Bariatric surgery is on the rise nationwide because of increases in obesity. According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) more than one-third of US adults are obese. Obesity has dramatically increased in the last ten years and diet, exercise, medications, as well as weight loss surgery are viable options for this condition. However, there is a precaution to be aware of... the surgery can put you at risk for vision loss.
According to an international journal, Obesity Journal, patients need to be educated on the risk of vision loss after weight loss surgery. Vitamin A deficiency has been linked to vision complications after bariatric surgery. Many vitamins must be in place to ensure proper functioning of the visual system. Among them are vitamins A, B1 (thiamine), E, and the mineral copper. It is important after surgery to implement a nutritional supplement program because typically patients can develop food intolerance or eat less after surgery. This can lead to nutrient deficiencies.
Lack of Vitamin A can lead to many pathological conditions of the eye such as night blindness, infections of the cornea, dry eye syndrome, or in rare conditions: blindness. Vitamin A is also vital to for healthy DNA, immune system and healthy skin.
Foods rich in Vitamin A include: sweet potatoes, carrots, dark leafy green vegetables, squash, Romaine lettuce, dried apricots, cantaloupe, sweet red peppers, tuna, and mangos.
After any type of weight loss surgery, patients should be monitored and prescribed supplements to offer maximum protection of their precious eyesight.
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