Gastric bypass surgery – some consider
it a cure-all for weight loss, others refer to
it as a copout, still others regard it as a last
resort. Why are Americans so desperate to lose
weight? Besides the obvious cosmetic benefits,
many also need to lose weight to simply survive.
According to research from the Wish Center, the
top reason for losing excess body fat is to increase
your chances of living and decrease your chance
of developing diabetes, cancer or other life-threatening
problems. Today’s guests have tried it
all to lose weight, including gastric surgery,
with varied results. Read more about their experiences
At the age of 16, Krista felt
hopeless and couldn’t understand how she had
come to weight 347 pounds. She was extremely active
and involved in sports, had healthy eating habits
and there was no history of obesity in her family.
Yet no matter what she tried, the weight wouldn’t
come off. Desperate to lose the pounds, Krista opted
for gastric bypass surgery, a rarity at that age
since most are not allowed to undergo the surgery
until age 18. Now at age 19, Krista has never been
happier, having lost 180 pounds. She believes that
surgery was the only option for her and that obesity
is a disease that needs medical attention.
Pam is the third person in her
family to undergo weight-loss surgery. Like Krista,
she highly advocates gastric bypass to those who’ve
tried everything else in the quest to lose weight.
Pam found herself at 252 pounds after the difficulty
of trying to slim down after three pregnancies. Though
she had tried programs like Metabolife and Weight
Watchers, she had seen the effects of gastric bypass
on her brother and sister and decided to go for it.
Now she says her relationship with her husband is
better than ever and that she is finally able to
tackle the demands of her busy life.
Though Pam and Krista saw weight-loss
surgery as their only option, Sharon never considered
it an option at all. Sharon hit a wall when her weight
reached 300 pounds and knew she needed to do something.
With her husband’s help, she embarked on a
diet and exercise quest that eventually shaved off
160 pounds within 18 months. Because she was able
to accomplish such extreme loss without the aid of
surgery, Sharon believes that those who do go the
route of surgery are lazy and foolish. She maintains
that the reward of losing weight on your own is much
greater and that those who say diet and exercise
haven’t worked for them just aren’t working
What would you do if you had had
two gastric bypass surgeries and you still weighed
more than 500 pounds? Welcome to Nikki’s world.
Nikki says that she is living proof that gastric
bypass surgery doesn’t always work. After both
of her surgeries, the staple line in her stomach
broke and she quickly gained all of the weight back
due to her tendency to overeat. Nikki warns that
those who are emotional eaters should stay away from
the surgery because she believes that those who are
attached to food will find a way to eat large amounts
no matter what.
Karen is another living example
of the flip side of gastric bypass surgery. Though
she underwent the surgery nine years ago, she is
still reeling from the negative health effects. Like
Nikki, her staple line broke and Karen went into
septic shock, which in turn caused her to have to
learn to walk and talk all over again. She also deals
with hypoglycemia, hernias and burning tongue syndrome.
Karen says that despite having lost 250 pounds, the
weight loss is not worth the near brushes with death
she has had as a result of having gastric bypass
At age 22 and about 450 pounds, Sarah is preparing
to go on her journey with gastric bypass surgery.
She says that though she is aware of the risks, they
are worth it if they will help her lead a productive “normal” life.
Like others on today’s panel, Sarah has tried “everything” to
lose weight and nothing has worked. The show plans
on following up with Sarah after her surgery at the
Wish Center – stay tuned to our Guest Updates
section for her progress.