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Big weight loss can bring big relationship changes

WEDNESDAY, March 28, 2018 – A loss-making operation could turn your love life upside down, as new research suggests.

In one of two new Swedish studies, greater weight loss after bariatric surgery was associated with more divorce.

In the other study, singles were more likely to enter into new relationships or to marry for weight loss.

"Those of us who care for patients with bariatric surgery find that many patients experience quite a profound change in their patients' lives," Dr. Luke Funk, assistant professor of surgery at the University of Wisconsin in Madison.

"Their significant weight loss and improvements in other health problems ̵

1; such as high blood pressure and diabetes – cause changes in both your physical and mental well-being," added Funk, co-author of a lead article published with the study.

"They often adopt new hobbies, become more physically active, and feel more confident about having an improved self-image, and I think that causes many to review their relationships with others," Funk said.

The weight loss surgery is an effective treatment for seriously overweight patients who want to control related health problems, according to the study's authors, with nearly 470,000 bariatric procedures performed worldwide in 2013.

But researchers have found a mixed set of behavioral effects ranging from improved quality of life, on the one hand, to an increased risk of substance abuse, on the other.] One of the new studies looked at the relationship history of nearly 2,000 overweight Swedes Researchers compared patients with approximately 1,900 obese adults who had no surgery

Postoperative data from approximately 29,000 patients undergoing gastric bypass surgery were reported in more than three years over a three-year period 280,000 people compared in population

The stu dy authors found that bariatric surgery was tied to increased chances of divorce or separation for those in a previous relationship, especially those who lost the most weight.

And among those who were unconnected, significant weight loss was associated with greater opportunities for a new relationship or marriage. Study author Per-Arne Svensson said, "In solid partner relationships, weight loss after bariatric surgery is not likely to be a problem, and in many cases, relationships may even be strengthened.

" In partnership relationships that are somewhat unstable or non-functional, However, weight loss can increase the risk of partner segregation.

An associate professor at the University of Gothenburg, Svensson added, "Unfortunately, our study can only provide limited insights into why some couples break up after a bariatric operation. Funk said it was "somehow surprising" that patients in a relationship divorced or divorced after surgery

"One might think that existing relationships would increase if bariatric He stressed that patients experience an improvement in their mental well-being and self-image.

Nothing is clear, but Funk offered some theories: "Perhaps the bariatric patients wanted to experience new relationships. Maybe the partners of these patients felt less with the & # 39; new person & # 39; connected with whom they were married.

Another possibility, he said, is that previously healthy relationships had suffered when "things that couples might have in common before the surgery After the surgery, the interests were no longer shared.

The research can not establish a direct cause-effect relationship, and the study authors warned that the findings may not apply outside of Sweden.

"Many patients have told me that a bariatric surgery is the best Decision that they have ever met, and they really have a new perspective on life. A new beginning, "he said.

But, Funk warned, medical professionals need to discuss the potential impact of bariatric surgery on their patients' relationships with others.

The report was published online on March 28, JAMA Surgery .

More information

There's more to weight loss surgery at the US National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

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