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Everything posted by shriner37

  1. shriner37

    Carbonated Beer

    When I had the sleeve I couldn't tolerate carbonation. I found a way around it, as I learned to pour the beer rapidly into a large mug or cup which released the carbonation into foam and allowed me to drink the beer when the foam settled. Unfortunately this little discovery was the single biggest reason I didn't hit my goal weight. I had a revision to bypass a year ago, and strangely now even though my pouch is supposedly smaller than my sleeve I can tolerate carbonation better. I still don't drink a lot of carbonated drinks, but on the occasion I try it seems to be better now.
  2. I went through the same thing a few months ago due to a hiatal hernia that had become almost strangulated. The 'reason' for my surgery was hernia repair, and that is what the insurance company approved. As my surgeon said, "we went in to fix the hernia and a bypass just happened".
  3. I never had one before, but since I've slimmed down overall the lack of one isn't quite as noticeable as it was. I've always said I had a case of "noassatall".
  4. shriner37

    Mad at myself

    Sorry to hear of your loss and challenges. We all deal with stress differently, so the thought of seeking assistance with that is good advice. I will say from the weight perspective, I was six years out from my sleeve and had gained back about 45 pounds. I found that what worked for me was to go on a 'time restricted feeding' schedule, and to eat a diet that was generally keto when I did eat. I skipped breakfast and only ate from Noon to 6pm. For those two meals I would have a serving of protein, and a green vegetable or salad. I was able to drop about 20 pounds in a couple of months. I stopped because my hiatal hernia had worsened enough that it had to be fixed with revision to bypass, but the diet program was working well. There is a nutrition doctor named Dr. Jason Fung who develops programs for insulin control diets, which is what I based my program on. You might want to Google him and check out his information.
  5. shriner37

    Stomach capacity

    This is good advice. I've experienced it a couple times already. The past two days at lunch I have had more than I should have, even by a couple bites, and the discomfort was intense. I realize I'm still healing but I'm also trying to learn the feelings and signals that go with this new pouch. They are different from the sleeve. Today at dinner I was very mindful of my current capacity, and stopped eating at the first flash of a full feeling. It worked as I was comfortable after my meal.
  6. shriner37

    Regrets for a Food & Wine Lover?

    This topic is a large part of why my first surgery wasn't more successful. I was quite the party guy, hanging out with friends every weekend who drank lots of beer and ate snacks while shooting the breeze at the lake. Unfortunately six months or so after the sleeve I was able to train myself how to drink beer again, and also learned that most snack foods are "slider" foods. This stalled my weight loss at about 60% of my goal. The other thing I learned was that the restriction lessened over time. By five years out I was able to eat almost a regular plate of food. There was still restriction on solid protein (I could only eat about 4 oz of steak) but I could eventually add reasonable side dishes to it. I'd say before surgery I would eat a very large portion, while after I was able to eat a much smaller version of a normal plate of food. While most folks Thanksgiving plates were heaping masses of food, mine was a few ounces of turkey and an assortment of maybe an ounce of each item I wanted to try. I just did a revision to gastric bypass due to hiatal hernia and GERD, but i am looking at this as a second chance to get it right. Six years out from my first surgery my lifestyle has changed enough that not drinking, or only having an occasional glass of wine or cocktail, now is fine with me. Success with weight loss surgery truly does require lifestyle change. The sleeve or pouch is a tool. Its maximum benefits are the first year after surgery. It continues to be a tool after but without a change in lifestyle the benefits won't last forever.
  7. I haven't been diagnosed with LPR but my primary says many of my ongoing symptoms suggest it. I've had eustachian tube dysfunction for a number of months. After ruling out the other causes he thinks it may be GERD or LPR causing them to be constantly irritated. I also had a hiatal hernia which might have made things worse. I just completed a reversion from sleeve to bypass. Both my surgeon and my primary think this will help once things have a chance to heal up.
  8. That is a frustrating situation I'm certain. I haven't gotten that far yet as my EGD is next week. My doctor seems to think he can get a hernia repair approved, so if that were the case I'd only be on the hook for the extra work related to the RNY if I decided to do it.
  9. I don't know. In 2015 I was self pay as my company insurance didn't cover bariatric surgery. I'm now retired and the ACA plan I have also doesn't cover anything related to bariatric surgery so if GERD was a side effect of the first surgery they wouldn't likely cover it. I think they will cover the hernia repair but not the bypass, so there might be some partial coverage.
  10. shriner37

    *MALE ONLY* How Frequetnly Did You Drop Sizes?

