Highest Weight: 345 lbs.
Current Weight: 218 lbs.
Goal Weight: 225 lbs. (he’s under!)
Bariatric Surgery: Gastric Sleeve
Surgery Date: October 2020
Largest Size: 48 waist, XXXL shirts
Current Size: 36 waist, L shirts
Weight related diseases: sleep apnea, high blood pressure, joint issues in feet and knees
Medications: cpap, 3 meds for high blood pressure
Life Before Surgery
Imagine being on a diet to lose weight when you were just six years old. You don’t even know what a calorie is at that age. That was how old Dave was when he was put on a diet. And it didn’t stop there. The dieting continued throughout childhood and high school. Dave remembers skipping breakfast and lunch and only eating dinner. While at one point in high school Dave did lose 25 pounds over the course of a year, he later gained that weight back and additional pounds as well.
In 2000, Dave did have significant weight loss success while living in Chicago. He lost 100 pounds by biking everywhere, exercising by playing basketball or lifting weights and choosing healthier food options, such as fruits and vegetables. During this time, Dave had a job in television where healthy lunches were served.
However, he switched jobs and began working for the famous comedy club, Second City, full time. Since he was on the road all the time, Dave wasn’t exercising or eating healthy foods. This led to a 30 pound weight gain.
In 2004, Dave suffered from a severe back injury and needed to have surgery. During his recovery, Dave continued to gain weight. This wasn’t his only injury. Dave also tore his ACL six months later which required surgery as well. Between both surgeries, Dave spent a total of five years in physical therapy. During this time, Dave’s weight did fluctuate, however the trend was a steady gain.
In 2010, Dave moved to Los Angeles with his wife. When they had a child, Dave had even less time to be active. Dave even started going to Overeaters Anonymous in 2015 in an attempt to get his eating habits under control.
Dave remembers days he would get out of the car and limp because the pressure on his heels and feet was so severe due to excess weight. Because of having such severe prior injuries, Dave was afraid to push himself to exercise.
Dave was working with an orthopedic surgeon who explained he was going to need surgery on his heels. This procedure would have been debilitating and the road to recovery would have been nothing short of excruciating.
Weight loss surgery was actually something Dave had been considering for some time. When Dave asked the orthopedic surgeon if bariatric surgery would help, the surgeon said it definitely wouldn’t hurt. The recovery would then be less painful if Dave lost weight first.
Choosing a Southern California Weight Loss Surgeon
Initially, Dave’s primary care physician referred him to a weight loss surgeon who did not provide any follow up care after the surgery. Dave knew this would not be enough support for him to have long term weight loss success. He was then referred to Dr. Korman, who has a comprehensive program that provides support for patients after surgery including support groups, follow up visits, and sessions with a dietitian.
Dave’s first impression of Dr. Korman was that he was straightforward, confident in the outcome of the surgery, and overall easy to talk to about his specific situation. This made Dave feel comfortable and confident that Dr. Korman was the best choice. Three months later, Dave underwent the gastric sleeve procedure.
Although Dave was nervous before the surgery, he knew undergoing the procedure would be life changing. After decades long attempts to reach a healthy weight, Dave knew bariatric surgery was the ultimate solution. His recovery was quick. Since his procedure was during the pandemic, Dave was able to go back to work within a week since he does freelance work remotely.
Life After surgery
Dave suffered from several weight-related conditions as a result of having obesity including high blood pressure, sleep apnea, and severe joint pain. He now only takes one medication for his blood pressure at the lowest dosage, as compared to three medications. Dave has also stopped using his CPAP for sleep apnea. Dave’s joint issues are much better which allows him to engage in physical activities for the first time in years.
Breakfast: overnight oats + blueberries
Mid-morning snack: low carb tortilla wrap with turkey / lettuce
Lunch: chicken / beef or bone broth with a little bit of buckwheat noodles with veggies
Dinner: salad with grated cheese + chicken / steak / roast / tuna / swordfish / shrimp
Snacks: a portion controlled walnuts and raisins, or greek yogurt w/ frozen blueberries and little bit of honey
Dave has also been vigilant about incorporating physical activity into his weight loss regimen. He trains 3 times per week utilizing weights for strength training for 45 minutes. He also has enjoyed playing basketball at the gym 4-5 times a week, usually before he lifts weights.
A Few of Dave’s Favorites
When asked what his favorite tools and experiences Dave has encountered since having weight loss surgery, his list is comprehensive:
Mission tortilla or Carb Balance wraps -60 calories per wrap
Baritastic app - An app that helps Dave logs food, and tracks his protein / carb / fat intake
People don’t recognize him because of his weight loss which boosts his confidence.
Playing basketball - Dave never thought he’d ever play again.
He has the energy to play with his kids outside.
Dave’s wife is thrilled and their relationship is stronger than ever.
Dave is very open about his weight loss surgery and enjoys being an advocate for those who struggle with obesity and are considering undergoing a procedure. He has even referred friends to Dr. Korman after they saw the weight loss transformation just from photos.
Words of Wisdom
“Weight loss surgery saved more than just my life. I want other people to not be afraid of it like I was for such a long time.”
“Obesity is not a character flaw - it’s a disease. The surgery is not debilitating. If you follow the plan, it works and saves your life. I feel 20 years younger. There is no better option than this.”
Dave has a final compliment for Dr. Korman: an outstanding rating of 10/10.