Saturday, July 2, 2011

Cut my guts out... Please!

The surgery I'm having is actually very simple, but to understand why it works, you need to understand how the stomach and the brain interact.  Your stomach is a bag for gathering and processing food. It has special cells in the tissues which can feel if the bag is empty or full. Biology compels you to fill that bag. When the bag is empty, cells release a hormone called Ghrelin which tells the brain, "Hey! We need some food down here!" When the concentration of Ghrelin is high enough, you will eat something, you don't really have any choice, you will eat until other cells, at the top of the bag, start to stretch. When those cells stretch, they release a hormone called PYY, which tells the brain, "OK, we're full down here, you can stop eating!"  So the cells in the main body of the bag say "EAT", and the cells at the top of the bag say "STOP"...
   The procedure is called a gastric sleeve. The surgeon goes in and cuts away most of the body of the bag, leaving a fairly thin tube where a big bag used to be. It looks like a shirt sleeve compared to Grammaw's giant handbag, hence the name. It doesn't just reduce the size of the stomach, it removes most of the cells which release the Ghrelin - in effect, it surgically removes your hunger. You simply are not compelled to eat like you were before. Your eating patterns need to change, as you can no longer sit down to a huge seafood platter and chow down like a beast. You can only eat small meals, chewing thoroughly and eating slowly, but small meals will still stretch the cells at the top of the bag, and those cells will tell the brain, "OK, we're full!" just as they did before. One of the side effects of this procedure is that patients will sometimes simply forget to eat...

   If you are one of those types who eat when you are depressed or lonely or for some other psychological reason, you need to address that particular issue first. Do something else when you are feeling low. It doesn't matter what, just do something else. Take up knitting, build a birdhouse out of tongue depressors, play video games, learn a second language, Я говорю немного па Русски, не очень хорошо...anything other than eat. If your life sucks, getting fatter ain't gonna help.

   Anybody wanna play Call of Duty? I'm gonna go shoot some bad guys. Here's a link that can tell you more about the procedure;


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