Atul Gawande

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In his book, entitled Complications: A Surgeon’s Notes on an Imperfect Science, author Atul Gawande explains what gastric bypass surgery is and also states that it is one of the strangest surgeries he has ever performed. In stating this, Gawande brings up the question of a human’s control over appetite. This paper will consider Atul Gawande’s discussion of adult obesity, including the question of will power. Also, I will explain Gawande’s position that adults have no self control when it comes to their appetites. In the chapter “The Man Who Couldn’t Stop Eating,” Gawande mentions society’s opinion that adults have the willpower to overcome their appetite. He notes that, “we have a choice over such simple matters as whether to sit still or stand up, to talk or not talk, to have a slice of pie or not” (169). Basically, Gawande is presenting the common belief in willpower. He points out that because people have a choice in most situations, they assume …show more content…

Gawande demonstrates his point through several different stories involving patients who had gastric-bypass surgery. For example, when telling the story of a woman named Carla, Gawande states, “She had slowly found herself to have a profound and unfamiliar sense of willpower over food.” Gawande argues that as a result of this change, “she no longer wanted to eat like she did before. She thought that the surgery was why she no longer ate as much as she used to. Yet she felt as if she were choosing not to do it” (174). Basically, Gawande implies here that previous to the surgery, Carla did not have this sense of willpower over food. He explains that the decreased appetite which typically accompanies successful gastric bypass surgery can give patients the false sense of increase

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