Can Your Gastric Sleeve Surgery Benefits Your Kids’ Health?

VSG patients aren’t new to the weight loss struggle. In fact, you may have been overweight or obese since your youth, and, statistically speaking, your family members probably do (or did) struggle with weight issue as well. As much as we’d like to blame genetics for those extra pounds, the truth is that unhealthy lifestyles are learned behaviors. You may not be able to go back in time, but your decision now about vertical sleeve gastrectomy can actually help your own children, no matter their age.

Teach Them Young
We know that gastric sleeve in Mexico isn’t magic; it does, however, equip you with a tool to take back control of your health in a powerful way. With a successful gastric sleeve diet and exercise regimen, you can not only transform your body, but your relationship with food and movement. And that translates into habits you can pass along to young children, helping break cycles of unhealthy eating patterns and setting them up for a lifetime of not struggling with weight. What a gift!

Reverse Course in Older Kids
Maybe your children are older. Because they’re more autonomous and making many of their own choices about food, you may not think you have much influence over your teens. But a 2016 study proved otherwise. In the year-long study of 53 overweight or obese adolescents, teens who had access to an online program with information about improving diet and exercise habits didn’t really lose weight. But when their overweight or obese parent did, the teens did, too. Study coordinator Jaqueline Hayes, MA, said, “We see that if parents are aiming to lose weight, they’re also going to be benefitting their adolescents as well.”

That’s excellent news. And it comes as no surprise to Tessa, who lose 100 pounds after her VSG, as did her 13-year-old daughter, who also had VSG. What might be more surprising, though, is that her 20-year-old son, who did not have surgery, also lost 60 pounds after his mom got healthy. “We are happy, we are healthy and we are living life together,” says Tessa of her slimmed-down family.

Inspiring Others
Even if you kids aren’t in the house anymore—or you don’t have any—your vertical sleeve gastrectomy can help inspire family members of any age to reclaim their health, with or without their own surgery. A study published in Archives of Surgery suggests that bariatric surgery patients make a real difference to those around them. “We found that after surgery, patients lost a lot of weight, but obese adult family members lost a significant amount of weight as well and so did kids,” said study co-author Dr. John Morton. In the study of 35 families, adult family members reported that they had adopted better eating habits, they drank less alcohol, and their children spent less time in front of electronics.

There are a couple of reasons that family members lose weight when a loved one undergoes bariatric surgery. Within the household, when one person’s eating habits change (for better or worse), others’ habits usually follow. But even outside the household, overweight family members may be convinced that genetics are not the primary reason behind their weight struggles when someone with similar genes succeeds with weight loss. This can be the hope or proof they need to adopt healthier eating and exercise habits—or maybe look into VSG for themselves.

The bottom line is that getting healthy for yourself is always the best reason to choose VSG. But it’s likely that, in prioritizing your own weight loss and healthy habits, you’ll inspire loved ones to get healthier, too.

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“Changing lives…one sleeve at a time”.