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Bariatric surgery less popular among men, says study

Bariatric surgery less popular among men, says study

Researchers at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine have identified a major disparity with demographic, socioeconomic, and cultural factors among US men and women undergoing weight-loss surgeries. The conclusion is that men choose to undergo bariatric surgery in far fewer numbers than women.

The Journal of Laparoendoscopic & Advanced Surgical Techniques published the study in March, stating that 80 percent of patients who choose to undergo bariatric surgery procedures are women.

“The results of this study should raise awareness in men about the complications that obesity brings to their health,” said senior author Santiago Horgan, MD, chief of the Division of Minimally Invasive Surgery at UC San Diego Health System. “Even though we have 50/50 percent split in obesity rates among US men and women, women get 80 percent of the bariatric surgeries and men only 20 percent. That’s a very uneven distribution.”

Read more about the studies findings on ScienceDaily.com.

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Bariatric surgery improves one woman’s life with amazing results

Bariatric surgery improves one woman’s life with amazing results

Jenifer Schon viewed bariatric surgery as the last option for improving her health, but has since been thankful that she had the procedure. Having been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of three and diagnosed with fibromyalgia later in life, Schon knew that she needed to control her weight, and turned to bariatric surgery as a solution. 

Amazingly, not only has Schon lost weight since having weight-loss surgery, but she has experienced improvements with her diabetes and fibromyalgia as well. Schon is now taking half the diabetes medication she needed before, and no longer needs insulin resistance medication. Additionally, her fibromyalgia strikes her with less frequent episodes than it did before weight-loss surgery.

Jenifer notes that the biggest challenge she has faced is changing her diet. She had already been monitoring her carbs, but after bariatric surgery, has had to monitor the amount of protein she consumes. Overall, Jenifer is happy with the results, understands she may face struggles with losing weight, and feels that the pros of surgery greatly outweigh the cons. “Patients aren't blindsided by this challenge, as they do go through a lot of education and preparation, but everyone goes through that adjustment to some degree," states Dr. Robert Quaid of Bariatric Center of the Rockies.

Now, Schon has more energy than ever before and can dedicate more of her time to hobbies she enjoys in life. Check out Schon’s story in the Coloradoan.

Photo credit: Provided by UCHealth for the Coloradoan.

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How to maintain your energy levels all day long

How to maintain your energy levels all day long

Have you ever skipped the gym or your workout session due to being tired and lacking energy? Many individuals say that the reason they don’t exercise regularly is that they lack the energy needed to get in an effective workout. While many people chalk up lack of energy to either not getting enough sleep or working too hard, the truth is that many individuals lack energy as a result of practicing one or more unhealthy lifestyle habits that zap their energy.

Unfortunately, if you lack the energy to exercise, you may also lack the energy to maintain a healthy diet, drink enough water, and practice the healthy habits needed to help you achieve your weight-loss goals.

Are you trying to lose weight, but have difficulty mustering up energy on a daily basis? Check out the following ways to maintain your energy levels all day long, from the time you wake up, to the time you hit the hay.

Morning habits

  • Avoid hitting the snooze button. While you may be tempted to hit the snooze button, make a habit of getting up as soon as the alarm goes off. Otherwise, you’ll have a more difficult time waking up, and you’ll expend extra energy doing so.
  • Drink water as soon as you wake up. Water will jump-start your digestive system and help stimulate a bowel movement, while also providing your body with an immediate burst of energy. Keep water on your nightstand to sip upon waking up.
  • Eat a healthy breakfast. Consume a healthy mixture of healthy fats, protein, and complex carbs to help balance your blood sugar first thing in the morning. Avoid eating sugary donuts, muffins, and pastries, which could cause you to crash early on in the day.
  • Do a morning workout. Exercise actually provides you with lasting energy, which is why it’s ideal to exercise first thing in the morning. Studies even show that morning exercisers tend to burn fat and calories more efficiently.

