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.

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

Posted in bariatric diet, bariatric eating, healthy dessert at grocery store, healthy grocery guide, healthy grocery list, protein recipies

Why Grocery Shopping Doesn’t Have to Be a Nutritional Nightmare

Today’s guest post is by Cassie…you can find her on Twitter @ehealth_inform.

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The pursuit of a strong, healthy body is a noble goal we all desire. However, those of us willing to chase the dream have many hurdles to overcome along the way. And while physical fitness is its own challenge, getting hold of the right foods for your diet can sometimes feel daunting.

Arguments in the scientific community don’t make things any easier on us either. While researchers debate about heart attacks and prevention both in terms of lifestyle and diet, we’re faced with having to find and choose foods that are the best for our health today.

Thankfully, though, technology is making the struggle much simpler. With the help of the internet, some well-designed apps and several health-oriented communities (each with their own inspiring stories, we can turn the disorganized and sometimes haphazard practice of grocery shopping into a pleasure far removed from uncertainty and aggravation.

You Can Become an Amateur Researcher

One of the greatest tools at your disposal is the internet. Thanks to the hard work of nutritionists, clinicians and food enthusiasts, you can find out what foods best suit your personal needs. For example, take the diet of someone that does a lot of aerobic work.

Aerobic workouts chew through both your short-term and long-term energy storage relatively quickly. They use up your glycogen first and then tap into fat. Because of this hierarchy, runners and similar athletes need a diet higher in carbohydrates than might be required by power lifters.

Their protein requirements are also slightly lower because there is less tissue damage to repair from a workout. Armed with this knowledge, you can look up different foods you enjoy to start planning out your meals before you even head to the store.

One of my favorite resources for healthy foods is whfoods.com. This site goes into all the details regarding vitamins and minerals and how to get them. It also makes a good companion to sites such as nutritiondata.self.com, which focuses more on facts and figures relating to ingredients and nutritional facts.

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There are So Many Apps to Help You

With so many mobile apps tailored towards making your trips to the supermarket more efficient and less stressful, one of the most powerful tools for making grocery shopping easier, your smartphone, is never far from your fingertips.

To begin with, you will want to make use of one of the many “list” making apps to keep track of what you need to buy and where you can buy it. One well-known app (and not without good reason) is Out of Milk. It allows you to create lists, scan items at the store and keep track of what’s running out at home (US users are also notified of deals while at the store).

Once you’re in the store, there are a variety of apps you can use to check up on foods and research ingredients. For example, Fooducate is an app where you can scan barcodes to get detailed information about ingredients and nutritional facts. However, when you’re in the store, mobile reception can be poor. Many places offer free WiFi, which can be a life saver at times, but also a tad risky if you aren’t using security software. It’s a good idea to utilize a Virtual Private Network with mobile devices if you plan to use the WiFi (a VPN is a type of internet security app). You’d be surprised how many problems can originate from unprotected connections.

On the other hand, if you aren’t a big fan of stores and prefer to shop at local farmer’s markets or at actual farms, you may want to consider apps such as Farmstand. Designed to help you find local produce, Farmstand integrates the locations of small time sellers and helps you figure out where to buy the freshest produce.

Of course, none of this would be possible without a strong community.

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You Are Not Alone—Join the Community

Besides doing searches online, preparing your shopping list and locating local sellers, you may also want to consider joining social media groups focused on nutrition and on the kind of exercises you enjoy the most.

Numerous Facebook groups exist to share meal ideas and advocate for different diets to help reach specific goals. In the same way you might find yourself exercising with community members at the gym or in the park, you can also get assistance coordinating your meals with real people online, especially when it comes to diets with special needs.

Pinterest can be great for this. Users will post photos of foods they’ve cooked complete with recipes, how-to instructions and commentary. You can use these pages to generate meal ideas and then coordinate with your list apps to make the trip much easier.

Due to the ease of running a social media page, you’ll also find healthy communities based around vendors that participate in your local farmer’s market. Here you can post your feedback and talk to other shoppers or sellers to further refine your shopping habits and meal plans.

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Enjoy the Ride

When it comes down to it, if you utilize the numerous tools available to you, shopping is quite a pleasure. There’s no shortage of good food in the markets and eating right is sure to compliment a healthy lifestyle.

With the help of apps, various internet resources and thriving online communities, you can decide more easily what’s worth buying and what should be passed over. Combine all of this with cooking, and you’re well on your way to a positive relationship with grocery shopping.

Will you make your next trip to the store a treat? Tell us how you shop or plan your meals in the comments.

About the Author: Cassie enjoys blogging about food and nutrition, but she also writes regularly about internet technology and security. When she’s not discussing health or technology online, she enjoys casual bike rides around town.

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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 bariatric diet, bariatric eating, gastric bypass protein, gastric bypass protein bars, Protein supplements

15 Best Ready-to-Eat Gastric Bypass Snacks

If you’re anything like me, you need food to be on had all the time.  I stash food around like a squirrel storing up for winter.  This keeps my blood sugar even all day, and keeps me from making any kind of convince store stops, or running through the nearest drive through.  I’ve already posted about great snacks that you can make/keep at home (read it here) but they aren’t all very portable.  So I scoured around, and found 15 of the top rated snacks that meet our protein needs, are low in sugars, and are portable!

#1:  Kay’s Naturals Gluten Free Protein Pretzels in Jalapeño Honey Mustard

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#2:  Pure Protein Crunch Chocolate

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#3:  Ostrim Snack Stick, Teriyaki

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#4:  Lenny & Larry’s The Complete Cookie, Chocolate Chip

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#5:  New Whey Nutrition Protein Shots, Fruit Punch

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#6:  Caveman Chicken Bites, Applewood Smoked BBQ

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#7: Tanka Bar, Natural Buffalo Cranberry Bar

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#8: Crucha Ma-Me Edamame Veggie Snack, Lightly Seasoned 

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#9:  Power Crunch Bar

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#10:  Think Thin Protein Nut Bar, Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel 

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#11: Fit Joy, Frosted Cinnamon Roll

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#12: Quest Protein Chips, BBQ

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#13: Optimum Nutrition Protein Water, Icy Blue Raspberry

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#14: RAP Protein Gummies, Strawberry Flavor 

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#15:  Smash Pack, Fruit & Protein-Tropical Fruit

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So here’s my current fav 15…please comment below and let me know what you keep on hand for portable protein!

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Posted in bariatric diet, bariatric eating, gastric bypass diet

Chew, chew, chew!

Before getting weight loss surgery, practice chewing your food.  Oh, you already chew when you eat?  Not the way you have to as a post-op!  It’s recommended you chew each bite 30 to 50 times before swallowing!  Basically, chew until its so dissolved you feel like your chewing up your own teeth.

I didn’t bother practicing chewing properly before surgery.  It was the dumbest suggestion I’d ever heard of!  How hard could chewing food 30 to 50 times be?  I regretted it big time.  Once I moved to soft foods that actually had to be chewed, I had a really hard time paying attention and slowing down.  Not realizing it, I was always a gulper.

The first few times you forget, and go back to your gulping habits (if you’re anything like me) you’ll realize your mistake very quickly.  It’ll suddenly feel like you swallowed a brick, so there will be no mistaking what went wrong while you were eating.  It will get “stuck” and will stay that way for quite some time until it dissolves enough to move out of your pouch.  So start practicing before surgery, or if you’re a post-op like myself, use this as a reminder to chew, chew, and chew some more! 

Better Bariatric