Normally when you eat, food goes straight to your stomach and then passes through your small intestine before reaching the large intestine. As the food moves from your stomach, it passes through your small intestine and into your large intestine and as it does so, your body absorbs nutrients and calories from the food.
After gastric bypass surgery your stomach is reconnected to your small intestine but closer to your large intestine. This limits the amount of digestive juices that your intestine can use to help your body absorb the nutrients from food.
Combined with food having to make a shorter journey to reach your large intestine, shortening the bowel means the amount of food your body absorbs is limited so you consume fewer calories. This is known as the malabsorption effect of gastric bypass surgery.
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