"Hunger; thoughts of food driving you to eat, no matter how much you’ve told yourself you won’t.
Nothing healthy around. Doesn’t matter, can’t wait. That’ll do, just a bite. Just a bit more.
I can’t believe I’ve eaten all that. I promised myself I wouldn’t. Too late now, might as well finish the whole lot. I hate this. I hate me."
A number of challenges need to be overcome in any successful weight loss program. Hunger is a primal drive that is difficult to resist through will power, it must be controlled for weight loss to be effective. Non-hunger eating cues emotional eating, social or habitual snacks, or pressure from others need to be avoided, or at least managed. Failures need to be managed, the physical consequences minimised and the psychological impact reduced. Finally, ongoing assessment of progress is essential, with an external yardstick to measure that progress, and importantly the ability to intervene to improve things if progress is not being made.
The LapBand® isn’t a magic bullet that makes people lose weight by itself; it is a tool that works by tackling the above issues.
Hunger is controlled by the LapBand® gentle pressure at the top of the stomach; together with food choices that minimise swings in blood sugar levels, it helps to remove the hunger problem.
Because the rate that solid food can travel past the band is limited, the LapBand helps manage out-of-control eating behaviours. In many cases, it is physically impossible or at least uncomfortable to eat too quickly. Taking the time to eat slowly encourages thinking about food choices and eating behaviours and can limit the damage from emotional eating. Social snacks can be enjoyed in small serves, rather than leading to gorging on poor food choices.
As part of the LapBand program your surgeon works with you to honestly evaluate your level of obesity, then to set goals and determine realistic outcomes. In most cases, losing 50-60% of excess body weight the weight above your ideal weight is enough to significantly improve, or even reverse, the health problems associated with obesity. Regular follow up is essential to check progress.
Regular follow up allows the LapBand® most unique feature to shine - it is adjustable. If hunger and inadequate weight loss are a problem, fluid can be added. If the band is too tight causing blockages, reflux and poor food choices fluid can be removed. This gives a level of control very different to the sense of helplessness that can accompany failures in behavioural weight loss programs.
No surgery is risk free. The information provided here is for general educational purposes only. Before proceeding, you should discuss your particular situation with the doctors at Weight Loss Victoria.