Posted in after gastric bypass surgery, bariatric diet, bariatric eating, gastric bypass diet, gastric bypass protein

The Beginner’s Guide to Macro and Micronutrients

Today’s guest post comes from Monica Nichols…see her bio at the end of post!

The two most-used terms in nutrition nowadays are probably micronutrients and macronutrients. And it’s no surprise, since they’re one of the most important aspects of building a healthy diet and promoting a healthy lifestyle. When you know a sufficient amount about micro and macronutrients, it becomes much easier to plan a perfect meal that will give your body everything that it requires on a daily basis. Simply put, a “nutrient” is any organic or inorganic molecule that the body requires in order to properly maintain all the processes inside of our cells. It could be a vitamin, a protein or just about anything else. One of the most popular classifications of nutrients is based on how much of them our body needs. Hence, we get the following classification comprising of macronutrients (molecules that our bodies need a lot of) and micronutrients (those that we need in smaller quantities).

This article is going to be a quick guide to the most basic macro and micronutrients, precisely why our bodies require them and why it’s a really bad idea to let yourself become deficient in any of them.

Macronutrients

As I already mentioned, macronutrients are molecules that our bodies require in large quantities. There are three types of macronutrients out there: proteins, fats and carbohydrates.

Carbohydrates (or carbs, as they’re regularly abbreviated) have a singular function within our organism – to provide energy. When food that contains carbohydrates is ingested, these molecules are metabolized into a more simple form of sugar called glucose. Glucose is incredibly important in our bodies, as it is the bread and butter of our body’s energy supply. Our brain needs it in ample doses to keep functioning properly, which is why people on low-carb diets can sometimes feel that their mental functions are somewhat impaired – their brains simply don’t have enough glucose to continue operating at 100% efficiency.

Carbs are somewhat of a double-edged sword, however; because they’re almost pure energy, over the centuries our bodies have adapted to respond really well to them by releasing large amounts of the feel-good hormone dopamine into our bloodstream. In other words, carbs are always welcome in our bodies and we don’t always know when we’ve had enough, which means that it’s really easy to overeat with carbs – much more so than with fats and proteins.

micronutrients

Continue reading “The Beginner’s Guide to Macro and Micronutrients”

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Posted in after gastric bypass surgery, bariatric diet, bariatric eating, bariatric recipies, benefits to bariatric surgery, gastric bypass diet, protein ice cream, Protein supplements, weight loss surgery experiences

A Different Way to Get Your Protein

Tired of protein shakes?  Try protein ice cream!  What a fantastic sweet treat to get your 75g a day.  This recipe uses Nectar Grab ‘n Go…to try all their 17 fantastic flavors, try getting a variety pack here…

Nectar Grab ‘N Go variety pack

nectar variety pack

Twisted Chocolate Cherry Protein Ice Cream

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Recipe by Better Bariatric, LLCA little sweet and a little tart make this protein ice cream the perfect frozen protein treat! Makes two servings.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup 1% milk
  • 1 packet Nectar Twisted Cherry protein powder
  • 1 single serving container Dannon Fit & Light Greek vanilla yogurt
  • 1 oz extra dark chocolate, roughly chopped

Cooking Directions

  1. Using a fork or whisk, mix milk and protein powder together in a small bowl.
  2. Gradually mix in yogurt, until throughly blended.
  3. Following your ice cream makers directions, add mixture to ice cream machine.
  4. During last two minutes, add in chopped dark chocolate.
  5. Enjoy soft serve or store in airtight container in freezer for up to 3 days.

185 calories, 4g fat, 23g protein, 12g sugars (from dairy)

Posted in after gastric bypass surgery, Gastric bypass books, gifts for bariatric patient

Hot Holiday Gift Guide for the Bariatric Patient

It’s that time of year again, time to give the loved ones on your list a special gift that shows you care, and really know what they’d like.  Somethings that you maybe used to buy for your loved ones-candy, wine, food baskets-might not be suitable anymore if your loved one has gone through bariatric surgery.  Here are some gift ideas that will be sure to please any friend of family member who has undergone weight loss surgery!

  1.  Ninja Master prep…400 watt power will blend frozen foods, and two cup processor can mince, dice and chop like a boss!

 

ninja

2.  Nature’s Approach Aromatherapy heat pad…keeps those sore belly muscles feeling better and the soothing herbal blend helps with relaxation.  Best part is just pop in the microwave for instant heat pack!

heat-pad

3.  A gift card to their favorite clothing store…one thing with bariatric surgery is we all go through clothes-very quickly- at first, so getting a new outfit or two will be much appreciated!

