hand me Anycarbs! (...except cereal and milk, gag) and I'll overeat it for you!
What made me realize this? One of my daughters decided to start looking at portions. She pulled out the measuring cups. And DOG KNOWS I AM A PROFESSIONAL MEASURER OF ALL THINGS NUTRITIVE and I can tell you how many calories are in all the things -- but -- do I bother measuring my own foods?
Nah. scoop scoop scoop
When I looked at her wee bowl of pasta and realized (for the millionth time) that 1/2 cup of pasta is only > this < much? And I have been serving myself with > this < much stomach + THIS MUCH + just because it's there? Thud.
Last night while watching My 600 LB Life -- I noted that Dr. Now puts all the patients on a 1200 calorie diet. It works. What I am doing, is not working. It's maintaining my obesity. What does this mean for me? I am going to make a conscious effort to aim for 1200 calories. I know that my aiming for that I may or may not - but it's not a huge deal. If I can hit it some days, I'll make progress. My goal is 150 pounds, so a loss of 20 pounds. To do that, I'll need to CUT THE CARBS back. I may need to cut out a meal or snack or three. Add shakes in? Maybe. I haven't "dieted" in so very long it's hard to even consider? I see lots of my online friends having great success with super low carb plans, some even KETO, but, I need something that is very flexible - even - ready to go - with no planning. I'm just ... chaotic. But I'll follow anything and be likely to succeed if I can get with it, you know?
Are you following any plans right now? Do you have excess weight to lose?
I know I promised to write a bariatric approved product review.
But first, this that showed up in my suggested Google links.
Girl, what are you thinking? Why are we flopping our fupa all over the Instagram and sharing/errr selling it to The Sun UK? We know that shit is real. (Did she really make a single account for, um, skin?)
For a moment I am tempted to pull out the skin I AM IN -- you know -- IN POST WEIGHT LOSS SOLIDARITY, after losing 170 pounds and having two babies and start a fupa social media campaign.
But, uh, no. It's very, very real. We are quite aware. You don't have to flop it on Insta to prove it to any-one.
Loose skin needs a song by Beyonce. Write it?
I signed on with a company to do a monthly product review of bariatric-approved products. My first product arrived this weekend, and in the spirit of full disclosure before I even start the review I have to tell you (...before I laugh, cry, or other?) that I hand-picked the first product because I know I like it. It's something I used to promote back in The Day of Blogging. (I do not know when the day ended, but it's no longer that day.)
The reason I am oversharing with you -- is because -- when I sniffed around the blog to find the first post about said product and it was written or even re-written MORE THAN EIGHT YEARS AGO. Guys. This means I could have written about this item nine or ten years ago and I am about to throw it back in your faces because I am:
What's worse? I deleted the initial URL for whatever reason, so the copy and paste of my words is showing up online in scraped feeds on other sites. Or on sites I used to frequent.
I just wanted to know how much this stuff cost back in ye olden days. (Yes, this is how I think. Post tomorrow.)
One of the first "rules" (....bahahahaha, rules?) of gastric bypass I learned early on - was not to add concentrated sources of extra calories where they were totally unnecessary. A food that qualifies the unnecessary category for me is - peanut butter and nuts.
I don't like peanut butter, so I was not bothered by not enjoying a peanut butter and jelly sandwich after weight loss surgery.
However, one of the other things you learn later on is YOU NEED EXTRA FAT SOMETIMES. To, uh, make your body work, and to make your skin not fall off. (This is just personal experience. Your mileage may vary. Your body should vary, yadda yadda yadda.) Many of us find that we under-eat fat.
A few weeks ago, I saw in the peanut butter aisle while picking up the nasty creamy gallon jug of peanut butter for my kids, this:
To be fair, I was drawn to it because it read CREAMY and COCONUT. Perhaps I thought it was going to taste of sweet coconut? (I AM A SWEET COCONUT FAN, and I think I might have picked this up thinking it'd be a decadent macaroon-y flavor. Sweet macaroons are asking for sweet death.) Instead, I bought the almond spread -- I made toast. I opened the glass jar, and mixed, it's got a slight oil on top, but nothing like natural peanut butter and it's more creamy like coconut butter - and I smeared it onto my bread. It's a very subtle taste, a teeny bit nutty, lesser sweet, and creamy. Not at all thick like emulsified peanut or other creamy butters.
Warning Text: Contains: almonds, coconuts. May contain traces of peanuts, soy and tree nuts.
