Weight Loss Surgery Cost

Are you considering gastric bypass surgery to get rid of excess weight? Perhaps, you are wondering how much the procedure would cost you and if it is covered by insurance. When looking at weight loss surgery cost, there are many different things to consider.

weight loss surgery cost article cover

Weight Loss Surgery Cost

Prepare to spend much to be able to lose weight. Nowadays, weight loss or bariatric surgery costs around $20,000 to $35,000. The cost of weight loss surgery has gone down significantly in the past years. It varies depending on the quality of the procedure itself, the experience of the surgeon, the medical team that will help in the operation, and the additional post-surgery services that a patient availed of.

Insurance Coverage for Weight Loss Surgery Patients

Is the cost of weight loss surgery covered by insurance companies? If a patient has insurance, he may pay part of the price or nothing at all. A lot of health insurance companies have considered obesity as a severe health problem, so they cover part of or all the expenses incurred in weight loss surgery. This coverage of the operation is because weight loss surgery can save them money in the long term. Insurance coverage for weight loss surgery depends on the insurance firm itself, the particular insurance policy, and the state where the patient is located (since there is no insurance coverage in some states). Also, insurance coverage is given only to qualified candidates or those who meet specific criteria set by an insurance company.

The following are the criteria that a weight loss surgery patient must meet to qualify for insurance coverage:

  • • Obesity for at least five years before the surgery
  • • Minimum of 100 lbs. of excess weight
  • • Showed serious efforts to lose weight through diet and exercise but to no avail
  • • No history of alcoholism
  • • No history of depression or other mental disorders

To be able to enjoy the insurance benefits, the patient (with the help of the surgeon or clinic) is required to file some forms to the insurance company. One of the necessary ways includes a Letter of Medical Necessity that usually indicates the patient’s weight or body mass index, obesity-related diseases (e.g., diabetes, hypertension, etc.), and the duration of the patient’s obesity, among others.

weight loss surgery cost

On the other hand, weight loss surgery patients who are not covered by insurance must shoulder the costs themselves. These self-pay patients may apply for personal loans to be able to pay for the surgery, but this payment option involves interest rates.

Post-Surgery Costs

The cost of weight loss surgery must also include the expenses following the procedure. A change in lifestyle after the surgery? Certain unthought-of expenses. Some will want that gym membership for exercise. All will need new sets of clothes, which will need to be replaced several times during the year.

Besides the financial costs, there are emotional and physical costs involved as well in the weight loss surgery. For one, the patient will need to adjust to the new lifestyle and the changes in his body, which can trigger high levels of stress and anxiety, especially in the few weeks following the surgery. The real cost of gastric bypass surgery involves being committed to the recommended diet plan to avoid serious complications and weight gain.

In particular, it means the patient must stay away from foods rich in fat and sugar, as well as avoid unhealthy habits such as skipping meals and overeating. Sticking to a regular exercise program is also part of the surgery’s physical cost.

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Tips for Buying Second Hand Clothing

I have lost about one hundred and fifty pounds over the last year, thanks to my gastric bypass surgery and hard work. While I reversed Diabetes and lowered my blood pressure, I had one problem: I needed clothes. This “Tips for Buying Second Hand Clothing” post comes from that experience.

There is nothing like standing at the checkout line in the grocery store and having your skirt fall off of your hips. We all got a great laugh out of it and then I started to invest in clothes, not safety pins. I went from a 26-28 in woman’s to 10-14 and needed new shirts, shorts, skirts, pants and even a few dresses. I didn’t want to invest a lot of money because I was loosing weight along the way and knew that “current” wardrobe would soon be obsolete.

With the cost of clothing always rising, you may be wondering how to dress for less. Take a look below at some helpful tips for buying second hand clothing. When you follow these tips, you can still snag quality, name brand clothing while spending less. Take a look at how easy it is, no matter who you are shopping for!

I have had luck at garage sales, church sales, resell stores, and even thrift stores. All these tips work beautifully for for each different location – you just have to USE them.

