Sleeve Gastrectomy changed my life
My name Jitendrabhai Patel and I live in Denton in Manchester with my mother and brother.
Just a year ago I used to weigh 22 stone. My BMI was 55 kg/m2. I already had high blood pressure and, with a history of diabetes in our family, I worried that might come next. It got to the point where at the age of only 31 I was waking up each day and worrying about whether that would be my last. Even the smallest tasks like loading the washing machine wuld tire me out – everything seemed like such an effort and a struggle. I did attempt to lose weight on several occasions through diets, exercise, herbal medicines and even hypnotherapy. He never felt comfortable at slimming clubs because his self-esteem was so knocked by his size.
“I just never had the confidence to stand up there in front of people – even those who were in similar situations – and get weighed or talk about myself,
“For a long time the thought just made me more depressed and I’d end up eating more, but then I got to the point where I knew I had to do something about it – I knew I had to be there in the future for my brother who needs me, and for my mum so she wouldn’t be on her own. My brother and my mum were my inspiration.
All this changed over a year ago. I went to see Mr Akhtar at the Spire Hospital Manchester following the grant of funding for obesity surgery. I saw the Obesity Surgery Multidiciplinary Team working with Mr Akhtar. I was given all the information about obesity surgery. I felt confident and safe in their had. I decided to have Sleeve Gastrectomy. Mr Akhtar explained to me the operation and answered all my quires.
A year on I am down 12 stones and feels as if I am a completely different person. I recovered from operation very well. Initially it was little difficult and I had to have a gastroscopy. Now I feel very well, healthy and fit.
Having the surgery has not only shifted the physical weight, it’s also removed that weight of worry which was always on my mind about leaving them. It’s given me a reason to live again – I’ve got a future back for me and my family.
And I feel so much happier, more positive and full of confidence after losing the weight that I don’t need food to cheer me up now anyway.”
Now wants to speak out about my experiences so that more people might benefit – particularly in Asian communities where he says there is a lot of scepticism about bariatric surgery. A lot of Asian food is cooked in oil and butter like ghee with lots of spices – people are worried about the impact of having surgery like this on the taste of their cooking or their ability to eat traditional foods.
“Of course it’s true, your eating habits do have to change – I don’t rely on takeaways or convenience food any more – but there are ways you can adapt. Now when I cook I boil rather than fry, and I use milder spices and herbs rather than stronger ones which might aggravate my stomach. I’m also eating much more fruit and vegetables. “Portion size too is another huge factor – in time I’m sure I will be able to enjoy what you might call ‘a proper curry’ again, but it will only be a small portion, unlike what I would have eaten before.
“Each day is a new opportunity now and there’s exciting times ahead, as well as a secure future for my brother – a future where he is financially supported and has me around to look out for him and rely on.”“I don’t think I’d have any of that without having the surgery and losing the weight.”
I am very grateful to Mr Akhtar and his team for the excellent care that they offered to me. Having Sleeve Gastrectomy has been a life changing experience for me. I will recommend it to anyone with serious weight problem and Mr Akhtar is the surgeon to go for.