My Bariatric Life from 24W to 2 - Thanks to Plastic Surgery 10-yrs After Gastric Bypass I'm Living Larger Than Ever!

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I grew from a fit teenager to a fat 22 year old...

I grew from a fit teenager to a fat 22 year old and became a processed food junkie and couch potato. I later developed diabetes, celiac disease, depression, acid reflux, asthma, and hypertension. I was in my 30s, morbidly obese and on ~10 prescription medications. Since 2003 I've maintained massive weight loss from gastric bypass surgery and remain free from 9 of the 10 prescriptions.

Gastric bypass surely saved my life. But I felt gypped. My weight remained pretty steady at 185-200 pounds and was not the thin body I had expected to achieve. Add to that, my skin did not shrink as I thought it would with weight loss but rather hung on my body like an ill-fitted suit. I remained shamed of my body even after a 100 pound weight loss.

Then in 2013 I underwent body contouring plastic surgeries and facial plastic surgery to remove the last traces of my former obesity. It was the best thing I ever did for myself. I love love love my body now! It is a wonderful feeling to be proud of one's own body.

Nowadays I am committed to supporting the online patient community with outstanding resources and by sharing my long-term success in defeating obesity and obesity-related illnesses. Today, I'm a size 2 (down from a size 24W) and living larger than ever!

I will post more about my experience at a later date. In the meantime, please click through to my profile and access my many reviews and photos on my plastic surgeries.

I hit the jackpot!

Having gone through my transformation, I think that I now know how people feel having hit the lottery after decades of living in poverty. My results from body contouring plastic surgery with Dr. Joseph F. Capella and facial rejuvenation with Dr. Catherine Winslow are so good, that it is sometimes surreal. After a decade of not having achieved the body and face I wanted to achieve from weight loss surgery, there are times when I feel as if this is just a wonderful dream. And I might awaken from this wonderful dream, lying in my bed in my former puddle of flesh, and not caring much about how I looked.

The "after" photos were taken this year, just months after my body contouring plastic surgery with Dr. Capella and facial plastic surgery with Dr. Winslow.

I now have the body that weight loss surgery could not give me. It has been decades since I looked this good. As of this writing, I have lost 50-inches and 45-pounds. I went from a size 14 jeans being tight to size 2 jeans in less than a year since my tummy tuck (my first plastic surgery). Never did I imagine that a simple tummy tuck would lead to this.

If it can happen to me, then it can happen to you. And it's a whole lot more possible than your chances of winning the lottery! It really can and does happen. Just checkout the ~thousand photos on Dr. Capella's website. As for Dr. Winslow, if you think her website gallery is impressive, just wait until you see the before and after photos in her practice.

I hit the lottery alright!

Pix of me right before gastric bypass I. 2003

Dear family

Thank you for loving me even when I did not love myself. I am so sorry to have put you through this nightmare "half lived life" when I was morbidly obese. Now I am so glad to be able to do all of the things with you I could not do before because of my weight and poor health. I love you all very much, now more than ever.

You have within you what it takes to succeed!

I received a lovely message from a WLS patient thanking me for inspiring her. She told me that she realize that she could do this and was not a complete failure.

We have the strength within us that it takes to succeed. We just have to find it. It took a long time for me to grow up and take on the challenge of my obesity. I have been free of obesity and my obesity related illnesses for more than a decade. RNY gastric bypass saved my life. The plastic surgery was the completion of erasing the sins of my past, getting rid of the telltale skin that was a constant reminder that I was a failure with regard to respecting my body for so long.

Not only did it shame me to look at my naked body in the mirror, but also it kept me from fully being present to living a life I love. I am so stinking happy nowadays. And I take such good care of my body, working out several times a week and eating super healthy. I know that I can fall back into old patterns of behavior so easily and ruin all the wonderful things I have achieved. I never want to backslide.

Acquired Celiac Disease - Gluten Intolerance after Bariatric Weight-Loss Surgery

I developed celiac disease after gastric bypass weight loss surgery. I researched the cause and wrote a full article on it (I regularly write on an obesity health site). Below is a very short synopsis of what I learned.

Celiac disease may occur as a consequence of surgery, including weight-loss surgery. According to Mayo Clinic, while the exact cause is unknown, it is suspected that the trauma caused by surgery may lead to the body having an abnormal immune response to eating gluten.

