Setting Nutrition Goals for Bariatric Patients

Bariatric surgery is an effective weight loss option for obese individuals [1] and health-care professionals are critical in helping them set nutritional goals for successful weight loss and healthy lifestyle habits. The individual cost of being obese is $4,879 and $2,646 for women and men, respectively, according to the George Washington University School of Public Health Services Department of Health Policy [2]. The analysis demonstrates that costs are nine times higher for women and six times higher for men in work-related costs like lost wages, absenteeism, and disability. No research has offered insight into consumer costs such as clothing, air travel, automobile size, and furniture expenditures.

Lifestyle modifications are needed by every obese patient with nutrition as a cornerstone for management. No single diet has proven to be superior in terms of weight loss, and bariatric surgery modifications need to be personalized to the individual for efficacy in weight reduction [3]. As Parker et al. state, individuals with presurgery eating pathology are more likely to retain disordered eating behaviors after surgery and experience poorer weight loss and more physical health complications [4].

The challenge is to diagnose and change eating habits prior to surgery. Candidates for bariatric surgery need to understand that weight reduction in the United States is a $30 billion business consisting of dietary supplements, diet foods, new exercise regimens, and cleanses. Since these are not individualized the solutions may produce some weight loss but it is quickly regained because attitudes and choices are not changed [5].

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