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LAP-BAND Patients
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Everything posted by Birinak

  1. Birinak

    After - Summer 2012

    From the album: Before and After

    This is me at about 155 pounds.
  2. Yeah, I did cheat, but my pre-op diet wasn't very strict and, despite being morbidly obese, my liver and health stats were fine. Also, when I say that I cheated, I wasn't going crazy. I never really drank pop or sugary juices even before then, and I didn't eat much junk food that week. I just ate larger portions than prescribed some days, and ate solid food up until maybe three days before the surgery. If you're genuinely cheating, eating greasy foods etc, and you are at risk of having a fatty liver, you might be risking your surgery.
  3. I usually eat food and drink (water, mostly) at the same time, especially after bites that aren't going down well. I'm not one for following rules, really, and this hasn't caused me any problems. If you find yourself still hungry after a decent portion (I don't stick to anything strict), then I would avoid drinking with your meals.
  4. I did not lose much compared to others, since I half-assed it. I think I lost about five pounds in the three week period.
  5. I haven't been on here in a while, but here are my before and after pictures. I'm currently ten pounds lighter than my after pictures.
  6. Birinak


    Gorgeous! Don't give up, because if this is you now, you're going to be an absolute knock-out even by your mid-way point.
  7. Birinak

    Before and After

  8. Birinak

    After - Summer 2012

    From the album: Before and After

    This is me at about 150 pounds. I'm now about ten pounds lighter.
  9. Birinak

    Before - 2010

    From the album: Before and After

    This was me at about 270 pounds, and this is in the most flattering clothing I had.
  10. Birinak

    Before - 2008

    From the album: Before and After

    This was me not even at my highest. I think I was about 240 pounds here. I eventually reached 270 pounds by 2010.
  11. Birinak


  12. Birinak


    From the album: Birinak

  13. I was banded on August 26th, 2010 and I haven't had a fill since Feb 15th (I had a small amount of fill removed on Mar 8th). In the first weeks after surgery, I often had little interest in food. I mentioned in the topic description that this post has more relevance to people a few months or more out of surgery because it's quite normal to lose your appetite soon after a major operation. My current post is unrelated to that usual loss of appetite. Nine months after surgery, I've now suddenly lost interest in food. For a few weeks at the end of April, there would be days when I'd only eat something like 2 eggs and a 30 cal rye crisp for the whole day. That's it. I started eating normally a week later (at about 1100 calories, which is my daily target). For the past two weeks, I'm finding again that, by each day's end, I've only eaten about 500-600 calories and I have to make an effort to then get to 800-900 calories. It's common for people to have a day or two like this, particularly when they're busy and they forget to eat, but I'm not even busy! I should be snacking like crazy because it's my summer break and I'm not working this summer. I spend most of the day at home near two fully stocked fridges. I'm not doing this intentionally to lose weight. I know that some people eat only 700 calories/day on their diets, but I would rather lose slower (1-2 pounds/week) and be closer to meeting the 1200 cal/day health guideline for females. I also know a fair amount about biology and I'm cognizant of the risks of eating poorly. While I'm not seriously concerned for my health in the long-term (as this is probably just a weird phase and I'm still making an effort to meet my nutritional needs through supplements), I'm just wondering if anyone else is going through the same thing months or more after surgery.
  14. Birinak

    I HATE this lap band!!