I loved it. I ate the whole jar over breakfasts in the next couple of weeks, every single morning. I must have really really liked it. When I returned to the store yesterday, however, I noted that it costs double what the peanut butter cost, at least, and I couldn't justify buying it this week. Maybe next time. (You know, I had to get my bread, which costs way too much. :x ..... )
People like to make fun of first-time parents. They run to the emergency room with their babies littlest concerns. Sometimes that is true. 20 years ago we probably took a baby to the ER for a head bump once or twice for no real cause, and now? Well, look at this poor nose.
Dad came home and realized he needed something outside in the car -- the mailbox -- somewhere. He opened the baby gate, failed to click it shut, and went out the side door, and did not shut that. Someone who now walks Very Fast, followed him while I was five feet away and I did not notice. The baby was in the presence of THREE ADULTS and none of us noticed that he took off after Daddy. He was gone maybe ten seconds, went through the baby gate, down a step and onto the walkway bricks. Boom on the hands and nose.
Someone who now walks Very Fast, followed him while I was five feet away in the kitchen and I did not notice. The baby was in the presence of THREE ADULTS and none of us noticed that he took off after Daddy. He was gone maybe ten seconds, went through the baby gate, down a step and onto the walkway bricks. Boom on the hands and nose. He was fine, a red clown nose, and now a scabby scrape. BUT IT COULD HAVE BEEN AWFUL.
Toddlers are dangerous people, guys. I spend so. much. time. per. day. keeping this child from killing himself un-intentionally.
I changed up my toast ritual.
A friend just pointed out weight loss surgery themed subscription box service, you know -- where you sign up to have a selection of samples (I am guessing these are sample sizes based on the photos given on the website that is at the moment very limited...) sent to you each month. For your payment -- a flat-fee of $34.95 -- you are sent 8 - 12 sample-size products for the bariatric patient.
I can see the niche of people who'd want this. Hi.
I was curious enough to throw my email on their mailing list, but I wonder are free samples worth $4 each? Maybe, I suppose if they have been sourced for you and shipped to you? How long of a commitment is this kind of service? I'm not the kind of person that throws out $34.95 for a box of I Don't Know What's Coming in exchange for grocery money -- however -- I could be swayed.
Don't think I am picking on this service just because it's "bariatric" I have no clue who's pimping it -- I say the same thing about the underpanties boxes -- the snack boxes -- all boxes -- I see them as profit machines for the person behind the curtain. :) I would simply like to know WHY it is worth the cost since some of it is free to the consumer already. Show me.
Apparently this concern with gastric bypass patients hasn't been "well-studied."
Hey researchers - PLEASE SEEK OUT PATIENTS WHOM COMPLAIN OF EXACTLY THESE ISSUES FROM DAY ONE.
Because, uh, *putting on my Dr. Google Hat* they're totally normal and expected, or so we thought? Or am I living under a rock where it's that we're not supposed to live with digestive distress most of the time?I suppose this is my bias because I live as a distressed patient, with a distressed patient, and know mostly only distressed patients? And WHAT IS GOING ON WITH THE FOODS LISTED IN THIS STUDY!?
I am using a lot of question marks lately. I need to stop that.
Study blurb via Reuters -
Researchers examined data on 249 extremely obese patients who had what’s known as laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, which reduces the stomach to a small pouch about the size of an egg.
Two years after surgery, these patients had lost about 31 percent of their total body weight on average. But compared to the control group of 295 obese people who didn’t have operations, the gastric bypass patients were far more likely to experience indigestion and an inability to tolerate multiple foods.
“It was already known from previous studies that the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass might aggravate gastrointestinal symptoms after surgery,” said lead study author Dr. Thomas Boerlage of MC Slotervaart in Amsterdam.
Alright guys, who is going to send me this? Can you feed a family of seven in an InstantPot? Tell me more. I need to know all about this thing. These things. All the things. Amazon linkage below will send you to the product page. Comments are entertaining as always.
Worth a read, and worth a watch. This mimics a bit of my experience, my family's experiences, and brings up some (deeper) questions. As someone who's had gastric bypass in 2004, I'm always intrigued at any new science that's discovered about the gut - brain connections.
"Nearly 200,000 Americans have bariatric surgery each year. Yet far more — an estimated 24 million — are heavy enough to qualify for the operation, and many of them are struggling with whether to have such a radical treatment, the only one that leads to profound and lasting weight loss for virtually everyone who has it. Most people believe that the operation simply forces people to eat less by making their stomachs smaller, but scientists have discovered that it actually causes profound changes in patients’ physiology, altering the activity of thousands of genes in the human body as well as the complex hormonal signaling from the gut to the brain."
