Weight loss surgery creates the perfect opportunity to make fundamental improvements in your habits and way of life. Following surgery, you’ll be encouraged to make changes to the foods you eat, to your level of physical activity and to other behaviors—all of which will encourage lasting weight loss.
As you make these changes in your life, you may influence the habits of those around you, especially family members.
Weight Loss for the Whole Family
For many people, obesity and being overweight are family concerns. Children who grow up in homes with obese or overweight parents are approximately three times more likely to become overweight themselves. This fact has encouraged many parents to make changes in their own lives so they can serve as positive examples for their kids.
A University of Pennsylvania study found that when one member of a family gets bariatric surgery, other members of the household frequently benefit, as well. While weight loss remains greatest for the individual who undergoes surgery, other family members often experience moderate weight loss results.
When you get weight loss surgery, reduced stomach capacity will encourage you to eat less without struggling with hunger. Your family members won’t have this physical benefit of surgery. Instead, their weight changes will come from the healthy habits you encourage throughout your household. This includes preparing healthier meals, discouraging poor snacking habits and becoming more active.
You can become more active as a family by:
- Scheduling family outings to local parks, zoos and other attractions
- Taking family walks after dinner
- Spending time together in the backyard instead of watching television
- Encouraging your children to play sports and practicing with them in the yard
- Joining an adult sport league and asking your children to come and cheer for you
Activities like these do not directly feel like exercise, but will encourage everyone in your household to get off the couch and spend more time being active.
In addition to these family activities, making some changes within your household can lead to healthier choices for those who live with you. Encourage everyone in your home to eat meals together. Serve healthy dinners that meet your own post-surgical diet guidelines and keep healthy snacks around the house so everyone’s diet improves after your procedure.
Healthy household changes like these can make a big difference in the health of you and your family. By working together to achieve a healthier lifestyle, you and your family can encourage one another to make positive changes and reach your weight loss goals as a team.