Sunday, June 21, 2015

Weight loss surgery is it an option?

If you have been obese for a while you may have considered weight loss surgery. It seems like a cop-out, the easy way out. Since I have blood sugar issues, managing my blood sugar while trying to diet is very difficult. I can workout 3+ times a week but if I don't manage my blood sugar, I don't lose the weight. So recently I have considered weight loss surgery because of the difficulty involved and the implications of diabetes. It would be negligent to not consider all options, in fact Dr Oz mentioned in one of his episodes that weight loss surgery is the underperformed surgery he thinks you should be getting. 

So out of swimsuit season desperation I have looked at the implications of surgery and if I can manage the lifestyle. I found a couple of great links for weight loss post surgery diets and tried them out to see if they is manageable.  One is the Highland Hospital Bariatric Surgery Center 3 month – 6 month bariatric lifestyle meal plan (1000 – 1300 Calories Daily, 60 Grams Protein Daily) The bariatric meal plan consisting of a tips section,
  • Potential problem foods, 
  • my favorite section is the Sample meal plan, 
  • Food groups and serving sizes,
  • Keeping active
  • and a very important Protein tally.
There is a puree and soft foods plan after the weight loss surgery but you graduate to a low calorie regular diet. Except that you have three small well balanced meals daily plus one to two snacks as needed. Can you manage that? You may have to consider the plan if you opt for the surgery.

Another great site is the Gastric Bypass Diet by GI care.  It has a vitamin and supplement section,
  • Nutrition facts
  • Special considerations
  • Fluids
  • The abc's of eating right
  • a Sample menu
But by far my favorite is by the University of California San Francisco Medical Center on Dietary Guidelines After Bariatric Surgery, it has a General Guidelines section

  • Fluids, protein, supplements sections
  • Diet progression after bariatric surgery, Diet in the hospital, 
  • Diet for the first two weeks post-surgery, Diet for weeks two to four post-surgery
  • Recommended meal plan for weeks two to eight until two months post-surgery with a sample menu, 
  • Recommended meal plan for two to six months post-surgery with a sample menu, 
  • Recommended meal plan for six months post-surgery and Beyond and long-term dietary guidelines
My favorite menu is the sample menu for the Recommended Meal Plan for Two to Six Months Post-Surgery. Out of curiosity I thought I would attempt this plan and I have some interesting observations. In this plan you eat almost every 2 hours but you eat a little at each time, there 8 possible meals. You can eat 900-1000 calories in the day so each meal is only 120 calories or so, or maybe 200 for meals and 100 for snacks. So it is like continual snacking, which is similar to my usual eating pattern trying to satisfy my blood sugar levels. The meals don't satisfy you as they are so small but since you will eat again in 2 hours you can tolerate the discomfort. Also my blood sugar is balanced better if I eat healthy foods for my 1000 calories rather than any calories.

I haven't weight myself as I tend not to but I have noticed I am not as bloated and it only has been a couple of days. Today was Fathers day and I did splurge a little on half restaurant salad, glass of wine and cake but I was still only 1500 calories for the day. But I might have blood sugar issues later in the evening cause the wine and the cake don't help balance your blood sugar. That is the thing about blood sugar, it doesn't take a break. Take care of yourself before you ruin your pancreas. 

So instead of doing the surgery I am experimenting with the surgery diets to see if it is something I can do, and a side benefit may be that I finally lose some weight. I still have a long way to go but a start is better than doing nothing.

I really don't like the post surgery diets the liquids diet, the puree foods diet, and soft foods sounds boring. Surgery may be something I still need to do sometime, but for now lets see what happens with the sample diets for long term weight management for surgery patients. 


Sunday, June 14, 2015

Tools to help with fitness

You don't need a lot of equipment to get fit, but there are tools out there to help you lose weight. Here's a review of some useful and popular ones recommended by me. Check with your doctor before changing your routine.

Pedometers are useful as they track how many steps you take. Doctors suggest you get to 10,000 steps a day to get fit. It will be surprising to see how few steps you take in a day and inspire you to walk more. The one I use is the Fitbit One Wireless Activity Plus Sleep Tracker. It has add on products such as the Fitbit Aria Wi-Fi Smart Scale and more.

I love reading and my favorite health books right now are anything by Michael Pollan, he is the leader, and very few people will dispute any of his suggestions or ideas. He advocates natural foods, slow cooking, whole foods and more. Nothing to hate there.

Also because of my current health requirements I love anything by Mark Hyman and Daniel Amen (in particular the Daniel Plan ). Both are well regarded leader in their field and their ideas are well thought out and convincing. If you hate shopping and cooking try some subscription services, there are lots out there Medifast has a lot of options and does all the work for you!

As for fitness tools, as suggested in my previous post Here's step one! Get moving I love the mini rebounder trampolines. There are also workout routines at Muscle and Fitness tips.

You could also use sneakers for walking outdoors. I love champion c9 sneakers, they are a consumer reports best buy and available at Target and you can't beat the price!

For weight management you can't go wrong with Weight Watchers any of their programs are top notch and work. They are also approved my the medical community and gimmick free.

An other tool to help if you aren't using a food plan such as Medifast or Weight Watchers is SparkPeople. It is more than just a food plan or fitness tracker, there is a lot of information and peer reviewed articles on the site. There are communities to help you with your journey and fitness challenges for a whole lot of conditions.

Again, you don't need a lot of tools and equipment to get started. But some of the above tools will make your life a lot easier as it takes a long time to get fit and maintain your fitness.

Good luck with your journey. Please comment below on your favorite tools for health and fitness, I'd love to hear about them.


Check out this site about sugar and weight and lets give up sugar!

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