 

4.  Bariatric portion plate…one of the easiest ways for a post-op to keep their meal portions in control, especially during the holidays when it’s very easy to over indulge.

plate

5.  The Social Chef conversion magnetic chart…make cooking easier with this magnetic conversion chart for converting recipe measurements.

conversion

6.  A gym membership…BUT, and this is  a HUGE BUT, only if he/she has asked for it, or talked about it!  Better yet, get one for both of you so your loved one won’t have to go alone!

7.  For her, try Natural Relaxing Bath Salts…after a day of stress, any lady would love to have a nice relaxing soak, especially if she’s still having some muscle aches from her surgery!

bath

8.  A gift card for a massage…everyone needs a little TLC, and a relaxing massage will be much appreicated.

9.  A food saver….especially if the person on your list isn’t cooking for a family, they will be eating a lot less.  This food saver will make dividing up packets of meat and fish easy, and save them lots of money in wasted food.

food-saver

10.  The Zoku Quick Pop Maker...who doesn’t love frozen treats?  The best part about this popsicle maker is the pops are ready in as little as 7 minutes!  Protein pops and homemade sugar free pops are a great change of pace from the sugar free ones you can buy.

zoku

11.  Give a class…would your friend or family member like to learn to cook?  Paint?  Pottery?  There are tons of fun classes out there, and it’s a great way to find a new hobby or    learn a new skill.

12.  Give an experience…a play, concert, museum tickets, the possibilities are almost endless!

13.  A healthy slow cooker cookbook…especially in the winter it’s great to pop dinner in the crockpot before work and come home to a healthy home cooked meal.

cookbook

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Posted in after gastric bypass surgery, life after gastric bypass, weight loss surgery experiences

When Your Partner Doesn’t Support You

*I am NOT a mental health professional and I urge you to seek appropriate counseling for any relationship problems*

For many of us who have weight loss surgery, we have had weight issues most of our lives.  I for one battled with my weight since the age of 12.  So when we hear the words “you’re approved” it’s a mix of feelings; relief, happiness, nervousness, excitement…I’m sure you can fill in many others you felt when you heard the news for yourself. We all imagine our spouse/significant other will be behind us 100% in our decision to change our life for the better and put an end to our obesity struggles.

bride-and-groom-figurines-1-1313897

But what happens when you’re partner doesn’t support your decision to go under the knife?  Why would he/she react this way?  More and more I’m hearing of couples having relationship issues either during the approval process or soon after the surgery is done.  There are many reasons that your partner might not support your decision for weight loss surgery.  For many, couples met and fell in love while at their current weight.  Basically who you are (and are trying to change with your WLS) is who your partner fell in love with.  The new you will take some getting used to.

Some lack of support may be due to worry that you will now be more attractive to other people and leave him/her for someone else.  If your partners is also heavy and unhappy with their weight, good ‘ole fashioned jealousy can be at play that you are able to change for the better and they are not.

Sometimes, without realizing it, our surgery becomes our sole focus, and that can wear on the other person (and honestly our other friends and family, not just our partners).  It’s a big deal to us, and even if our loved ones are happy for us, and supportive, it doesn’t mean they want to hear about it during ever conversation…that’s when support groups come in handy, so we can talk about it to our hearts content!

If your partner is truly disrespecting you, insulting you, or hurting you in anyway, do NOT tolerate that!  But if it seems to be simply they are having a rough time with the changes your surgery brought on, try talking honestly about them, and meet him/her halfway, and see if attitudes can shift to make both of you happy again.  One of the biggest changes in your life doesn’t have to mean an end to your relationship!

 

51Nhp6tzqEL.jpg      weight-loss-relationships    wls-connection   shaping

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Posted in after gastric bypass surgery, Bariatric vitamin requirements, gastric bypass diet, gastric bypass protein, healing after gastric bypass

Nutritional Deficiencies

Hair loss seems to be one of the biggest topics asked about after gastric bypass.  Right on the heels of this seems to be lots of comments about how “I get enough protein in with food alone” from people who had their surgeries like two minutes ago.

Let’s get real here.  You CANNOT get enough protein from food alone right after your gastric bypass surgery.  It is PHYSICALLY impossible!  Even if by some miracle you are able to eat enough food, your bypassed small intestine are not absorbing all the protein out of the foods you eat.  Same goes for vitamins, and why we need vitamin supplements also.

