The gastric sleeve, otherwise known as the sleeve gastrectomy, results in weight loss when combined with a healthy, balanced diet and exercise in 3 main ways:
1. Around 75% of the stomach is removed, leaving a narrow tube or ‘sleeve’ – about 150-200ml in size. This decreases the amount that can be eaten at meals before feeling satisfied.
2. The smaller stomach empties more quickly, increasing levels of certain hormones produced in the gut that make you feel more satisfied.
3. Reduction of a gut hormone called ghrelin, which causes you to feel less hungry. This occurs because the portion of the stomach that is removed is responsible for producing this hormone.
The removal of most of the stomach and the associated reduction in food intake can result in you not consuming enough vitamins and minerals. The reduction in stomach size also results in less stomach acid being produced, which can affect the absorption of some vitamins and minerals. You will therefore be required to take lifelong vitamin and mineral supplementation and undergo regular blood tests to help prevent any nutritional deficiencies.