What You Need To Know About Your Bariatric Surgery

what you need to know about bariatric surgery

Approximately ⅓ of adults in the United States are reportedly obese. Which accounts for the rise in the number of people opting for bariatric surgery. The American Society For Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery noted that around 228,000 patients underwent Bariatric surgery in 2017, which is a significant increase from 2011.

What is Bariatric Surgery?

Bariatric surgical procedures help people lose weight by restricting the amount of food their stomach can hold. Although these surgeries can be beneficial, they also create special post-surgery dietary requirements, including the need for patients to take vitamins and nutrients to avoid those deficiencies.

Even without surgery, it can be hard for most people to eat enough fruits and vegetables to meet daily nutrient requirements. This is why post-bariatric surgery, it’s even more important to seek out the right multivitamin and vitamin routine to ensure your body is getting all of the nutrients it needs. Furthermore, water-soluble vitamins, such as the Vitamin B-Complex, do not get stored in the body, so they need to be added daily.

Types of Bariatric Surgeries

There are four main types of bariatric surgeries available. Their outcomes, depending on the type of procedure, will either restrict the amount of food your stomach can hold, or reduce the number of calories and nutrients your body can absorb. Your doctor will discuss with you which procedure will be your best option. 

  • Gastric bypass: A small pouch is created at the top of the stomach, which limits the amount of food and liquid you’ll be able to ingest. This is considered the ‘gold standard’ in weight loss surgery. 
  • Laparoscopic adjustable gastric band (The Band): A permanent inflatable band is placed inside the stomach creating a small stomach pouch that only allows a narrow opening into the rest of the stomach. 
  • Sleeve gastrectomy: 80 percent of the stomach is removed, and the remaining portion is shaped into a tube looking like a banana, which creates a smaller appetite. 
  • Biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch (BPD/DS): A large portion of the stomach is removed, the middle section of the intestine is closed off, which limits the amount of food you can eat, along with how much nutrients, fats, and proteins can be absorbed. 

Who Is A Candidate For Bariatric Surgery?

Bariatric surgery isn’t for everyone. You have to meet specific qualifications to be eligible for one of the procedures.

According to best practice, you need to fall into one of the following areas

  • A BMI >40 and 100 pounds overweight
  • A BMI> 35 combined with other weight-related illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, GI disorders, and more. 
  • Unable to lose weight despite following healthy diets

You’ll need to go on a restrictive, pre-operative diet about 2-3 weeks before going into surgery. 

What To Expect After Bariatric Surgery

Most surgeries will leave you feeling battered and bruised for a few days to a few years post-op. Going in for a bariatric procedure, you’re concerned about your health. But, maybe you’re also worried about how you’re going to feel once you wake up from the surgery, and those few days to weeks after. 

  • 2-5 day hospital stay, depending on the type of surgery and how well and quickly you recover.
  • 3-5 weeks before getting back to your regular life schedule.
  • Many return to work within a week or two.
  • Constipation.
  • Dumping syndrome which occurs after meals that were high in sugar. Can cause nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting.
  • Gallstones which can happen when you lose a lot of weight quickly.
  • Infection in your wound site.
  • Hair loss is common but temporary.
  • Potential serious side effects are blood clots, blood in your stool, and leaks. If any of these occur, call your doctor immediately.
  • It is recommended to wait 12-18 months after surgery before getting pregnant.

Life Changes After Bariatric Surgery

With weight loss surgery comes expected weight loss. You will also need to make a lifestyle change to enhance the success of your operation. 

  • Exercise. Anything helps. If you’ve never been into exercising, start walking, and build up your physical activity level from there. If you swim, you need to wait until your wounds are healed before getting back into the water 
  • Food. You’re going to need to eat smaller meals more frequently. 
  • Nutrition. You will probably be working with a nutritionist who will help make sure you’re getting in a well-balanced diet mixed with your post-bariatric vitamins. 

You will need to take multivitamins for the rest of your life post-bariatric. In particular, you will need to increase your dosing of Vitamin D, calcium, and iron. 

Try Tespo’s bariatric multivitamins. Because they’re a liquid formula, they are easily digestible and absorbed more.  Buy links

Taste Change Post Bariatric Surgery

One of the common “side effects” of Bariatric Surgery is that there is a change in taste, smell, and/or food tolerance. Most patients are affected by at least one, if not all three of those. 

Most commonly, sweet, sour, and fast foods were the groups most noticeably affected. Sure, it’s a great thing to have an aversion to those particular foods because avoiding them can aid in more effective weight loss. 

Diet After Bariatric Surgery

You’re going to have an enormously decreased appetite after you have your bariatric surgery. You’ll need to follow your nutritionist and doctor’s recommendations carefully. 