Afternoon habits

  • Go outside for fresh air. Fresh air can provide you with renewed energy and a fresh perspective on the tasks you’re trying to accomplish. Even if you’re stuck at work, take a break to step outside for 15 minutes for a walk or lunch break.
  • Swap out coffee for tea. If you’re used to slurping on coffee throughout the morning and afternoon, switch to drinking green tea. Tea won’t be as intense on your body, and is less likely to interfere with your nighttime sleep habits than coffee.
  • Eat healthy snacks. Instead of turning to fast food or vending machine foods for convenience, stick to snacking on nuts, vegetables, and fruits, which will naturally provide your body with a burst of healthy energy. Salty and sugary foods can actually drain your energy levels.

Evening habits

  • Lower your alcohol intake. Many individuals say alcohol helps them fall asleep after a hard day’s work. But in actuality, alcohol can disrupt your natural sleep cycle and either cause you to wake up later in the night, or leave you feeling even more exhausted come morning. Try to omit or limit your alcohol intake at nighttime.
  • Stop using electronics. The light emitted by mobile phones, tablets, computers, and television can interfere with your sleep patterns, and sometimes make it more difficult for you to fall asleep. Stop using all electronics at least an hour before bedtime.
  • Make sleep a priority. A good night’s sleep will help you feel energized the following day. Make sleep a priority in your life, and stop staying up late to watch movies, play video games, and read books. Aim to get between seven and eight hours of sleep per night for lasting energy levels.
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How the "hunger scale" concept can help with weight loss

How the "hunger scale" concept can help with weight loss

Nutrition and dieting can be a tricky game, even if you’re feeling confident that you’re nailing it and doing it correctly. If you’ve managed to cut out sweets, fried foods, and processed foods in general, now you’ve got to nail the timing aspect. If you go too long without food, you may end up overeating, whereas if you eat too frequently, you may be consuming more food than your body actually needs.

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5 hard truths about the weight-loss journey

5 hard truths about the weight-loss journey

If you’ve been dedicating the last several months or years to shedding excess weight, you’re probably already well aware of how difficult the journey can be. Making major lifestyle changes such as cutting out soda, exercising regularly, drinking more water, and eating more fruits and vegetables requires hard work and dedication. Even after overhauling your entire lifestyle, you may still find yourself hitting a weight-loss plateau, or even gaining back some of the weight you’ve lost.

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12 superfoods that can help fight stress

12 superfoods that can help fight stress

Certain moods can affect what you eat, and how you feel afterwards. If you’re bored, you may just grab anything within reach. If you’re happy, you may indulge in something more sweet. Sometimes it can be difficult to stay on track with good nutrition if you’re in a particular mood and want something specific to eat, especially when you’re experiencing stress.

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Health risks associated with excess weight

Health risks associated with excess weight

The following is an excerpt from our ebook, Gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss. Click here to download the complete ebook.

Gastric sleeve surgery does not come without its own set of risks, however, you can lower your risk for complications by adhering to your bariatric surgeon’s instructions closely after surgery. Keep in mind that the benefits associated with gastric sleeve surgery far outweigh the risks associated with staying overweight, which can eventually worsen and develop into more serious health conditions the longer you put off treatment.

From a medical standpoint, your body is considered obese when your body mass index (BMI) reaches 30. Having a BMI over 30 can significantly increase your risk for the following health problems:

  • Type 2 diabetes
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Heart disease
  • High cholesterol
  • Asthma
  • Infertility
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Joint problems
  • Gallbladder problems
  • Acid reflux
  • Cancer

Gastric sleeve surgery has the ability to help you lose excess weight and reverse many of these health conditions. Most gastric sleeve patients report experiencing positive changes in their health as early as the first few months after having surgery.

To learn more about gastric sleeve surgery, download our free ebook, Gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.

