October 12, 2023

Preparing for Gastric Sleeve Surgery

Achieving sustainable weight loss is a journey.

Remember that your unique journey is just that, yours and yours alone.

You are competing with yourself. Your goal everyday is to be healthier than the day before.

Step by step, you will get there. Meaningful weight loss after sleeve surgery does not happen right away but rather is gradual, over about a year – so pace yourself. 

Now let’s get you prepared for this journey ahead!

First, how does a gastric sleeve work?

Preparing for Gastric Sleeve Surgery

The principle behind the surgery is the removal of 60-80% of your stomach.

Bariatric surgeons remove the most distensible/stretchy part of your stomach and in doing so, also remove a large majority of cells that produce a hunger-causing hormone called Ghrelin.

You in turn, feel much more full after a meal because your stomach no longer has that “stretch” and lower levels of Ghrelin act to curb your hunger drive. 

Our bodies, however, have developed many more mechanisms for us to gain weight than lose the pounds. That means that the surgery alone can't do everything. A growing volume of studies show that combining therapies, which could include diet control, exercise, psychosocial support, medications and surgery, together, can help achieve long term weight loss success. This is our philosophy and practice at MyLife Bariatrics. By combining the latest in therapies, we want you to achieve your best weight loss and keep it off!

Preparing for surgery and the journey to follow is so much more than booking a surgical date. Preparing yourself is a mental and physical exercise, and we want you to make the most of this important investment that is your life.

Step 1: Commit to the process. Make yourself a priority.

A healthier you is around the corner. Setting yourself up for success starts with prioritizing yourself among many of life’s obligations. Make it clear to yourself and to your support structure that you are about to embark on a unique journey, and that you are going to make life choices in your best interest. Make small incremental changes in your life instead of big sudden sweeping and often costly changes. Gradual changes will have lasting effects.

Step 2: Compete with yourself.

Remember, everybody has a different experience and there is no reliable way to predict how your journey will proceed.

Compete with yourself alone. Aspire to be a better version of who you were yesterday. Set goals, and if you don’t achieve all of them, brush it off, acknowledge what you did right and what you did wrong and get started on new ones.

Step 3: Prepare physically for surgery.

Nothing complicated here. Simply walk daily. Walking will improve your cardiovascular health and help maintain your muscle mass.

Studies about pre-habilitation before surgery have shown improvements in body composition, your functional abilities and quality of life. Walk with your phone on silent for 20 minutes everyday so you serve dual purpose, a little time for reflection and some for physical activity. More strenuous physical exercise is not bad but don’t overwhelm yourself and don’t outpace yourself. There will come a time to get into more strenuous aerobic exercises.

Step 4: Visit or update your family doctor.

Keeping your family doctor in the loop about your upcoming sleeve surgery is a great way to ensure that he/she will be there for you in the future.

Of course, you can reassure them that our bariatric team at MyLife and our medical partners will provide you with comprehensive weight loss care and will send them updates regarding your progress (with your permission of course) Having all your healthcare providers on the same page, especially with a life-changing operation like a gastric sleeve will ensure your support network is always there for you.

Step 5: Prepare for your medical and surgical consultations.

In the practice of medicine, knowledge is power.

The more your physicians know, the better they are prepared to help receive the best in medical and surgical care.

The online forms you fill out prior to your visit are crucial to help us build a deeper understanding of you prior to surgery. List key points in your medical history, surgical history and salient points with regards to your lifestyle. Our forms also ask questions to gain insight into the challenges you expect after surgery whether that includes overeating, self-confidence or chronic pain. We can advise you upfront how to prepare for both expected and unexpected challenges. We are partners in your journey! Help us be there for you.

Stay tuned for our next blog post: What to expect in the early days after gastric sleeve surgery.

If you are interested in private gastric sleeve surgery, reach out to us to see if you qualify for out-of-hospital surgical care and let us guide you in the right direction. We are here to help.

Experience gastric sleeve surgery, at centers in Toronto & Hamilton.

Long lasting weight loss is within reach.
We are here to help.

Reach out with a question or comment
OR book a free, no-obligation consult with one of our surgeons.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.