I see this question asked in online bariatric support groups all the damn time. It kind of makes me mad. The truth is that there are certain food rules you may want to consider following as a bariatric patient. There are some foods that like us back better than others.
In general, you want to:
- Eat small meals (3 oz. or less),
- Steer clear of simple carbohydrates. Complex carbs like quinoa are encouraged and part of a healthy diet plan.
- Stick to healthy, unprocessed foods whenever you can.
- Get in your protein…between 60 – 75 grams of it each day.
- Stay hydrated by drinking 64 oz of fluid or more daily.
I don’t believe that there are any ‘bad’ foods or even ‘good’ foods for that matter. Food is an inanimate object and well, we shouldn’t think of it in positive or negative terms. It just is fuel for our bodies. We should strive to fuel our bodies with the best possible fuel. That means that you should eat lean protein and fresh produce as much as you can.
Of course, you will probably need to add in protein water or a protein shake to make your protein goal every day. I use Vega Protein, it’s a plant-based protein powder. I have to drink mine with soy milk because other milks cause dumping for me. TMI, I know.
Truthfully, if you want to eat pizza, or Oreo cookies or a candy bar, do it. There’s room in a healthy diet for it. You don’t have to ask permission of people in a support group who don’t know you and may judge you for it. Guess what – you are a grown up and can eat whatever you like.
Act like it. Do it and deal with the consequences. You may not lose as much weight as other people do or as quickly, but you shouldn’t be comparing yourself to them anyway. Comparing yourself to others won’t make you happier in the long run. I, myself, follow an 80/20 approach as suggested by my nutritionist. I eat well 80% of the time and allow myself to slip up or eat something I’m craving that’s not as nutritionally sound about 20% of the time.
Basically, I have learned to listen to my body and give it what it wants. Personally, I’m a big advocate of eating whatever you want when you want it. The body knows what it needs. My cravings have changed too, as a result of the surgery. I honestly crave things like avocado, seeds and other protein sources. I don’t like sugary foods and gluten is not my friend.
You may find that pizza no longer appeals to you. Yup, it’s true. It’s very freeing but also a bit unusual. Good luck, eat what you want and stop worrying about what other people think. You do you. As a coach, I do not judge your food choices and encourage you not to either. If you do ‘slip up’, do NOT beat yourself up over it. It does not serve you.
Call me today at 512-484-7634 for more information on working with me. I can help you help yourself on this process.