Tips for Buying Second Hand ClothingTips for Buying Second Hand Clothing

1. Allow yourself some time.
When shopping at a second hand clothing store, give yourself plenty of time. You really need a good chunk of time to go through all of the items and racks piece by piece. This is the best way to be sure you see it all and aren’t missing any buried treasures. If you THINK you might like something, pop it into your cart. You can change your mind later and put it back, but if someone saw you pull it out of the rack and it caught their eye? It will be gone before you go back for it.

2. Check out labels.
Name brand clothing will always carry more value. Check the labels of the items you buy to see if they are a name brand. The item will carry more value and even get you more money when you decide to sell it back! You can also be assured that name brand items are often made with quality and durable materials. They are often made better than non-name brand items too. Hidden seams, better zippers, reinforced shoulder pads and more. They really hold up well.

3. Examine items carefully.
A damaged item is not worth purchasing. Be sure to hold all items up in good light so you can see any stains, holes, or signs of wear. Should an item have any of these signs, pass on it. If you still really want it, ask the cashier if a discount can be offered due to the damage. I forgot this rule once and brought home a $7 dress that had a small burn hole from a cigarette. WHY would someone donate that instead of just tossing it out? I have no clue but I did rescue it – the hole location was perfect to put a whimsical little decal/patch over it and make it “fun”.

4. Find available discounts.
Prior to shopping, see if the second hand store offers any discounts. Certain tags or colors may be discounted, a discount day may be offered, or they may offer a senior or student discount. Some shops even offer a discount if you bring in a donation. Find all available discounts prior to shopping and save. Not only that, some have rewards cards where you earn “dollars” for a future purchase like Saint Vincent’s.

5. Consider the basics.
It is always smart to invest in basics: black pants, a good pair of jeans, a white blouse, a navy button up sweater, and solid maxi dresses. These are items that can be worn and used in multiple ways and made to dress up or dress down. Invest in these basics that are sure to give you lots of wear.

Give these Buying Second Hand Clothing shopping tips a try and you are sure to find great second hand clothing for less!


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How to Make Quick and Healthy Meal Plans

Planning your meals is probably the easiest thing you are able to do in order to have an eating success that’s also very healthy. Doesn’t matter if you are planning only a few days at a time, a single week or even longer, it is totally up to you. There is a big benefit. You will make your own decisions in a focused, calm manner. It is going to be easier to avoid getting a pizza if you turkey tacos ingredients are at home when you know How to Make Quick and Healthy Meal Plans.

How to Make Quick and Healthy Meal Plans

How to Make Quick and Healthy Meal Plans

Count the meals

Take a moment and think about what you have to do in the week ahead. Consider everyone’s plans and get the rough idea of how many dishes you are going to need. For example: five family dinners, six breakfasts for everyone, four solo lunches, one brunch, and one kids-and-sitter dinner.

Time to cook

Consider how much time do you actually have to cook. This is a very important element of meal planning that people often skip. You can plan anything you can imagine, but if you are not able to execute it, you are not going to have any benefits. Give yourself more information about what you are going to make.

If the week ahead is going to be busy for you, keep in mind to be on the lookout for meals that can be served if you’re in a hurry. I am a big fan of the cook once, eat twice solution. For example, you can roast a couple of chickens over the weekend for dinner. Later, you can use what’s left for sandwiches and healthy salads.

Schedule and pick dishes

Take a look at your list and choose the meals that will fit the bill. Look for family’s favorite recipes for ideas. Consider what’s in season, what the time of the year is, and what your family members like eating. When you are scheduling, think about the ingredients you are buying. For example, make a fish dish the same day you buy it, and you can save the frozen dishes for later.


Whether you use a printable template, a notecard or go digital, it is a pretty good idea to have a paper calendar in your plain view. A popular choice is hanging the copy on the fridge. If your meal plan is constantly visible, you will be more motivated to stick to it. Also, your family members aren’t going to ask you all the time “What’s for dinner?” They will just take a look at the calendar.

