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Gastric Sleeve Patients
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Everything posted by BarrySue

  1. BarrySue

    Weight Loss Too Fast?

    Water-weight fluctuates wildly, and the scale is not a good indicator of the complex changes taking place on a metabolic and physical level in your body. Yes, you will lose weight because your muscle mass as a man allows for more rapid energy consumption. Yes, there will be peaks and valleys where you lose huge amounts, and lose nothing. It is fine, it is normal, and unless you are experiencing debilitating symptoms or your doctor is concerned, trust the process. Our bodies aren't typically the problem. Our lack of knowledge in regard to how weight loss and our anatomy actually work are typically the problem, because we have fundamental misunderstandings about how everything works.
  2. I had a resting metabolic rate test done, as well as other assessments/bloodwork/etc. Similar testing on metabolic output has been done on the previous contestants of Biggest Loser, and it's pretty much universal for those who go through extreme, rapid weight loss. It's a huge part of why regain happens. My body has changed significantly in that I am constantly cold, and my thyroid function has diminished (not to levels where I need supplements, but the low range of normal).
  3. Short answer: It depends. In extreme weight loss, your metabolism will likely function at a diminished level for the rest of your life. As in, eating 2000 calories a day may without regain may never be an option. There have been extensive studies on this, and you can actually work with your doc to gauge your nutritional needs as you progress. Nearly four years out, my metabolism simply doesn't operate the same, having spent my life over 300 lbs. If I eat more than 1200 calories a day, I will begin to regain. My needs are different now, and that's that.
  4. BarrySue

    Chick-fil-a : post op

    Chicken nuggets from Chil-Fil-A are very, very healthy and have only a few carbs. I still eat them regularly, and I love their chicken tortilla soup as well! Going on four years post-op and it is still part of my regular eating, lol
  5. BarrySue

    Anyone regretting this?

    It sucks. It sucks and it's terrible. It sucks, it's terrible, and some of us get these awful complications. I was miserable and ill for months after my sleeve, far worse than most people. Three years out, every single minute of pain was worth it. Time makes it better. The pain of surgery and the initial recovery grow more distant every day, and a healthy future gets closer AND longer. Hang in there. **Edit: I was completely unable to eat or drink at one point. The creative solution was peanut butter crackers, because I loved them, and I had so psyched myself out about vomiting that I threw everything else up except this snack I'd always loved. They used it to get me to tolerate food again. After that, I lived on fat free fairlife milk (they filter out the lactose and sugar, fortify with extra protein and calcium) since NOT ONE protein shake worked for me. I mixed my milk with sugar free strawberry syrup, diet hot cocoa mix, or PB2, that sugar free peanut butter stuff that I blended with fairlife milk and ice cubes to make peanut butter ice cream. For water, I added sugar free hawaiin punch, and I'm still drinking it three years later.
  6. I HATED protein shakes. They all had this whey flavor that made me extremely ill. I tried everything, and it simply didn't work. But what I did finally end up not only tolerating, but actually enjoying, was fairlife milk. It is filtered to remove much of the sugar and lactose, and fortified with extra protein and calcium. So, I could drink the fat free fairlife milk with either sugar free strawberry syrup, or heat it up and put sugar free hot chocolate mix or sugar free hershey syrup in it, or blend it with some PB2 or other fun things. It was how I survived for a few months!
  7. BarrySue

    Food Anxiety

    Between 10-18 weeks, I started having severe pain, vomiting everything up, and stopped being able to eat entirely. They suspected a stricture, but they also felt like I had such deep anxiety and food issues that I was psyching myself out and vomiting as a reaction to severe stress. I couldn't keep anything down, and protein drinks were useless. I ended up hospitalized and they couldn't release me until I could eat. So, they gave me peanut butter (the regular sugary kind) and crackers, because it was a snack I loved as a child, and they hoped the familiar/nostalgic taste would trigger good feelings and prevent me from throwing up and relearn how to eat without panicking. For awhile, I was told to eat ANYTHING so long as I could keep it down. Priorities at that point became survival, not weight loss. Also switched to fat free fairlife milk with sugar free strawberry syrup or heated up with diet cocoa mix. That was how I got my protein for a long, long time until I was able to start eating regularly again. But my nutritional path was different from others, and that's okay. Just do you, follow your docs, listen to your body, and take a deep breath. Your journey is your own individual thing and that's okay, the destination is still the same as the rest of us. You'll get thee.
  8. BarrySue

