Gastric sleeve surgery in Maryland has helped thousands of individuals reclaim their health and their lives. However, it isn’t the quick fix that many think it is. While it is a tool that aids in massive weight loss for obese individuals, it also requires lifestyle changes from the patient to work long term.
Post-surgery, the stomach is often a quarter or less of its original size. This limits food intake. It also requires dietary changes to prevent harming the stomach or leading to weight gain after gastric sleeve surgery. While smaller portions are key to success, there are some foods that should be mostly or entirely avoided.
Foods to Avoid After Gastric Sleeve
After gastric sleeve surgery, you first need to heal before you are able to eat solid foods. Once you pass that milestone, there are no foods that are explicitly off limits. However, there are certain foods you should rarely eat, and if possible, avoid entirely. These include:
- Fatty foods
- Foods with lots of added sugar
- Empty calories
However, you might discover that other foods are off limits to you just because your newly reshaped stomach can no longer tolerate them. Some foods people avoid after gastric sleeve surgery include:
- Anything tough to chew, as these foods are also harder to digest
- Fibrous foods, such as some types of fruits and veggies
- Nuts and seeds
- Long-grain rice
- Anything spicy
While it isn’t that you cannot eat these foods after gastric sleeve surgery as a rule, you should introduce them slowly and see how your body reacts to them.
How to Approach Your Post-Surgery Diet
Your doctor should give you a precise schedule for introducing foods after your surgery. This will start with a clear liquid diet, then a full liquid diet, and from there progress to purees, then soft foods, then softer solid foods before opening up to allow all foods—with the correct approach.
Keep in mind that it isn’t just what you eat, but how you eat. Some of the basic rules for mealtimes after gastric sleeve surgery are:
- Break up your food consumption into 4-6 small meals.
- Take time to chew your food thoroughly before swallowing.
- Stop eating when you get the first sense of being full.
- Center meals around protein and then build around this with fruits and veggies.
- Be mindful about eating urges that are tied to emotions, including boredom.
- Drink at least 1.5 liters of fluids daily.
- Do not drink within 15 to 30 minutes of mealtimes as this can cause vomiting.
For more information about the post-bariatric surgery diet, set up a consultation.