Getting a lap band surgery to lose weight is a major step forward in your weight loss journey. Knowing what to expect post-op will help you feel prepared for the changes you will encounter after the procedure.
During the weeks following the procedure, you will be on a liquid diet then slowly progress to pureed foods and eventually soft foods. Initially, your biggest focus will be staying hydrated and healthy. Staying hydrated during the liquid phase of the post-op diet will be the easiest. Typically, you can have broth and protein powder mixed with water. You still need to drink water throughout the day, otherwise, you can quickly become dehydrated. Most post-op patients find it is best to have a bottle full of the recommended amount of water and pour it into a small cup. The small cup reminds them to sip the water and not take large gulps of water. Storing your water in a large container will show you how much water you have left for the day and whether or not you are meeting your hydration goals.
Focus on Protein
Protein powder and similar beverages may be the best way to intake enough protein while you are in the liquid phase of your diet. As you progress to pureed foods, there are slightly more options for protein. Pureed chicken and fish are options at this stage because they should be well-tolerated while providing adequate protein. Other options include dairy products, such as yogurt and cottage cheese. If you eat yogurt, opt for Greek yogurt, since it often has a higher concentration of protein than regular yogurt. Also, you should choose sugar-free yogurts. If you are lactose-intolerant, talk with your surgeon about dairy alternatives, such as almond or soy yogurts, many of which are also good protein sources.
Be Mindful of Chewing
Once you progress to soft foods, you need to be more mindful of the bites you take and how much you chew each bite. Since the band separates the small, upper-pouch from the rest of your stomach, larger chunks of food can become stuck at the location of the band. If this occurs, you may become ill and experience nausea or vomiting. Not only do you want to avoid feeling bad, but vomiting can also increase your risk of complications, such as band slippage. To minimize the risk of problems, remember to take small bites of food and chew each bite thoroughly. Since you are slowing down the rate at which you consume food, it is easier to avoid over-eating, because you are more likely to notice when you become full.
After you undergo a lap band procedure, the next couple of months can be challenging as you adjust to a new way of eating. Listening to your surgeon's instructions carefully will minimize the risk of illness or complications. Learn more by contacting services like Davtyan Medical Weight Loss.