Changes to AHPRA Cosmetic Surgery Regulations, as of July 1 2023, Learn More

Coco Ruby

Our Blog

Our Coco Ruby Skin Clinic team will ensure you receive exceptional customer service with a smile while visiting us at our Melbourne clinic. Please phone us on (03) 8849 1400 to schedule an appointment.

What Is An Ideal Weight For Abdominoplasty Surgery

Suitable candidates for abdominoplasty or body lift surgery after bariatric surgery are those who have a healthy body mass index (BMI). Other patient criteria are also factored in to determine candidacy for an abdominoplasty or Body Contouring/Liposuction procedure, including Body Lifts for skin reduction surgeries after weight loss procedures.

URGENT UPDATE: The Australian Government has reinstated a Medicare Item Number for an abdominoplasty for some post-pregnancy patients suffering from Diastasis Recti (Split Tummy Muscles) if you are eligible and meet the new criteria. This new 30175 Medicare Item Number – is effective 1st July 2022. Read the 30175 Medicare Item Number factsheet.

If you qualify for the 30175 Medicare item number, you may also get a subsidy from your Health Fund. However, there will still be a significant out-of-pocket GAP, as Tummy tuck surgery is NOT FREE.

Tummy Tuck Surgery (Abdominoplasty)

Download your free Tummy Tuck Guide

Download Now

Tummy Tuck Download

Tummy Tuck Download

Would you like us to call you?*
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

While every patient is different, particular criteria are required for a Tummy Tuck, Liposuction or Body Lift.

Patient Criteria in terms of Weight or BMI to qualify for an abdominoplasty are:

  • Be at a stable weight for at least 6 months and ideally 12 months or longer
  • Be at an ideal or goal weight with a BMI below 30 and ideally below 24/25
  • Regularly engage in exercise and strength training so that you’re healthy and strong
  • Lead a healthy lifestyle that involves good nutrition and regular meals
  • Limit or abstain from substance use (alcohol)
  • Do not engage in drug use, such as smoking
    • Nicotine is a serious drug and greatly impedes your health and skin healing.
    • Smoking before or after surgery increases your risks from any form of Plastic Surgery.
  • Prepare for surgery with recommendations for supplements or skin treatments (ranging from probiotics if recommended, to healite II or skin-needling for increasing skin circulation).
  • Have realistic expectations about what an abdominoplasty can do – don’t resort to this procedure as a weight loss measure.

What is the ideal weight for a tummy tuck? Is it too heavy for an abdominoplasty or a liposuction?

Candidate Criteria

  • If you have descending or excess skin, you will not likely be a suitable candidate for liposuction surgery.
  • Instead, you will likely require an abdominoplasty or an alternative skin reduction procedure, such as a Body Lift with additional contouring.
  • Ideal weight for an abdominoplasty—If your BMI is AT or ABOVE 30, you are not a suitable candidate for an Abdominoplasty, Body Lift, or Liposuction.
  • You are not a suitable candidate if your weight is not yet stable, and you gain and lose over 4 kilos or more at least once a year.

7 tips on achieving an ideal weight for an abdominoplasty

The following are some tips to help reduce your appetite and lose weight:

1. Don’t go extreme in your eating plans – instead, take it slowly and consistently and plan ahead.

  • There are many ways that are advertised online to lose weight relatively quickly.
  • However, most of these strategies involve depriving yourself of certain food groups and may be too extreme to keep you healthy.
  • These rapid loss programs are also often not sustainable, meaning you may not learn healthy, moderate, and balanced eating to sustain an ideal or goal weight.
  • Extreme changes to eating plans AND restricting food groups are NOT recommended, as it can leave you feeling constantly hungry and irritable.
  • If you don’t intend to stay on track, you will give up easily.
  • Instead of extreme changes or nutritional restrictions that will leave you unhealthy or ill-prepared for sustaining a stable weight over the longer term, here are some great tips for losing weight in a healthier way before your procedure.

