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Gastric Sleeve Patients
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Everything posted by Trillium

  1. It's tough when I compare my stats with others. I am a slow loser, and knowing there is a "honeymoon period" causes quite a bit of anxiety every time I step on the scale and it hasn't budged. I feel like the clock is ticking. At age 54, I know I won't lose like a younger person, but I am worried that this is my "new normal," my body's set point (it's the weight I spent the most years at, having always been overweight). At 8 months out, I can easily eat 1200 calories a day, have no food aversions, and have to be very careful around carbs. My doc thinks perimenopause is wreaking havoc with my hormones, and I should focus on daily health habits, not continued weight loss. But damn it, I want to reach goal!
  2. In my experience, the materials given to bariatric patients and "support" from paraprofessionals and insurance company nursing consultants have not caught up to the science. (The welcome brochure from the hospital has a scale indicating "calories in / calories out." Bogus!) They are still talking about emotional eating and obesity as a failure of self-control. This is not only dated but cruel, and counterproductive. My surgeon is the only one among her staff that is apparently willing/able to discuss the complex mix of genetics, gut microbes, hormones, and obesogenic factors that may underly my BMI. Imagine a breast cancer patient being forced to walk a gauntlet of people who assumed her morally culpable for her DNA, toxic mattress, drinking Water, medications, stress levels, etc, and asked her on every form, in every conversation, "what have you done?" and "what are you doing?" to prevent these cells from invading your body. This is not trivial, as our ideas about our own obesity appear to be critical to success after surgery: http://esciencenews.com/articles/2014/10/23/how.people.view.their.own.weight.influences.bariatric.surgery.success I view my excess weight like it's a cancer, a growth I do not want, did not ask for, and YES, may have encouraged through any number of life choices. (For starters, I should have refused all those antibiotics. I should have been eating anti-inflammatory foods, not low fat, in my crazy youth. I should have married someone who cooked, and moved to a bike-friendly city. So many wrong choices!) If some day, in spite of our efforts to protect them from cancer and obesity, my children end up seeking treatment, I hope they get it from professionals whose prejudices do not infect their care. Who give them facts, not unsupported ideas, about the best route to health. Oh, and about all those inflammatory processed bariatric "foods" my clinic is pushing? Don't get me started. /endrant
  3. Trillium

    Sleeved March5 th.

    I had my sleeve on Dec 29th at Swedish in Seattle!
  4. There appears to be justified concern that artificial sweeteners cause the very thing they are intended to prevent. I find it puzzling that bariatric centers are still pushing them. Any thoughts? Did you or will you use artificial sweeteners for weight control? If so, are you concerned about their impact on your gut biota?
  5. Trillium

    Artificial Sweeteners?

    Just a plug for Bai5 drinks, which are only five calories and naturally sweetened. I love them. My kids to as well, and now I have to hide them in my bedroom!
  6. Trillium

    Any Fun Hospital Stories?

    When I woke in the recovery, it was the middle of the night and very quiet. I wanted to pee. A bumbling but sweet guy who may have been a janitor helped me drag my IV pole to the bathroom. Left alone, I had to steady myself against the wall. The pain meds were working just fine. When I was settled into bed again, a handsome male nurse entered and asked if I needed to use the bathroom. "I went already." "Oh. Did you use the hat?" "I used the toilet." He laughed and showed me the plastic measurement thing the orderly should have given me. "No worries. We can do an ultrasound of your bladder." So I lay there high as a kite as McDreamy lifted my gown and massaged gel onto my pubic bone. Is my bladder really that low, I thought. And then, gee, this is not the worst place to be. Not at all. After he got his data and cleaned me up, he helped me into my robe and we took a few laps around the floor, past the dark rooms and empty nurses station. He joked that I walked faster than most of the staff. As we looped the floor, arm in arm, we chatted about our diets and fitness regimens and vacation dreams. Then he put me back to bed, gently replacing my socks, folding my robe, adjusting my pillows. His smile was like Christmas morning. I'm sure I'm not the first or the last to fall a little bit in love with the night nurse.
  7. I had no comorbidities and was approved at a BMI of 40. It may depend on your record of previous efforts however. I had tried everything in the book.
  8. Trillium

    Dec 29th sleevers ?