    I only had my surgery 9 months ago and I have no experience with band complications yet. I'm sorry that you're dealing with this. All that I can say is that, if I were to have a slip that requires surgical correction, I would take the money that would be spent on such a surgery and get the sleeve. Multiple new studies show that long-term complications with the band are relatively high and each year with the band increases the probability of a complication. In terms of money, the conversion from band-to-sleeve can be done by reputable surgeons in Meksico (if I spell the country correctly, the word appears as a hyperlink to a surgery site) for about 5000-6000 dollars. This includes band removal. You'd have to research surgeons carefully and consult those on the VSG board before you can assess the surgeons' reputations. There are a few very popular ones. The band cost my parents 16000 dollars and, although I'm pretty pleased with the results thus far, I wish I had considered the sleeve more carefully before getting the band. I heard that band removal surgery will cost nearly the same as the original procedure, and it seems that many people will have their bands removed sooner than they expected. I explained on another thread that, aside from its relatively low cost, the sleeve doesn't require post-op maintenance (you don't need fills or annual visits with your surgeon). Also, the sleeved stomach is difficult to stretch out unlike the band's pouch or the bypass stomach, and I've never heard of post-op complications long after surgery. The only sleeve complications of which I've read were peri-operative and rare, but once you've recovered, you don't have to fear a slip or other complication in five or some years. You'll also always have the same amount of restriction right from the beginning (your restriction won't suddenly go away until you get a fill, and you won't be tighter some days than others) and the sleeve doesn't involve malabsorption, unlike the bypass. Obviously, you can still cheat with the sleeve (milkshakes etc.), but you can do the same with the two other procedures. Another reason that I wouldn't get a slipped band surgically corrected is that the probability of having a slip is high when you've already had one. I hope that your surgeon informed you of this before you paid for the second surgery. You really couldn't afford to have yet a third surgery just for the band to slip again. Finally, if you check out the vsg board, they just seem happier and less confused than people do on this board. Their weight-loss seems to come easier, especially since they don't have to go through "sleever-hell" or worry about losing restriction, as I mentioned. I hope you found this advice helpful. To those who are overly fond of their band and sensitive to criticism of it: I'm not saying this to the OP because I personally dislike the band. I've had good results with it so far. If I could keep the band for the next decade, I probably would as long as there were no complications. However, 1) the OP needs honest advice; and 2) we should all, even we happy bandsters, give thought to our plan B if our band slips, if we regain our weight, or if we need the band removed a year or ten years from now.
  15. Birinak

    Co Worker JUST SAID WHAT????!!!!

    If she really did say it in a sarcastic tone, she was being rude. I agree with those who are saying that she's probably just a hater. She wants to emphasize that, as opposed to the OP, she's losing weight on her own and, therefore, she deserves more credit for her weight-loss than the OP does for hers. When it comes back on, she might regard the band differently. Also, maybe she thinks the OP was self-pay and she's bitter that the OP could afford to have the surgery while she can't. To the OP: The best thing to do is to not over-react. While maintaining a professional attitude in all necessary interactions with her, keep an emotional distance going forward. Don't bother being social. You can expect her to make more comments along those lines if the topic comes up again, especially if she gains the weight back.
  16. Birinak

    Co Worker JUST SAID WHAT????!!!!

    This hardly constitutes harassment and we have no reason to believe that it'll ever progress to that point. Her comment was rude because of its implications, but not everything is cause for litigation.
  17. Birinak

    Four Golden Rules

    I'd hate to tell you that you absolutely can't drink a latte if it wasn't causing you any problems. Do you find that it's keeping you from losing weight? Or, even if you can fit it into your daily caloric budget (as you technically can with most things in small enough portions), is it taking up room in your daily diet that would be otherwise occupied by more Protein or veggies? In other words, are you getting all of your nutrients and staying within your caloric budget WHILE drinking this latte in the morning? If I were in your situation and I could fit it into my diet healthily, I'd keep drinking the latte if I really enjoyed it over the alternatives. There's common counsel against drinking your calories and it's good. People can easily have several very high-calorie drinks without being conscious of how much they've consumed or feeling full. Also, popular drinks often have a low nutritional/protein status relative to some solid foods in the same calorie range. However, I see the "don't drink your calories" as a general rule and I consciously break the rule twice a day, while observing it for most of my meals. I drink a high-quality and relatively low-calorie Protein shake two times a day. I rarely drink juice or any other drink, unless it is had as a treat. Especially as a vegetarian, the protein shake has made my diet much easier and helps me reach about 100g of protein a day, while staying below 1100 calories. There's no reason (that I'm aware of) that I should take this Protein Drink out of my diet. I'm losing weight more quickly now than I was before I started the protein drink (this is likely in thanks partly to the drink and partly to my stricter diet). In my opinion, you should analyze the drink, yourself, in terms of its nutritional status and find out how many calories you are consuming in a day while the drink is in your diet. Also, you should examine your diet for various nutrient targets that you need to be reaching (e.g. potassium, Vitamin A); this will tell you if you need to take the drink out to make room for other foods that are high in particular nutrients. Good luck deciding! EDIT: I should say that you can find out if you're reaching your nutrient targets with a food tracker. myfitnesspal.com is the one I use to keep track of calories, fats, protein, and various nutrients.
  18. Haha that's funny! Same weight, same goal, same height. Yeah, I still haven't gotten around to jogging. I'm so sedentary. I've spent most of my day today reading. Not a lot of physical activity involved in that. My calorie tracking wouldn't work well if I didn't eat foods that are relatively simple, and easy to put into the tracker (stir-fries, simple sauces etc). Have you seen a nutritionist?