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8 easy weight-loss hacks

8 easy weight-loss hacks

Visit any social-driven news media website such as Buzzfeed or Mashable, and you’ll find numerous articles that feature life “hacks.” When used in this context, hacks are easy, quick solutions to problems. When it comes to weight loss, most individuals want the easiest and fastest possible solution. Losing weight through diet and exercise alone often takes months or years, depending on the amount of excess weight you need to lose. Unfortunately, since excess weight can trigger a slew of serious health problems, not everyone has the time and patience to spend years working toward their weight-loss goals.

However, the following eight weight-loss hacks could help you reach your weight-loss goals even sooner!

1. Drink more water

If you’ve grown up drinking sodas, fruit juices, and energy drinks, you might find water too boring. However, water is highly important for weight loss, as it offers a number of health benefits, such as more frequent bowel movements, the lubrication of joints, the flushing out of toxins and wastes, and much more. Drinking more water throughout the day can also reduce hunger and cravings. Toss out all other drinks, and stick to drinking water as much as possible. Adding some lemon, orange slices, or cucumber to your water will add some extra flavor that may motivate you to drink more.

2. Stick a mirror on your refrigerator door

Research shows that those who post mirrors on their refrigerators are less likely to make poor decisions in regards to diet and nutrition, since it reminds them about their weight-loss goals. If you’re prone to snacking or visiting the kitchen regularly out of habit, stick a mirror on the door of your refrigerator.

3. Use smaller plates and glasses

Smaller plates can trick you into eating smaller portion sizes, whereas larger plates can indirectly influence you to fill up and cover the entire plate with food. Pack away your larger plates, and just stick to using small snack plates and thin drinking glasses to lose weight more quickly.

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5 effective ways to get rid of your cankles

5 effective ways to get rid of your cankles

Everybody gains and loses weight differently, which can be frustrating for individuals who want to lose weight in specific problem areas. For example, if the majority of your excess weight seems to lie in your thighs and buttocks, you may feel a bit jealous of those who weigh more than you, yet somehow have skinny legs and a small behind. On the other hand, if you like wearing tank tops but feel self-conscious about your arms, you might feel upset about the fact that you’ve lost weight everywhere else except your upper arms, which have come to resemble batwings.

“Cankles” is another common problem area for many people. “Cankles” is the urban, contemporary term used to describe unusually thick ankles, or ankles that lack definition to the point where they look like part of your calves. You may feel that your ankles look unsightly and unattractive, or find that it’s difficult to wear boots and other shoes that extend past your ankles.

However, it’s important to know that cankles aren’t always caused by weight gain, though weight gain is often a factor. Check out these five effective ways to get rid of your cankles.

1. Lose weight

This step may seem like a no-brainer, but losing weight through diet and exercise are the best steps to take if you want to get rid of cankles. In most cases, cankles occur due to gravity pulling down fat stores toward the ankles and calves, especially if you’re often on your feet working, shopping, or doing housework. Try doing more exercises that specifically target your calf muscles, such as running, jumping rope, or doing sets of jumping jacks.

2. Prevent fluid retention

If your body is retaining water for any reason, your ankles will be one of the first places that become swollen and bloated. Fluid retention can be caused by excess sodium intake, pregnancy, or even prescription medications. Start drinking more water to flush sodium and other waste out of your body, and ease up on the sodium in your diet by eliminating processed foods. In the meantime, wear compression socks, which can help relieve swelling.

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Exercising more often could be better than eating less

Exercising more often could be better than eating less

You’ve heard people say that dieting is more effective than exercise at helping you lose weight, and you’ve also heard that exercise is more effective than dieting. What’s the correct answer? A new study from the University of South Carolina weighs in on the debate, showing that most of Americans’ diets improve throughout life, while people are exercising less often.

“It is well known that US men and women gain weight and fat as they age,” concluded the researchers. “However, to our knowledge, this is the first study to comprehensively document age-related trends in weight status, physical activity, and diet quality using a representative sample of US men and women.”

