Life after weight-loss surgery: There's an app for that

Posted by Heidi Bednarchuk, A.P.R.N., Bariatric Surgery Coordinator
September 17, 2014

Heidi Bednarchuk C.N.S.Maximizing and maintaining weight loss after bariatric surgery requires hard work and commitment. Dedication to a healthy lifestyle, including healthy eating and exercise habits, is essential. Fortunately, there are numerous mobile apps that can enhance your weight-loss journey. Electronic information is everywhere, so it’s important to use a filter to ensure you’re accessing the most accurate material.

Let’s explore important things to keep in mind when searching for online information, as well as some of the top apps available.

  • No matter what website or mobile app you use, make sure it:
  1. Uses the USDA nutritional database or another reliable source
  2. Is easy to use and gives you the information you are looking for
  3. Labels food items clearly
  • Recipes found on electronic sources may not always be appropriate for post-operation bariatric surgery patients. Make sure you look at the nutrition information and check with your dietitian if you have any questions about appropriate nutrition content.

Bariatric-surgery-specific apps worth checking out

Bariatric app logoMayo Clinic Pre-Bari and Post-Bari apps (opens in the Apple iTunes store website)

  • $4.99 each; iOS only
  • Content developed by clinical experts specifically for bariatric surgery patients
  • Nutrition tracker allows you to enter notes and take pictures of food
  • Helpful videos on topics, such as post-operation diet progression, physical activity, maintaining motivation and goal setting
  • Allows you to set and track goals, check symptoms, sync supplement reminders to your calendar and track fluid intake
  • Links to Mayo Clinic and other bariatric surgery resources
  • Real-time messaging to encourage a healthy lifestyle

What to look for in an app

There are other beneficial bariatric apps in addition to the Mayo Clinic apps. Some features to look for in a program is one that:

  • Links to bariatric surgery podcasts and user-led forums on several different sites
  • Tracks weight and nutrition
  • Recipes, photo timeline and weekly motivation
  • Syncs with FitBit
  • Provides quick access to user forums on a wide variety of topics related to bariatric surgery (Because some forums are user-led, keep in mind that the information may not always be accurate or reliable)
  • Shares information about hydration, which is one of the biggest challenges after bariatric surgery
  • Regulates eating pace
  • Tracks food and calories
  • Track exercise
  • Sets goals
  • Graphs progress
  • Scans food barcodes
  • Maps runs with GPS tracker
  • Provides recipes and information about various foods

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Comments (1)

Will there be an app for the android?

colleen - 08/18/2015

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