    I talked to my nut and given that I've had no nausea or pain, and a history of compliance, she cleared me to advance slowly to soft foods. Beginning with eggs and yogurt. Let me tell you, a scrambled egg has never tasted so divine. My weight has stalled the last two days but I'm not concerned as I'm shrinking, and can see it in the mirror and the way my clothes fit. I've been walking 30 minutes or more each day and feeling pretty jazzed. Tomorrow is support group. Has anyone else been to one yet? I'm interesting in how clothing exchanges work. Stats: HW 257, SW 228, CW 222. Down 6 lbs since surgery, 35 total.
  9. I just wanted to come back to this craptastic thread (sorry) and say my surgery went really well on Dec. 29th. My doc's post-sleeve diet is three weeks of Clear liquids, which as y'all remember, get old very quickly. I called and asked if I could advance early to "soft" given my excellent recovery (they even released me early as I was up and walking and hydrated), lack of nausea, ability to get daily protein/water/exercise, etc. I argued that as long as I was protecting my stomach, transitioning off fake food could only be good for me. Thankfully my dietician is a big fan of healthy biota and gave me the green light. So today at 12 days out, I had a bit of yogurt, egg, fish, and spinach (all very soft). I feel TERRIFIC. It would not surprise me if an overgrowth of bad bugs is caused by the an excess of sweeteners, natural or not, and antibiotics, etc. I hope that fat bias (and WLS surgery bias) will wane as it becomes clear that this is truly a multicausal disease that is tied less to character than genetics and environment.
  10. Sixteen years ago, I got slim in about 6 months on phen/fen. It made me very productive at work (HR) and I was often the first and last person in the office. I was frank about the drugs when people asked. I figured to lie was a disservice to every fat person who failed to lose on their own, because naturally thin people think (and a lot of fat people, too) that willpower is all that's needed. Which we know now is BS. As my surgeon said "you can't call yourself a failure at something if fewer than 5% of those who try it succeed." It did not occur to me until reading this thread that my candor about phen/fen may have backfired. I've always blamed it on an (very fat) boss who put moves on me, and when I rejected him, reassigned me to a dead-end position. Maybe it was more complex. Maybe it seemed I was not "playing by the rules." Making others look bad, whatever. Ironically, that jerk was found guilty of fraud a few years later! That nightmare assignment was my last full-time job (pre-kids), and I know it won't be easy to re-enter the workforce. But I know I will feel much more confident when slim, and nobody will even know I ever looked different.
  11. Trillium

    "I'm praying for you!"

    Great discussion, as I've been vexed by the presumption in Facebook support groups that everyone belonging to one believes in God, and worse, that everyone believes in the same deity. Note that I am not offended by people praying for me (I honestly think prayer helps healing, not because it moves a God's hands, but because it helps us feel supportive and supported). I welcome all sorts of religious prayers or nonreligious prayers or positive thoughts and wishes, but I would appreciate some humility and cultural sensitivity around the conversation. We live in a multicultural country full of believers and nonbelievers of all kinds, and people need to get with the times. Asking "how can I support you" and not making assumptions would be a huge step forward.
  12. Got sleeved the 29th and came home yesterday. Hard to get the protein in, but doc said focus on water first, so that's what I'm doing.
  13. Trillium

    Dec 29th sleevers ?

    My surgery is tomorrow at 6:30 pm. I had to do Clear liquids today . . . several cups of coffee, lots of Water, and for dinner, beef broth, then nothing by mouth after 10:30 am tomorrow. Why no liquids for you?
  14. Trillium

    Seattle Sleever Walk and Talks?

    Sounds great! Do you have a time in mind that would work with your schedule?
  15. Anyone live in the city of Seattle? The traffic is so terrible that venturing outside the city can take hours. Lets meet at Green Lake or another park to get our steps in while we talk and offer each other support. I'm lucky to have a friend a few blocks away who is having her surgery in January (mine is Dec. 29th) but our schedules don't always mesh. It would be great to have standing dates for walk-and-talks that anyone could join.
  16. Trillium

    Seattle Sleever Walk and Talks?

    That would be great! We could start in January as soon as I'm mobile.
  17. Trillium

    Only 15 days to go!

    My sleeve is the 29th, so a day before yours, and I can identify with your nerves and history of depression. GOOD ON YA for the substantial weight loss already. I am looking for a new therapist to help me through the transition of losing weight and adjusting to my new self. I like my old therapist but he's not really the right guy for this job. What kind of presurgery diet are you on?
  18. Trillium

    Dec 29th sleevers ?

