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Ghrelin (hunger hormone)



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I am starting to investigate having the Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy (VSG) surgery after seeing it on the news last week (me and countless others). One of the things about it that interests me is that part of the stomach where the ghrelin hormone is produced is removed. On the news report the Louisiana surgeon says most of his patients don't get hungry..."ever..." And there are other things on the internet that state it, but I have yet to hear or read anything about it from the patient point of view.

How true is this? How does this really make you feel? How does it affect hunger and/or appetite?

I can't imagine that people just wake up from surgery and never feel hungry again.

Are there post-sleevers out there who can better describe the ghrelin factor (or lack of it)?

Thank you for your help.

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I am starting to investigate having the Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy (VSG) surgery after seeing it on the news last week (me and countless others). One of the things about it that interests me is that part of the stomach where the ghrelin hormone is produced is removed. On the news report the Louisiana surgeon says most of his patients don't get hungry..."ever..." And there are other things on the internet that state it, but I have yet to hear or read anything about it from the patient point of view.

How true is this? How does this really make you feel? How does it affect hunger and/or appetite?

I can't imagine that people just wake up from surgery and never feel hungry again.

Are there post-sleevers out there who can better describe the ghrelin factor (or lack of it)?

Thank you for your help.

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I'm 3 days away from being 17 months post-op, and I never feel physical hunger. That doesn't mean that I do not like food, or do not have cravings because those things are mental, and they operated on my stomach and not my brain. So, I do have zero physical hunger, and have gone up to 16 hours without eating anything and not even thinking about food. The only clue I get that I need to eat is that I get a little grouchy, and have this empty feeling but my stomach never growls, or rumbles. I don't get weak, or dizzy, or any of those symptoms.

Not all sleevesters experience 100% resolution of hunger, but most report a small amount of food satisfies that hunger. Also, ghrelin is made in other parts of the body such as the pancreas, and while I've lost my physical hunger, I still have a fat girl's appetite and cravings. It's all on me to make the best choice, and sometimes the fat girl wins. The sleeve makes the decision-making much easier, but I still have to be mindful of what I put in my mouth.

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If I do not eat every 3 hours, I will get hunger pains. Not real pain but rumblings in my stomach telling me I waited too long to eat. I eat my little food and I'm good for the next few hours. I can go longer than 3 hours without food as long as I am drinking Water.

I've been post-op for 6 weeks.

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Hello B)

I am three weeks out from my VSG and do not have hunger pains. I have "wants". Like I'm hungry for. My mind hasn't been trained yet. It has been wonderful to finally eat to nourish my body instead of eatting to please an emotion. This will take time but what a wonderful chapter of our lives. Mary

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As far as I understand - the Ghrelin dissapears for some time after removal of the fundus. But after ½ year to 2 years, the intestines takes (or pancreas ad Tiffykins say's) over, and starts to produce the hormone again. But not as much as before?

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I'm three weeks post op and have no hunger pains. I never feel hungry, but I do still have cravings for specific foods.

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I am one of the unlucky ones who has still had hunger - and so is my husband! BUT, even so, it helps a LOT. I still get hungry, but not like I did before surgery. I get hungry several times a day, when it really is time to eat. As long as I don't ignore it, I have plenty of time to make food and eat without every feeling ravenous. If I ignore it for a long time, the hunger does get stronger. I do take an acid reducer, and I have noticed when I don't take it for a few days, my hunger gets stronger, so that may be part of it. My hunger is also stronger during my period week.

Hunger does not go away for everyone and you can't EXPECT that it will, because you could be disappointed - BUT, it will definitely help you to be a lot LESS hungry, and for hunger to be much more manageable. And you could be one of the people who doesn't get hungry - but some people actually complain that because they never feel hungry, they have no appetite and they lose the desire to eat. So either way, there will be challenges.

I am happy to report though that even though I still have hunger, I have lost over 90 lbs in 5 months. So obviously, it is still quite successful. I actually am fine with still having hunger, because it reminds me to eat and I really enjoy food still. But sometimes hormonal stuff makes my hunger worse (I've been struggling re-adjusting to birth control and my period is pretty constant) and that can be difficult.

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As Christie, I too feel hunger. . I've had it ever since surgery. But now at almost 1 year out I have learned that when i start feeling the hunger, I know i can make more sensible choices where food is concerned, unless i don't feel like it, but then the restriction restricts me from pigging out. . .i eat whatever, but in moderation (restriction) I LOVE my Pork rinds and enjoy those everyday. . I still get head hunger alot but pork rinds help in that area. . . night eating has been a challenge, but i can overcome that. . .it's more psychological i think. . . but that is my 2 cents worth. . . I'm still really glad i had this done and would probably do it again. . .

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I am 8 weeks out -- I don't get hunger, but I do get stomach acid -- which makes me feel hungry -- and it usually happens when I am not drinking my Water or my stomach is empty. I often forget to eat -- I'm not that interested in food and could very well not eat all day, but I do because I know it's good for me. :)

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Thank you all so much for your replies. I've understood in the past that there is a difference between physical hunger and mental appetite. And a lot of your replies addressed that. Congratulations to everyone for all your great results!!

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At my seminar there was a girl there who when my surgeon talked about this hormone being taken out... gave me this look as to say YEAH I'm NEVER hungry lol

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I feel hunger especially if it has been quite a while since I ate, i get GROUCHY too holy moly it isn't funny lol. Though I stay full longer and don't realize sometimes it is has been hours and hours since I ate. I don't feel the need for Snacks though so it is usually just 3 meals a day and I am more then satisfied. I am not sure if I am happy about feeling hunger or not, I guess I am glad I have a reduced hunger sensation and that I enjoy the food I do eat and it fills me up super fast!

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