Diet Changes and Weight Loss Surgery
Of all the changes you will experience after weight loss surgery, those to your diet may be the most profound. Making changes to your diet prior to your weight loss surgery can encourage a smoother transition to the post-bariatric way of life and enhance your weight loss results.
Fully adopting the post-bariatric diet plan prior to your operation will be challenging. After surgery, your stomach capacity will be reduced and you won’t experience as much hunger, making the reduced calorie intake more manageable.
Before surgery, you can take small steps to start adjusting to the diet you’ll follow later. You can do this by making changes to:
- The foods you eat
- The portion sizes you consume
- How often you eat
- The beverages you drink
- Your cooking methods
- Reasons to Change your Diet before Surgery
Making healthy changes in your diet in the months leading up to your weight loss operation will encourage you to start losing weight before your bariatric procedure. Losing weight prior to weight loss surgery is associated with several benefits, including:
- Greater weight loss
- Reduced risk of surgical complications
- Greater long-term weight management success
- Faster recovery period
As you prepare for weight loss surgery, consider adopting the following dietary behaviors:
Following weight loss surgery, you will consume smaller meals more frequently throughout the day. Instead of indulging in two or three large meals, begin eating a series of smaller healthy meals in the weeks leading up to your weight loss surgery.
You will grow full much faster when eating after weight loss surgery, and will need to detect the early signs of fullness to prevent discomfort. Start eating slower and learning to recognize the signs of your body becoming full.
To ensure that you are getting enough protein, you will be advised to consume foods that contain the essential nutrient first. Instead of mixing your protein with bites of vegetables and starches, grow used to eating your entire protein serving first before moving on to other items.
After weight loss surgery, you will not be able to snack freely throughout the day. Set designated eating locations and if you are not having a meal, make a habit of not eating.
Prior to your operation, you should also practice drinking plenty of water in small sips throughout the day. Staying hydrated is important for healing after any form of surgery and is necessary after bariatric surgery.
Also, begin eliminating items that are prohibited after weight loss surgery, like sodas, fried foods and sugary items. Refer to your weight loss surgeon’s guidelines for what you can eat the day before bariatric surgery.