I have more energy and just enjoy life a little more now.
Kayla Reidle was 25 years old and, like many other women, unhappy with her weight. And like many others her age, struggling with obesity came from a very young age. “I was always overweight as a child, and I can remember always being on one diet or another with my mom and others in my family,” recalls Kayla.
As an adult, Kayla reached over 300 pounds. While she was able to diet and exercise to lose weight periodically, nothing ever really stuck. “My weight would go up and down,” says Kayla, “and being a young, active woman, that was really hard to deal with. There never seemed to be a permanent solution.”
In 2014, a friend of Kayla’s underwent bariatric surgery and she was able to witness the results. “It’s not that it was easy for her to lose the weight, because there’s a lot of work involved,” remembers Kayla, “but for the first time, she was successful at keeping it off with a positive outlook on the future.”
The fact that diseases like diabetes and heart disease had affected her mother and others in her family made Kayla very sensitive to the burdens of obesity later in life. Despite being active, Kayla already was experiencing trouble with joint pain and increasing fatigue. “I just didn’t want that for myself,” Kayla says.
Kayla decided that she wanted to explore bariatric surgery and met with Dr. Angel Caban and his team. “From my first appointment,” Kayla says, “everyone was so kind and really took the time to explain all of my options. And then, most impressively, they asked what I thought would be the best option for me.”
Kayla ultimately decided to have gastric sleeve surgery, or a vertical sleeve gastrectomy, in which the surgeon removes about 70% of the patients’ stomach resulting in less overall hunger while still allowing for absorption of necessary vitamins and nutrients. “I physically cannot eat the portion sizes and types of foods I was eating before without being sick,” says Kayla. “I am fuller faster, and slowly learning the types of foods that really power my body and not just feel good in the instant that you eat them.”
While Kayla recognizes that surgery isn’t the answer for everyone, she does credit Dr. Caban and the bariatric surgery team at Ocala Health for changing her life. “I’m more confident in my own skin. I have more energy and just enjoy life a little bit more every day now.”