    I dropped from size 46 dress slacks to currently size 38. Dress shirts went from a 19 to currently 17-1/2 and almost ready for 17's. Shorts from 40's to 34's, and T-shirts from 4XL to XL. Being that my weight had gone up and down a lot prior to surgery, to start I had a good assortment of dress clothes in most of the sizes, only having to purchase t-shirts and casual clothes. I have now reached the end of what I had 'in stock' and have had to start purchasing clothes. In fact today I'm loading up 8 boxes of clothes to donate to the local thrift shop that supports a no-kill animal shelter. My loss stalled for several months, at my own hand, but now has picked back up so I hope to get to my goal and run through a couple more sizes. Spending money on clothes you will only wear for a short time isn't fun, but getting new smaller clothes is one of the non-scale victories that help to keep me motivated.
  11. @@Blewis913 Congratulations on your successful surgery! Things will improve quickly, day by day.
  12. @@ag0177 I am a little shorter than you (5'8") but started at about the same weight. My high weight was 301, but I had lost 16 lbs on my own and was a 285 when I started the surgery process. I've had a good ride so far, but at about the six month mark my rate of loss slowed significantly. I have continued to lose some inches but the loss of pounds has slowed to a crawl. I suspect this has to do with my food selections coupled with extensive travel and eating prepared food. I have a follow up appointment with the surgeon and the nutritionist tomorrow to see what I need to do in order to get the loss back on track. Overall, even though progress to my goal has slowed I have had great success. In eight months I've lost about 77 pounds from my high weight and 61 from my first surgery weigh-in, almost 10 inches off my waist and similar losses in other areas. I've dropped from size 46 slacks to size 38, casual shirts have gone from 4XL to XL, and I've found it made all the difference in the world as far as being able to exercise. I went from being out of breath walking up the stairs to being in the middle of training for my first 5K. I was able to stop both of my type-2 diabetes meds as of surgery, and have reduced by blood pressure meds from three pills a day to one, with hopefully the ability to stop it entirely very soon. Good luck with your surgery! Follow the recommendations of your surgery team and nutritionist and you should do great.
  13. There is a surgeon, Dr. Matthew Weiner, who has produced a very good series of videos on YouTube that provide a great deal of information about the surgery and weight loss. One of them discusses the changes that occur in our metabolic setpoint after weight loss surgery (can't remember exactly which one it was). If I remember correctly the videos all advertise his book "A Pound of Cure", but looking past that they are full of good information about the surgery, the body's reaction to it, and how to be successful with it. You can search YouTube for "Matthew Weiner" and go to his channel, where you will find all of the videos. In a nutshell, the sleeve resets our metabolic setpoint. Instead of your body striving constantly to retain fat, it now strives to lose fat to bring itself to it's new, more normal target. As long as we work with it by eating enough Protein, limiting carbs, sugar and alcohol, and provide some moderate exercise it works. This is why they say the sleeve is a tool... you need to make the behavioral changes to go along with it to allow your body to be successful. To understand why resetting the metabolic setpoint is important, look at the recent articles published about The Biggest Loser contestants. They all lost great amounts of weight through diet and exercise. Many of them have gained it back. Diet and exercise alone don't work long term because they don't change the metabolic setpoint. When your body loses weight it goes into survival response mode and does all it can to restore the lost weight. We must change the setpoint for long term weight loss success. Changing the setpoint is the equivalent of changing the thermostat in your house. This is the key metabolic benefit of VSG. Researchers believe your metabolic setpoint is controlled by the leptin-ghrelin-insulin balance in your system. VSG removes most of the stomach tissue that generates ghrelin (hunger hormone). This is why we aren't very hungry, except for head hunger, after surgery. Removing most of the ghrelin also affects the leptin (fat storage hormone) level, causing the body to want to reduce leptin levels and release fat. The change in both of these also impacts insulin levels, which reduces insulin resistance and in many cases immediately resolves type II diabetes. Endocrinologists don't know exactly why and how all of this works yet, but it does. In fact the ASMBS has reclassified the sleeve from a "restrictive" procedure to a "metabolic" procedure due to the impact it has on our metabolism. I believe those that have not been successful believed that the surgery was all they needed, and didn't change their lifestyle, food selection or habits. The sleeve should be a catalyst to change to a new, healthier behavior.
  14. shriner37


    Regrets? - None Wishes - I wish I had done this years ago. Changes - the biggest change for me is that my new way of eating has significantly altered my lifestyle. food used to be a social event... I used to go out to lunch with a group daily; now it's maybe a couple times a month. I also eat out as little as possible since it's difficult to get the right foods and portions at most places. For me now food is fuel, and refueling is way less fun than social eating. Even if it is the right approach to take.
  15. shriner37

    Sleeve or RnY?