Grocery list and shopping

You are probably going to do this when you are filling out your calendar. Don’t forget to check what you already have at home and how much do you need of each ingredient. Grouping your list as the products are listed in the store will save you a lot of time once you’re there.

Prep and cook

Grate cheese, chop vegetables, make sauces or just prep whatever you can in advance if that’s what you’ve planned. You are even able to measure out the spices in parboiling potatoes, pre-roast vegetables, and plastic bags.

I love the tons of different meal planning tips you can see HERE

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Eating Healthy and Saving Money

  • Eating Healthy and Saving Money? We are often led to believe that making healthy eating habits is out of our reach for convenience and cost reasons.  But did you know that making the smarter and healthier choice can actually save you money?

Eating Healthy and Saving Money

Let me explain with these tips:

Curb your eating out and drive through habit.
This one can be tricky because it seems like if you order from the dollar or budget menu, that’s about as cheap as it gets.  Who can beat an entire meal for $3, am I right?  The trouble is, you are often buying these meals for your entire family which will likely put you over the $10 mark (and who really has a family meal for $10? You know you order extras).  If you do this even half of the week, you are looking at an extra $150 per month spent on food that is not good for you.  This is not even taking into account any sit down restaurants you go to visit, where a family meal is likely to cost $50+ and they are full of calories, sodium and more!

Cut the junk food from your shopping list.
Have you ever calculated how much you actually spend on pop, chips, frozen pizza (or other convenience meals), cookies and crackers.  None of these food provide you with good nutrition and they all cost quite a bit.  Cut these from your diet and not only will you feel  better, but your pocketbook will feel fuller!

Shop in Bulk.
Believe it or not, the bulk section carries a lot of healthy meal prep items such as oats and beans.  Both of these are incredibly healthy and are super cheap when bought in bulk.  Look for oats to be $0.70 per pound or less when bought this way and oatmeal is one of the healthiest breakfasts you can buy!

Cook More!
Cook bigger meals for dinner and use them for lunches throughout the week.  This will keep you from buying fast food or convenience type lunches and since you are eating homemade food, you are looking at a healthier meal option.  (This is a great reason to cook soups, stews and healthy casseroles)

Shop with a grocery list and don’t shop hungry.
These are two of the best tips I have ever learned while shopping.  Take a list with you and stick to it.  The more organized and prepared you are when doing your shopping, the less likely you are to buy impulse snacks and foods.  The same goes for shopping hungry.  It is proven that when we shop hungry, we spend more money.  Our hunger often makes us grab foods we wouldn’t normally shop for.  That hunger also talks us into those near-the-checkout impulse buys that are right at our fingertips, like candy bars and snack sized foods that are far from healthy!

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12 Freezer Ready Casseroles

As my family works their way through the chest freezer full of food that I prepared before my surgery, it finally became time to add another batch to it. These 12 Freezer Ready Casseroles were just the trick so I made a double batch of each one and BAM! 24 more meals ready for them.

12 Freezer Ready Casseroles

When going through gastric surgery for weight loss, you need to know that you wil not be eating “real” food for almost four months. If you are like me, and the on who usually makes the meals for the family, it helps a lot to pre-prepare. When you are on your liquid diet, the last thing you want to do is tempt yourself with a bunch of “real” food. I found that making the meals ahead, and filling the freezer, meant that they could fend for themselves for dinner while I enjoyed my amazing protein shakes.

My diet should be just about back to normal food as they finish up this next batch. I won’t be eating full portions but I will be eating “normal” food again.

If you have a similar goal of making more meals at home, the secret to success is planning ahead. Casseroles are a filling and easy meal idea for busy nights, and these casseroles are great freezer meals when you don’t have time to cook.

