The Very Low Calorie Diet (VLCD) is often used before weight loss surgery to shrink the liver, this allows it to be retracted far away from the stomach and helps prevent surgical complications. The VLCD can last from anywhere between 2-6 weeks prior to surgery. A patient’s starting BMI and liver size on ultrasound will guide the surgeon’s recommendation as to how long this period lasts. The VLCD is less than 800 kcal/day and makes use of shakes, bars and soups along with vegetables, salads and plenty of water.
The Centre for Disease Control has added obesity to the list of conditions that cause increased risk of severe illness with coronavirus.
Studies from around the world are reporting that excess weight is associated with increased risk of: testing positive, hospitalisation, admission to ICU and mortality. The risk seems to increase progressively with increasing BMI above the healthy weight range. A large New York study showed that people with BMI>30 were 4-6 times more likely to be hospitalised than non-obese patients.
Over 30% of Australians are obese and the same level exists across most of the United States and Europe. Understanding the causes of this epidemic will reduce its associated problems of diabetes, hypertension, sleep apnoea, osteoarthritis and cancer.
For millennia humans were hunter gatherers, expending a lot of energy to obtain a meal and living in sustained periods of food shortage. This is the life that the body’s weight control mechanisms have adapted to over a long period of time.
A post-operative diet high in protein reduces muscle and hair loss in the first six months after surgery. The major long-term benefit of focusing on protein is the effect on satiety, out of all the macronutrients it will keep you feeling full for longer. Protein requirements will vary according to your surgery type, age and activity level but a basic guideline is 1-1.5grams/kg ideal body weight (what your weight would be at BMI 25) per day. It is best to distribute this throughout the main meals of the day to reduce snacking and grazing between meals.