Weight Loss Surgery: Getting Support From Friends and Family

Michelle Phelan, nutritionist at Blossom Bariatrics, responds to a question about finding support after making the decision to have weight loss surgery.

A bariatric patient’s primary support group of close family and friends and other (secondary) support groups will help patients navigate the physical, emotional, and relationship changes weight loss surgery will foster, and provide support when resistance in these areas is experienced from outside sources.

Jennifer from Houston, Texas, wrote to Michelle Phelan, nutritionist at Blossom Bariatrics, and asked for advice because of antagonism experienced at work.  “I am scheduled for a sleeve procedure in two months and lately at work my coworkers have been sabotaging my efforts to get this surgery and they say things like 'It’s the easy way out,' and that I should, 'lose weight the old fashioned way.' I have tried all sorts of diets all my life. What can I do to explain to them why I feel this surgery is important for me?”

Close family and friends will almost always be supportive, and Phelan affirms, “Well Jennifer, as you know, it’s really important to surround yourself with people who love and support you 100%.”  These close relationships reinforce positive behaviors all-around and Phelan says that it is also common for bariatric patients to become the “go-to” person for healthy-lifestyle advice.

Additionally, Phelan encourages connecting with people who have had the same surgery.  This puts patients in touch with other people who have “been there--done that.”  Phelan recommends that Jennifer, “join a support group or an online support group; there are many of them out there.”

In her article, “Support Groups – Educating, Motivating and Celebrating Weight-Loss Surgery Patients,” Colleen Cook mentions just a few of the benefits support groups provide:

- Validation
- Education
- Motivation
- Celebration
- Rededication


Phelan concludes, “It is important to really follow your heart. This surgery is a wonderful tool, if it is used as it is meant to be. You need the proper education, the proper nutrition information, the proper supplementation, and the proper support groups that will help you on your journey.”

Phelan's response video can be viewed here.

About Blossom Bariatrics:

Blossom Bariatrics is a weight loss surgery center located in Las Vegas, Nevada. Award winning surgeon, Dr. Thomas Umbach, is dedicated to helping individuals improve their health, and live more fulfilling lives by losing their excess weight.  His gastric bypass practice specializes in both advanced and traditional laparoscopic (minimally invasive) procedures.

Contact Info:
Name: Dr. Tom Umbach
Email: Send Email
Organization: Blossom Bariatrics
Address: 3235 East Warm Springs Rd. Suite 100 Building 24 Las Vegas, NV 89120
Phone: 702-904-8011
Website: http://blossombariatrics.com

Release ID: 68073