    There are a couple of studies out there indicating that over a long period of time the RnY may be more effective than the sleeve. I don't know whether to believe them or not, since research studies can often be developed to achieve a specific result. Plus, the sleeve just hasn't been around long enough for lots of long term studies, where the RnY has been the staple of weight loss surgery for over a decade. That being said, I went for the sleeve and have been happy with it. One question though - my surgeon told me no NSAIDs with the sleeve. I had not heard that restriction was only applicable to the bypass. Did I understand that correctly?
  16. shriner37

    Salad question

    I'm close to seven months out and still can't really eat much salad, mostly because of the bulk of the lettuce and vegetables. I find if I get the Protein I need I can only eat a small portion of salad. If I try to eat a bigger salad I either end up picking off all the protein first or not getting enough of it in the meal. We have a salad bar at our work cafeteria and I do occasionally prepare a small side salad to go along with a chicken breast or some other lean protein, making sure I focus on the protein and just eat the salad as a side dish.
  17. shriner37

    Time off?

    I think the lifting will be a bigger issue for you than the time off. Of course everyone's experiences were different but I had surgery on a Tuesday and was back at work the following Monday. I actually could have returned on Friday had I needed to. I will say that it took a week or two for me to get back to full strength and stamina, probably due to being on liquids only for the first couple of weeks. My surgeon required me to not lift more than like 15 pounds for the first month or so after surgery.
  18. shriner37

    Sleeping After Sleeve Surgery

    I slept the first two nights in a recliner, then was able to move to the bed. I had some discomfort when rolling over or moving too much for the first couple of weeks. It was mostly pain around the one large incision, and took a couple weeks to fully resolve.
  19. shriner37

    Band our sleeve in on 3/30

    My surgeon had the drain removed at discharge from the hospital so I can't answer that question. Did they tell you how long you need to keep them? As far as the Dodgers game goes, I think it depends on the person and how quickly you heal. I was sleeved on Tuesday and came home from the hospital on Wednesday. I was able to drive to and attend a meeting on Thursday evening (2 days after surgery). I was attending baseball playoff games about two weeks after surgery so you may well be able to go without problems.
  20. shriner37


    I was allowed to drink decaf after the first couple of weeks, but was to avoid caffeine for two months. I'm now back to having two cups of regular coffee a day (sometimes three if I'm traveling) and have had no bad effects.
  21. @@Lisa_85 It's probably best to stop a little before you reach the point of being too full. I know I had to train myself early on to not eat to fullness. Before surgery the stomach would stretch to accommodate whatever we eat, within reason. After surgery the sleeve doesn't stretch like a regular stomach, so you can go from nothing to painfully full in just a couple of bites. I'm 4 1/2 months out and still sometimes miss the signal and eat a little too much. I've gotten better with it as time has passed, but it is something you have to learn.
  22. I never stopped using them. My doctor told me that was an urban legend and had no basis in fact. One of the challenges of weight loss surgery is being able to get in enough Water and liquids. Drinking through a straw can make that easier.
  23. shriner37

    Pre-approved right away?

    I was a cash pay which is an expedited process at my surgery clinic. It still involved a pre-surgery consult, EKG, psych visit, lab work, nutrition class and an EGD. The surgeon also required a one or two-week pre-op liquid protein diet right before surgery to reduce liver size. All in, it was about a month from the time I signed up to surgery.
  24. Think of it this way... in order to lose weight, with or without surgery we need to alter our behaviors and eating habits to consume less food and consume the right kinds of food. We also need to increase physical activity. These are the key factors you would follow with either path. Weight loss surgery is not a quick fix by itself. It provides us with a tool which makes it easier to make those changes and comply with our new habits and behaviors. Restricting intake and possibly absorption (with bypass) help to achieve the weight loss we want, but with either path we have to alter the way we eat and how much we take in. There are studies published in the past couple of years that seem to indicate permanent weight loss is usually only achieved through surgery. According to the studies, almost everyone who loses conventionally gains most or all of their weight back. Conventional dieting doesn't change our metabolic set point. Weight loss surgery does. However, you have to make sure you have the personal commitment to make the eating and behavioral changes necessary, otherwise weight loss surgery is just another expensive path to failure. You have to decide if you are willing to change your eating habits, commit to a healthy nutrition program and increased exercise. If you make that commitment, you will be successful with weight loss surgery.
  25. shriner37

    9 days post surgery questions

    We all lose at our own pace. To a large extent our individual rate of loss is tied to our underlying health status, muscle mass, starting weight and base metabolism. I know, for example, that I tend to lose a little slower than others who had surgery around the same time. I also tend to stall easier. This is likely due to a lower basal metabolic rate. For example, at 9 days out I had lost 16 pounds which in comparison would seem to be way worse than your results. However, my loss was just fine for me at that time. If you read through this site one very common thread is to remind us all not to compare our results to others, but just focus on our own journey and goals. It sounds like you are doing great. I'd say keep up the good work!

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