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PaleoKris

LAP-BAND Patients
  • Content Count

    84
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About PaleoKris

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday 10/19/1985

About Me

  • City
    Dunedin, New Zealand
  1. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Laura - Maybe try and mix things up a bit with exercise and food? In the first couple of years I had my band I had an awesome personal trainer at the gym in Dunedin (she knew what I'd had done) and she was making sure I wasn't doing the same thing too often so my body got used to it... Good luck with the job hunting and the weight loss. Speaking of your mum getting banded - how's she handling it? - my dad got the gastric sleeve, I think (not actually 100% sure what he got done, oops.) late last year... Interesting seeing another family member going through what you went through and knowing that despite all the advice you can give they still have to figure it out for themselves... Looking forward to being back home soon for a visit (less than 2 weeks now!!!) to have an indepth discussion with him about food. That and I'm SO looking forward to being in NZ again. Even if it is only for a fortnight. Sigh. ChangingMyLife - Hi! Welcome! As I've been explaining to my dad recently (and as Dr Fris, my surgeon, said to me ... 7 years ago...), listen to what your body is telling you with regards to how your stomach feels. It's a big mental mess because your mind will tell you one thing and your body will just be like "Nope, not gonna happen" with food. Oh, and try every food carefully after the op when you first have it... I found out the hard way that dried fruit is very difficult for me... And 1 chocolate covered coffee bean apparently makes eating impossible for hours. (I haven't dared to retest that theory since....). And yeah, my port is really easy to feel, it's just under the skin. I think it may have been slightly less easy to feel when I'd just had the surgery, but I can't remember (I'm down at my goal weight). For what it's worth, the band does restrict food intake, and things do get a bit sensitive once you're at your goal weight, but the fun thing I've found is, since getting to my goal weight, when I exercise more I'm able to eat a fair bit more than when I'm sitting around doing nothing (3x more, this evening) - the band is surprisingly adaptive, which is good.
  2. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Hi guys, Just thought I'd pass on a bit of info I'd learnt... I can't remember how many of you go to Dr Fris (other than Laura...), but turns out he's retiring from bariatric surgery because there are so many people doing it in Auckland now... My mum had been in contact with his office because my dad is considering it and that's what they told her, anyway. I emailed Dr Fris about it (well, more to get contact details for people he recommends over here in case I have problems) and he said Heather will continue to look after patients. I'm guessing that's existing ones. Hope you guys are having a nice start to spring back home.
  3. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Oh, is that that doctor who was in the news a while back? I saw an article on Stuff about a doctor in Christchurch who had a 'new cure for diabetes' in the form of bariatric surgery (not sure how new it is as I'm sure I was told that it would reverse any side effects of obesity when I got my surgery - and I was in the 'don't have diabetes YET' stage)... But it's good he was in the news and managed to help make a bit of a start/give a heads up about things. It seems to be a lot easier to get the surgery over here where I'm working now (the Netherlands). I get the feeling insurance here makes things a fair bit easier (it should, you pay for the roof for it (at least I do anyway, heh) and it's obligatory), and the idea of bariatric surgery is a lot more open here than at home, but then if it becomes too easy to get then that creates it's own problems. I work with a girl who claims her sister a gastric bypass on a whim just because she was lazy and doesn't eat properly now either so is always deficient in Vitamins and such, but on the other hand, this is a girl who's got her own weight problems and is taking it out on her sister, so I take what she says about her sister with a whole load of salt. Anyway, you're right about attitudes needing to change, but definitely public as well as government. I've told more people over here than I have at home (though I've had to to stop the indigestion caused by stress of no one knowing - of all things!), and more people know about it so it has a bit less of a stigma. Though so saying, even here there was a news thing about bariatric surgery which led to a hilarious conversation between three guys I work with where they misunderstood everything - I was about to start correcting them, but they left while I was trying to keep myself from cracking up... (Only two people I work with know, but several people in a European project I'm in know - meetings for that tend to get stressful and when I'm stressed my ability to eat much goes out the door).
