After weight loss surgery patients may fall into erroneous thinking that they are on a “fad diet”. It’s important to realize that you are on a nutrition plan that you must follow for the rest of your life. One important key to achieving long-term success is sticking to the guidelines set out by the surgeons, as reverting back to old habits can lead to weight gain. Even with a small pouch, if the guidelines are not implemented, weight gain will result. It would be unfortunate to sabotage and damage the investment you have made in your health by returning back to old habits.
When goals are met you may feel like you can deviate from the nutritional guidelines and indulge in food rewards because you “feel” you deserve it. You deserve to be healthy. You pay a price when you start deviating from the nutritional guidelines. You do not deserve poor health. The candy bar or piece of cake may move you back to an unhealthy place that left you miserable. Recognize your behavior and be aware of what you do deserve. A healthy lifestyle is life-long commitment.
“Plan today what you will eat tomorrow.” – David K. Miller, MD
Have foods on hand that are part of the nutritional guidelines. This is an excellent way to keep you on track if you take the time to prepare them. Foods that are high in protein and low in carbohydrates rarely come from the nearest fast food restaurant. Because of the limited size of your pouch it is practical to think about how you can use a meal for more than one meal. If you are preparing chicken, cook a little extra to go on top of a salad for lunch the next day. When grating cheese for chili, grate a little extra to go on top of the refried beans or a salad.
Planning for, shopping, and preparing meals can also include your family. Seek input from your family member, find out their favorite meals and incorporate them with your meal planning. Search the internet for low-carbohydrate, high protein recipes and ideas. Find new recipes to vary the foods in your diet.
At least once every two weeks sit down to plan a two-week menu. Inventory your cupboards and make a shopping list of the items that you will need to implement the menu. Be aware of “poor choices” that seem to sneak into the cupboard. If it’s not healthy for you, it’s not healthy for you family. Help change poor habits to good habits for your whole family.
What are some of your favorite healthy, bariatric-friendly recipes?