Obesity - More People Turning to Surgery for Help

by WITN ,  CNBC | 2011-02-10

Nearly one in three adults in North Carolina is obese, according to statistics.

A Centers for Disease Control study shows North Carolina is one of the top ten fattest states, ranking 8th with a 29% obesity rate.

Many people are turning to surgery to lose the weight. Recently, ECU Football Coach Ruffin McNeill shared his surgery story with WITN.

We also talked recently with two sisters who had bariatric surgery.

At age 55, Janet Dickens tipped the scale at 227 pounds and was diagnosed with diabetes.

She had bariatric surgery and lost 100 pounds in a year and she no longer has to take her diabetes medication. But she has a caution.

"I’ve put 20 back on, I’m sorry to say. I was one of those people who thought it was the magic cure,” Dickens said.

She tells us she thought she just wouldn't want to eat after surgery and her cravings for sweets would diminish. But they didn't, and she still occasionally indulges.

"I need to be more careful because when I eat those things I don’t feel well.”

Bariatric surgeon John Pender at Pitt County Memorial Hospital warns patients not to eat unhealthy foods after surgery.

"They’ll get what’s called dumping syndrome, so if they eat a Snickers bar or fried chicken or high fatty foods, then they’ll get pretty bad cramps,” Pender said.