Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Recently, I read a great blog. The blogger had lots of good information and I enjoyed it, told her so, then vexed for a week about one sentence she had written in which she stated she didn't want to go for a bariatric quick fix-no bands or bypasses for this lady. The more I thought about it, the more it troubled me. This is why:
I've been obese for nearly half of my 60 years. There is no diet I haven't tried. Without inflation, I can safely say I've lost 1,000 pounds and many thousands of dollars. I've done Curves, walked, jogged, exercised for longer than most of you are old. Last year, I decided to bring my blubber boil to a head and lance it for once and all by having a lap band, never thinking that some of my fellow Sparkers would label me a "quick fixer" just wanting more than anything else to be fit and able to buy my clothes at Chicos.
Bariatric surgery is not a "quick fix" and anyone who thinks so is pathetically misinformed. Most insurance companies have stiff eligibility requirements, the least of which may be a 3-6 month qualification period. Candidates must prove that they have tried unsuccessfully to lose and maintain weight loss over an extensive period of time. To weed out those who would indeed like a magic bullet to lose weight, prospective banders undergo nutrition assessment and counseling as well as psychological evaluation. Why? Because surgeons have to convince insurers that they aren't whacking away on folks who have no real desire to lose weight.
So the aforegoing happens over months and years BEFORE the "quick fix" band. Now what? Lots of people lose really fast, then get stupid and gain it back-just like people who don't get bands or bypasses. Statistics reflect that very few people who lose weight, regardless of the method by which they lost it, keep it off. My own "quick fix" has been about 45 pounds over an 8 month period. I've had two fills-those are lots of fun if you like long needles. My calorie intake has never gone over 1,500 per day since the band, usually about 1,200.
Some non-bariatrics moan because of a holiday lapse or birthday blow-out. After a band, that is pretty much an impossibility unless you want to spend most of the day near the porcelain throne, barfing. It's not always easy not being able to pig out with friends-one poor soul I've known of wanted her lap band removed so she could eat "normally" again.
I guess what I'm trying to say is this. A lot of Sparkers only have a small amount of weight to lose; some of us have hundreds of pounds. We're all here for the mutual support we receive and the tools available to us on the site. Bariatric surgery is a tool, and for most us, it was a necessity, not a choice. Be careful what you say, you might have to eat it later.