  4. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Hey kiwijo! I think (not entirely sure) you might be the first person posting here who's had it funded? (If I've missed someone else, my bad!). That's one thing I never understood when I got mine (self-funded) is that insurance was against paying for it because I wasn't dying or something, but then the costs of care later on would be ridiculous compared to the cost of surgery now... As you say above. Just out of curiousity, what is the selection criteria? All I know is that they denied me back when I got my surgery, they just said my case was preventative, not dealing with problems of weight after the fact, so they wouldn't pay for it (insurance, that is... Nevermind public funding). Congrats on the losses so far and hope the surgery recovery goes smoothly.
  5. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    As AAAJJJ said, no worries about it - it's easy to mis-read some well-intentioned text sometimes. Or to write something and have it not come across the way you intend... Text can be tricky that way. Especially if you get in rant mode and people don't realise (I definitely support ranting, but I have had a friend once claim I was angry at THEM when I was just wanting to talk about how annoying something else was for a while. Go figure.) I thought that might have been why they made you wait. They had him on tv and everything - I know it's case by case basis (I didn't go nuts with alcohol when I was 18 and I remember you telling me you wouldn't when they had us emailing each other back then) but I suppose there's no way to prove you WON'T do something like that until after the fact, if that makes sense? I got the feeling that they were being a bit wary with me being on the young side and I'd just turned 20. That's what made me think of the teaching and some med scholarships (radiography at least) though. It's like you get the help because it's something that's needed (or will be a benefit to more people down the line, or whatever), but if you skip out on your bond early (ie don't follow the rules) then you need to pay it all back. Of course I think I'd still keep the requirements for getting it done publicly super strict anyway, but either way. I think too many people still consider it an easy way out and if people who think that way get it done publicly it'll take it away from people who would do better with it, so you'd still have to be careful. And because this is super exciting for me, I just got back from my Saturday running training group and I just had my first pain free run since October last year! Yay! Left knee is finally quitting complaining and letting me run (carefully/slower than normal) again without limping!
  6. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Hi guys, Can I just say IT bands (SUCK. And I need more discipline to fix mine in my left leg. That aside...) I can't resist adding my two cents here... (And for the record it isn't my intention to cause offense to anyone, just thinking aloud a bit...) I can definitely see both sides of the story - with the disclaimer that none of us know Laura's mum of course. As mentioned earlier, my dad is also considering this at the moment (he's working overseas right now, making up his mind when the contract overseas is up). For him it would be to cure the problems that have come about from being overweight - he's pre-diabetes, strain on joints, etc, etc. (For me it was preventative.) It would be great if he could go public with it, but I have a feeling it would go the same way as for Laura's mum... More difficult money wise, but he'll probably end up going through Dr Fris as well. On the other hand I have heard a few stories of people who refuse to make the lifestyle changes (neighbour's friend who drank melted chocolate when she was on the post-op liquid diet and managed to put on even more weight, for example). So I can see why funding is restricted for public ops... I don't know if any of you remember a doco of a boy (think he was like... 15 or something) who went to Dr Fris - heard he put all the weight back on after a while as well. Not sure if it was publicly funded because of the doco or what. Anyway, what if they did something like the scholarships for teaching and radiography students in NZ? They pay the students' way, then the student is bonded to NZ for a certain amount of time - if they leave NZ before their bond is up they have to pay all the scholarship back (it turns into a student loan, essentially). What if there was a way where a fund paid for public surgeries then tracked the people afterwards - I remember Dr Fris drawing a graph of my predicted weight loss rate - if they didn't stick to the surgeon's weight loss rate (within a reasonable margin) and show commitment to the lifestyle changes required, then they have to pay it all back as if they'd gone privately? Just an idea, probably wouldn't end up being implemented, but I reckon that might solve the worry people would have about taxpayers' money being squandered. And then it would be a bit less of a free ride, as well - they still have the incentive to work at it because the surgery won't be free if they slack off. Of course, something would have to be sorted out for people who have legitimate problems/complications, but the surgeons would know the difference between those and someone slacking and could make a case for the patient. I do sometimes wonder..... For those of us who had the surgery as a preventative measure, how much do we save the taxpayer for NOT getting the various problems that being overweight can produce down the line? Just a thought.