2. Minimise your sugar intake

  • Sugar and other sweet foods contain glucose and fructose.
  • Glucose is absolutely vital to life, and every cell in your body uses glucose as a source of energy/nutrition.
  • Fructose, however, is very different. Your body does NOT produce this on its own.
  • In fact, very few cells in the body can make use of fructose except liver cells.
  • When your diet is high in sugar, most of the fructose gets metabolised by your liver and is often then converted into fat, secreted into the bloodstream. [1]
  • There are also some suggestions in the literature about insulin resistance.

3. Don’t skip your meals, and don’t go longer than 4 hours without a snack (except when sleeping)

  • This idea of losing weight – skipping meals – is a big NO-NO.
  • It ends up telling your cells that your body is starving and in danger.
  • To compensate, your body conserves energy by slowing down your metabolism and increasing your insulin response.
  • As a result, your blood sugar may drop, rise or become quite variable, leaving you feeling hungry or irritable or lacking in concentration or stamina, and you’ll be tempted to eat TOO MUCH when you FINALLY do sit down at a meal.
  • Solution: Don’t skip breakfast, and always eat a healthy breakfast. Small healthy snacks every four hours can help boost your overall metabolism, as can lots of water.

4. Keep portions smaller and use smaller plates – avoid eating heavy meals at dinner time

  • According to research, your body digests food more slowly at night. (2)
  • There is varying evidence about this, but overall, it is usually a good idea NOT to try to sleep when you’re very full and still digesting.
  • If you eat a lot during dinner, your body will likely store more fat, and you’ll get less quality sleep.
  • Less quality sleep is linked with weight gain, irritability, and emotional eating.

5. Avoid Salty Foods

  • Eating salty foods causes sodium and water retention and typically increases blood pressure.
  • Not to mention salty foods are often fried or otherwise unhealthily prepared; the better they taste, the more you’ll have—even when you’re full.
  • So learn to have your food salt-free or with minimal salt, and you’ll be healthier and lighter because you’ll be less likely to keep eating after you start to feel full.

6. Strength training workouts can build muscle to keep your body strong – and your metabolism high

  • Strength training to build muscle helps you have a higher, healthier Muscle-To-Fat ratio.
  • Do strength training under supervision or with the doctor’s approval – three times a week, with a rest day between sessions for the body to recover.
  • Combine these workouts with regular cardiovascular activity as your doctor or exercise physiologist recommends.
  • Beware of sudden bursts of exercise or improper forms. If you become injured during your attempts to get in shape, you’ll end up in worse shape, as you can’t exercise well with torn tendons or sore knees, backs, and shoulders.

Whatever you do, brisk walking for at least 30 to 45 minutes at least 4 to 5 days a week can also help you shed pounds.

7. Drink lots of water, and eat soups, other water-rich foods and fibre-rich foods

  • Researchers at Pennsylvania State University reported that eating water-rich foods such as tomatoes, watermelon, apricots, cucumbers, bananas, cherries, strawberries, apples, and pears reduces overall calorie consumption if eaten during meals.
  • Studies also suggest that eating more SOUP can help you lose weight.
  • Drinking water is mandatory for weight loss.

Fibre-rich foods such as avocados, pears, berries, coconuts, figs, artichokes, peas, okra, squash and even eggplant may help slow the movement of food through your stomach and small bowel, resulting in a prolonged feeling of fullness and less hunger cravings. (4)

Ways to lose weight to reach an ideal BMI or goal weight before a Body Lift procedure, before Liposuction or before Abdominoplasty Surgery (Tummy Tuck) are:

  • Plan ahead.
  • Take your time.
  • Learn a lifestyle habit, not a rapid change or restrictive eating plan.
  • Engage in strength training to increase your metabolism and strength (muscle-to-fat ratio).
  • Reduce your Body Mass Index (BMI) slowly over time.

Disclaimer: Results can vary from patient to patient and will change over time and with life events, such as ageing, pregnancy, or weight changes. All invasive surgery also carries risks. Find out more by attending a consultation or meeting, sending an online enquiry form, or calling us on (03) 8849 1400.

How do you know what your body mass Index is?

Best High Tech BMI Scales for measuring body composition and weight/height proportions

  • You will likely need to be weighed or checked for your BMI during a consultation and before and after surgery.
  • Your medical records are kept confidentially.

Not ready for a consult yet, but curious about your BMI? Or planning surgery and wondering what your CURRENT BMI or weight is?

