“I believe my weight loss, which put my diabetes and high blood pressure into remission, and the fact that I stopped smoking 12 years ago saved my life,” Jay says.
“I told Dr. Adeyeri he saved my life a second time during this pandemic.”
Men, older people and people with chronic health conditions, including diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease, are at higher risk of contracting COVID-19–and more likely to die as a result. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also cites extreme obesity as another significant risk factor.
Thankfully, our gastric bypass success story, Jay Reid, started his road back to a healthy lifestyle in 2008 when he quit smoking.
In 2018, after living with diabetes, which required five insulin shots in the belly daily, and medication for chronic high blood pressure, common conditions that can result from obesity, Jay took control back control of his weight with bariatric surgery.
After losing 80 pounds, he is no longer diabetic and no longer requires blood pressure medication. He walks regularly to maintain his weight and for stress reduction.
Jay, who looks far younger than age 69, had significantly improved his overall health and reduced his chronic disease risk, which increases with age.
In 2020, he benefited from these two efforts in ways he never imagined.
A COVID-19 diagnosis
As the owner of a successful New Jersey cleaning company, Jay doesn’t know how he contracted COVID-19, but he was hospitalized in late March due to the severity of his symptoms.
Remarkably, Jay was released after just three days in the hospital.
Obesity Raises the Risk of Death from Covid-19 Among Men
A slow recovery for a fast mover
An active person and avid walker, Jay soon realized that his recovery from COVID-19 would not be as brief as his hospitalization.
“About a week after the virus was out of my system, I took a short walk with my wife, but had to turn back because I just couldn’t breathe,” Jay recalls. Ultimately, it would be 12 weeks before Jay’s lungs recovered and he could resume his walking regime.
“This virus is no joke, I can tell you that,” the business owner notes. “Get yourself in the best health you possibly can, because you never know what’s up ahead.”
Dr. Adeyeri recaps Jay’s COVID-19 recovery
“Jay is an outstanding example of the power of good baseline health when the body is fighting off acute or chronic disease,” Dr. Adeyeri explains. “A healthy body is stronger than a body compromised by obesity or chronic diseases such as diabetes or heart disease.”
Dr. Adeyeri concurs with Jay’s assessment of his recovery from COVID-19:
“Jay fits the profile of someone at highest risk for dying from the virus—he is over 65 and male.
But the fact that he is no longer a smoker, exercises regularly and is no longer extremely obese helped him fully recover.”
Dr. Adeyeri says that people with diabetes, in particular, risk a poor recovery prognosis from COVID-19.
According to The Lancet, a publication that addresses issues related to diabetes:
The reason for worse prognosis in people with diabetes is likely to be multifactorial, thus reflecting the syndromic nature of diabetes. Age, sex, ethnicity, comorbidities such as hypertension and cardiovascular disease, obesity, and a pro-inflammatory and pro-coagulative state all probably contribute to the risk of worse outcomes.
Glucose-lowering agents and anti-viral treatments can modulate the risk, but limitations to their use and potential interactions with COVID-19 treatments should be carefully assessed.
Finally, severe acute respiratory syndrome COVID-19 infection itself might represent a worsening factor for people with diabetes, as it can precipitate acute metabolic complications through direct negative effects on β-cell function. These effects on β-cell function might also cause diabetic ketoacidosis in individuals with diabetes, hyperglycaemia at hospital admission in individuals with unknown history of diabetes, and potentially new-onset diabetes.
Are you ready to lose the extra weight and resolve weight-related medical problems?
If you suffer from diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, sleep apnea or other chronic diseases related to obesity, weight loss surgery may help you put these medical conditions into full remission as soon as a year after your bariatric operation.
Learn more by calling our friendly bariatric team at (732) 217-3897 to learn more and schedule a personal visit with Dr. Adeyeri safely via telehealth.
Your appointment can be confirmed within a week of your call to us. We look forward to meeting you!