Weight Loss Surgery and Binge Eating

Weight Loss Surgery alters how much food a person can eat. But, Weight Loss Surgery does not address the underlying emotional issues that drive emotional eating.

Are You An Emotional Eater?

Often this critical piece is overlooked! If emotional eating is one of the factors that contributed to your decision to have Weight Loss Surgery, then it’s important that it be considered and addressed. Your Weight Loss Surgery doctor may offer a nutrition and a weight loss surgery support group, but what if you need more?

Could you benefit from an opportunity to explore the following?

  • Your use of food to manage feelings (boredom, loneliness, stress, anxiety, anger, even excitement…)
  • After surgery, if you can no longer turn to food, how will you tolerate intense feelings?
  • Body Image-What will it be like as your body changes? Will you be treated differently by others? What if you’re finding that you’re not treated as differently as you hoped?
  • How do you begin to develop new self-care and mood regulation skills?

Neither Gastric Bypass, nor Roux en Y Surgery, nor Lap-Band Surgery alone will fix an emotional eating problem, or one’s need to disconnect from feelings. If emotional eating continues, post weight loss surgery, it is bound to increase an already high complication risk. (Death rate is 1 in 200. Serious complication rate is 1 in 100.) Post weight loss surgery, if a person has not developed any alternatives to emotional eating, he or she is also likely to find ways to go back to emotional eating…which is likely to have impact on his or her health, weight loss and weight regain.

Services Available:

Individual Coaching Services*
Conducted by telephone. Appropriateness for Coaching Services determined through a telephone assessment

Individual Psychotherapy Services
For Emotional Eating, Binge Eating Disorder and Depression (available in-person in Cincinnati only)

Please call for a Free Assessment, 513-321-4242. If you get our voicemail, please leave a message. All messages are kept confidential. Ellen Shuman is the only person here who has access to messages.

A Weigh Out’s Position on Weight Loss Surgery

We fully understand and appreciate the desperate feelings that lead people to consider weight loss surgery. Typically, when people consider having surgery, they feel they have tried every diet known to man (and woman), and they feel like they have failed at everything. They feel they have already explored all possible alternatives to weight loss surgery. But all too often, in our experience, people who are emotional eaters and are considering weight loss surgery have not had adequate support and opportunity to work on the emotional eating habits/issues that drive their emotional overeating.

Not everyone who seeks weight loss surgery is an emotional eater. But if someone is morbidly obese as a consequence of factors that include emotional eating, we believe the emotional eating must be addressed…either as an alternative to surgery…or before or after surgery. If emotional eating is a factor, then it is an illusion to think that, over the long haul, surgery alone will fix emotional issues that drive compulsive eating. Work must be done on the stressors in one’s life that lead to overeating and/or to any other compulsive behaviors that a person uses to tolerate uncomfortable feeling or situations. We recommend pre and post surgery work around developing healthier strategies for living an emotionally, physically, nutritionally, and spiritually healthy life.

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* As is the case with all coaching, self-guided membership programs, and psychotherapy, individual results may vary.

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