  1. Chicken and Rice Casserole
  2. Mexican Casserole
  3. Cheesy Chicken Tortilla Casserole
  4. Macaroni and Cheese
  5. Cheesy Baked Ziti
  6. Hawaiian Chicken and Rice Casserole
  7. Chicken Bacon Ranch Casserole
  8. Creamy Poppy Seed Chicken Casserole
  9. Corn Casserole
  10. Taco Rice Casserole
  11. 20 Minute Tuscan Pasta
  12. Chicken Parmesan Casserole

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5 Ways To Eat Organic On A Budget


Five Ways to Eat Organic on a Budget

In this day and age, when most of our food supply is genetically-modified and/or doused with pesticides, buying organic is more important than ever. However, organic food can be expensive and many people may feel overwhelmed by the idea of switching from conventionally-grown food to organically-grown. While it is pricey, there are ways to eat organic on a budget. Check out these five tips to help you save money on organic food.

  1. Buy in Bulk

Many big box and warehouse stores sell organic food in bulk. This comes in handy when purchasing individually-wrapped organic snacks for school, such as granola bars, or mini bags of popcorn. You can also buy bulk amounts of organic food at many supermarkets where bins full of cereals, nuts, and dried fruits are available to purchase by the pound. And lastly, online is another way to go. Simply search “bulk organic food” and you’ll find great deals.

  1. Grow Your Own

Even if you don’t have a green thumb, or the space to grow large amounts of fruits and vegetables, everyone has room for a few pots of dirt in which to grow organic herbs. Herbs such as basil, oregano, cilantro, and dill are all easy to grow indoors and nothing could be fresher than clipping your own fresh herbs to add to a recipe. If you have the room for more containers, or the land to grow produce, do so. Just be sure you buy organic seeds and use organic soil when planting.

  1. Coupon

A lot of people are under the misconception that no coupons exist for organic food. This is simply untrue. Check the flier when you enter a store to see if there are coupons for the organic food you’re seeking to purchase. Also, go straight to the source by checking the website of a particular brand you want to buy. You can also write to the company who owns the brand you’re interested in and ask for a coupon or discount. It’s worth a try!

  1. Join a CSA

Research local certified-organic farms and find one that offers a CSA. CSA stands for “community supported agriculture”. Various families from your community “buy in” to a CSA to support the farmer’s time, labor, and supplies, and in return, they get a share of the harvest. CSAs are a wonderful way to try new foods and recipes that you normally wouldn’t, because often, the weekly shares are pre-boxed by the farmer with whatever s/he has on hand. If there isn’t a certified-organic farm in the area, contact local farms to ask if they use organic practices to grow their food. Many do and simply don’t want to pay the fees to become officially certified.

  1. Buy Local

If you’re not interested in the commitment required by joining a CSA, you can still reap the rewards of buying from local organic farms, or at regional farmer’s markets. This allows you to buy what you want, and the amount appropriate to your family’s needs. Try going to the market closer to closing time as farmers often discount produce, eggs, meat and other items so they don’t have to pack it up and bring it back home.

Buying organic on a budget is completely possible. Using these tips, you’ll be able to save money while feeding your family the healthiest food available. Eating organic food may be more expensive than conventional food, but the benefit to your health is priceless!

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10 Cheap & Healthy Foods

It’s rare that the words cheap and healthy can be used to describe food and what we buy in the supermarket.  But it is doable to watch what we eat and stay on a budget as well by simply stocking up on healthy options especially when they are on sale.  Below are just 10 of some cheap and healthy foods to stock up on now.


10 Cheap & Healthy Foods

  1. Canned tuna.
    Packed with protein and omega-3, tuna is a must have in your pantry for cheap and healthy meals.  Added to salads or mixed with a light or fat free mayonnaise, tuna is a great bet.
  2. Dried Beans.
    So many beans, so little time.  Buying and preparing dried beans is not only inexpensive but they can be used in so many recipes.

    ten healthy things to eat dried beans

  3. Whole grain pasta.
    Again, the variety is endless in the pasta aisle. Not only is whole grain pasta more nutritious than regular pasta, but it is usually the same price as well.
  4. Frozen vegetables.
    What a great stock up item when these go on sale.  Used a side dish with a healthy meal or added to soups and stews, frozen vegetables can do no wrong in your freezer and are always there for you.
  5. Bagged spinach.
    Surprisingly, this produce item is so cost effective and typically on sale especially in the summer months.  It’s always ready to go, lasts about a week in it’s own bag when sealed properly, and is great for salads and also sauteed for a quick healthy side dish.
  6. Whole wheat bread.
    Whole grain and whole wheat bread is an excellent choice to always have around.  When they are buy one, get one, stock up and freeze extra loaves to save money and always have available.