    My surgery is Dec. 29th. I've was not given a presurgery diet but am starting protein drinks and low-carb diet (20 grams a day) to adjust to post-surgery eating.
  19. Trillium

    Artificial Sweeteners?

    I told my nutritionist that I was willing to use artificial sweeteners for recovery, but not beyond. (I am persuaded that my Diet Pepsi addiction helped get me to where I am, and after weaning myself off of it, I find the aftertaste repellent.) She was not interested in discussing sweeteners or my preference for a whole foods approach to weight loss, which makes me wonder how current her training is. However, the bariatric nurse assured me I would be back on whole foods quickly, and it was truly the best thing to do for my health. So I won't be stuck in sugar free, fat free, fake food land forever. While not everyone is sensitive to the biota-changing effects of fake sweeteners, I will discourage my kids from using them, even though their father, who shared my 20-year diet Pepsi habit, is thin and still fits into his high school jeans. Getting them to take Probiotics is a tougher nut to crack! They'll eat fermented sauerkraut and pickles, though -- and occasionally kombucha and yogurt. They are not fans of kimchi and miso.
  20. Trillium

    Pre op weight loss

    Hang in there and keep starting over no matter how you ate the day before. Have you tried logging your food and exercise on www.myfitnesspal.com? It keeps me honest, and I can see how quickly carbs add up. If you live alone, I would raid your cupboards and toss the simple carbs: all flour, sugar, bread, rice, Pasta, Cereal, etc. Put it in the garbage or foist on a neighbor. I'm struggling to lose right now as well, before surgery Dec. 29th. Fortunately, my doc helped me with a Phentermine prescription. It helps keep the hunger at bay.
  21. Trillium

    A new me in 15 hours!

    Stay strong! I'll be holding space for you and following your progress.
  22. Excellent article. This is the first place I've read that stress can cause weight gain even without additional calories. So I did some googling and lo-and-behold, the studies are out there. Why is this not front-page news? Stress caused by financial insecurity is at Depression-era levels, as obesity rates soar. The fact that stressful events and depression alter how we metabolize food (not just what we choose to eat, or how often we move) is BIG. As long as we pretend the problems of obesity are individual not systemic, we'll be chasing the wrong solutions. My story in brief: I was a 10-pound baby and grew up chubby but healthy. Gained 20 with children and post-partum depression, then lost a friend to suicide and put on 35, very quickly. I lost that 35 with hard work and low carbs, but a series of stressors occurred that left me with little appetite or energy. Yet within two years, I gained 55 pounds. I am not a binger. I eat sensibly and am moderately active (I walk, bike, swim, hike). I don't drink soda, eat very little sugar, and stay away from carbs. I honestly thought my doctor's scale was broken. She figured it was my genes kicking in (my parents are large), and no doubt suspected me of lying about my diet and activity levels. The big takeaway for me? Even after WLS, stress will effect how I metabolize food. Looks like stress-reduction will be just as critical to my success as keeping track of food and exercise. I'll plan to add "cushion time" on MyFitnessPal to log daily meditation. It may burn more calories than one thinks. And join a support group! I suspect the cortisol-lowering effects of being with sympathetic people are just as critical if not more so than the "accountability" factor.
  23. Trillium

    Why is my Pre-op diet so long?

    I was told the more you lose before surgery, the greater your chances of reaching goal. I'm down 22 and trying for 30 (four weeks to go). If my doc puts me on a long pre-op diet, I will be disappointed but OTOH, it will help me focus. Good luck and hang in there!
  24. I was told yesterday at the clinic that once a patient gets insurance approval, they are not rejected for falling below the BMI threshold (40). So I have no reason to worry. I bought all the supplements I need and am trying some new protein powders. As this my last T-day with my "old" stomach, I thought I'd be having a food carnival, but I'm more eager to reach my goal of 30 pounds gone by December 28. Just a bite of this and a bite of that. The first bite tastes the best anyway! So pumped.
  25. What a strange pickle I'm in! My surgeon warned me that if I lose too much between now and my projected sleeve date in December (still waiting for approval letter to set the date), I will drop below the minimum BMI required by my insurance. Has anyone here been qualified at first weigh in and later denied for losing too much?

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