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Showing content with the highest reputation on 03/27/2012 in all areas

  1. 2 points

    That's Not Real Food

    So one of the things I'm still working on figuring out nearly 8 weeks after banding is what foods are worth it for me to eat. This is a new equation in my life. Before banding, I just ate. Half the time I didn't think about what I was putting in my mouth (if I did, I would have lived in a state of perpetual self-disgust) and the other half, I just didn't care. I was already fat and unhealthy, so why stress about the food that was making me that way? Clearly, I was eating too many calories, but now I'm realizing that the amount of calories I was eating may have mattered less than whether those calories were worth eating. What I mean by that is that as I make better, more sensible food choices, it is becoming clearer to me that "real food" is much more satisfying than the alternatives. "Real food" is a hot topic these days. You can find whole books about it in your local bookstore, whole pages of books on the topic, if you cruise through Amazon. For my purposes, though, when I talk about real food, I'm referring to anything that isn't processed or prepackaged. Things like eggs (pasture raised, please), meat (ditto), milk (three for three), vegetables (organic, please), fruits (yuppers), and grains (certainly in the "o" column). To many, my obsession with organics and pasture-raised animals may make me a snob or a hippie, but I'm okay with that. Even before banding, I preferred to choose those foods when possible, but now I'm realizing that the alternatives aren't worth it. I try to keep my calories at somewhere around 1000/day. I say around, because there are days I eat 850 and days I eat 1400. Mostly, I average between 1000 and 1100. Before banding, I could get 1000 calories having coffee, a piece of toast, and a single fast food sandwich, and then everything else I ate that day would be those excess calories that made me fat. Theoretically, even with the band, I could still make those food choices, but now they're just not worth it to me. Today, I would say that most of that food isn't real food, and therefore, I'd rather not eat it. This morning, I had toast and coffee for breakfast. Not the bandster's first choice, perhaps, but I find I can't eat anything too rich or too heavy in the morning without severe nausea and potential for vomiting (I've always been that way, even before banding). The difference here is that the coffee was made with real raw sugar (half a teaspoon) and organic, pasture raised half-and-half. One tablespoon of that. For a total of 37 calories. The toast was a thin slice of home-baked bread (made last night from organic flour and natural ingredients) with a teaspoon of pasture raised butter. Low in protein, but I'll have meat for lunch and dinner, so I'll have no trouble meeting my protein goal for the day. So far for the day, I've had 137 calories, less than 15% of my allowance for the day, and every single one of those calories was totally worth it. They all tasted good, none of them cost the environment more than necessary, and all of them allowed me to live with my band while feeling content and satisfied. If I'd tweaked that just a little, gotten a small nonfat latte and a bagel with non-fat cream cheese from Starbucks, for example, I'd have eaten 500 calories of food that wasn't really worth it to me. Even if the band had stopped me at half the bagel, that would still have been 250 calories (113 more than I actually ate). It would have contained less fat, but also less satisfaction and it wouldn't have tasted as good. To me, the unprocessed "real food" I ate at home was a better, healthier choice and worked with my band. True, a lot of bandsters would tell me I should have had Greek yogurt instead. Or maybe a scrambled egg. There are days when I do that, but here's my confession: I love bread. Love it. It is my favorite of all foods. I adore it more than ice cream (meh) or potato chips (one of my trigger foods and a life-long addiction for me). Give me a choice between a handful of chocolate and a piece of fresh baked bread (home-made or from a real bakery) and I will go for the bread 9-1/2 times out of 10. My brother and sister-in-law are gluten intolerant, and have cut all products containing wheat out of their diets. I'd rather cut off my own arm. Seriously, I can't live without bread. Which could be a problem for a bandster, both because of the low protein/high carb nature of bread, and because the texture of bread can have trouble passing through the band. But here's the thing. "Real" bread (the kind from the bakery or from my very own oven) passes through the band pretty well. It has fiber and texture and it tastes so good, that it's worth it to me to take small bites, chew slowly, and get it through the band. Pre-sliced generic white sandwich bread? Not real food and definitely not worth it. Also lower in fiber, higher in sugar, stickier in texture, full of chemicals, AND higher in calories. Clearly the unhealthy choice. As a bandster, I have had to reshape my priorities. Homemade bread is a priority; processed, pre-sliced bread is not. It's all about priorities. And balance. For breakfast today, I had a carb-heavy, protein-light meal. For lunch, I will have a couple of slices of roast chicken (heritage breed, pasture raised) and some veggies. Or maybe a small serving a chili with pastured ground beef. The meat cost a lot more than the supermarket alternatives, but it was locally and sustainable raised and frankly, it tastes so much better that I don't feel deprived from eating only 2-3oz of it as a time. It's so full of flavor that 2oz feels more like a meal than 6oz or the alternative. For dinner, there's either the chicken or some leftovers from an organic rabbit I stewed over the weekend in red wine and prunes. And more veggies. So worth every single calorie and so, soooooooooo satisfying. One of the reasons I got the band and not another procedure like bypass was because I wanted to be able to eat and enjoy real food, I just wanted to eat less of it. I didn't want to give up my bread (obviously) or my chocolate or my steak. I wanted a smaller slice, nibble, or cut. I'm doing that with the help of the band, and because I'm choosing real food, I'm doing it with happy tastebuds and a smile on my face. ------ I hope no one interprets this as a lecture, or me claiming to be better than anyone else. My priorities are my own. I happen to live in an area where organic, pasture raised foods are easily accessible. They're sold at my local groceries and at the weekend farmer's market in my town, less than 5 miles from my house. I also only have myself to feed and worry about. I'm not trying to budget to feed myself, a husband and three kids, let alone saving for college, paying for daycare, or providing clothes to cover bodies that seem to double in size every few months. My animals and myself are the only things I have to spend my money on, so it's easy for me to justify funding my environmental and health agenda. Everyone has to do the best they can with what they have, and no one--least of all me--should fault them for it. Make your own priorities, and then live by them. I hope it brings you the same satisfaction it brings me.
  2. 2 points
    I don't know if I have any "good advice", but I might be able to put things in perspective a little. First of all, I know you want this weight to just go away fast, but I think you are doing just fine (there's always room for improvement) and you shouldn't let this get you down. Perhaps your weightloss is slower than some, but losing slower will do a lot of good things for you: you skin won't be baggy, you will have time to develop muscle tone, you will be able to adjust to the new lifestyle instead of starving yourself/just being on another "diet", and mostly importantly those that lose slower are twice as likely to keep it off as those that lose quickly with drastic measures like starving themselves. I TELL YOU ALL THIS BECAUSE THIS IS WHAT I NEED TO TELL MYSELF WHEN I FEEL LIKE I'LL GO CRAZY. I was banded november 30th and have lost 25ish lbs and wish it would go faster, but i have to realize that slow and steady wins the race. If you really want to amp things up there's always the traditional advice of playing around with calorie counting (more or less depending) and uping the exercise, but you're smart enough to figure that out so i don't want to lecture you
  3. 1 point
    Nearly seven years for me with no major problems - my pouch has stretched out a very little bit which my doctor says is a fairly natural adaptation over time, but that if i respect my band it will serve me gor a long time to come. The scars do fade well but my port has always been visible. I had my band unfilled for most of last year and it was hrd work maintaining my weight. I dont think i would become obese again (with work) but maintaining a bmi of 20 wouldnt be easy. I have no plans to unfill -but i dont need to be tight to maintain either. I run about an hour a day and thats key. Personally, i wouldnt swap a bmi of 20 to settle for 32 or even 25, i love having gotten truly "thin"
  4. 1 point