General post-bariatric surgery diet guidelines are:

  • Smaller meal portions
  • Low calories, fats, and sugars
  • Keep a daily food journal
  • Don’t use straws or drink carbonated beverages. It causes air pockets and will make you extremely uncomfortable
  • Avoid sugar in its various forms
  • You’ll start with low-calorie between 300-600 calories per day, mostly thick liquids
  • It’s not recommended to exceed 1,000 calories per day

For more information on post-bariatric diet expectations, you can read this: Dietary Guidelines After Bariatric Surgery

Vitamins In The Bariatric Formula

At the request of the Bariatric community, Tespo created a unique formula using the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery guidelines. The Tespo Bariatric formula addresses the specific nutrient needs of the Bariatric community offering increased Vitamin B12, iron, Folic Acid, and D3, among other vitamins and minerals. The following vitamins and minerals are essential for everyone, including Bariatric patients.


Vitamin A’s primary role is enhancing vision. It aids in the development and growth of the cornea and other membranes of the eye. It works to keep the retina healthy and aids in producing proteins which absorb light in the retina.  Beyond the eyes, it is a powerful antioxidant; meaning it fends off free radicals to support immunity, bone growth, and the production of new cells.


Calcium is a mineral that is critical to the building and maintenance of healthy bones. The majority of the calcium in our body is in our bones and teeth, but it also helps blood clot and nerves function. Taking calcium is key to preventing bone loss or brittleness, which studies have shown to develop in patients post-bariatric surgery as a result of calcium deficiencies. But be sure to take calcium with Vitamin D3, which helps the body absorb calcium.


The sunshine Vitamin’s myriad talents include boosting moods, supporting heart health, blood sugar levels, healthy aging, and strengthening bones. For the latter, it plays a crucial role in helping the body absorb calcium. Vitamin D also supports the immune system by helping to fight off free radicals.

Vitamin D3 has been shown to help control blood pressure and reduce the risk of developing diabetes. Both of these ailments contribute to cardiovascular disease. A correlation has been drawn between Vitamin D deficiency and heart disease. In one study, Vitamin D was shown to increase levels of cytokine, which functions as an anti-inflammatory compound. Inflammation has been linked to heart failure.


Vitamin B9 plays a crucial role in healthy pregnancies. It promotes both a healthy reproductive system while being a key player in the development of embryos. Folic Acid supports the development of a healthy central nervous system in fetuses and continues after birth to support nervous system function. It plays a role in repairing DNA damaged by toxins, and aids in the production of blood cells.


This potent B vitamin plays a vital role in insulating and protecting nerves. This is key for proper nerve function and development. B12 helps to keep blood cells healthy while aiding in the prevention of certain types of anemia. It also influences the health and production of sperm and DNA. Vitamin B12 is the exception to water-soluble vitamins as it can be stored in your liver. Yet, the body is still not able to produce it on its own.


A water-soluble nutrient that is part of the vitamin B complex, biotin supports healthy nerves, the digestive tract, and metabolism. Also known as Vitamin B7, biotin aids with the metabolism of protein and carbohydrates, and helps to regulate blood sugar levels. Specifically, it acts as a coenzyme to metabolize fatty acids, amino acids, and glucose, which our body uses for energy. As a cofactor to enzymes, it also plays a role in gene expression. Also, it promotes healthy skin, hair, and nails.

  • IRON

Iron helps your body make healthy oxygen-carrying red blood cells. A common side effect of bariatric surgery is low iron or iron deficiency anemia. It is even more common after gastric bypass because the operation causes food digestion to bypass the duodenum, the primary area where iron is absorbed. Iron supplementation can help ensure that iron levels are adequately maintained to avoid iron deficiency.

  • ZINC

Minerals such as magnesium, zinc, chromium, and potassium are essential to healthy nerve, muscle, and enzyme function. In particular, Zinc helps to keep a healthy happy brain by aiding the metabolism of fatty acids in the brain. It is essential to healthy cell division. It contributes to the health and growth of hair, skin, and nail cells.


This trace mineral functions as an antioxidant and may help protect against oxidative damage and premature aging. It helps to preserve elastin, a protein used to keep skin taut and smooth. It utilizes proteins to boost hair growth. Studies have shown an inverse relationship between adequate selenium intake and heart disease. This is thought to be because of its antioxidant properties, which help to reduce inflammation and prevent platelets from aggregating. Studies also have shown that supplementation with a combination of selenium and CoQ10 can reduce the chance of cardiovascular death.

Support your post-bariatric lifestyle and dietary needs by incorporating Tespo’s Bariatric Complete into your diet. Taking it twice a day, you’ll be delivered the right amount of vitamins and minerals. And, because it’s in a liquid form, it’s easier to swallow, digest, and absorb. The two-pod system is compatible with both the first generation dispenser and the Tespo Connect. Adding a calcium chew makes the Bariatric Pod ASMBS compliant. 

*Disclaimer: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) suggests that you consult with a health care professional before using any dietary supplement. Many supplements contain ingredients that have strong biological effects, and such products may not be safe in all people.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.


Shop our Bariatric Multivitamins:

Men’s Bariatric Complete

Women’s Bariatric Complete