    10 Cheap & Healthy Foods eggs

  7. Eggs.
    This amazing food is not only a healthy one but super inexpensive too.  Breakfast, lunch, and dinner calls for any type of egg recipe.
  8. Sweet potatoes.
    Either served sweet with butter and cinnamon or savory with some spices, sweet potatoes are super for sides and a light lunch. Rich in vitamins and nutrients, simply bake and serve.
  9. Canned salmon.
    We often buy tuna, why not canned salmon?  Make salmon cakes or add to salads and get a ton of protein and omega-3’s in your diet.
  10. Greek yogurt.
    Now that greek yogurt varieties are endless the dairy aisle, stock up when they are on special.  They make a great healthy snack and are portable especially when you are on the go.

I hope this quick list of cheap & healthy foods helps stretch your budget — if you think I missed something, please share!

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How To Score A Six Pack For Cheap

If you’re looking to get some six pack abs, there are a few things you need to know about how to achieve them! It’s not simple, but it’s also not as hard as you might think. We ALL have them, it is just the simple fact that many of us have them more padded than others. (Mine are VERY well insulated and I’m working on fixing that)

Beautiful fitness woman posing

How To Score A Six Pack For Cheap

For starters, six packs are made primarily in the kitchen. Of course you’ll need to exercise them as well and incorporate some ab workouts in to your routine, however, the kitchen is where the magic happens! If you want a six pack, you need to put just as much work in the kitchen as you do at the gym. Eating fatty foods will only continue to hide the abdominal muscles underneath with a layer of belly fat.

So naturally your first step should be to throw away all junk food. Anything that is overly processed is only going to hinder your six pack progress, so get rid of it. You want to fill your house with fresh fruits and vegetables, and lots of protein. Chicken, beef, fish, and beans and legumes are great sources of protein. Additionally, snacks like hummus are full of protein, so it’s good to keep things like that on hand for when you’re needing to snack between meals. What’s nice about this, is eating clean is actually much, much cheaper. It sometimes can seem like it’s more expensive, but filling your house with produce and proteins and less processed food actually is less of a financial burden. If you shop at local farmer’s markets for produce, you’ll absolutely see a decrease in your grocery bill, and also in your belly.

man working out

While your diet is the primary source of six pack progress, you’ll also need to do workouts. Crunches are a great way to work your abdominal muscles, but you would need to do tons of them to strengthen your core enough to achieve a six pack. There are many other ways to work your core, and even plenty without having a costly gym membership. Of course the goal here is to get a six pack for cheap, so you don’t want to worry about the price of a membership. The best workouts for abs that are cheap can be found on YouTube! You can do the Jillian Michaels 6 Week Six-Pack Abs Workout and it’s totally free!

It’s important to note that there are many factors into achieving the six pack you want, but it is easily forgotten that as long as you’re putting in the work, you will eventually reach your goal. It might take time, but it’s worth it in the end. Clean up your diet, start working those abs (for free!) and get to it!

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Is it Just Too Expensive to Live Healthy?

Is it Just Too Expensive to Live Healthy? It’s kind of funny that my hubby thinks he is healthier than I am…he just goes by looks. I am a large gal — cursed with a very slow metabolism from my FibroMyalgia that I inherited with a car accident in 1993. However, I have better than normal levels of everything from cholesterol to blood sugar, rarely get a cold/flu and seem to get more things done in a day than many people. Compare this to him, who as a cold of some sort every other month, rarely goes to the gym with his FREE membership, and is often commenting on how tired he feels…I must be doing something right!