  7. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Laura - Yay cycling! I have to get my bike out again - wanted to go cycling while back in NZ, but didn't get to... Living in Holland = lots of cycling, but I haven't managed any longer bike rides yet... Should do some this summer. Auckland to Wellington could be epic. Yeah, as I said my goal weight was supposed to be 55, but I look quite skinny when I get down to 57 (lightest I've been), so 55 I'd look like a stick... I think if you're close to a healthy weight and you're happy it's all good. Pockets - sounds like you're in the same situation as me - insurance wouldn't cover it because I wasn't dying of anything and my BMI was ... I think one point too low? My gp had told me I was close to pre-diabetes (freaked me out), so here we are. Funny though, I think doing it now would be cheaper than doing it when I had doubled the weight again and had diabetes, heart conditions, etc, etc, etc, but I suppose it's a way to keep every man and his dog from having it because it appears to be 'the easy way out'. (My sister was about 92kg at her heaviest and got down to 60kg all by herself - she claims I took the easy way out, even after seeing some of the difficulties with eating. However Dr Fris met my dad and said it looks like it's genetic as my dad is quite active and still can't lose weight (and is now too heavy to be very active anymore because his joints are protesting), so either way.) I went to Northridge Surgery and have done everything through them (that's Dr Fris and that lot) - so that was all private. I think someone (can't remember who and can't be bothered going through all the pages of posts, heh) had issues with them, but I've had a really good experience and have found them really helpful (except when they just shrugged off the indigestion, but that's pretty minor). I've found them quite supportive, both while loosing the weight and since getting to my goal weight. I imagine that whatever private place you choose to go to should be equally supportive, etc, and that you can just ring up to find out details and make an appointment... I'd say making an initial appointment at where you'd want to go to and meeting/talking to the surgeon could be a good next step. Then they'll tell you what you need to do next if you decide to go ahead with it (and help you set up all the subsequent appointments with nutritionist, psychologist, etc if you need to do all that, which I guess you still have to do before they approve the surgery).
  8. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Happy new year people! So I was totally going to see if anyone wanted to do coffee (think that was mentioned a couple of months ago by someone, heh) when I was back in NZ but it was super busy for the three weeks I was back, so... yeah. Hi Pockets! I've had my band for 7 years as of last December (I'm 26, I got the band when I was 20), and it's worked really well for me. One thing that I thought was rather major that they DIDN'T tell me about when I got it was the potential for indigestion/heartburn when you get to your goal weight (or rather, just past the sweet spot on the band). I don't know about anyone else here, but I had never had indigestion before I got to my goal weight a few years ago, and every time I've had it since it has hurt a hell of a lot - not sure if this is because it gets aggravated by the band or not, but either way. Heather (at Dr Fris' office on the North Shore) just sort of shrugged it off and we agreed that having the band tight enough to help me stay at around 56-57 kg (just above my 'ideal' weight, think my 'ideal' is 55kg...) was too much, so now I just aim to stay around 58. I've also noticed that it tends to be triggered by stress half the time - I moved to Europe, no one here knew, I got indigestion several times; I told a friend at work, no indigestion since. Go figure. There are, of course, other complications like slippage, etc, but like Laura said, I found the benefits have far outweight the risks. Actually, Dr Fris told me that a patient of his had moved to London, the band slipped, and he flew all the way back to NZ to go to Dr Fris rather than get it fixed in Europe. That suggests to me that any problems caused by that are manageable on the short term at least! Oh, like Laura and AJ said about the band not working/changing habits, I remember discussing the band with a neighbour who told me a friend of hers got the band, then while still on the liquid diet was melting chocolate so she could drink it... Needless to say she never lost any weight... People who don't know much about it (or don't want to know...) tend to think it's the easy way out, but it is just a tool you can use, like listing everything in the weight watchers book or calorie counting or some such. Like AJ said, you can sabotage it (like with the chocolate drink mentioned above)... On the flip side though, it is a rather strict tool as if you forget about it and take a big bite of a sandwich or eat too much too quickly you will definitely know about it (more so the further along you get). Changing your eating habits takes a bit of getting used to - I still find that I have to pay attention when I visit my family as I wasn't living at home when I got it so they never slowed down their eating along with me (my ex-bf did, really appreciated that! Funny thing is he still eats slower now - when he has time to, anyway, heh) - old habits die hard I suppose. Other little things I've noticed are that I've turned into a bit of a light weight on the alcohol front (I used to be able to handle it really well, my tolerance has halved I think - I don't drink very often, but when I do, anyway. Mind you, the nutritionist at Dr Fris' office also told me to drink a glass of wine a day...)