One of the questions I get the most (after the dreaded, “How much have you lost???”) is “what do you eat?”. That answer has changed over the last seven weeks, dramatically!
The first three days after surgery are ALL about sipping. The diet is ALL clear liquids. The focus in on hydration and protein. One of the biggest concerns after weight loss surgery is dehydration, and this fact is really driven home by all medical staff at the hospital, at the Dr’s office and from the weight loss community – so I took heed. The goal for hydration is 64 ounces a day. Here is a sample of the suggested hydration liquids:
- Decaf Coffee or Tea (Splenda, Equal, Truvia & Stevia are allowed)
- Clear Fruit Juice (Diet or Sugar Free)
- Sugar Free Jello
- Sugar Free Popsicles
- Chick, beef or vegetable broth
- Sugar Free, Non-Carbonated beverages (Crystal Lite, SF Kool-Aid, SF Lemonade)
- Vitamin Water Zero
- Mio drops
- Dasani flavored water
- Skinny Water
You also have to focus on protein. For days 1-3 the list of protein (in liquid form) is pretty short. The goal is to get 60-80 grams of protein in a day (for my surgery).
- Nectar Protein Powder
- Health Wise high protein fruit drink
- Healthwise Bouillon
- Isopure Liquid
- New Whey 42
- Healthwise Sugar Free Protein gelatin
- Unjury chicken soup
For me, the list was pretty disgusting too! 😦 I was NOT a fan of most protein drinks. Also, your taste changes from the pre-op to the post-op period. I was fine with the Isopure drinks prior to surgery…but after…ugh! It made me nauseated to think of sipping on that! I LOVED the Unjury chicken soup. It was wonderful since most of my hydrating liquids of choice were “sweet”. I craved the savory and it satisfied!
The SCHEDULE is the hardest part of this. The easiest way to explain it is to think of a clock and break it up into 15 minute increments. From the top of the hour until 15 minutes past, you are sipping on your protein liquids. From 15 mins past the hour until 30 mins past, you are sipping on your hydrating liquid. From 30 mins past the hour until 45 mins past, you are sipping hydrating liquids. Finally, from 45 mins past the hour until the top of the next hour, you are sipping on hydrating liquids. EACH 15 minute interval you should consume 2 ounces of liquid by SIPPING slowly. You start over at the top of each hour, so that each hour you are having your protein first. You are literally sipping every minute of the day, if you’re doing it right. This stressed me out so much! I didn’t feel like I could rest at all because I was worried about dehydrating and not getting my protein in!
Again, I missed chewing and I missed my life not revolving around sipping but STILL WORTH IT. I went into this on diabetes and high blood pressure meds and I stopped them the day before my surgery. Have not had a blood sugar level over 105 and my blood pressure is normal, if not low, at all times! Praise God for this opportunity to be HEALTHY.
I found it most helpful to write everything down. I kept a notebook detailing what I drank, how much and what time. It was the only way to stay on track and not forget where I was for the goals I had (64 ounces of hydrating liquids, 60-80 g protein). Here’s a snapshot of one of those days (this was during the next phase – full liquids):
I also measured everything out (2 ounces at a time) in either shot glasses, small Dixie bathroom cups (they are 3 ounce, so you have to measure liquid before), or clear plastic mini cups (they are 2 ounce – PERFECT) with lids. You don’t want to chance gulping from a large cup or serving and it helps to visualize as you are drinking. I remember thinking “Okay, it’s 7 minutes after, I should be halfway done…” and it really helps when you are trying to do everything by the book.
Next post will be from the next phase of diet! The FULL LIQUID phase!