Post-Bariatric Weight Loss Surgery Guidelines

Many Americans struggle with obesity.  And it’s no surprise with the amount of preservatives, chemicals, and other additives in today’s foods.  For some, the major battle is eating right.  For others, it’s exercising regularly.  And still, for others, it’s both.  When you don’t eat right and exercise, your body suffers, which means, you suffer.

After failed attempts at losing weight through traditional methods, bariatric weight loss is a viable solution to lose weight and regain your mental and physical confidence.  And while the surgery itself does most of the work, it is incredibly important that patients understand post-surgery guidelines.

After bariatric surgery, a new lifestyle is crucial.  To prevent complications from surgery and ensure patients succeed in keeping off the unwanted weight, changing the way you eat is vital.  Directly after weight loss surgery, patients are restricted to a clear liquid diet.  This means that you can have water, diluted Gatorade, sugar-free jello, broth, etc.  You will start by only have very little, about half of an ounce to one ounce, every fifteen minutes for the first three days of recovery.

Often times, this seems overwhelming and unattainable.  We encourage patients to really focus on your goals.  There is no such thing as a quick fix to the struggle against weight loss.  Understand, bariatric weight loss surgery is not a one-surgery-fix-all solution.  It requires dedication to the process.  After surgery, a new lifestyle is required.  Eating according to the guidelines and walking will help you heal faster and keep you healthy.

After the first three days of recovery, you can begin to incorporate more liquids into your diet.  Each hour, you can add about four to six ounces of food that are thin like milk.  Foods to eat range from protein shapes, fat-free milk, diluted juice, hot cereal, sugar-free pudding, yogurt, vegetable juice, etc.  When drinking liquids, do not use a straw and make sure to blend the liquid until you have the consistency of milk.

Again, exercise is key at this stage.  When you work out regularly, you will see more drastic results and notice that your body is recovers better.  You will want strength during this stage, so find exercises you enjoy and try to establish a routine.

Once you’ve gotten through the first two weeks, you can incorporate soft, mashed foods to your diet.  Puree about two ounces of protein foods with one ounce of vegetables.  Good proteins to consume range from egg whites, meat or tofu, and refried beans.  Take your time when eating and chew slowly and thoroughly.  As you eat, really listen to your body.

When you are satisfied, stop eating.  Do not keep eating because there is still food on your plate or wait until you feel full.  As soon as you’ve eaten enough for satisfaction, stop eating.  Never eat more than six ounces.

Once you are six weeks post-operation, you can start incorporating regular food into your diet.  At this point, it’s important to determine how your lifestyle will be.  Because your stomach is smaller, each bite you take matters.  This means the foods you eat need to have nutritional value.  Low fat, protein-rich foods are the best.