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Be Active

A regular exercise program will help you tone your body, lose weight and accomplish your health goals. Getting active and staying active will make your journey to the healthy new you a success. Bariatric patients who do not exercise are not as successful and lose significantly less weight than their active counterparts.

When you have weight-loss surgery, you lose weight because the amount of food energy (calories) you are able to eat is much less than what your body needs to operate. Your body has to make up the difference by burning reserves or unused tissue. Your body will tend to burn any unused muscle before it begins to burn the fat it has saved up. If you do not exercise daily, your body will consume your unused muscle, and you will lose muscle mass and strength.

Daily aerobic exercise for 20 minutes will communicate to your body that you want to use your muscles and force it to burn the fat instead. Exercise actually begins the afternoon of surgery - the patient must be out of bed and walking. The goal is to walk farther on the next day, and progressively farther every day after that, including the first few weeks at home.

Most patients are released from medical restrictions and encouraged to begin exercising about two weeks after surgery, limited only by the level of wound discomfort. The type of exercise is dictated by the individual’s health. Many patients begin with low stress forms of exercise and are encouraged to progress to more vigorous activity when they are able.