... I've also noticed that flying long haul can really mess up my eating patterns now - flying from NZ to Europe or vice versa generally has me surviving on one or two meals a day for a few days, compared to three plus Snacks... Just little things, but it's interesting when you start noticing the non-weight related changes. I really like that if anything happens the band can be adjusted or, if needed, removed. I like that there is the option if needed, though considering how much my abs/stomach hurt after the surgery to get the band in there I think it'd have to be something pretty serious for me to get it removed, heh. Ok, I've rambled on for ages... Ahem. On the other front, I went to Dr Fris' office when I was back in NZ (the same day I flew in, no less!) and got a top up - I hadn't gained as much weight as I thought, thank goodness (scales at a specialists office here said I was 65...! Dr Fris' scales said 60... Argh.). Had half a mill of solution added - tiny tiny amount, but talk about feeling it... Fortunately I could use the long haul travel excuse when visiting friends... This is the first time I've had to totally rely on Heather for advice as usually my intuition regarding the band is really good, but I just haven't been feeling it lately. It felt loose and I was hungry a lot of the time, but then I went to Bremerhaven on a work trip two weeks before coming home and I was barely able to eat for the entire weekend (epic stress = no food apparently!). It took a little while to settle as well, as usually I'm back to normal within a couple of days (I've never had to do the liquids after inflation thing), but I was feeling a bit restricted all the way up till Christmas... Guess this was a fine line inflation, really, but it's feeling pretty good right now. My grandparents did a full roast meal for my family the night I left NZ and I managed my usual serving of that fine, so that was good. Now I just need to get the running sorted out again and try and get my knees to stop screwing up and I'll be good to go (or rather, stay at the same weight, or perhaps fit into my favourite pair of jeans again - I fit them at 58kg or less, lol) again. Heh. Actually, on a more light-hearted note - I'm familiar with the problem of not being able to fit some clothes because they weren't a large enough size (some - I was size 18 at my heaviest, 96kg - this was mostly preventative surgery because the pattern was 'gain weight no matter what I do' and the only way appeared to be 'up'... But I did have a couple of instances of not being able to buy stuff I liked cos it didn't go to size 18...)... Now I've discovered that if I'm not careful and, say, get to my goal weight (which I'm not planning on, I decided a couple of years ago that 58 is where I'd rather be), I will be too small to fit clothes from Kathmandu and Bivouac, which is where most of my clothes are from... Oops. Aldesa - I'm with Laura on this one, that sucks! Are they able to do anything about it? Laura - go you! You can do it! What's your goal weight again? And how far away is your 21st? Hmm. I'm making a nice big pot of Soup and I can't remember how long it's been boiling for. Oops again. Forcing myself to eat something before I pass out again. Yay jet lag!
  9. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Maybe try the 'take the stairs instead of the lift' or 'get of the bus a stop before' type stuff? If you don't have time to go to the gym with exams, then doing those sorts of things will be better than nothing. (That and I had the 'stressed because of exams' excuse in undergrad... My personal trainer at les mills told me off, I still went to her, and I actually felt better. ) You can also read your notes on the treadmill and the bike... I know, I've done both, hehe. Good luck for the rest of your exams. Being in the northern hemisphere is messing me up, I didn't realise it was that late in the year already.... My dad has also gone to see Dr Fris about a band... He's at risk of diabetes I think, but doesn't have it yet, which is a small wonder. He's got a number of other health problems though, as well as injuries, so even though he's got a relatively active lifestyle... Problem is my dad is really wary because I spent most of my time in Dunedin when I had the band, and when I came home my family still ate really fast, I'd stop concentrating on eating slow, and then they'd see the epic down sides of the band... I'm better with it now, but at first it was hard visiting my family and having meals with them. That and I was at my parents when I first ever had heartburn and it was really bad. My mum was on the verge of calling an ambulance because we didn't know what was going on, heh. With those kinds of things to consider it's probably no wonder my dad's a bit wary of it, heh. Good luck to your mum - I hope the money goes through. Wonder what my dad's going to decide... Actually - do you find it odd to be going through something like this then a family member to start looking into it as well? Anywho...
