Dr. Carlos A. Barba on Why it Might Be Time to Consider Weight Loss Surgery

By on October 30, 2020
weight loss surgery

Obesity is rapidly becoming a major health issue not just among adults but even teenagers and children. Obese people have a number of options to choose from when it comes to controlling or losing that excess weight. While dieting and exercise might help, the health risks associated with and often resulting from obesity could render these options less effective. That’s when weight loss surgery becomes the right solution for obesity.

Dr. Carlos A. Barba and his team are committed to providing the highest level of care in the fields of general surgery and weight loss surgery. Dr. Barba has performed over 6,000 bariatric procedures and won the certification as Surgeon of Excellence. The team at Carlos A. Barba, MD, PLLC in Brownsville, Texas, and Harlingen, Texas, provides patients with safe and effective weight loss surgery, pre-operative education, post-operative education, and ongoing aftercare. The problem with obesity, explains Dr. Barba, is that if left untreated, it can have serious complications on the patient’s health.

The Problem of Obesity in the U.S.

 To say that obesity is a modern problem that’s the result of eating unhealthy food or leading a sedentary lifestyle doesn’t paint the whole picture. A recent study by the CDC found that almost 40% of American adults were obese. Dr. Carlos A. Barba says it’s a problem that has been spreading rapidly over the past few decades. The causes could be anything from changes in metabolic activities to genetics and hormone levels. However, other factors have recently come under the spotlight as possible causes of obesity:

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  • Work Conditions: It’s no secret that modern offices are more comfortable than their counterparts half a century ago. While private-sector workers in the 1960s were expected to perform a good amount of physical activity, that activity has dropped by more than half by 2010. With so fewer calories being burned at work, it’s no wonder that the average American adult weighs 197 pounds according to recent studies.
  • Eating Habits: Nowadays Americans are eating more than previous generations. And it’s not just the portion of the meal that has increased, but the frequency of eating and snacking as well. A study by North Carolina University that spanned over 30 years concluded that the number of meals in the U.S. has risen from 3.8 to 4.9 meals a day. Such a high-calorie intake combined with a decrease in physical activity at work can only lead to weight gain.
  • Lifestyle: To complicate things further, people are less likely to exercise in their free time. Even if the recommended daily exercise is just to walk for 30 minutes, only 5% of Americans meet this requirement and commit to this minimum amount.

When Dieting and Exercise are not Enough

 With such rampant obesity problems, many people try to lose weight or at least get it under control using different diets and also working out. But the team at Carlos A. Barba, MD, PLLC, believes that dieting alone offers temporary results that can hardly be considered a long-term solution to obesity. And when you consider that fat deposits in the artery walls, around the heart, and in the abdominal cavity all lead to cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, strokes, and sleep apnea, it becomes clear that even exercising and dieting are not the best options to deal with obesity. In addition, it is estimated that about half the cancer cases among women are often a result of or closely associated with obesity.

Both diets and workouts are notoriously slow in bringing down the person’s weight. And since there’s always a risk of regaining the lost weight after the diet is over, many doctors recommend bariatric surgery for faster weight loss results and to stave off the risk of obesity-related diseases. 

When is Weight Loss Surgery Necessary?

 In general, the doctor would recommend a weight loss surgery when obesity becomes such a major issue that it could lead to health complications and risks. Dr. Carlos A. Barba considers bariatric surgery as the best option when the patient has tried to use diet and exercise but couldn’t get their weight down.

The screening process also recommends surgery when the person’s body mass index (BMI) goes over 40. But even if the BMI is around 35 but the patient has other health conditions such as high blood pressure or type 2 diabetes, then weight loss surgery becomes necessary.

Carlos A. Barba on What Weight Loss Surgery Can Do for you

 The different types of weight loss surgery, from gastric bypass to gastric sleeve and gastric banding, all performed successfully at Carlos A. Barba, MD, PLLC, lead to weight loss. The goal of the procedure, explains Dr. Barba, is to limit the calorie intake and absorption by reducing the amount of food the patient eats. This can be achieved by shortening the digestive tract or just reducing the size of the stomach or both.

While bariatric surgery leads to a fast decrease in excess body weight over a matter of months, its impact on health is just as positive. Cholesterol levels go down to healthy levels and the size of the heart also goes back to normal as its functionality improves. Other obesity-related health issues such as high blood pressure and kidney functions get better while type 2 diabetes goes into remission in many patients following the procedure.

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Dr. Carlos A. Barba on Why it Might Be Time to Consider Weight Loss Surgery