CHRISTUS Health would like to thank all of our patients, their families, local business owners and leaders in the communities we serve for their support during our negotiations with Cigna. We realize this situation caused concern, and we are thankful for a resolution that allows us to continue to provide care close to home for all those who need high quality, compassionate care. Learn More

Mary's Story I have been overweight since I was in third grade, always dealing with the low self-esteem by hiding it with shyness! No one ever knew who I was and I made sure they did not notice me.

I have been overweight since I was in third grade, always dealing with the low self-esteem by hiding it with shyness! No one ever knew who I was and I made sure they did not notice me.

The more I felt bad with my weight the more I ate to feel better.

I was a very thin child but my family did not like me to be so skinny, so we ate large portions and high fat! Lots of barbecues and typical Hispanic meals — tacos, menudo, regular sodas! I would wear big clothes to hide the fat. Unfortunately, it gave me more room to grow into; it was always so upsetting to try to find an outfit for special occasions.

I am blessed to work in an organization that cares about their employees. Through work, I attended the 'Naturally Slim' program online. I also started seeing Dr. Peterson and his professional staff – Cindy, Jane, and Anna.

With the assist of PA G. Cossio and frequent visits (every month for 6 months), I attempted to lose weight on my own. I struggled and was able to lose 20 lbs. prior to my surgery.

After the surgery it was so exciting to see the weight start falling off so fast! I love weighing myself!

I also have had to buy a whole wardrobe twice! I can work all day and be able to go home and do housework. I like the attention I get! It is easy to 'diet' when your stomach does not hold so much. I wish I had done the surgery sooner!

I strongly recommend it to my patients who have diabetes due to their weight. I realized if I had not been able to lose the weight on my own yet, I never was going to get the weight off.

I needed the help of the surgery to start my healthy lifestyle. Because I was seeing the weight loss, I was ready and determined. I followed the directions recommended by Anna, Dr. Peterson's dietitian. Anna was so encouraging and understanding of the struggles. Jane is also a great mentor for encouragement — because Jane has gone through weight loss surgery herself, she understands.