  10. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Congrats Laura Like the others were saying... It really is a case of one thing at a time and one small step at a time... I've been thinking about this again recently as a friend at work constantly complains about her weight, and then has bread with margarine and some thick spread... Just take away the margarine or butter, halve the spread, and you're taking a step in the right direction. Either way. Good on you for getting closer to 90, Laura, and there is nothing wrong with going to Rainbow's end, haha. My sister went a little while ago, and she's over 20 (think some friends my age (26) went recently as well). On the subject of too much too fast, I went into new running shoes to fast and now have the luxury of 'IT band problems' (aka really sore knee while running) - something I never thought I'd have because I never thought I would ever run! While training for the half marathon I also started putting weight back on again and have realised I've put on 5kg since last December. This is the annoying side of getting to your goal weight.... When you get there, you don't get fills anymore really, but the band does slowly leak a bit (or something like that)... So after a while (2 years, apparently, for me) I start putting the weight back on, get back into the same 'eat too much, can't fit jeans, blame myself' mentality. Fortunately my mum told me off about that and reminded me that this is what happened in 2009, so the band just needs to be topped off... But when you're doing running training, climbing, and getting back into indoor hockey and you STILL put on weight... (please excuse me while I try to refrain from banging my head against the wall). I mentioned the IT band thing because I had a small freak out that I wouldn't be able to do any more exercise this year (and I want to look at least a little decent and not in winter-hibernation-mode when I come back to NZ in a few weeks), but turns out this is an easy problem to fix, so yay. Going to step up the exercise a bit and see if I can keep on top of this a bit, but think I'll be back in Dr Fris' office in december - just in time for Christmas, go figure! It just seems a bit of a hard call as the band is purely a tool, we can't rely on it at all, it can't lose the weight for us, so this really puts me back into the same mentality of when I was unsuccessfully loosing weight before surgery - ie. 'it's all my fault it's going wrong', that type of thing. It doesn't help that just after discussing this with my mum and realising I needed a top up I mentioned this to two friends here (one is VERY skinny, the other is the one I mentioned earlier) and they said obviously I just need to do more exercise. .. ... ... Should've known better than to mention it to them. (Was my birthday as well! Hehe.) Anyway, hope it's all going well for everyone else. Think I might go abuse my knee some more.
  11. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Mm, that's a good point to remind us on Neelloc (hi, by the way ). I'm at the other end of the timeline as you've probably read (at goal weight - well, sort of, when I'm not slacking off), but as far as maintenance goes I know I can be quite hard on myself, and I think it's something we're probably all guilty of. How does the Cheddar cheese ad go? Good things come to those who wait? Take it slow and you'll appreciate the results a lot more. Push yourself too hard and it backfires so then you get discouraged (like how we were discussing gym work earlier, Laura... ) 21 day challenges are a good way to go about it. Keep up the breakfast - I consider that even more important now than before my surgery. In fact, every little thing you do is (or will be) much more noticeable now, be it miss a meal, eat one bite too many, or drink a glass of wine. And now I shall go and harass the weather until it decides to stay like this for the rest of the afternoon. (ie overcast with some sun rather than thunderstorms. Heh).
