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From a Guy’s Perspective

by Dana Epstein, (aka “The Foodie Guy”)

Hi – I’m Dana… a guy named Dana.  A guy named Dana, who’s had weight-loss surgery (WLS). Why is that noteworthy?  Why, or to whom should that matter?  Well, WLS certainly isn’t unique to women, but I think you’ll agree that in terms of nutrition and metabolism, we’re (at least sometimes) somewhat different. We can be different in how our bodies respond to exercise, where we store our excess weight, which affects the types of exercises we do, and any number of other issues.

As the newest contributor to Foodie News, and as this is my first contribution to the BF team and Foodie Nation, I’d like to start by offering a fairly brief introduction and give you the HDR (heavy, deep and real… the details!) of where I came from and where I am today.

I’ve been an overweight guy since as far back as I can remember, both anecdotally and in pictures.  I wore husky-sized pants, was never athletically-inclined, had a limited palate (lunch was almost invariably a peanut butter and jelly or peanut butter and fluff sandwich, WITH dessert, of course!), and wasn’t overly active. Those behaviors didn’t change much through high school.  (I promised you brief, right? How’s that for fast-forwarding through a bunch of years!)  While I expanded my horizons, and learned to like a lot more foods, I didn’t expand my activity level all that much, so the weight piled on.

Fast forward again to sometime in 2010.  By now I’ve tried losing weight in a number of ways.  I’ve gone on traditional diets, I’ve tried all kinds of programs.  I have tried The Cambridge Diet, Herbalife, Jenny Craig, South Beach, Weight Watchers, and a couple of other fads I read about and tried. I initially experienced varying amounts of success on most of them, but couldn’t maintain the loss over time.  In fact, I’d typically lose anywhere between 20 to 90 pounds, only to gain it back. In most cases, I’d gain in back and then some.  At some point, I weighed 327 pounds. That’s a lot for anyone, but it’s a whole lot for a guy who only stands just under 5’7.

I’d considered WLS once before, but hadn’t done much research, and had no support system in place. During the next several months, I started looking into the process more seriously, and in November of 2010, I attended my first information session and was very intrigued.  I went to my second one in January of 2011 (this particular hospital’s program’s “rules” included having to attend two sessions, at least one of which had to be live).  If you chose, you could watch a pre-recorded webinar to satisfy one of the two sessions.  I had a discussion with a few people and informed them that I was planning to have the surgery.

Fast forward to March of 2011 – I’d fulfilled all the requirements of my hospital’s program, and was at the point where I could schedule my surgery. I’d remembered from my information sessions that I could expect to have a window of 30-90 days for my surgery date. The first date they offered me was 5 days later!  I thought that was a bit *too* soon to have to make plans with work and all, so I asked what the next available date was, and it was two weeks later – April 11th, 2011.

Fast forward again to today, where this morning’s weight (yeah, I stepped on the scale just for all of you) is 194.4. Don’t bother trying to do the math – I’m down well over 130 pounds from my highest weight.  I’m still a work-in-process – my next goal is to break the 175 pound mark.

So there you have it – you know who I am, where I’ve been and where I am today. I’m here to answer any questions from my fellow Foodie Nation readers and give you a guy’s perspective on WLS and some of the resources I have found helpful in my journey. I have been moderately successful in my journey, and am happy to “pay it forward”. 

Do you have a “guy related” question for Dana (related to being a guy after weight-loss surgery, we’d like to clarify he is NOT your dating advice resource!)? Email them to bariatricfoodie@yahoo.com.

NOTE: You may see comments “down yonder” that don’t make sense in relation to the article. Unfortunately, on this platform we have to recycle article pages so you’re seeing comments in response to past articles that were on this page. No worries…we’re working on moving to nicer digs, soon. Until then, keep commenting but don’t get worried if you see a comment that looks like it doesn’t belong. In fact…give it a hug. Wayward comments have feelings too!

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