Summary: Tummy tuck and liposuction both come with similar instructions. After your surgery, you’re supposed to maintain a stable weight as much as possible. It’s essential for your long term results and to maintain the aesthetics that you desire. But that brings up a question: just how are you supposed to maintain a stable weight?
Best Ways to Maintain a So-Called Stable Weight?
The definition of what a “stable weight” is will change for every patient depending on the situation he or she is in. Drastically increasing or decreasing your weight can cause your results to diminish incredibly quickly. That’s why today we’re talking about some strategies you can use to keep yourself in that desired weight range.
The first step in maintaining your weight after a liposuction or tummy tuck procedure is to make sure you’re the right weight when you go under the knife in the first place. Many surgeons will ask that you be an “ideal weight,” but really that just means an ideal weight to you. Both tummy tuck and liposuction are designed to help contour the body–to sculpt a little bit here and there. They are not intended to necessarily help you lose a large amount of weight (that’s what bariatric surgery is for).
Liposuction will eliminate stubborn areas of fat, while tummy tuck can get rid of unwanted excess skin. So it’s usually recommended that patients be pretty happy with the way they happen to look when they undergo surgery. If your weight is pretty stable before your procedure, that’ll make it easier for you to maintain your weight after surgery.
What Weight Shifts Can Do
Gaining or losing a significant amount of weight after a liposuction procedure can drastically compromise your results. For some patients, that might mean developing odd shapes as they gain or lose weight. Likewise, with tummy tuck, gaining weight can stretch the skin again, while losing weight can lead to the production of more excess tissue.
To rectify either condition, you’ll likely require surgery again–either liposuction or tummy tuck, depending on what the situation calls for. And if you’ve already undergone a tummy tuck, the last thing you want to do is have to schedule another one just to get the same results.
How to Maintain Your Weight
That’s why surgeons are pretty adamant about telling patients ahead of time how important maintaining a stable weight is to their results. You can maintain your weight in several ways:
- Exercise regularly: Exercising to build muscle or to maintain your current weight is the way to go. You won’t want to exercise with the intent to lose weight. Regular, moderate exercise, however, is necessary if you want to maintain the weight you’re at.
- Don’t diet: The last thing you want to do when you’re trying to maintain a stable weight is start dieting. Any kind of restrictive diet (for example, eliminating gluten or protein from your daily food intake) is designed to help you control or lose weight. (The exception, of course, is any diet your doctor orders you to undergo, such as a diet designed to control sodium levels).
- Try to maintain habits: Whatever habits you were comfortable with before your tummy tuck or liposuction helped get you where you are. Maintaining those habits can be essential to maintaining your current weight. So it’s not a bad idea to make sure those habits are part of a healthy lifestyle and, overall, sustainable.
For most people, this will be about balance: ensuring that your caloric intake is relatively balanced against your activity. If you start increasing or decreasing your activity level, then consider also adjusting your caloric intake.
Helping You Enjoy Your Results
The idea here is that you want to enjoy your results. And the best way to make sure you can enjoy your results for as long as possible is simple: maintain a stable weight. It may not always be easy to see what that looks like or how to get there. But that’s why it’s important to consult with your plastic surgeon, especially at the early stages of your procedure. It’s easier to maintain a stable weight if you’ve proven you can already do it.
About the Author: Dan Voltz has been writing about plastic and cosmetic surgery for almost five years. He’s constantly in communication with cosmetic and plastic surgeons to ensure he has the latest and most up to date information possible.