Day 36: Weight Control, Calories, and Mashed Potatoes

Where a balanced diet is concerned, it is fair to say that I really have not had one since my surgery! It is actually rather debatable whether I had a balanced diet prior to surgery but that is another matter :)

Many people ask me about whether I have lost weight as a result of being banded shut for the last month and the answer is, yes I have, but the reality is that if you have had this surgery the you need to make a concerted effort to watch your caloric intake to ensure that you don't lose weight. That is what the brochure says anyway!

However, my experiences where eating is concerned are these:

  • Immediately after surgery (the dreaded first week) I had absolutely no appetite or desire to eat. Syringing food was actually easier than I thought but towards the end of week 1 and during week 2 the tube really irritated my throat and apart from hot food (soup) I really did not eat much. I didn't want to eat.
  • Being banded shut makes drinking your food rather laborious to say the least. As in, laborious. A liquid diet is just that, liquid. Food should not be in liquid form for two+ weeks. Your body does not appreciate it in sooo many ways . . .
  • Once I was able to take my bands off, eating obviously became easier. Although being forbidden to chew and consequently having to gum or suck your very soft foods results in very experiences. Not good experiences necessarily please note.
  • I have read many similar blogs and forums where people who have had this surgery actually eat normal foods and meals. One question, how? Sure, you could blend everything but people talk about eating pasta, cheese, fruit. They must have had a different surgery than me. Either that I was, and am, just incredibly inept at sucking food so that it is edible. 
  • Splints are the biggest impediment and obstacle to eating. Ever. Food + splint = not fun.
  • Given that you are allowed to take your bands off for a limited amount of time, you have to maximise that time. For example, the first week I could only take my bands off for fifteen minutes so if I experimented with new foods and it didn't work out (read one of my posts) then I was not eating. Go with what you know. Boring, even predictable, but at least I was eating!
  • Do you know how time consuming it is in the beginning to take off your bands, drink and slurp your food, and then have to brush your teeth with a baby toothbrush, swill mouthwash in a mouth that barely opens and then somehow spit it out when you have a splint and cannot get your tongue out of your mouth!? Nope, didn't think so. So who want to go through all of that just to eat some instant banana pudding. Hence the weight loss . . .
  • Now that I am week 4 post-op and my bands are off for eight hours a day, I have time to experiment with foods. I am no longer eating mashed potatoes everyday you will be glad to hear although I have yet to kick the instant pudding addiction. That will be a hard addiction to kick :)
  • I was a slacker and didn't count my caloric intake everyday.  Ever. Waaayyyy to much work and a hassle I didn't need after surgery. I ate when I felt like it and didn't when I didn't. That simple. The result? Like I said, not exactly a balanced diet and I have lost weight (20+ lbs so far).
  • I learned that I ate way too much food before surgery. I simply ate too much food that I did not need to eat. 
  • Once I am eating normally again (whatever normal is) the weight will come back on I am sure.
So there you have it, my observations on eating. To eat means to chew. I cannot chew. So what do I do? I slurp, I suck, and I gum my food.My foods are getting more adventurous and I think I am probably reaching my caloric intake goal. Progress indeed.

Next Post Previous Post

Leave a Reply