How to Prevent Weight Regain After Bariatric Sleeve Surgery
By: Laura Greaney MSN Nutritionist
Are you experiencing weight regain after bariatric sleeve surgery? Are you finding it difficult to control weight because of habits such as,
- Emotional eating,
- Sugar addiction, and
- Giving in to excuses?
If your answer is yes, then you know the classic saying, ‘Old Habits Die Hard,” is quite true. There is no magic pill that can make you change years of your eating habits. Keeping weight off after surgery will take a continual conscious effort. Determination and focus to get to your goal and remain there will be how you can keep your weight off.
In this post, we discuss a 2-prong approach for preventing weight regain through diet and exercise. To keep on your weight loss path, you must:
- Stick to a diet of healthier foods that the dietitians recommend for you
- Incorporate exercise that is right for you
How proper diet will help you to prevent weight regain after bariatric sleeve surgery
After the initial weight loss from surgery, you will begin to lax off as you get further out from your surgery date. You will then start “tasting” foods you haven’t had in a while. As long as you don’t notice any physical issues when eating, you will think it is OK. What you might not realize is the physiological change it is having on you.
Incorporating sugar and carbohydrates will increase hunger due to unstable sugar levels. This will most likely lead you to eat more, which in the end will be responsible for weight gain. Also, once you start incorporating those foods, you will crave more of them.
So, how do you fight this?
By keeping an eye on your Protein intake.
Now, due to your restriction from the bariatric surgery, you may be filling up on the wrong foods. Hence you may not be leaving enough room for adequate protein. If you want to control your hunger, and continue to lose weight, you need to focus on eating protein first. Make sure each meal has 15-30g of protein and that you are getting in 60-80g of protein per day.
By sticking to a meal schedule.
Avoid long periods of time without eating as this will lead to hunger and low sugar levels, which will cause carbohydrate cravings. Sticking to a meal schedule may be challenging but it will help avoid weight gain and cravings.
How exercise will help to prevent weight regain after bariatric sleeve surgery
Another dreaded word for most people is exercise. Exercise can be time consuming and something many do not want to do. However, exercise is key if you want to prevent weight regain after surgery. Use these tips to create a weight loss work out program that is friendly, and is suited for you:
The extent of exercise may vary for each person.
Some will be able to run or use the treadmill for 45 mins. Others may only be able to do some sitting exercises or stretching. Whatever form of physical activity you can incorporate into your weekly schedule will benefit you with losing weight and avoiding weight regain.
Choose a form of exercise that will work in your schedule.
Not having time to exercise is a poor excuse; make the time! You should also choose something that you enjoy. Maybe it is dancing around your house for 30 mins, going outside for a walk instead of the treadmill, or bike riding.
Do something that interests you.
Remember your heart doesn’t know what activity it is doing, it just knows that it is beating faster which helps with the fat burning process.
Hold yourself responsible for your actions and your motivation.
This is the key to avoiding weight regain after bariatric surgery. Be aware that yes, you may be your worst enemy. Also, understand that everyone is human, and people will have off days and off weeks. The importance is recognizing that as soon as possible and getting back on track. Instead of ignoring your weaknesses, accept them so you know what you need to work on.
Refocus yourself and your goals.
Don’t just make one huge goal which can seem overwhelming. Adjust your goals as needed throughout the exercise and weight loss process.
Weight regain after bariatric surgery can be disheartening and isn’t a quick easy fix. To lose weight, you need to take a series of steps and adjustments to help you live a healthier, happier life.
We at Tristate Bariatrics are here to help. Contact us today and let us support you through your journey after your surgery.