  12. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Nice about the weight losses AAAJJJ. I know the feeling about thinking it hasn't been going well.... I went to see Dr Fris last year when I was home for Christmas. Thought I would've put on at least a few kgs because despite getting into a mad amount of sports (running, climbing and floorball/unihoc/indoor hockey (whatever you feel like calling it, haha)), my eating had kinda gone down the drain. I thought I was eating more than I should be, I wasn't eating as well as I should be, etc... Turns out I hadn't maintained my weight after all (I don't have scales over here, haven't gotten around to buying any new ones). I'd lost maintained it and lost another 2kg on top of that. It was the lightest I'd ever been since the age of... what... 10?, and was a bit of a surprise. When I was discussing it with Heather, Dr Fris' assistant, later I explained what I expected - no scales to weigh myself, doing lots of exercise but not really watching what I ate. Her reaction: Congratulations, you're normal. Hehe. So that was 4 years down the line and my lifestyle finally clicked. I need to do a lot of sport to be able to not worry about what I'm eating, but it's enjoyable, and I can do it now. Had a crappy few months over here lately but thankfully only put on a few kg that I'm sure will come off when I start playing floorball again next week (if I don't kill myself in the process by overdoing it. Hmm.), fortunately just in time to come back for NZ summer, haha. Wow, nice that Obesity Surgery Wellington has covered your next two years! Had to keep paying through the place I went to. Gah. It's so much money... Either way, it's worth it (though sometimes I still wish I could've got by without it). Keep up the good work
  13. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Nice about the weight losses AAAJJJ. I know the feeling about thinking it hasn't been going well.... I went to see Dr Fris last year when I was home for Christmas. Thought I would've put on at least a few kgs because despite getting into a mad amount of sports (running, climbing and floorball/unihoc/indoor hockey (whatever you feel like calling it, haha)), my eating had kinda gone down the drain. I thought I was eating more than I should be, I wasn't eating as well as I should be, etc... Turns out I hadn't maintained my weight after all (I don't have scales over here, haven't gotten around to buying any new ones). I'd lost maintained it and lost another 2kg on top of that. It was the lightest I'd ever been since the age of... what... 10?, and was a bit of a surprise. When I was discussing it with Heather, Dr Fris' assistant, later I explained what I expected - no scales to weigh myself, doing lots of exercise but not really watching what I ate. Her reaction: Congratulations, you're normal. Hehe. So that was 4 years down the line and my lifestyle finally clicked. I need to do a lot of sport to be able to not worry about what I'm eating, but it's enjoyable, and I can do it now. Had a crappy few months over here lately but thankfully only put on a few kg that I'm sure will come off when I start playing floorball again next week (if I don't kill myself in the process by overdoing it. Hmm.), fortunately just in time to come back for NZ summer, haha. Wow, nice that Obesity Surgery Wellington has covered your next two years! Had to keep paying through the place I went to. Gah. It's so much money... Either way, it's worth it (though sometimes I still wish I could've got by without it). Keep up the good work
  14. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Ah yup, a bit taller than me (I'm 5'2"/158cm). Woo! Go you Laura I actually got around to going for a run too, haha. It was so hot and muggy though that instead of making my 10.6km goal I only managed 8.3km. Woe. Oh well, as I said (and I should listen to my own advice!), small steps, hehe. Legs hurt enough though! And same with me - day off today, got to make sure I go for a little run tomorrow... When there's a storm warning here. Oops. Wonder if a couple of hours in the climbing hall can equal 5kms of climbing... Heh.
  15. PaleoKris

    How Bout New Zealand

    Slow weight loss is definitely better than fast weight loss, it's more likely to stay off as your body has adapted, as you said. I think with this surgery it's also better as it means your body can adapt to being more energy efficient as you allow it less food... How tall are you Laura? (Just curious). Heh, funny that you mention being happy about your weight before you reach your ideal weight. My ideal weight is between 50 - 55 kg. I got to 58 and Heather and I agreed that that was fine and I was happy.... Last year at Christmas when I was home (after 8 months with no scales and three different sports) I was 56... And my mum was telling me to eat more. I realised when I got to 58 that if I got down to 55 or below I'd look like a stick and that 'ideal' weight is really to be taken with a grain of salt. Literally as well as figuratively. Planning on joining a run this morning around the Amstel River (didn't go yesterday, didn't finish my breakfast quick enough to go! Oops...) and they have a set of scales there so you can see how much water you need to replace. That should be interesting... If I can find the place anyway. Haven't seen a set of scales since I've been home...

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