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Weight Management Without Surgery

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People who lose weight and keep it off have some things in common. Before resorting to painful weight loss surgeries, you should practice the basics of sound nutrition and healthy living. Even if you have been unsuccessful, keep trying.

Who wants to undergo these painful procedures?

1. Restrictive surgeries work by physically restricting the size of the stomach and slowing down digestion. A normal stomach can hold about three pints of food. After surgery, the stomach may at first hold as little as an ounce, although later that could stretch to two or three ounces. The smaller the stomach, the less you can eat. The less you eat, the more weight you lose.

2. Malabsorptive/restrictive surgeries are more invasive surgeries that work by changing how you take in food. In addition to restricting the size of the stomach, these surgeries physically remove parts of your digestive tract, which makes it harder for your body to absorb calories. Purely malabsorptive surgeries -- also called intestinal bypasses -- are no longer done because of the side effects.

I don’t want anyone to go these types of surgeries unless there is no other option. Also, there are no guarantees that you will succeed with weight management after these surgeries. Based on the descriptions above, you can restretch your stomach to hold more food.

In my opinion, the better alternative for you is to mimic the practices of those who have been successful with weight management. It will work for you too if you don’t give up too soon.

The National Weight Control Registry (NWCR), established in 1994 by
Rena Wing, Ph.D., from Brown Medical School, and James O. Hill, Ph.D., from the University of Colorado, is the largest prospective investigation of long-term successful weight loss maintenance. They are tracking over 5,000 people (80 percent women, 20 percent men) who have succeeded with weight loss and maintenance for at least five years. And, they succeeded without the use of surgeries.

Here are some of the results:

--78 percent eat breakfast every day
--75 percent weigh themselves at least once a week
--62 percent watch less than 10 hours of TV per week

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February 18, 2011 - 1:54am
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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