photo: Revelist/Jessica Torres

It's important to accept our bodies as they are, but good health is of the utmost priority. Life is an incredible journey and you want it to last as long as possible. 

That's why when Dana Martinez's doctor told her that her 520-pound weight had become life-threatening, she decided to act and have weight loss surgery. And she's here to tell you that surgery is NOT a cop-out. 

It's painful. It requires months of preparation, mentally and physically. And after it's over it can cause major fallout in your life. Here's Dana's story... 

Dana Martinez is a fashion blogger and body positive enforcer.

photo: Revelist/Jessica Torres

In 2010, she weighed 520 pounds.

photo: Revelist/Jessica Torres

At that point, her options were to lose weight or risk death.

photo: Revelist/Jessica Torres

She consulted with her doctors and decided to have gastric sleeve surgery, the prep for which takes nine months.

The surgery reduces the size of the stomach to house less food. Martinez says she can only stomach about two ounces of food per meal.

After recuperating, she shed 90 pounds in six months.


Five years later, Martinez's weight has dropped to 242 pounds. “I still have to work every day at what I put in my mouth,” she says.

With the life-changing decision, she lost more than weight. “You can lose boyfriends, you can lose husbands, you can lose friends,” she says.

The one thing she'd want others considering the surgery to know: You're going to have a lot of loose skin, and the hardest-won battle is in your own head.

The surgery is not a magic fix. You have to put in work before, during, and after — and for the rest of your life. 

Watch Martinez tell her story below.