If you’re not sure what your body mass index/BMI is, ask for a free visit to our clinic to measure your weight and BMI. Phone (03) 8849 1400 to ask when you can visit our Hawthorn East clinic and have a private session with the BMI scale (it’ll give you a highly confidential printout).

Remember, getting to a healthy weight and ideal BMI before surgery—one you can sustain after surgery—requires multiple approaches.

These include lifestyle and dietary modifications, a strong intention to change your lifestyle and body shape, and proper consultations with either a Dietician or Physician to help you achieve your desired goals.

Call us or fill in the enquiry form below to get a detailed consultation about Surgery options for body contouring and skin reduction. You can also phone (03) 8849 1400 and ask about some weight loss doctors or nutritional advisers in the Melbourne area who may be able to assist you.


  1. Christopher James Clark; Jean-Luc Morel (1 February 2014). Nutritional Grail: Ancestral Wisdom, Breakthrough Science, and the Dawning Nutritional Renaissance. Extropy Publishing. pp. 102–. ISBN 978-0-9912595-0-2.
  2. 100 Ways to Supercharge Your Metabolism. Fair Winds Press. 2009. pp. 164–. ISBN 978-1-61673-462-6.
  3. Omeed Gul (February 2010). The Ultimate Guide to Weight Loss: Simple Slimming and Exercises. pp. 7–. ISBN 978-0-557-28945-5.
  4. Howarth NC, Saltzman E, Roberts SB. Dietary fiber and weight regulation. Nutr Rev. 2001;59(5):129-39.

Specialist Plastic Surgeons and ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeon

With a wealth of experience and training, our Specialist Plastic and ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeons are dedicated to best-practice patient care and education, customising Surgery for each and every patient to best meet their needs and desired surgical outcomes.

Dr Craig Rubinstein
Dr Broughton Snell
Dr Stephen Kleid
Dr Gary Kode

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001124843

Dr Craig Rubinstein

Dr Craig Rubinstein is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon based in Hawthorn East, Melbourne. With over 20 years of surgical experience especially in all areas of Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery, but particularly in breast surgery. These include Breast Augmentation and Breast Reduction as well as Breast Surgery Revision.

Furthermore, he believes that surgical customisation, precision planning and technical expertise help him to provide optimal surgical outcomes for his patients.

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001190266

Dr Broughton Snell

Dr Broughton Snell is a Specialist Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon based in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. His training in Plastic Surgery took place in Australia and the United States of America (USA).

Dr Snell is a fully qualified specialist plastic surgeon having completed his Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in plastic and reconstructive surgery.

ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeon MED0001052799

Dr Stephen Kleid

Dr Stephen Kleid is an experienced Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Surgeon (Otolaryngologist) based in Melbourne with a passion for Septo-rhinoplasty, Septoplasty, as well as, a strong interest in Rhinoplasty Revision.

Dr Kleid trained at Melbourne University, then completed surgical training at various hospitals including Royal Melbourne, Royal Children’s, The Eye and Ear and St Vincents. He worked as a surgeon at the University of Florida Medical school for further experience.

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001405964

Dr Gary Kode

Dr Gary Kode is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon, with experience in Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgery, as well as non-surgical treatments.

Dr Kode is a member of several organisations, including the Australian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS), The International Confederation for Plastic and Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery, and he holds a Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.

What to do next?

Our Patient Liaison Team can assist with any questions you may have when considering a procedure. You can send in an enquiry form below or call our Melbourne Clinic between 9 am – 5 pm Monday - Friday.

Disclaimer: Results depend on individual patient circumstances and can vary significantly. Results may also be impacted by a variety of factors including your lifestyle, weight, nutritional intake and overall health. Consult your Specialist Plastic Surgeon for details. This information is general in nature and is not intended to be medical advice nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Surgery risks and complications will be covered in detail during a consultation with your Surgeon.

Start your journey

Book a Consultation

Our Practice

Hawthorn East

759 Burwood Road, Hawthorn East, VIC, 3123

Get Directions

Get in touch

Ask us a question

Reach out to us to secure your appointment.

  • Looking for before and after photos?
  • Want to know more about recovery times?
  • Wanting to find out costs?

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.