Article - New York Times
A shocking report.
"Obesity and excess weight is an expanding health problem for more than 60 percent of Americans, and a new study by Hugh Waters and Ross DeVol finds that it's a tremendous drain on the U.S. economy as well. The total cost to treat health conditions related to obesity—ranging from diabetes to Alzheimer's—plus obesity's drag on attendance and productivity at work exceeds $1.4 trillion annually. That's more than twice what the U.S. spends on national defense. The total, from 2014 data, was equivalent to 8.2 percent of U.S. GDP, and it exceeds the economies of all but three U.S. states and all but 10 countries. The report also highlights how this public health challenge can best be addressed."
Is obesity something that we should be tackling? My gut (no pun intended) says OMG OF COURSE YES, because we are looking at some very preventable disesases. Those are some cah-razy numbers. However, does the pharmaceutical industry care? I mean: obesity is Big. Money.
Read the report:
We moved house on Halloween, and in the process, my scale lost it's batteries.
I have avoided quite successfully, replacing the batteries to the scale. The scale, with it's cracked plastic face, still weighs and measures quite accurately and is that what I am afraid of? It hasn't been very long since I checked in with that scale. And my eating hasn't changed much at all, as it never does. I eat what doesn't kill me, and occasional OH MY GOD I MIGHT DIE BECAUSE I ATE THAT YOU SHOULD HAVE WARNED ME foods. I have been one of the most boring-est eaters since weight loss surgery you might ever know.
What I do know is that I am in need of clothes, it's nearly winter and I was wearing maternity clothes in a bigger size last year, and I have nothing right now that fits me appropriately and I really did not want to start this season in my kids' hand me downs. I am in that NO YOU CAN'T GAIN ANYMORE range, I know it. I don't need a scale to tell me that I can hold up a pair of size 14 jeans on my regain butt.
Then again, I'm also okay at this size, because it's also where I land every time I just simply eat what I feel like having without drama. Does that make any sense to you? I feel like if I just added exercise to my current-state-of-toast-and-protein, I would trickle back to my tighter self. Honestly, it's the lack of Doing, not the Poor Eating. I am a decent, not super, decent, better than many, eater. A few days a week of moving my ass would really do the trick.
Could someone just sell that as an edible product -- motivation? Because I don't have it. Aside from running a 13 month old up and down stairs, it's just not happening. All the advice in the world, I'll find excuses.
off to find some batteries and weigh-in
I know I haven't blogged in regular blogs, but we've spent the last two weeks moving -- and move day (s) turned into Hell Week.
This is mostly why.
Thank you CASEY MOVERS of Rockland, MA. (Waits for ads to change)
After a failed "full pack," Casey's "professional packers" left us with truck loads of stuff to pack before our buyers came to the house for their final real estate walk through. We were thoroughly embarrassed as we packed the last of our household into our own cars in the pouring rain, while the 18-wheeler LEFT US without taking everything.
On move in day, the movers showed up hours and hours LATE. After arriving, the mover team leader informed us that they "did not feel like" unloading the truck" and were going to go home for the night. WE WAITED ALL DAY LONG IN AN EMPTY HOUSE AND GOT BABYSITTERS TO UNLOAD THIS TRUCK. They did not "feel like" emptying the truck and wanted to sleep. The smell of vanilla cigars OVERWHELMED ME and I was disgusted at the men sleeping in my street in the van.
We asked that if they were going to LEAVE, please unhook the trailer in front of the property. They attempted to turn around the 53 foot truck in our brand-new cul-de-sac and GOT IT STUCK. Then, after un-sticking it, they TIPPED IT OVER!
Finally. Something I can post.
"Currently, Samantha's work focuses on conceptual portraiture, allowing her to explore human emotion from the inside out. She is working on an on-going self-portrait series focused on body image and healing that challenges viewers to question what is means to accept oneself. "
If you have yet to do so, I would not be alarmed. Question the photos. Dig into them. Feel it. This is is what we know.
This is my husband's favorite protein powder. He literally just dumps it into almond milk and stirs it until just emulsified and sips it while still a bit lumpy. And he loves it.
Tell me why I should like it.
I have been anti-Quest for so. very. long - I know I have to try it for review because it is in my kitchen calling me.
Do you like this product? Do you use it? Do you hate it? What other flavor of Quest powder do you enjoy? What do you mix into it?