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Gastric bypass surgery has a ripple effect: One that causes entire families to join in losing weight, eating more wisely and exercising more.
A study from the Stanford School of Medicine in the US noted that a growing proportion of partners, relatives and even kids of gastric surgery patients have also dropped weight, doubled their activity levels and had other improvements that were still evident a year after the surgery.
This ripple effect suggests that gastric bypass operations are also a way to bring about change in the attitudes and behavioural habits of complete families who may also be in need of help with their weight and exercise habits.
Patients that have the active support from their family, more often that not, go on to reach positive goals and long lasting outcomes. And it’s precisely this commitment that is doing more and more good for the health and wellbeing of the patient’s own household.
The research also noted that, during the course of post-operative follow up consultations, the more weight they lost, the more confident their patients grew and the more often family members would come along with them.
What’s more, while patients were telling their surgeons how great they were feeling about their progress, their supportive partners would mention how they were also losing weight.
Social support can be a powerful motivator in breaking bad habits. Where the necessity to stick to a diet and exercise regime becomes more effective when two or more people do it together.
When one party is feeling unmotivated, the other encourages, and vice versa. Added to that, there’s the purely competitive aspect, where each person is trying to emulate the other. The classic win-win situation.
The Gastric Bypass ripple effect has another interesting and encouraging aspect. With weight and obesity often being a family-wide issue, proactive support like this during and after Mum or Dad’s bariatric surgery is also changing the lives of the entire family unit. And in some cases, saving lives as well.
Image Credit Family & MWR