Bariatric surgery is controversial with many people believing that it’s the easy route ‘out’ for people in very large bodies. But what exactly do they know about the people who opt for the surgery? Nothing. It’s so easy to judge a person on their appearance, believing we know how healthy or fit a person is based on their body size or shape, but what if the information we’ve taken in over the years is outdated and shrouded in prejudice due to lack of understanding of weight regulation. Would that make you reassess your beliefs?
People who opt for surgery feel stigmatised by society for years which plays havoc with their mental health and only exacerbates the situation they find themselves in. Despite what people think, those in larger bodies don’t eat their way to a larger body, in fact the opposite is more likely to be true. Weight-cycling for years (yo-yo dieting) will actually increase the body's set point weight (a weight where your body naturally wants to settle). The larger a person becomes, the more difficulty the brain has registering leptin (a hormone made by fat cells which gauges fullness and tells us to stop eating) which makes it harder to feel satiated. Metabolism and hormone production are also affected by weight increase which means people often feel out of control; this is very real because their body has spent years preparing them for the next ‘famine’ which is a natural physiological reaction to restrictive diets. It's basically a losing battle.
So, when we take into account the impact that the above has on a human being with complex emotions and feelings, is it right to perform life-altering surgery on them and then leave them to it? They now have their smaller body, but many mental health issues remain because they’ve not been addressed. They’re put to the side, being seen as a separate issue; but it’s not separate. The mind and body are connected. We need to raise awareness of the need for long-term post-op care for people.Just because they’ve chosen to have the surgery, doesn’t mean they choose the negative impact it can have on their life afterwards. We shouldn’t just be operating and then leaving people to find their own way in their very different bodies. More support is needed. We - society and the healthcare system need to do better. We offer training for healthcare professionals on bariatric process through each of its life stages, highlighting the key psychological challenges for the bariatric patient at each stage and the key focus areas that lead to successful outcomes and freedom from distressed eating. We will also be looking at the nutritional requirements & also working with the Neurodivergent client in mind. Our next course is in July and is open for bookings now! Our trainers are: Kim Rutherford, Psychotherapist & Author (NCS Acred), Lisa Smith (BANT & Snr Lecturer), Bernie Wright Eating Disorder & Distressed Eating Specialist (BACP Acred) and Mel Wakeman (MSc. RNutr)
If you’re ready to know more and do better - you can book online via the website www.neddetraining.co.uk