Gastric bypass surgery is a weight loss procedure that results in major changes not only in the body, but also in one’s lifestyle. To be able to adapt well to those changes, a patient needs to bear in mind these guidelines that ensure success after the surgery. Success means maintaining a healthy weight and preventing the possibility of regaining weight.
- Avoid foods that are not nutritious. The culprits for weight gain are foods and liquids that are rich in calories, fat, and sugar. These include soda, milk shakes, alcohol, and sugar-rich desserts. These foods do not provide nutrients; instead, they cause hunger pangs and vomiting. Avoid them so that you do not out your weight loss effort to waste. Make sure that your diet is rich in protein, and include lots of fruits and vegetables.
- Avoid foods that cause discomfort. Sticky, dry, and fibrous foods such as pasta, rice, bread, and meat are usually a no-no for bypass surgery patients. Soda is also not allowed because it causes bloating, gas pain, and even pressure in the stomach.
- Avoid snacking between meals. This will only hurt your chances of keeping a healthy weight.
- Avoid drinking liquids immediately before, during, or after meals. Filling your stomach with liquids instead of foods will deprive you of your much-needed nutrients for healing and recovery. Be sure to drink fluids at least 30 minutes before and after your meals. And of course, avoid drinking fluids while eating meals.
- Refrain from drinking alcoholic and caffeinated drinks. Alcohol does more harm than good for people who have gone through weight loss surgery. Devoid of calories, alcohol can cause stomach ulcers. Caffeine has the same effect, aside from working against hydration in the body.
- Contact your surgeon if problems arise. If you experience one or more of the following problems, call your surgeon immediately: extreme pain in the legs, shortness or difficulty of breathing, fever, bleeding of the incisions, and dark stools.
- Maintain your follow-up visits after the surgery. This will make it easier for you and your surgeon to monitor and assess your progress. Also, this will result in early detection of problems such as surgical complications and nutritional deficiencies.
- Keep yourself from getting pregnant for two years following surgery. Because your body is undergoing weight months after the surgery, it may not be able to support a baby. This will be unhealthy for both of you and the fetus. Ask your surgeon for advice in case you plan on getting pregnant.
- Join a support group. Coping with the aftermath of the surgery may be much easier if you do it with the help of other people. There are many support groups formed to provide emotional support and advice for people who have undergone weight loss surgery. Search for these groups on the Internet; for sure, you can find one within or near your locality.
- Find ways to cope with stress. Stress usually leads to comfort eating, which is not good for people who have had weight loss surgery. Listen to your favorite music, read books, meet up with friends, and do whatever you can to effectively deal with stress.
You will get the best results from gastric bypass surgery if you follow the guidelines mentioned above.