T Nation

Gastric Bypass Question


#1

As the Gastric Bypass is becoming more and common, I am seeing (and knowing) more people who have had the procedure.

Even though I think that the weight (or BMI) that qualifies one for the procedure has dropped too low, I have seen it be a Lifesaver for some.

Anyway; a question that I've been curious about:

It seems that everyone I've known who has had the procedure loses as LOT of weight; then it seems to stop, often at a "still obese" level. In other words, a 5'6", 400 pound woman may lose down to 250 (which is GREAT!)...but she is still 250!

(I seem to see the same phenomeon on a lot of "weight loss" shows/specials also).

Is this deliberate...or is there some sort of a "limit" to the weight that can actually be lost by the procedure? (Since it turns the stomach into a pouch, it's hard for me to see how).

Any thoughts or ideas?

Mufasa


#2

My guess is that the people who get it are eating less but are still eating a lot of foods that they shouldnt. I have heard that your stomach also stretches a bit and people can go from eating nothing bigger than an egg to eventually being able to eat a cheeseburger or two.

I have also heard that some people who have the procedure actually start gaining weight after a while because of how they eat. Some people will crush up potato chips so they can stuff their small stomach with them or drink milkshakes all day.

I have a reletive who had the procedure and hit a plateu (after losing about 150 lbs) but busted through. He has kept the weight off for almost 2 years thanks to a strict diet with plenty of supps. He also works out at the gym every day and competes in triathalons every chance he gets. He is a legit T-Man.


#3

Not exactly a lifesaver.

http://www.daytondailynews.com/health/content/life/daily/0117lamb1.html


#4

Being the geek that I am I've watched documentaries on this. I remember one guy who had the procedure was absolutely miserable the first two weeks or so just from the affects of the procedure and pain meds - very common after surgery and especially abdominal surgery.

The reaction of his smaller stomach to food was that he felt like puking after eating very little. But, like anything, the body recoverys, adapts to things, and the pouch can expand. This might be the reason for the plateau. After the initial "shock" your body goes through, it begins to adapt.

Add to this the fact that many of these folks still don't exercise, or just do the "taking a brisk walk" thing. We all know that an extreme calorie deficit + low intensity cardio = muscle loss. So their metabolisms slow down simply because of muscle loss.

This is not a good solution, IMO, unless someone is truly on death's door.


#5

It sounds like a good procedure but
only if you do some one on one time and figure out for yourself that you dont have the self control to work out and eat normally. A surgical procedure that you have to live around just isnt going to be as healthy as working out and eating right mufasa but living around surgury is a lot healthier than obesity so take ya pick b-boy

i definitely agree though that its hard for some people. Some people just like to eat waaaayyyy too much.


#6

If you eat really bad food, even in small portions, you will maximize the amount of damage and distress you cause to your body. So, if you have a gastric bypass, and then live on coke and trans-fat-fried chips, you can still make yourself obese.

Conversely, if you eat a really good diet - even if the calories are high; and if you do a modest amount of lifting heavy and something that gets you moving fast (call it cardio if you like) then you are going to get in better shape.

A really obese person could, with time, become a massivly muscled person. They could eat as much quality protein/carbs/fat as they wanted, and as long as they performed strenuous heavy lifting, it would convert that life-destroying fat into life-saving / disease-fighting muscle. They could make the rest of us look like skinny bastards, but with a muscle-mass we'd envy (as opposed to a fat percentage we all pity).

For one's health, wellness and longevity, a gastric bypass is the last thing that should be considered; and only after an attempt has been made to correct a dysfunctional diet / exercise plan.

If you, or someone you know, is considering the procedure, I humbly suggest you ask them to read any one strength-training and nutrition article here, and then reconsider the surgical, irreversible, totally-unnatural option. (I'm not saying a gastric bypass should never be done, but I am saying it's the LAST THING that should be tried).

Kind regards,

WiZ


#7

The gastric bypass procedure should only be used to help someone loose a signifigant amount of weight therefor allowing them the mobility to exercise and then lose the weight in a more natural manner.

I work with a girl who had the lap band surgery done, this is where they place a band around the enterance to the stomach, and they can fill the band with saline to slow the amount of food that enters the stomach compartment. I have to say she is hot. But I'd never known she had the surgery done with out her telling me about it. She showed me a picture of her driver's liscense before the procedure and to look at her now you'd never know. She's smokin hot.

Bullpup


#8

Wiz, that's not how it works...Eat the cleanest and best food at a large enough caloric surplus and train hard, and much of that weight sure as hell won't be muscle. Some will but much will be fat


#9

Agreed. Fat doesn't turn into muscle. Muscle doesn't turn into fat. Calories don't somehow avoid turning into extra body fat just because they are "good calories" if you still eat more than your body uses.


#10

From my understanding the "pouch" expandes, and most of these grossly obesse people learn to eat constantly and like the prof said calories are calories good or bad.