    Not tolerating chewable vitamins

    Because I had trouble tolerating everything, my doctor put me on completely dissolvable children's vitamins, and I simply took twice the recommended dose. It worked just fine for me, I simply mixed them into my drink!
  9. BarrySue

    Week 3 Nausea

    Between weeks 3-12, a lot of folks go through a stage of general intolerance, plus residual inflammation/stricture-esque issues that don't always happen immediately after surgery and take time to manifest. I got off whey proteins and that was the only thing that helped resolve my issues. I switched to fairlife milk + sugar free strawberry or chocolate syrup to replace protein shakes, and it made all the difference in the world. Under my doctor's orders, I also ate peanut butter covered crackers for a couple of weeks. Because I was getting anxiety/stress over eating and anticipating the nausea/vomiting/aversion to come, he felt like the familiar taste of a snack I always liked would help me re-learn to tolerate food. He was right. Staying in touch with your doc and working with a nutritionist is always best.
  10. BarrySue

    college sleevers!

    College was fine. I had no issues, my professors all let me keep Water and Snacks with me, everyone was understanding, it was actually very easy to maintain my weight there since many college folks are so health-conscious. I stayed away from alcohol for a full year though. It simply wasn't worth it to me to risk permanent damage to my body. Now, I can go out for a night of drinking, but I must give myself lots of time (1.5 hours minimum) to digest food. Mixed drinks take forever because my stomach capacity is small, so I end up pretty much just drinking straight shots, but I pace myself carefully with plenty of time between drinks (and I NEVER MIX CLEARS AND DARKS). If I try to drink too much, I'll vomit. If I mix, I vomit. My sleeve is very good at telling me when enough is enough. Unlike many people, my alcohol tolerance didn't really change, and after all the weight loss, I still don't really feel much of a difference in the amount it takes for me to get a buzz. But enough people have expressed a lower tolerance, so be careful anyhow! Lastly, drinking is seriously overrated. I wouldn't do it too often, sleeve or not. Campus culture can be nuts, and it's not good for your health overall to drink so much. I definitely feel the pressure, so I just limit the nights I'll drink, and encourage my friends to take part in activities outside drinking (bowling, trivia, dancing, etc). Learning to have fun and participate in social activities outside of food/drink has been really helpful!
  11. I went to a hospital in a different city with a private WLS unit, because I absolutely did not want my medical info to be fodder for other people's gossip.
  12. BarrySue

    How much did you pay out of pocket?

    I paid 15k out of pocket. If I could do it all over again, I'd have run off to Mexico and saved a bundle!
  13. BarrySue

    Wendy's chilli

    Between my job and work, sometimes fast food was just the easy, convenient thing for me to do, so I've had Wendy's chili on occasion starting at about 6 weeks out. I could never finish more than 1/3 of a cup, but it was a nice change of pace from drinking my protein. I still have chili every once and a while, it's a go-to especially when I'm out at a restaurant or want to blend in without wearing a giant "I HAVE SPECIAL DIETARY NEEDS" blinking neon sign.
  14. BarrySue


    I started eating crackers about 8 weeks out because I started having severe nausea and became unable to eat practically any food. I didn't eat them indiscriminately, though (because I could barely keep anything down). They were PB-smothered crackers for protein, and I never ate more than a few every day. I practically lived on peanut butter crackers, fairlife milk, and vitamins for six weeks until my sleeve settled (and only on the advice of my doctor). Once I felt better, I weaned myself off the crackers though. They are definitely not something you wanna rely on. If you have room in your tummy, it's best that you leave it for protein and not such an empty nutritional carb.
  15. Awesome! How far out are you? I just hit my 10 month mark
  16. BarrySue

    I'm at a loss

    Sounds like a trip to Mexico is in order!
  17. BarrySue

    People and their opinions

    Tell them you are working with your doctors to determine what your true healthy weight is. It is scary that we have so conditioned ourselves to be used to larger bodies in general here in America that overweight seems average, average seems skinny, and skinny seems incomprehensible.
  18. BarrySue

    10th Month: How many calories?

