Overweight person walking down path, shown from behind, legs and upper back shown

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Is weight loss surgery for you?

  • If you have a BMI of over 40, or over 35 with at least one serious health condition, you may be a candidate for weight loss surgery.

When you’re overweight you battle more than just your weight. Stigma, stereotypes and misconceptions abound. Why you carry extra weight can be complex. While strides have been made in obesity research, we still have much to learn about its causes, treatments and long-term management.

The truth is that obesity is a disease just like diabetes or heart disease. And, like these other diseases, it is best handled with a comprehensive care management program. Treatment for obesity typically includes a combination of lifestyle modifications, medications and surgery.

How do you know if you’re a candidate for weight loss surgery?

Weight loss surgery (also known as bariatric surgery) is one of the most effective treatments for obesity in the amount of weight you can lose, improvements to other medical conditions, and helping you keep the weight off long-term.

A misconception about bariatric surgery is that you must be extremely obese to qualify. The truth is you don’t need to look like the people on the TV show “My 600 Pound Life.” The first step is to find your body mass index or BMI. If you have a BMI of over 40, or over 35 with at least one serious health condition, you may be a candidate for weight loss surgery. What your insurance plan considers a serious health condition may vary, but in general includes Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, lipid abnormalities or heart disease.

Just as in non-surgical treatments for obesity, a commitment to lifelong healthy eating and following healthy behaviors including regular exercise, is your cornerstone to success.

If you feel you are a candidate for weight loss surgery, check your BMI then call your insurance company to check on your coverage for bariatric surgery. After that, Allina Health Weight Management can walk you through your steps from there!

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