The study was published in the Medicine & Science In Sports & Exercise journal, and involved nearly 5,000 Americans. Researchers used the long-running National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, a federally funded research project, to analyze and conclude that exercise trumps dietary changes when it comes to losing weight as we age.

“The current investigation found that … age-related increases in BMI and waist circumference are likely to be explained by the age-related decline in physical activity,” the study said.

Read more about this study on NEWSMAX.com.

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7 “lazy” ways to lose excess weight

7 “lazy” ways to lose excess weight

Weight loss may be challenging, frustrating, and exhausting, but if you work hard at it, weight loss can also be highly rewarding. Many Americans tend to start and stop pursuing their weight-loss goals repeatedly because of the sweat and dedication they’re required to put in to lose excess pounds. This is partly due to why many Americans also pursue fad diets and bogus weight-loss products; they simply want to lose weight in the easiest manner possible without having to exert themselves too much.

While being lazy is the last mindset you want to have when it comes to losing weight, there are actually a number of relatively small lifestyle changes you can make to become thinner without necessarily having to exert yourself. Eating healthy foods, practicing good sleep habits, and having a positive attitude are just a few healthy behaviors that could be considered “lazy” and don’t require you to exert yourself too much to lose weight.

Exercise is still an important part of any weight-loss plan, but by practicing the following “lazy” habits, you can jump-start your weight-loss journey even sooner. Check out the following “lazy” ways to drop and keep off excess weight.

1. Sip on caffeine

Some weight-loss experts say that drinking caffeine can boost your body’s calorie-burning process for up to three hours following consumption. Consult with your health care provider prior to adding coffee to your diet to determine whether this habit will benefit your health, especially if you’ve had weight-loss surgery. Or, stick to drinking green, white, or black teas to benefit from both caffeine and antioxidative properties.

2. Sit on a stability ball

Swap your office chair or recliner at home for a large stability ball. Studies have shown that sitting on a stability ball can burn off more than 260 calories per day if you forego a regular chair for the ball.

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2 major questions to ponder regarding your weight-loss goals

2 major questions to ponder regarding your weight-loss goals

If you’re in the process of trying to slim down, you may already be entertaining daydreams in your head about what your life will be like once you meet your weight-loss goals. You may envision yourself looking svelte while wearing a strapless evening gown, or turning heads on the beach at your favorite vacation destination. Or, perhaps you envision yourself walking up a steep hill without having to stop and catch your breath, or think about how you can benefit from a good night’s sleep without having to deal with sleep apnea.

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Is your taste in television triggering weight gain?

Is your taste in television triggering weight gain?

You may already know that spending hours in front of the television on a regular basis can lead to potential weight gain and setbacks with weight loss. Plus, television is considered a sedentary activity, which can increase your risk for major health problems, including early death. While television can be a great way to relax after a hard day’s work, it’s great to keep tube time to a minimum.

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One man’s brave display of excess skin after LAP-BAND surgery

One man’s brave display of excess skin after LAP-BAND surgery

Weight loss is a journey, and choosing to undergo weight-loss surgery is a big decision. A 22-year-old Brooklyn man began his journey with LAP-BAND surgery, and made the decision to start exercising and eating better.

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Bariatric surgery and divorce rate

Bariatric surgery and divorce rate

Bariatric surgery is associated with a number of incredible health benefits. Not only can bariatric surgery help you lose weight and become healthier, but it can also make you feel happier and more confident, boost your self-esteem, and provide you with more energy than ever before. Since bariatric surgery requires you to make a series of healthy lifestyle changes, your hobbies may evolve from watching television into spending more time outdoors being active.

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Guide to using social media for weight loss

Guide to using social media for weight loss

Social media can be a fun, effective tool to use for weight loss, and it allows you to connect with other like-minded individuals who are also trying to lose weight and become healthier. Not only does social media provide an open forum in which you can share your weight-loss progress and rant about having “off” days, but it’s also home to a variety of weight-loss contests, challenges, and tests that can enhance your weight-loss journey.

