Weight Loss Made Me Feel Like a New Person

weight loss before and after

BEFORE                                                             AFTER


Patient: Julia

Province: Ontario

Surgical Weight Loss Procedure: Mini Gastric Bypass

2 years post-surgery


For as long as I can remember, I have had an unhealthy relationship with food.

I was always on the heavier side growing up, and in adolescence, my relationship with food went estranged.

I was a competitive dancer and stood out, not because I was an amazing dancer, but because I was larger than everyone else. I desperately wanted to be like my svelte teammates, so I started to restrict food and exercised constantly. This spiraled into a slew of eating disorders ranging from anorexia nervosa through to binge-eating disorder. The psychotherapy I received healed my mental health, however, my binge-eating habits kept with me.

I just loved food and became an emotional eater. For every single emotion I experienced, food was there. Through the ups and downs and turmoil of life, food was there to support me. So much so, that seemingly so suddenly I was 297 pounds (at 5’4”).

While I was climbing up the weight ladder, I was concurrently climbing down the depression ladder. Although it was a gradual decent, it felt like in just one day, I was overwhelmingly miserable. Despite having a great career, a husband that adored me, and four beautiful children, I hated myself yet again.

I felt incredibly self-conscious all the time. I stopped being social with friends, stopped volunteering for school events with my kids, and became less intimate with my husband. I felt anxious, like everyone who happened to gaze my way was judging me for my size. The self-hatred was crippling, so I withdrew from life. But I knew I had to change and I had to do something immediately.

Recalling all of my failed dieting attempts, I knew that this time I had to do something drastic in order to be successful long term. So, I conducted a myriad of research on bariatric surgery and quickly knew that this was the right solution for me.

I knew I could not withstand the lengthy wait for government-assisted bariatric surgery, so I opted for a private program and from all of my research, SmartShape was the best. They had the most up-to-date information concerning bariatric surgery on their website, including print and videos, which made it easy for me to make an informed decision. It was the abundance of information readily available about the facility and surgery team, the transparency of the procedure and fees, and the timeliness of surgery dates that ultimately drew me to SmartShape.

Within a week of initial contact, I had consulted with my surgeon and booked my surgery date. I was considering either a Gastric Sleeve or Mini Gastric Bypass (“MGB”), and with the advice of my surgeon, decided on the MGB.

My experience at the SmartShape facility was everything I could have hoped for. I truly felt like a VIP from start to finish. The facility was beautiful, more like a hotel than a clinic, and I was greeted with kindness and respect from all the staff.

Everything ran smoothly, from check-in at reception to pre-op assessments. I felt calm and supported by everyone.

It’s hard to believe that that was two short years ago.  I finally reached my goal weight of 130 lbs in March of this year, for a total weight loss of 167 lbs. I am now physically active; I stand all day at my standing desk and do CrossFit three times a week with my kids. Food and I are friends again, but at a healthy distance. I eat for nourishment, not to support my emotions.

Adapting to this new lifestyle was not difficult for me. I think this was because I was beyond ready for change and I knew just how important this was for myself and my family. I knew I had worth and I was willing to do the work required to realize it.

I don’t believe I could ever adequately articulate just how much SmartShape has changed my life. My time being trapped inside an obese body and mind feels like it was another lifetime ago, and I guess in a way it truly was. I am not the same person I was pre-MGB. I am no longer shy and withdrawn, anxious and self-conscious.

My life has most definitely improved on all fronts since I decided to have the MGB. The SmartShape team of surgeons, nurses and support staff were invaluable to my recovery, which well surpassed my time at the clinic. I felt and continue to feel supported and encouraged by the team and will be forever grateful to have had privilege to benefit from their expertise.

Thank you for giving me the knowledge and tools I needed to make those positive changes and to help me realize my worth and full potential in health and in life. Thank you for all that you have done for me, and for all that you do for so many others, SmartShape.


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