Terry Simpson, MD, a bariatric surgeon, claims surgeons have discovered a high incidence of celiac disease in patients who had undergone gastric bypass surgery. It is assumed that since bariatric surgeons had bypassed the traditional area for gluten breakdown in the small bowel, that the protein being seen further down began a process of an acquired celiac disease.

My best advice to you is to have regular colonoscopies. Celiac disease is an auto-immune disease and should not be taken lightly. My celiac disease was detected years after my gastric bypass. I don't know when it actually onset but I don't believe I had it prior to my weight loss surgery. Note that it is VERY important that your colonoscopy go into the small bowel - you will have to ask your gastroenterologist specifically to do this and biopsy a tissue sample. My gastro did this and sent the specimen to a doctor in Texas who was very specialized in reading such tissue samples. The celiac sprue otherwise would have gone undetected and my body would have continued to attack itself.

Motivation - Be a Rebel! You CAN Do This!

“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The trouble-makers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently…they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius.” ~ Steve Jobs

My Bariatric Life before and after photo

This photo was supposed to go with the post above. The photo on the left is me the night before my gastric bypass surgery in 2003. The photo on the right was taken in June 2014, about 8-mos after my plastic surgery. People tell me it is hard to believe they are one in the same person.

As for me, I wonder how I ever let myself get to the point of morbid obesity. I was thin as a teenager. I'll never know the answer to that. But what I do know is that it will never happen again.

Be a rebel, people! You can do this!

I have already lost touch with a couple of people I used to be

You cannot start the next chapter of your life, if you keep rereading the last. Be thankful for who you are now, but keep fighting for what you want to be tomorrow. That was one of the most courageous decisions I ever made.

My Bariatric Life AMAZING transformation video photo gallery

My Bariatric Life AMAZING Transformation

Finding my true self

I wasn't aware that I did not love myself. Only recently was I able to love the person who was -- the obese me I see in photographs from more than a decade ago, or even the overweight me I see in photos from 21-months ago. And once I loved that person who was, I loved the person who is.

It did not happen by chance. It took work. I have been doing the inner work since completing my plastic surgery, the work I guess I was supposed to do 12 years ago when I had my weight loss surgery. Back then we did not have comprehensive treatment teams to help us along. We had only a surgeon to change our anatomy. The rest was up to us.

I realized that because I did not know how to love myself, that I did not know how to love someone else, either. I have been blessed with some very wonderful people in my life. I buried my mother last month. She knew how to love better than anyone. Her love shone through in everything she did and everyone she touched. She was one of the very most wonderful people in my life.

John came to her funeral, He took the hours long drive in inclement weather up into the mountains in the middle of nowhere to the peaceful village where my parents live. He was a friend of the family since the age of 12 or 13, something like that. John also is one of the wonderful people in my life. He was my first love; I was 16 and he was 14. I had not seen him in 20 years. He held me tight in his arms and I cried. I felt like a little girl again in those moments, as if I was 16 and Mom was alive and life was simple again. I felt so safe. I did not want to let go. I did not want to return to reality. John did not say a word. He just held me for as long as I needed. I could feel the energy passing between our chests as we stood there, our heart chakras opening up.

It is amazing that love never dies. I don't know if I would have appreciate the enormity of John's act of love that day had I not been on this spiritual journey that I'd undertaken to transform my "inside" having completed transforming my "outside." And the memories came flooding back, all the things he did for me, expressions of his love for me, and I am amazed that such a young boy could have been such a man in these matters. He was more of a man at 14 than some men I know in their 40s.

And I remember, too, all of the ways Mom showed us her love every day of her life until she became far to ill to communicate any longer.

And I recognized all the ways the men in my life expressed their love to me -- there were not many to be sure, just a few really special ones, and not all of them were lovers.

Have you done the inner work to love yourself? Have you had any transformative experiences?

I love this before and after photo

I am not sure what year the before photo was taken but I am in my 30s. The after photo was taken in 2014 and I am 50!

Thankful November, My Bariatric Life

November is traditionally a time to give deeper consideration for all that which we have to be thankful. And I am thankful for massive weight loss because it has given me back my health and my life. Before my gastric bypass in 2003, I had cycled through obesity, anorexia, binge eating disorder, bulimia, and finally morbid obesity. I was physically and emotionally deteriorated when I turned to bariatric surgery. But I did the hard work and pulled myself together to achieve the level of fitness I have today. Please know this dear reader: You have the power to change your life just as I did.
Vishal Mehta M.D.

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