Vitamins After Weight Loss Surgery
By: Sarah Christensen, PA
All bariatric surgery patients require life-long vitamins after having weight loss surgery. The changes in anatomy following surgery can change the amount of vitamins the body receives. Daily supplemental vitamins are used to avoid the risk of deficiencies.
What vitamins should I take?
Each type of surgery has a specific group of recommended vitamins because of the changes in anatomy. Below are listed the daily vitamins recommended according to the surgery performed.
- Lap Band – multivitamin
- Sleeve Gastrectomy – multivitamin, sublingual vitamin B12 and Calcium citrate
- Gastric Bypass – multivitamin, sublingual vitamin B12 and Calcium citrate
- Duodenal Switch – ADEK vitamins, multivitamins , sublingual vitamin B12 and Calcium citrate
Why do I need vitamins?
It is important to continue on these supplemental vitamins indefinitely to avoid vitamin deficiencies which can lead to various health concerns including:
- Vitamin B12 – Important for neurological health. Deficiencies can lead to fatigue, tingling of the hands and extremities, anemia and neurological disorders. Vitamin B12 is given under the tongue because the new stomach anatomy does not produce the necessary protein needed to absorb dietary vitamin B12.
- Vitamin B1 (thiamine) – Important for neurological health. Deficiency can lead to neurological disorders including muscle weakness that can be permanent.
- Calcium – Important for muscles and bones. Deficiency in calcium can lead to osteoporosis.
- Vitamin A – Deficiency in vitamin A can affect vision and weaken the immune system.
- Vitamin D – This vitamin is important for the immune system and bones. Deficiency can lead to osteoporosis, fatigue and weaken the immune system.
- Vitamin E – Promotes wound healing.
- Vitamin K – Important in appropriate blood clotting. Deficiencies can lead to increased risk of osteoporosis, heart disease and bleeding.
How do I avoid vitamin deficiencies?
Take supplements consistently as prescribed by your bariatric surgeon. Be sure to get blood work done annually even after you are done following up routinely with your bariatric surgeon. Be sure you are seen each year by your primary care physician for health screening and annual labs to monitor vitamin levels.
Bariatric vitamins are very important and needed to avoid the risks of vitamin deficiencies. Stay in close contact with your surgeon if there are questions or concerns regarding your supplemental vitamins.
For more information on Medical Follow Ups after weight loss surgery, click here.
For more information on the Various Complications that can occur after weight loss surgery, click here.
For more information on Annual Labs that need to be taken, click here.
For additional information on Vitamins and Minerals you should be taking after weight loss surgery, click here.