Why You Should Consider Low-BMI Bariatric Surgery
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Last Updated on September 1, 2023
If you’re overweight, whether mildly obese or you suffer from severe obesity, you’ve probably struggled with weight issues for most of your adult life. You’ve probably tried more diets and exercise programs than you care to remember. You’ve probably been disappointed and dejected due to the results more than most people can bear. The good news is low-BMI bariatric surgery can help.
The truth is that your body doesn’t respond well to major changes in your diet. It will turn its powerful survival instincts against your efforts to cut calories or nutritional balance by automatically slowing your metabolism to the point where you might even gain weight on a calorie-reduced diet.
Bariatric surgery is universally accepted as being the most effective way to lose weight permanently in patients with severe obesity. Long-term studies have found that, in addition to weight loss, sleeve gastrectomy patients also experience long-term, health-related improvements to their overall quality of life.
OHIP & Bariatric Surgery
As Canadians, we are justifiably proud of our universal healthcare system. It’s part of our national identity. So when we find out that our particular health situation is not necessarily covered by provincial healthcare programs, like OHIP here in Ontario, it can be very frustrating and confusing.
Even worse, some conditions only qualify for OHIP coverage depending on their severity. This is the case for those who suffer mild obesity, also known as Class I obesity, or low-BMI obesity.
OHIP only covers weight-loss surgery procedures for those who are severely obese, or moderately obese with a comorbidity (another chronic condition, like type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure). By the numbers, that means you qualify for weight-loss surgery under OHIP if your body mass index (BMI) is over 40, or over 35 with a comorbidity.
In other words, if your BMI is 34.0, which is a matter of a few pounds of extra weight, you do not qualify for weight-loss surgery coverage under OHIP.
Why You Should Still Consider Low-BMI Bariatric Surgery
One of the reasons that OHIP does not cover low-BMI bariatric surgery is that many of the guidelines for coverage were set over 20 years ago. In the intervening time, new, safer and more effective bariatric procedures have been developed; less invasive laparoscopic surgery has been mastered, and outcomes of all forms of bariatric surgery have greatly improved.
Coupled with the fact that dietary interventions have proven time and again to be ineffective for sustained weight loss, bariatric surgery is now considered the only treatment for all levels of obesity, including mild obesity, to be effective in the long-term.
More importantly, we have gained a better understanding of the dangerous health effects and symptoms of obesity, especially for mild obesity. Once thought to have a minimal effect on overall health, mild obesity is now associated with an increased risk of many of the same health issues as morbid obesity. These can include the following, among others.
- Heart Disease
- Sleep apnea
- Fatty liver disease
- High cholesterol
- Kidney disease
- Complications during pregnancy
In addition to the health risks, low-BMI obesity is also linked to decreased quality of life and lower life expectancy.
Gastric Sleeve Surgery for Low-BMI Patients – Compared to other forms of bariatric surgery, gastric sleeve surgery, or a sleeve gastrectomy, is particularly well-suited for low-BMI patients. In addition to it being less invasive, (which means it’s also lower risk) you can expect to lose 60% of your excess weight, on average, and complication rates are extremely low. It is now the most widely-used bariatric surgical procedure in the world.
One More Reason to Choose Bariatric Surgery – Affordability
Yes, bariatric surgery is not a small investment. But you wouldn’t want it to be. This is about the rest of your life. About living it free of the health, physical and emotional issues that have been always inescapable due to your weight. And that takes exceptional levels of long-term care, expertise and facilities for you to enjoy the highest level of success.
To help you remove the barrier of the cost that may be between you and better health through sustained weight loss, there are financing options available that let you take advantage of the surgery with affordable monthly payments.
If you found this article helpful, check out our recent post about 4 things to know before having gastric sleeve surgery.
If you’re considering weight loss surgery, below are some next steps you can take:
- Take a quick online quiz to see if you qualify for sleeve surgery
- Speak with a Sleeve Clinic Program Advisor
- Follow The Sleeve Clinic on Instagram
Please note that the information provided in this article is for general informational purposes only and should not replace medical advice. It is always recommended to consult with a qualified healthcare professional for personalized guidance regarding weight loss surgery. If you are considering sleeve surgery you can book a consultation with our clinic here: Contact us!