    11 Months!

    Wow this blog really made me excited. I just got approved yesterday and hoping to have my band placed by the last of april., I keep thinking what will i be and look like by my birthday and hopefull a cruse iam going on with my friends. That will be 6 mos from the time of my surgery. Your post gives me alot of hope.
  5. 1 point
    Hello Cat, I am 17 days post-op, and I do not regret it. The benefits are tremendous, and the goal is worth the journey. You will eat very little, you will not fell hungry, you will not hallucinate about food, you will be ligher. The best time to do it, is when you are all clear from any medical condition/complications like diabetes, heart condition, pulmonary condition,... Do it while you are fit, do not wait until you become impaired with other medical conditions to do it. Good luck
  6. 1 point

    Hours Away

    I was so worried the night before surgery, I couldn't sleep. I had many of the same worries you do. That was three months ago. I am 50lbs lighter and sooo happy with my lapband. You are doing the right thing. God bless
  7. 1 point
    I too can become discouraged over the slow weight loss. But I so have to tell myself that today is today & I will do my best today. Yesterday is gone my dear & tomorrow hasn't shown itself yet. So for today - enjoy you .
  8. 1 point

    Getting Banded On April 13 :)

    You need to get your head around that this is a life change...it is the start of something so positive and so rewarding....The surgery is daunting and so is the recovery and life with the band is different but It is so overwhelmingly worth every second....I am different to alot of people I still eat little bits of what I enjoy (that the band is ok with) but my portions are so so so much smaller than they ever were, I try to get low fat versions of my fave foods.....I lived on potato and leek soup the first three weeks.....It was so filling. Remember that the first few months is more about caring for the band rather than losing weight!!! good luck I wish you both so much happiness for the future!!
  9. 1 point

    What I Eat

    Thanks LilMissDiva...coming from you who I seek wisdom from constantly that is a major validation that I must be doing something right!!!!!!!!!! Lliana...Yes I get that feta salad from HEB in the deli department. Also I order Quest bars off of Amazon but you can get them also from netrition.com
  10. 1 point

    Tricare Prime--Question

    I have Tricare standard (North). If I look in the benefits section online, it said I had to complete a six month diet. But when I went to the doctor seminar, they said I didn't. I didn't want to take a chance of going through the process and getting to approval time for them (insurance) to say "now you need a 6 month diet". so i went ahead and saw my GP doctor monthly as I waited on my first appointment with the surgeon, through all the testing and dietian, psych appointments....that way when it was submitted for approval I already had complted 4 months of the diet. Worst case senerio I would be delayed 2 months. All this being said, tricare didn't require it and the doctors office was actually correct. I was worried because I am only 36 BMI but I do have 2 comorbidities.----I would suggest you call the insurance person at the surgeons office. They work with the insurance companies so much, they usually know what is expected.

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