Is it Just Too Expensive to Live Healthy
Is it Just Too Expensive to Live Healthy?

Have you ever used the excuse “It’s just too EXPENSIVE” when it comes to improving your health?!?! I once used this excuse too, but cutting back from having my favorite latte everyday to making coffee at home has now allowed me a little extra money to make better decisions. Here is how you can save $150 – $600 per month to put towards your healthier lifestyle, a personal trainer, gym membership, savings, and so much more… It’s easy! Life is simply about choices – we make them all the time : this or that… Just remember, YOU have the power do make any changes you really want to! It’s the simple little things that let you be healthy – enjoy the following list!

1) Stop buying soda and sugar filled snacks!

The average person drinks 2-3 sodas per day. Not only is soda pop horrible for your teeth, health, etc it is expensive! You could save…$90 a month by switching to water! Snacks – Do you run for that candy bar or bag of chips for a snack when you are hungry? Anyting with high fructose corn syrup is a slow zapper of your energy! Switch to homemade treats or something as simple as the breakfast cookies that I shared and help balance your blood sugar, give yourself a “full” feeling, and provide doctor-recommended fiber, which is vitally important for gastrointestinal health. (don’t you just love using big words, LOL>?)

2) Start brewing your coffee at home.

B.I.Y. (Brew it yourself) – Save about $5 per day by brewing your coffee at home.

too expensive

3) Get Trained!

Start using some of the new savings from the 2 small steps above and Hire a personal trainer to work with at least one day a week! (or be like me who is a member of health club where I can use one FREE. A few sessions with a trainer can not only motivate you – but teach you a regime that will work for YOUR body…YOUR level and teach you how to do the exercises correctly. You can then take it from there yourself until you think you are ready for more of a challenge.

4) Go Green!

Literally! We all know white foods are bad for you, so work on eating the rainbow colors of produce! Tis the season – get ready to start shopping at your local farmers market – locally grown organic food is not only better for you, it leaves a smaller carbon footprint on our planet!

5) Brown Bag It and stop getting your meals “through a window”

Save big cash by bringing your own lunch to work. You could save… $5 dollars per day, or $25 in a 5-day work week. Don’t eat anything that comes through a window!!!!!!!!Even if you are ordering off the dollar menu, you end up spending more on food than you would by purchasing ingredients at the grocery store and cooking them at home and let’s face it what are you really eating by ordering off of the $1 menu. Do you head to restaurants or order takeout because of boredom, lack of cooking skills or being short on time? Resist boredom and improve your cooking skills by looking up new and fun recipes on the internet. Try cooking something you normally wouldn’t whether it’s your favorite dish from a gourmet restaurant or an interesting dish from an exotic destination. There is something for everybody from the frugal to health conscious available on the internet.. You could save: $10+ dollars per meal

Is it Just Too Expensive to Live Healthy

Here is a biggie –>6. Quit smoking- Seriously.

There is no benefit whatsoever. Smoking is horrible for your health, drains you of money, and is no longer perceived as “sexy” or “cool” by pop culture standards. The taxes on cigarettes rise up to ten times per year, with each pack costing at least $5.00. If you can’t quit, or decide that you are going to have to wait until another time you should consider switching to a discount or value brand. You could save: Depends on how much you smoke. Smokers will spend over $40,000 in twenty to thirty years on cigarettes…gee, look at the number: $40,000. (tee hee)

These are not new ideas — you can see them anywhere from the Biggest Looser TV show on NBC to a late night infomercial that is touting the latest “must have” gadget for a newer, slimmer you…but they all make great sense! Remember, little things add up-you can pick just a few things off of this list and gradually change not only your health, but find that you are really able to tuck away some serious cash! Add it to your vacation fund, retirement fund or your downpayment for your first house…what ever trips your trigger

Until next time…how can YOU become more healthy?

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