Success and companionship are interactive. This is not to say that a person cannot succeed independently, but help along the way is purposeful.
Help does not necessarily mean hands-on support. Emotional and verbal support are of also of great, if not more, importance. Helping someone to lift a load is most valuable only if the lift is truly a two person effort. If a person can move the weight with her own shoulders, it is then becomes most important to support her by helping her believe she is capable of doing just that.
Independence can be gained through interaction with another person or it can be made with no help at all. Self-made independence can be labor intense and lonely. Support from family and friends can make all the difference and is often times an exchange of favors that benefit all who are involved.
The Value of Family Support
It is no secret that family support after bariatric surgery enhances the weight loss patient’s recovery. The best way to promote such support is to simply ask for it and explain why it is important.
Clarify how critical it is to have their support and how that support will improve the potential for success. Share your hopes and your goals with them and make clear your gratitude for their involvement.
It is important to relate to family members what you are going through and what they should expect. Such explanations can help produce empathy regarding the trials of weight loss surgery. Those bariatric surgery patients who have adequate family support often lose weight at a faster pace.
Family members are a natural support system and can raise the level of patient success measurably.
Mutual Benefits For the Supportive Family
As reported by the New York Times in October of 2011, a current study showed that gastric bypass surgery improved not only the health, dietary,
and exercise habits for the bariatric patient but did so for the family as well.
The research discovered that spouses, relatives, and children of family members who had weight loss surgery lost meaningful amounts of weight and doubled their activity levels. These familial changes were intact at a one-year follow-up.
A supposition due to this phenomenon is that bariatric surgeons might explore the procedure as a method to promote change in households who need help with weight and exercise issues.
Benefits When a Second Family Member Has Weight Loss Surgery
Study results have shown distinct advantages when two family members have weight loss surgery in the same period. One year after the surgeries were performed, it was found that family members had lost 30% more weight than in those instances when there was only one person involved.
Furthermore, the study showed that siblings lost more than 40% more weight than those in the control group.
The clinical professor of surgery at the University of Medicine and Dentistry in New Jersey who performed the study noted the importance of sibling rivalry as a tool for success.
Advanced Surgery Associates http://www.advancedweightlossnj.com/2012/05/the-role-of-family-after-bariatric-surgery/ - accessed 6/4/12
Brandenton surgical Group http://www.bradentonsurgicalgroup.com/weight-loss-blog/the-benefit-of-family-support-after-weight-loss-surgery/ - accessed 6/4/12
Danbury Hospital http://www.danburyhospital.org/en/Our-Services/Center-for-Weight-Loss-Surgery/Am-I-a-Candidate/Support-From-Family-and-Friends.aspx - accessed 6/4/12
Emax Health http://www.emaxhealth.com/1506/success-weight-loss-surgery-improved-family-member-support - accessed 6/4/12
New York Times http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/10/17/weight-loss-surgery-benefits-entire-family/ - accessed 6/4/12
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Published On: June 20, 2012