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Learning to live with an unhealthy partner

Learning to live with an unhealthy partner

Trying to lose weight is difficult enough as it is, but if you live with a partner who absolutely refuses to exercise or eat healthy meals, weight loss can seem hellish and impossible. After all, how can you stick to eating healthy greens and lean protein while your partner is sitting across the room indulging in pizza? And how can you find the motivation to exercise when your partner is trying to convince you to stay home and enjoy a Walking Dead marathon?

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Is the positive body-image movement dangerous for women?

Is the positive body-image movement dangerous for women?

In recent years, women everywhere have brought awareness to the fact that beauty can exist in all sizes, shapes, and colors regardless of who you are, where you come from, and what you look like. The concept of “love your body” is healthy for mind and soul, and plays a large role in self-esteem, self-confidence, and overall happiness.

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3 strange weight-loss tricks that really work

3 strange weight-loss tricks that really work

While diet and exercise may be the traditional go-to methods for weight loss, there’s really no one-size-fits-all approach to weight loss. When conventional weight-loss methods fail to work and you feel stuck in a rut, you may feel tempted to try various outside-of-the-box weight-loss methods on your mission to slimming down.

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3 behaviors you should practice after every workout

3 behaviors you should practice after every workout

A sweaty, intense workout can sometimes be taxing on your body and mind, especially if you’re an extremely busy person. As soon as your workout is over, you may be tempted to immediately jump in the car so you can address everything else that needs to be done that day. As a result, you may forget to stretch, shower, and eat. However, the behaviors you practice within the first 30 minutes after your workout are crucial to recovery, and can either make or break your results depending on what you do.

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The possibility of foot drop after bariatric surgery

The possibility of foot drop after bariatric surgery

Foot drop is a medical condition in which loss of muscle control causes your feet and toes to hang forward when you walk, increasing the risk for trips and falls. Many physicians refer to foot drop as a form of peripheral neuropathy, and this condition is common in people who suffer from multiple sclerosis, neurological disorders, and vitamin deficiencies. In many cases, those who experience rapid weight loss after bariatric surgery are also at risk for experiencing foot drop.

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Create great progress photos to document your weight-loss journey

Create great progress photos to document your weight-loss journey

When it comes to weight loss after bariatric surgery, you want to make sure everyone can see the progress you’re working so hard to get. Most of the time that means documenting your transformation through photographs. But, how can you make the most of your photos and accurately show your success?

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Proper sleep hygiene may aid weight-loss efforts

Studies have shown that people with poor sleep habits (known as sleep hygiene) have a harder time losing weight. When people are sleep deprived, they tend to consume more calories than when they are well rested, and most of those calories come from junk food. Disruptions to the sleep cycle may also trigger the release of a hormone that stimulates the appetite.

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Weight loss and emotional health go hand-in-hand

You are here because you've already made a commitment to your physical health. Whether you have already undergone Lap-Band surgery or are just starting to learn more about it, congratulations! You are on the road to a healthier you. As our many satisfied patients will tell you, Lap-Band surgery has truly changed their lives. They have more energy to keep up with their children, they have seen other weight-related conditions resolve, and they feel happier, healthier, and more confident.

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Realistic resolutions

If you've pledged to renew your commitment to weight loss and healthier habits in the new year, you're not alone. According to health experts, weight loss tops the resolution list for most Americans. Unfortunately, less than half keep their commitment after six months. Rather than becoming a part of this statistic, make 2012 the year you shape up and meet your goals with these five tips.

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Pushing past weight-loss plateaus

LAP-BAND patients sometimes find that their weight plateaus several months after surgery. These periods of stagnation can be extremely frustrating: you may be doing everything you can to follow your doctor's and nutritionist's advice, but the numbers on the scale still aren't budging. Getting past these rough spots may require switching up your routine and re-examining some of your habits.

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