    I'm at about the same. Any week I go over the usual 1100-ish calories, my weight loss stagnates.
  19. I hate TBL. Why? Because it tells the audience that obesity is simply the result of not working out enough. That weight loss is a process of quick-fixes and instant gratification. Dehumanizes overweight people as pathetic and miserable, demonstrates to the world that it's okay to scream and belittle someone to encourage them to lose weight. That weight loss comes from working out until you vomit, jogging until you pass out, and not in quiet, resolute moments where you choose apples instead of a candy bar, or vegetable skewers instead of mashed potatoes for your side. That obesity is due to laziness and we just need to "toughen up." That it fails to acknowledge the forces working against you from the moment you're born: billions of advertisement during kiddie shows, food scientists working for multinational corporations that invent ingredients to act on the receptors of your brain and trick your body into thinking it is not full, cutting P.E. and physical education programs, portion sizes at every restaurant enormous, working more hours per week than people in any other country in the world and not having time to cook meals, psychological care being reduced or cut from most health insurance plans. American culture plays a huge role in developing and sustaining obesity. The Biggest loser doesn't dismantle the system. It doesn't try to educate. It exists for ratings for a major network, and that's that.
  20. Honestly, if it's right in front of me and I'm craving it like mad, I take a bite. Sometimes two or three. Life post-sleeve isn't about deprivation. It's about building new and sustainable habits. In the nine months since my sleeve, when someone goes "hey, you wanna bite" or I become totally fixated on some treat, I indulge. I sit there, and once I have it in my hand and have a bite, I've satisfied the urge and it goes away. I take a bite, then wait. Then I take another bite, and by then, the impulse that drove me to it has passed. Then, I throw it away immediately. I don't save it, I don't say "I'll eat some of this later," it goes right into the garbage can. Sure, it's resulted in a huge waste of food (it'll end up in two places: the trash or my hips, and I've learned to choose the trash), but it's how I manage to still feel like a normal person and find balance. Oftentimes, I can simply have a bite or two of someone else's treat, or offer to "split" something with a friend and only take a mouthful or two. I was a binge-eater and food-obsessed person pre-sleeve, so my post-sleeve plan is to try and live a normal life. It's worked. As time goes on, I become more committed rather than less. The urges and thoughts about eating naughty foods decreases. The emotional attachment has slipped away, and I make good choices for myself. Yesterday, I had four little bites of Peanut Butter ice cream, and it was the first "bad" thing I'd eaten in weeks. It may not work for everyone, but I stick to the plan by not ALWAYS sticking to the plan. I'm at nearly 150 lbs lost since July, totally on track, and more focused/committed to leading a healthy life than ever. How do I keep from sliding completely? By allowing myself to occasionally slide a little bit. Oh! And any of that snacky bad food I try? It never, ever comes home with me. I indulge every once in a while OUTSIDE the house. Nothing but appropriate, high Protein foods and nutritious stuff in my house. I won't even keep things that are good in small amounts (aka: carbs, anything salty or sweet) because it's too strong a temptation.
  21. BarrySue

    Vaporizing Marijuana

    Happy you're doing well!
  22. You acquire basic/essentials that you keep all year round as a base/foundation for fashion throughout the year. Then you rotate in and discard seasonal items one by one. Some people go to Plato's Closet or consignment shop route too to swap out or unload old clothing to make room for new stuff, especially if they have a taste for fashionable clothes.
  23. BarrySue


    It's great though that you genuinely tried to follow their advice and still utilized them as a resource before striking out on your own. That's one thing I dislike about many WLS nutritionists -- they have a "one size fits all" policy that doesn't always accommodate the needs of patients.
  24. BarrySue

    Sleevers over 300lbs?

    Haha, are we the same person? I was 353, had surgery in July, and today I'm 210! I still have 65 lbs to go before I hit a healthy BMI, but I'm hoping a hard push will get me there by labor day!
  25. BarrySue

    Brown period

    It happened once or twice to me, and is generally no cause for concern.

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