Can Bariatric Surgery Improve Your Love Life?

2 min read  |  June 14, 2019  | 

Major weight loss can greatly reduce the risk for diabetes, heart disease, stroke, hypertension, depression, cancer, and sleep apnea. As it turns out, dramatic weight loss can boost your self-esteem, improve your physical abilities, and improve your sex life in the months and years following bariatric surgery.

What’s the connection between your weight and sexual health?

In both men and women, being extremely overweight is tied to sexual dysfunction and dissatisfaction. Before bariatric surgery, approximately half of patients with severe obesity were not happy with their love life, according to one study.

Hormonal changes and physical limitations may interfere with sexual desire and function.

Men with a higher than average body mass index have a greater risk of developing erectile dysfunction (ED). And that leads to medical concerns. Up to half of all ED cases are attributed to hypertension and cardiovascular disease, which are also associated with obesity. Some high blood pressure medications may also affect sexual function.

In men, obesity can decrease testosterone levels. In women, it can cause or may be a result of higher levels of hormones, like testosterone and estrogen levels.

Losing significant weight and keeping it off has many benefits — including improvements in cardiovascular conditions, hormonal imbalances, and physical health.

“With the significant weight loss seen after bariatric surgery, the hormonal imbalances are improved,” said Nestor F. De la Cruz Munoz, Jr., M.D., a bariatric surgeon with the University of Miami Health System. “We have had patients report an increase in libido and sexual satisfaction after their surgery.”

How you see yourself matters — to you and your partner

Beyond the physical challenges of morbid obesity, the emotional battle of having a poor self-image can also trigger a loss of interest in sex or sexual dysfunction.

Following weight loss surgery, patients report improvements in their desire, function, and frequency. Five years later, approximately half of the women and men who were dissatisfied with their sexual lives before bariatric surgery report being more satisfied.

Want to learn more? Speak to UHealth’s Bariatric Specialists.

Dana Kantrowitz is a contributing writer for UMiami Health News.

Tags: bariatric surgery, Dr. Nestor Villamizar, sexual health, weight loss surgery

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