Nutrition After Surgery
In the weeks after surgery, the patient should follow a strict plan given by the surgeon. This will include instructions for proper nutrition and activity. The plan could begin with a liquid diet for a period of time followed by a progression to soft or pureed foods, eventually ending with more regular food. While healing in the first few months, it can be difficult to get enough fluid. Most surgeons advise a goal of 64oz or more of fluids per day to avoid dehydration, constipation, and kidney stones.
In addition to good fluid intake, the patient will need to develop a lifelong habit with daily supplements, usually including:
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin B12
According to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), healthy lifestyle choices will give patients the best results for good health and weight loss after surgery. Patients are warned to avoid excessive carbohydrate intake, such as that found in pasta and breads, as well as sugar. In fact, the ASMBS recommends 50 grams of carbs per day, or less, to avoid rebound hunger problems that can lead to weight gain.
Alcohol is not recommended after bariatric surgery. This is because alcohol contains a high number of calories and minimal nutrition. In addition, the absorption of alcohol changes with gastric bypass and gastric sleeve surgery, often causing alcohol absorption to be more potent.
Fitness After Surgery
Along with a healthy diet, physical activity is also very important for long-term weight management. Because different patients have different needs and abilities, the surgeon will instruct you on the best plan for you. As the patient progresses, the body becomes more efficient and weight will be lost.Weight is lost by the number of calories burned per hour, which tends to decrease when the same plan goes unchanged over time. Post-surgery, it is necessary to gradually increase the intensity or length of fitness activities. It is recommended that 150 minutes of moderate activity a week, such as jogging, swimming or using exercise machines, be attempted and achieved. Fitness routines should be varied and include cardio, strength and flexibility exercises.
Is Bariatric Surgery For Me?
Bariatric surgery is not a cure-all for obesity. Rather, it is a procedure that can help obese patients lose weight more quickly and easily, as long as they follow a healthy diet and exercise plan. If you are obese and having trouble losing weight, consult with a certified surgeon about bariatric surgery to see if it is the right option for you.
After extensive weight loss, many patients find that they have lose skin that does not go away. This skin is unsightly and can make patients feel self-conscious. If you have excess skin after weight loss, Dr. Siamak Agha can help. Dr. Agha is a board certified plastic surgeon who specializes in body shaping after weight loss by offering a variety of procedures and treatments that remove excess skin. Contact Dr. Agha today for more information.