After struggling with your weight for many years and trying all of the fad diets and exercise plans you can handle, you have made the brave decision to go ahead with medical weight loss surgery. This life-changing experience will alter the foods you can eat, your drink choices, and your activity habits, but will ultimately lead to a healthier, happier you.
While such a dramatic change to your lifestyle may seem a little intimidating, there are many things you can do ahead of time to prepare yourself both mentally and physically for what’s to come. Here is the ultimate checklist of things you can start doing today to prepare for your bariatric surgery.
3 to 6 months prior to surgery
Medical care, payment, and logistics prep
- Talk with your surgeon about any pre-op testing or instructions.
- Attend a weight-loss surgery seminar to get a better handle on what to expect before, during, and after the procedure.
- Make sure you understand your financing and insurance options.
- Schedule pre-surgery tests and physical consultations to ensure that you are a good candidate for surgery.
- Begin your physician-supervised diet program.
- Schedule your initial consultation with your surgeon to go over any necessary paperwork.
- Complete any other preparatory steps required by your surgeon’s office.
One of the most important things to remember about weight loss surgery is that it will not work unless you change your habits, so start living as if you’ve had the surgery at least 3 months in advance.
- Ditch the junk food and start eating for health.
- Eat lots of protein! It helps you feel fuller longer and preserves muscle during rapid weight loss.
- Eat slowly and watch your portion sizes.
- Start taking a multivitamin.
- Don’t drink anything with your meals and ditch sugared beverages and alcohol altogether.
- Drink more water.
- Limit your caffeine intake.
- Stop smoking.
- Increase your exercise routine to 20 to 30 minutes per day.
- Start attending a bariatric surgery support group.
2 weeks prior to surgery
Now that your pre-op tests are completed, your paperwork is complete, your insurance company is on board, and you have started changing your eating, drinking, and exercising habits, you are ready to start the final preparations for your weight-loss surgery.
- Set the surgery date and time, and know when to arrive at the hospital.
- Get all necessary pre-surgery blood work or tests done.
- Check in with your surgeon one more time for consents, a pre-op physical, and to go over any last-minute details.
- Plan for a leave of absence from work, probably 4-6 weeks.
- Schedule any necessary child care.
- You will need someone to stay with you for at least the first week after surgery, so make sure they have requested time off of work.
1 week prior to surgery
- Coordinate with someone to take you to and pick you up from the hospital.
- Start preparing food and vitamins for after surgery or make a shopping list for someone to buy those items for you so you have things ready once you get home.
- Set up a comfortable sleeping arrangement.
- Pack your bag for your hospital stay. Remember to bring any comfort items, entertainment, clothes, hygiene products, sleep aids, or anything else you need to make your stay as comfortable as possible.
The night before
- Do not eat or drink anything starting at midnight.
If you have any additional questions on preparing for your weight-loss surgery, the experts at Lee Bariatrics would be happy to help!
Call 1-877-421-8183 today to find out more information!