Gastric sleeve surgery is designed to reduce the size of the stomach to restrict the amount of food intake. One of the questions gastric sleeve patients ask regularly is, “Will my stomach stretch after gastric sleeve surgery?

The answer is YES, but it’s very different than people think!

This article will discuss the stomach stretch after gastric sleeve surgery in detail.

Can My Stomach Stretch Out After Gastric Sleeve?

The new sleeve stomach is 85% smaller than its original size and holds 85% less food. The “sleeve” is durable, yet small. It’s very difficult to stretch your stomach after gastric sleeve surgery because you are not hungry and can’t eat much without feeling full.

Stretching your stomach to its full size after gastric sleeve surgery is impossible. However, your stomach will vary in size from time to time. The amount of stretching is very minor and generally doesn’t stretch often.

Related: Click Here to Test Your Pouch Size After Gastric Sleeve Surgery!

Will My Pouch Stretch After Gastric Sleeve - Re-Sleeve After Stretching

How to Avoid Stomach Stretching After Gastric Sleeve

Stomach stretching is one of the biggest misconceptions in bariatric surgery. Yet, patients need to know this to maintain healthy, effective, and long-term success with gastric sleeve surgery.

Mild stomach stretching is necessary to get enough nutrients and stay healthy post-op. However, it can become a problem if patients are not careful with their eating behaviors and instead engage in emotional or binge eating. This can quickly cause unnecessary stomach stretching, which could lead to weight regain.

Minimize Unhealthy Weight Gain

  • Follow a balanced meal plan with lean proteins, healthy fats, and non-processed carbohydrates.
  • Portion control: do not overeat, take small bites and eat slowly. Be cognizant of your body’s response to being satisfied.
  • Drink non-sweet beverages like water, herbal teas, and True Lemon products
  • Do not drink with your meals; it pushes food through your pouch faster, causing you to be hungry faster.
  • Try stress management tools like meditation, yoga, exercise, and mindful walking.
  • Use a smaller plate as smaller plates hold less food.
  • Stop mindless snacking, choose whole food options like nuts, avocado, boiled eggs, vegetables, and fruits instead.

Exercise, yoga, and meditation are highly recommended to ease stress and avoid emotional eating.

Weight Regain after Gastric Sleeve Surgery

Although difficult, patients can regain weight after sleeve surgery for various reasons. A larger stomach will not necessarily cause weight regain. Weight gain can be a multi-factorial problem. The key is to remember that gastric sleeve surgery is a tool to support healthy behavior change.

If you gained a pound or two, remember how much you have already lost. If you have gained 10 or 20 pounds, it’s time to start thinking of possible solutions to address weight gain after gastric sleeve.

More than 70% of gastric sleeve patients successfully lose 50% or more of excess weight loss and maintain it for at least 5 years.

Causes of Weight Regain After Gastric Sleeve:

  • Binge/emotional eating
  • Lack of control over impulse eating
  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Inactivity or Immobility
  • Overconsumption of sugary or alcoholic beverages (we don’t endorse the consumption of alcohol)
  • Hormones in Meat
  • Genetics
  • Lack of sleep
  • Medication
  • Pregnancy or Menopause
  • Imbalanced meal planning