My story Started way back in 2007.
I was 28 years old, I’d had my 2 children by then and my weight and size was growing by around a 1-2 kgs a year since the birth of those children.
I had always been a size 14 around 80kg and I was ok with that but by 2007 I was pushing 100kgs and size 16-18.
My mother had just been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and a heart condition, and had always been “overweight”
I was seeing my own future if I couldn’t shift the weight and I’d tried gyms, and exercise and every “diet” with no long term success.
I visited my GP and had a referral to a surgeon to have a fairly new procedure “the lap band”
In February of 2008 I had the procedure and over the next 2 to 3 years I lost around 20 kgs and was back to 75kgs and a size 14 again. I joined a couple of sports teams and kept my weight off for a few years……. But I barely could eat, most “normal” food wouldn’t pass through the band so I learned to eat soft foods all the time – mash veggies, yogurt, minced stews, soups, risotto etc- this became normal over the years and I justified that it was ok cause I wasn’t obese anymore. As time passed thou the soft foods were getting harder to eat too, I couldn’t keep much food down as it got stuck- eventually I was living on milk shakes, hospital grade sustagen meal replacements, and tea and coffee- still I kept justifying this as ok.
By 2017 I had gained all my lost weight back, I couldn’t eat, I lived on liquids and to top it off I had horrendous reflux, it would wake me at night, I had constant shoulder tip pain- I no longer could justify the lap band, I was miserable, fat, uncomfortable, unhealthy and in 2018 I found a surgeon to remove the band- as it turned out the band had caused scarring and it was growing around the band- which was the cause of the issues- the damage done meant I was no longer a candidate for gastric sleeve as first discussed with that surgeon. I needed to heal first and then explore other options.
This is when I found Dr Gounder. He recommended a mini bypass but warned me that I should only expect to get to approximately 80kgs as this would be a second weight loss surgery and results are not as good a second time round. At this point I was sitting at 106.9kgs- my highest weight and 80kgs was way better than where I was.
By this point in my life I was pre diabetic, I had suspected sleep apnea and still had the reflux from the damages of the lap-band.
In July 2018 I went under the knife again for what I hoped would be my lifesaving and last surgery.
Im now 5 years post op and I lost 48kgs!!!! My weight is “around” 60 kgs it fluctuates anywhere from 56-60 kgs I’m now a size 6-8.
I should also add that I did have excess skin from abdomen, breasts and arms removed in 2019 at 18months post operative from the bypass- this was needed as my weight had fluctuated so much and been through 2 pregnancies in the past 20 years and my skin was too big for my now small frame- it actually hung off me……..This was the final touches to my transformation and my plastic surgeon commented that I was a prime candidate as I had no more fat in my body to lose and he literally was only removing skin.
I have none of the pre bypass surgery symptoms. I can eat most things in smaller amounts. I still enjoy “junk food” occasionally and I’m small portions.
There has been many changes over the past 5 years that I’ve needed to adjust to.
I am now lactose intolerant- I can’t eat ice cream at all or have a milkshake or smoothie, I only eat 2 teaspoons of yogurt at a time and I only use lactose free milk.
I also suffer from dumping- my body gets the sweats and I need to lie down otherwise I feel like I’ll pass out- so things that are high fat or high sugar will make me feel very ill if I have too much of it.
I also get Hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar) if I don’t eat often enough.
These are actually good side effects for me (now I know how to control them and what sets them off) because it keeps me on track- I’m never going to risk the milk shake or pig out on a bag of malteesers because it makes me feel so terrible that I choose better options or just have a small taste! And I eat smaller amounts more often!
I also got diagnosed with high oxytocin in my kidneys which apparently is more prevalent with those of us who have had gastric bypass surgery- basically I had to eliminate foods from my diet that are high in oxytocin’s- once my levels returned to normal I was allowed to consume those items in small quantities and less often or find replacements – the highest food containing oxytocin is spinach- and my daily diet prior to the diagnosis was a salad made on spinach- I now eat a lettuce mix instead.
So although there has been lots of adjustments and dietary changes over the last 5 years I consider this surgery a success, I’m fitter, I move more quickly, I feel good, my body looks the best it has done in my whole life and my dietary constraints keep me in check.
I’m now mid 40’s and I want to live life……. I stand paddle board, I do physical challenges, I climb trees and ladders, I feel confident in my body.
I feel very grateful for Dr Gounder and also my plastic surgeon.
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