#11

I've known two people that have had the surgery. The woman I know that had it done in the mid eighties. She took constant bathroom breaks to throw up if she ate too much it basically turned her into a natural bulimic.

The dude I knew was down to 450 from 550 (the Dr. made him diet and exercise pre surgery) I advised him not to get the surgery as he was already doing better. He had the surgery and for 3 months lost no weight then suddenly started melting like butter on a candle. He got done to 250 but has since gained 200 back. When he was not losing weight he was quite depressed maybe borderline suicidal he told me he wish he never had the surgery. He said while he lacked discipline it was better to try on your own than unnaturally make your body do things.


#12

Here's my own politically-incorrect take on gastric-Bypass:

No one seems to want to say this, but gastric bypass surgery is NEVER absolutely necessary. The whole point of the procedure is to reduce the size of your stomach so you won't eat as much. This in turn means (obviously) that this surgery is only effective for people who eat too much...not (for example) for people who have hormonal problems). So I conclude that GB surgery can be avoided if these people will simply EAT LESS.

And that's the end of my touchy-feelie discourse on the subject...


#13

I know fat doesn't turn into muscle, but even an obese person would lose a lot of fat if they "eat heavy and workout heavy". They'll not get to 15% bf, but they can easily get to 20%. But you're right: the best thing is to eat sensibly.

Also, folks like Berardi suggest "leaning out" before you bulk - but can you imagine an obese person being told that. yeah right" they'd say, and pop another doughnut in..


#14

What are you talking about? An obese person will not be 'bulking'. In a perfect world, this very under-exercised person will eat a proper diet, start training and lose a lot of fat-hopefully gaining a little muscle in the process.


#15

Yes. "bulk" is wrong word. Sorry for miselading. I think I typed more quickly than I was thinking. Sorry. :-}

This all started with a question on gastric bypass and whether you can still be (or presumably become) obese after one. I certainly believe you can. I was trying to make an argument that the alternative to bypass is very real and achieveable for everyone. I am going to try that again, as it's just too important for anyone overweight reading this thread. Hopefully, I'll make my point correctly this time. Please bear with me...

My belief and experience in a non-professional manner is that even an obese person loses a helluva lot of fat, and gains muscle when they eat healthy food EVEN IF they eat a lot of health food.

Many obese people that have tried to lose weight go on starvation type diets, most of which can't last 24 hours. They usually don't change their food, they merely try to eat less. 2 cans of coke and a small pizza instead of 6 cans and a large pizza; they don't understand why this can never work (this used to be me, but I was only "overweight", not "obese").

So they often feel that a bypass is the only way it can ever work. Frankly, if eating coke and doughnuts is an objetive, they are quite possibly right: I don't think even a bypass can offset humungous amounts of crap food. What many overweight people don't realise is that they don't have to "diet" (= starve yourself) to lose weight.

I think we fully agree that an obese person would lose weight (mostly fat) by switching from a dreadful junk to a healthy-eating diet and exercising. My belief is that they would achieve that goal to a similar extent even if they consumed a simlar number of calories as when they ate junk food.

In reality, trying to eat, say, 7,000 calories or more of healthy food in a day is a challenge that many can't achieve' yet we could all eat that in crap (have a bloomin onion "appetizer" at Texas Roadhouse). Psychologically, if an obese person believes they don't have to starve themselves to lose weight, then any diet becomes at least possible for them; and gastric bypass can hopefully be avoided.

That's the point I was trying to make. I'm sorry for using the wrong words and causing confusion.

This next part is for anyone who is quite overweight or obese who's looking for an achievable way-out that does not involve a bypass:

Firstly, I promise you there's a really better alternative to bypass surgery. But I know what you're thinking: I have to starve myself again. Not true; honest. Try this:-

Spend 3 weeks retraining your food-likes (eat lean meats, veggies and all the stuff shown in nutrition articles herein; drink water, tea or any other sugar-free beverages). During this period, don't even think about "starving" yourself as you may have done before on your pizza and coke diet. Focus on retraining your food-likes. Eat when you wake up and not more than three hours later. Never let yourself get hungry. Do not count calories. Doing this alone will yield positive results in terms of weight-loss (sleep quality and other things also improve too, for most).

Once you've formed a new habit for healthier food (and seeing results), you'll be ready to take on the next steps, which include exercising. You can achieve phenomenal results doing this and you will never have to starve yourself again. I swear it's achievable. Try it for three weeks and then tell me that bypass surgery is still your only hope.

Thanks and apologies for any misnuderstandings from my earlier postings. I now cross my fingers and hope I haven't done it again. :slight_smile:

Feel free to "PM" me if you want to discuss this more. I'm a former fat-bastard who used to starve himself and do all kinds of stupid dietary things before I found out the right way to live. The funny thing is, the solutions is not only doable, it's also FREE, courtesy of T-Nation.com.

WiZlon