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March 29, 2006

Heading back to the original weight.

Bigmac_1 I get a lot of emails with personal stories of friends and "fans" willing to share their experience with WLS. I picked up a special one, from Ron Koopman in  Lake Oswego, OR.

His experience with Gastric Bypass Surgery is one of those you hope will never happen to you, but as he explains, it is possible and it could easily happen to all of us WLS patients .

"Back in March 17, 1999 I weighed in at 360 pounds. Had gastric bypass (surgery) at Sacred Heart (Medical Center) in Eugene. During the next year, dropped to 210 pounds and never felt better. Gave up things like Big Macs, carbonated drinks, all bread. Learned how to make what I did eat count -- a lot of protein and small portions. Knees felt better, back felt better. Got off high blood-pressure meds, did a lot of walking and, as I said, never felt better. Looked better. Self-esteem was better. Never regretted the surgery.

During almost five years, put 60 pounds on and could see I was heading back to the original weight. I was able to eat more, took the attitude that I never had to worry again and did not keep track of what was happening to my body. Forgot all those things I used to tell people in support groups: "This is only a tool." Hello! Wake-up call! The knees began to hurt; the clothes no longer fit; the back was aching.

Now, the amazing part: Rather than go back to 360 pounds, with encouraging words from my wife, I simply stopped eating so much, started moving again and, within six months, the 60 pounds came off, the small surgery pouch shrunk back to original size and, bingo, I weigh in at 200 pounds. I am now 50 years old. I get on the scale every morning. I eat right; I exercise and weigh less than when I graduated from high school. I want to spread the word to gastric bypass folks that we still have a great advantage. We can take it back off and keep it off. I am living proof. And it is a simple formula: Eat less. Keep track of your weight. Move around. Care about how you look and feel."

-- Ron Koopman, Lake Oswego

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Comments

Susan

I share the same problem. I had bypass surgery 5 years ago and have gained back 40 lbs and I feel horrible. I needed to hear what I seen in your article.Thanks I still have hope and your right bypass surgery is NOT a mircle cure for weight loss

TheMorbidMe

Susan!
Ohh.. wow... I hope you start back again, it must be really frustrating to experience those gains, after all we have to suffer.. Did it happen because you started to eat again? Wish you all the best, and keep the fight !

ANNETTE

I TOO AM ONLY 2 YEARS POST OP BUT HAVE BEGUN GAINING WEIGHT BACK. I LOST 70LBS, BUT HAVE PUT 26 LBS BACK ON. I NEEDED TO HEAR I COULD START LOSING AGAIN.

TheMorbidMe

Annette,

Hmmm.. I think it is all in the head... WLS is not a magic trick, it is help.. I am sure you know about this already... What happened? Did you change your habits ? Did you stop exercising ? Also, what kind of WLS did you get ? I will be writing more about this topic, I have some tips and tricks my doctors gave me...

ANNETTE

I HAD GASTRIC BYPASS.I AM STILL NOT ABLE TO EAT AS MUCH BUT I HAVE STOPPED WATCHING THE AMOUNT OF PROTEIN AND JUST EAT WHAT I WANT.EVERY TIME I TRY TO CUT BACK I END UP BINGING ON CARBS. I AM VERY DISCOURAGED.

KIM

I just wanted to say thank you for posting that story, I am one year and a half out of gastric bypass surgery, and I am starting to puy weight back on, I have put on 20 lbs in the past year, and I want to get a hold of it now before I sky rocket back up again, I originally lost 130 pounds. This story has given me a lot of inspiration, and makes me feel like I can do this, I am telling myself it is a lot easier to lose 20 pounds than over 100 pounds. So I have new hope, thank you again!

TheMorbidMe

Dear Kim,

Great to hear that ! Now, you also have to consider that you have a big advantage... you are very positive and you have gastric bypass done to you, so it will be easier to loose that extra pounds...

Did you change something in your diet ? Did you stop exercising? Thanks !

Nancy

I am almost two years out of surgery and in just the past two months have gained back 20 lbs. I am so discouraged and upset with myself. My problem is snacking on bad stuff and not exercising. Yesterday I forced myself to join a gym and I'm hoping that I can again get rid of my bad snacking habits. Like Kim said, it will be easier to lose 20 lbs. than having to lose 130. I'm hoping that I can get back on track.

KIM

Yes, it is my own fault, I eat things I shouldn't and stopped excercising, but I am going to get back on it and lose these extra pounds, I don't want to ever go back to the person I was, it's to much fun being thinner!!

TheMorbidMe

Ohh... you know, that is the number one failure in the long run... when people stop doing the things we have to do for the rest of our lives... In a support group I teach, I had a patient that stopped taking her vitamins, just because...... well, same with exercise and eating habits.
GOOD LUCK !!!!!!!!!!!!

KIM

I HAD A QUESTION MAYBE SOMEONE COULD ANSWER, I'M HAVING A DIFFICULT TIME CONTACTING MY NUTRTIONIST AT THE HOSPITAL, SO MY QUESTION IS, FOR A GASTRIC BYPASS PATIENT WHO IS 21 MONTHS OUT OF SURGERY, HOW MANY CALORIES ARE WE SUPPOSED TO EAT AND HOW OFTEN SHOULD WE EAT? I'M REALLY CONFUSED AND I WANT TO LOSE AS MUCH WEIGHT AS POSSIBLE. I HAVE STARTED A EXCERCISE ROUTINE EVERY DAY, AND BEEN WATCHING WHAT I EAT BUT I'M NOT SURE ON WHAT I SHOULD DO, EAT MORE, OR LESS, 3 TIMES A DAY OR 6? PLEASE HELP. THANKS! KIM

I had surgery (and then plastic surgery) over the past five years. Became depressed, stopped exercising. Could eat whatever and almost, as much as I wanted. Gained back 20 pounds. Looking for "diet". In same position as before surgery, the depression, the lack of willpower, the sense of failure. Anyone else? How's you get back on track? Having surgery doesn't change that struggle.

Patricia

I am almost 3 yrs post-op and have lost a total of 180 lbs. and have been able to keep it off. I watch what I eat and I never splurge on hamburgers, chocolates, cakes etc. Dedication to good food is what you need to do to maintain the loss.

rusty

I started at 265 and only lost 65lbs. The doctor tells me some people are meant to be bigger than others. Who wants to hear that! I am sad about my weight loose but I have to accept it if I don't want to suffer from depression. What else can I do?

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