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No staples are used in this procedure, and your physician can adjust the diameter of the band around the stomach by adding or removing saline (salt water). Over time, the pouch can expand to hold two to three ounces of food. Since no part of the stomach is removed, digestion remains normal.
This type of procedure is classified as restrictive because the size of the stomach is reduced so dramatically. Despite the lack of malabsorption, we still encourage daily vitamin intake as part of your healthy lifestyle.
Weight loss is slower and lesser with the lap band. You can expect to lose 50 percent of your excess weight at two years. Potentially, with continued adjustments of the band and better eating and exercise habits, you may lose more weight. Like gastric bypass, your effort will be critical to producing significant weight loss. Even with this operation, it's possible for you to eat enough to maintain your pre-operative weight or to regain any weight you lose.
It will be critical that you begin and continue an exercise program for the rest of your life. This should include at least 30 minutes of exercise five to seven days a week. In addition, it's critical that you maintain a diet for the rest of your life that consists of no sweets, very small amounts of carbohydrates, small volumes of food and high protein intake. You'll need to eat 40-60 grams of protein a day and it'll be very important for you to pay attention to food labels to make sure you get enough.
After the procedure, you'll only be able to eat about three-quarters to one cup of food, and you have to chew the food thoroughly. Eating more than the stomach pouch can hold may result in nausea and vomiting. Restrictive procedures pose fewer risks than gastric bypass procedures, but they're also less successful because continuous overeating can stretch the pouch so that it accommodates more food.