Surgery Helps Weight Loss, but Healthy Habits are Key to Success

In 2012, Tammy Smith weighed 340 pounds. She attended a weight loss surgery seminar and decided to have gastric sleeve bypass. Her journey to new health habits began several months prior to her surgery, leading to a nearly 200-pound weight loss. Here’s Tammy’s story in her own words:

Two years ago, I was very scared and nervous about the idea of bariatric surgery. I went to a seminar and met Bariatric Surgeon Dr. Alex Gandsas and he was amazing. After speaking with him, I decided to go through with the surgery to have the gastric sleeve bypass.

The easiest part of the journey has been the surgery itself. There was very little pain. The hardest has been adjusting to a new way of thinking about food and establishing an exercise routine. But the program is set up for success by helping you adjust to new habits before surgery.

Three months leading up to surgery, I met with the nutritionist in Dr. Gandsas office who guided me in the right direction. It was a lifestyle change that needed to take place in order to be successful. Each month, I picked two or three of the changes that needed to happen. I worked on making these changes every month until they became habits. As weeks went by the challenge was to make good choices and exercise regularly.

I have lost 191 pounds. I started at 340 pounds and size 24. Now I am in a size 4. My journey has changed me. I love the new me.

I never knew this life I now know could have existed.

This surgery is not a quick fix or a magic procedure. It is about changing your way of life, not just a diet.

Bariatric surgery is a tool in your tool box. Learning good eating habits and educating yourself about nutrition is key. For those who choose not to work out, the results will not be as great.

The true test for maintaining and continuing my weight loss came after I lost my husband. Getting through the last six months has been a huge test to old eating habits. But I have stayed the course, and I know I will continue with my new lifestyle.

I am so thankful for this program at AAMC. If you make the changes and do the hard work you will be successful!

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