Anyone that needs gastric bypass surgery of any type has some type of food "addiction". Unfortunately while the surgery works to permit weight loss initially, it will be difficult to maintain the weight loss or stick to the post-surgery food limits of amount and type if the food issues have not been grappled with successfully. Some people find Overeaters Anonymous meetings, either in person or by phone, can work for them to help sustain the initial loss.
Food addiction to explain the cause for obesity is like saying Global Warming is caused by too much greenhouse gases...
OK. Now, what's for dinner?
Obesity is about poor nutrition and the resultant hammer we call insulin resistance.
See, we can be stupid but our bodies cannot. It will make the necessary adjustments and adaptations to keep us alive regardless what we eat and how little we move. If you don't eat healthy, be active and get plenty of rest, our body will make our lives miserable in a desperate attempt to keep us alive. It is in our programming.
Without health-inducing fundamentals practiced, daily, Gastric Bypass Surgery is simply just another one of our furtive attempts to fool mother nature...
and, everyone knows, that's not a nice thing to do...
The OA ideas keep me grounded every day so that I can recognize that the things I do about food and exercise each day matter. However they also allow me to forget yesterday, stay in the now about my food and exercise choices and not try to live in the future. The ability to share about weight issues on an anonymous basis is very helpful. There are a myriad of reasons why people overeat but when the veil of secrecy which usually accompanies overeating can be lifted through sharing in a meeting or listening to others share. It is not uncommon for a person whose is or was an overeater to have another "over" problem like clutter or alcohol or to develop such a problem to replace the life function overeating served when that is gone. If the problem were solely a physical one then gastric by-pass surgery should have a lose to100% cure rate which it doesn't. Relapsing after by-pass or lap-band surgery in more than a minor way means the person needs to consider all possible means of support to maintain the reduced weight, including intensive private counseling and support groups. What a good OA meeting provides is a fellowship of people with food problems who can share and listen for a hour. AA has worked for alcoholics with its one day at a time approach. The phrase food "addiction" does not sit well with some obese people. But it does seem to be the simplest shorthand way to get someone to recognize that eating the whole package of cookies or engaging in similar behaviour on a regular basis or eating meals that are so large post-gastric by-pass surgery that nausea or vomiting results is self-destructive behaviour over which they need to call on a power beyond themselves. That power may be no more than the OA meeting itself. Naturally thin people are not very good sounding boards because most of them do not really understand why an obese person can't just stop eating or why someone would eat to the point of feeling sick.. So I say yes to OA or private therapy. It requires a lifetime commitment to keep to the regime post-operation through thick and thin, through good times and bad. That is very hard to do alone.
And that was my point. The surgery is just the beginning. It doesn't fix the problem the way an appendectomy can. Private therapy is not accessible to everyone. But some sort of support group, like OA, can help. Obviously the nutritional fundamentals have to be worked out but that is one of the things that the should be evident and done fairly quickly. It's the mental challenges that will be there year after year, month after month. Having to make sure that the food in the house is appropriate is a mental challenge. Eating out or staying away from eating out is a mental challenge. New food habits must be learned and maintained. Ugh! I'm tired just thinking about it. That's why one day at a time works for me.
I abused processed food, alcohol and cigarettes. I'm happy to say only one remains: processed food [br> Although I'm now of healthy weight, from my perspective, conquering food addiction is far more challenging than alcohol or cigarettes for one simple reason:
When you abuse alcohol or smoke, the only issue is to stop...
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
The opinions expressed in WebMD Communities are solely those of the User, who may or may not have medical or scientific training. These opinions do not represent the opinions of WebMD. Communities are not reviewed by a WebMD physician or any member of the WebMD editorial staff for accuracy, balance, objectivity, or any other reason except for compliance with our Terms and Conditions. Some of these opinions may contain information about treatments or uses of drug products that have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. WebMD does not endorse any specific product, service or treatment.
Do not consider Communities as medical advice. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your care plan or treatment. WebMD understands that reading individual, real-life experiences can be a helpful resource, but it is never a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a qualified health care provider. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or dial 911 immediately.