Guest post by Vicki Bovee, M.S., R.D., L.D., is a registered dietitian with over 25 years experience in weight loss, weight management, and specializing in bariatric nutrition since 2003. www.chefdave.org
I have always said that when someone in the house has weight loss surgery, usually the whole family benefits. Typically, there are fewer meals out, less junk food coming in, healthier foods being prepared, and in smaller portions. I have seen many times where the spouse of the surgery patient loses weight too. Maybe not at the same rate, but the weight loss is usually welcomed.
Now there has been a study to confirm my observations. Stanford University School of Medicine followed 35 gastric bypass patients for one year post-op. The obese adult family members who participated with the surgery patient lost an average about 8 pounds and decreased their waist circumference by about 3 inches. In addition, the amount of physical activity increased and alcohol consumption decreased.
A contributing factor to the weight loss was that the family member accompanied the patient to all their pre-op and post-op visits. I like it when my patients show up for their pre-op nutrition assessment and nutrition class with a family member. I think most dietitians, like myself, emphasize healthy lifestyle habits at each visit and everyone can benefit from that information.
So it's never too late. Take a family member with you to your next visit. Another plus is that they can become more sensitive to your needs and become a better support person. It's a win-win.
Vicki Bovee, MS, RD, LD
Stanford University Medical Center (2011, October 17). Halo effect: Family members of gastric-bypass patients also lose weight, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved May 12, 2012, from http://www.sciencedaily.com /releases/2011/10/111017170831.htm