Hair loss is only one complication of lack of protein and vitamin deficiencies.  Anemia, bone disease, eye problems, and skin rashes are just some of the other problems that can occur.  A dietician I worked with at one of my local hospitals said they have seen numerous patients coming into the ER with medical problems due to being non-compliant.

Please, follow your doctors advice, and supplement with protein and vitamins after your surgery.  It’s not just a scheme you’re being told to do this; it’s for your own health and your own good.  Supplementing doesn’t just have to be vanilla protein powder in a blender either!  There are soooo many tasty supplements out there.  Proti Diet is one of my favorites, and comes in everything from soups to pancakes to chocolate cake!  If you like fruity flavors that will mix right into your Crystal Light, Nectar is a good choice.  Bariatric Fusion makes great tasting vitamins as well as protein powered.  I’ve included a few Amazon links to get you started.

Bariatric Fusion Variety Pack

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Bariatric Fusion Soft Chews-Iron

iron

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Proti Diet Hot Cocoa

cocoa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nectar Grab N Go variety pack

nectar-gng-lineup

 

 

 

 

 

For further reading:

http://www.obesityaction.org/educational-resources/resource-articles-2/weight-loss-surgery/protein-supplements-weight-loss-surgery

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/809195_8

Posted in after gastric bypass surgery

Regrets

I spend a lot of time talking about all the great things that can come from having WLS.  But what about our friends out there that are regretting theirs?  I have recently talked to a few people who had different surgeries and felt regrets for various reasons.  That got me thinking to times I had issues with the way my new stomach was working, and thinking back to did I ever regret it?

I have been very lucky to never have had any major complications.  But like everyone else, I have had my share of minor bumps in the road.  I have had food get stuck, and spent agonizing hours hoping and praying it would move on through.  I have had odd post-op pouch pain that required trips to the surgeon’s office, to have them find nothing and say it was just one of those things.  I have been low on iron, dumped food for no apparent reason, had low blood sugar attacks and ordered whole meals at restaurants that once it arrived, I couldn’t even look at let alone eat. 

Sometimes, during those fun and exciting times (ahem, yes this is sarcasm!) I have felt the twinges of “what on earth did I do this for”.  When we are miserable with feeling sick, it’s very easy to have feelings that this was the wrong choice, and wish we hadn’t gone through with it.  But like any decision in life, there will be ups and downs.  Just like in any other major life choice, like marriage and careers, this one will have great parts and not so great parts, but staying focused on the ultimate goals and what you have accomplished, will help make those down times a bit easier, and not take over your journey!

Better Bariatric

Posted in after gastric bypass surgery, gastric bypass recovery time, healing after gastric bypass

First few days after WLS

I know a lot of surgeries are coming up this summer, and it’s normal to feel anxious or nervous!  Knowing what you’ll be eating, and how you might be feeling in the first couple of weeks can help ease some of those concerns.  So here’s a short list of what you might feel and a short list of full liquid ideas to keep you going in those first few days after your bariatric surgery.

Tips on staying comfortable:

  • Get up and walk ASAP.  This will help with gas pains, and help prevent blood clots.
  • Hold a pillow tight against your abdomen when getting up, sneezing, laughing, etc.
  • Sleep in a semi-sitting position.  This is usually more comfortable then laying flat.
  • Take pain medicine EXACTLY how it was prescribed!  If you try to tough it out, or not take it the way your are supposed to, it is harder to manage pain.  
  • Take it easy.  You just had major surgery, now is not the time to clean the house, work in the garden, etc.  Walk, walk, walk, but give yourself plenty of rest time too.
  • Follow your surgeons instructions!  This is so important.  It’s easy to feel like you can do something/eat something more than they say, and it almost never works out.  

Tips on eating:

  •  Some good full liquids-tomato soup, pureed split pea, protein shakes, plain fat free Greek yogurt, sugar free pudding and jello, protein gelatin, low fat chicken broth and sugar free Popsicle. 
  • Sip, sip, sip all day long.  Your pouch doesn’t hold much, so it’s so important to drink enough to stay hydrated.
  • Don’t run out and buy a big container of protein.  If you don’t like it, you’ll have wasted a lot of money.  Try to get single serving pouches until you find a favorite.  
  • If you’re lactose intolerant, try unsweetened almond or soy milk.  The milk will really help you get your protein in during the first couple of weeks!

Please remember, these are just some suggestions I found to work for me.  Always follow what your doc and NUT tell you!  Happy healing!