Category Archives: Diet
One of the simplest but most common phrases we tell our patients is “everything in moderation” and this also applies to alcoholic beverages. However, there are some hard and fast rules that must be understood in the immediate postop timeframe that can prevent serious complications and discomfort. First, it is important that in the months after surgery, you do not drink alcohol. This is primarily because alcoholic drinks can add hundreds of empty calories. A bottle of beer can add upwards of 150 calories (and discomfort from the carbonation), a glass of wine, upwards of 125 calories and mixed drinks can add hundreds of calories and quite a bit of sugar.
From well before bariatric surgery to long after, one common theme is protein. Bariatric patients require at least 60 to 80 grams of protein each day. This may seem daunting, but patients quickly find that it is not terribly hard to achieve this goal with thoughtful eating. With time, knowing exactly how to get to your protein requirement becomes second nature. However, not all proteins are made the same. Here are mistakes some patients make that reduce the effectiveness of their protein consumption regimen.
It may seem trivial, but grocery shopping is one of the first lifestyle changes you have to get used to after surgery. For one, grocery shopping after bariatric surgery will never be the same as what it was before the procedure. There are many reasons for this, not least of which is that many products sold in the grocery store are simply unhealthful. These products may have caused the excess weight or obesity in the past and may be some of your favorite foods. However, grocery shopping does not have to be torture. Rather, it can be a catalyst for jump-starting healthy eating habits, not only for yourself but your entire family. In this blog, we will discuss the various tips and tricks that you should use when going to the grocery store. This will help ensure that it is both a successful and enjoyable experience.
The number of pre-diabetic and diabetic patients has increased dramatically over the past few decades. Today about 13% of the US population over 18 has diagnosed or undiagnosed diabetes. The primary reason for this has been an exceptional growth in obesity. While we typically discuss diabetes as a significant risk factor for a number of long-term and chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, now, more than ever the effect diabetes has on the immune system needs to be emphasized.
It may be one of the last things on your mind, but during stressful times such as these, we tend to find comfort in the familiar. Our lives have been affected, in many cases, to such a degree that going back to old habits becomes easy. For those suffering from excess weight or who had bariatric surgery, this may mean eating during times of extreme stress. After all, for years, or even decades, eating was our way of coping. Our bodies are very good at remembering those feelings and sensations, despite how destructive those actions were to our health. While we can tell ourselves that we deserve to indulge a little bit more during these crazy times, the weight can pile on pretty quickly and put us in a position where it is difficult to turn around. Unfortunately, as we all know, it is much easier to put on weight than eliminate it.
It isn’t just the food industry trying to catch your attention with low-fat, low-sugar or other miracle-fix promises. How many people pick up that grocery store checkout magazine with the newest fad diet on the front cover? Come to think of it, almost all our magazines, social media site and online blogs are shouting with confidence that the way to a trim body and perfect life are through the maze of one fad diet to the next. This topic was discussed recently at one of our online support groups on Facebook. The competition over your attention between the food and diet industries makes for a very confusing relationship with how we eat.
A very real and common challenge for postoperative gastric sleeve patients is building muscle. Firstly, this challenge may come with age — muscle tone decreases and as anyone over the age of 40 knows, it becomes more challenging to build muscle. Second, because of excess weight, most patients have not exercised properly in years. This can often mean that muscles have atrophied due to underuse. Lastly, patients will be consuming far less food than they did previously, which makes fewer calories available for burning during vigorous exercise. While it may seem like a struggle, the gastric sleeve, and bariatric surgery in general, actually offers the opportunity to build muscle more efficiently than if the patient were pursuing a diet and exercise regimen alone.
Very interesting research has emerged about sodas and how they affect our bodies. A recent study set out to determine if soda consumption reduced a person’s life expectancy, and if so, was diet soda any better? The surprising conclusion was that all sodas, even diet sodas that contain no sugar, may have a significant detrimental effect on life expectancy. But if diet soda was created to address, in part, sugar-related excess weight, why would it also be problematic? The answer is simple.
You might think that, as a weight loss surgeon and advocate for healthy eating, I’ve lost my mind saying that fast food is OK after weight loss surgery. It goes counter to everything we’ve learned since we decided to have surgery, right? Not exactly. To be sure, fast food should not be a regular indulgence…but it doesn’t have to be a complete disaster. A renewed interest in personal health has brought about strides in the right direction as it relates to fast food. Not only are there dozens of new fast food outlets that have truly healthy offerings, but even supermarkets are getting in on the game. Prepared foods are no longer the concern that they once were.
Everyone’s gastrointestinal tract has a natural balance of “good” and “bad” bacteria. This mixture of bacteria contributes to the system by aiding in digestion and immune support, among other things. During some weight loss surgery procedures, the digestive tract undergoes a large change, but no matter what procedure you choose, it is likely your gut health will shift. From research we know that the gut flora of obese individuals tends to be different from those with a healthy body mass index, or BMI. Research studies have also been exploring the weight loss effects of altering the gut bacteria using methods like introducing probiotics to the system with some encouraging results, both in studies of patients who have had bariatric surgery and those who have not. So, should you be taking a probiotic supplement?