  19. Hey there, I'm also 24 years old (1986). Your post-op experience is pretty normal. Some people claim that gas drops/strips etc. help with gas pain, but I personally think that the treatment may just be having a placebo effect on that minority. The pain that people feel even a week or two after surgery is usually what is called "referred pain" in the left shoulder, which is actually really coming from an issue at the band-site (and not the intestines nor the left shoulder). Gas strips and walking would be able to help with gas trapped inside the intestines, but not with the left-shoulder pains that afflict many bandsters post-op. I also felt more pain at the larger incision, which is the site of the port. Even now, 9 months after surgery, it's still a tiny bit sore when I press down on the scar. I didn't mind broth on the first day, but I couldn't stand it by the next. You just have to stick through it until the thick liquids phase. Then, you'll have many more things to eat (i.e. strained and blended Soups like lentil and cream of mushroom, or fruit/protein shakes). For now, maybe expand your list of fruit juices (as long as they're clear liquids). How about V8? Have you tried any other kinds of broths, such as vegetable broth? You shouldn't have to worry about over-doing your portions if you're following the guidelines that should've been given to you by your band-practitioner. I think about half a cup (maybe even a cup, I don't quite remember) is usually permitted. At this stage, your pouch should be able to accomodate a relatively large amount compared to later on in the process (after several fills). Just stick to the list of permitted foods, eat slowly, and be reasonable about your portions. The feeling of fullness with the band is somewhat different than before, but it's nothing to fear. Plus, right now, you're only consuming liquids. If you eat slowly, it would be difficult to get that stuck feeling on liquids. Just after surgery, you likely don't have a very tight band since you've had no fills (except for some in surgery, possibly). Your band probably feels tighter now than it will in a month, but that's because of swelling from surgery. Especially if you're consuming enough food, you'll soon regain your energy. Many people go back to work after a week or less. I still had some shoulder pain two weeks after surgery, especially each time I ate food, but I was largely recovered by then. Hope you feel better soon and make sure to ask your practitioner about how much you should be eating at each stage.
  20. Hey there! I'm not doing anything special. I'm just calorie counting. I limit my calories to 800-1100 and I don't eat junk (except occasionally). I rarely exercise (cause I'm lazy), but I'm *planning* to start jogging this month, now that I'm not as heavy. I'm pretty short (5'2), so you might be much closer to your ideal weight at 180 than I will be. Maybe that's why your loss has slowed?

  21. I'm from Toronto, but in September I'm moving to Nova Scotia for the school year. There's another bandster from Ottawa. It seems like most people here are from the southern states.
  22. Birinak

    Hot guy talked to me in a bar and I freaked out

    You're not the only one who reacts this way to male attention. I'm a very upfront person usually, but I don't know how to act when guys flirt openly. I'm not used to it and I become embarrassingly shy. It's so uncomfortable that I end up coming across as stand-offish or awkward. The other day, I was walking to campus and some guy calls out to me: "Hey, honey. How are you?" I turn and see that the guy is cute and young, unlike the older creepers who usually hit on me when I was fatter. I quickly reply "I'm good," and continue on my way without turning back. The rest of the way, I'm thinking, "Why did he say that? Do I have something on my face? Why didn't he say anything to anyone else also walking on the sidewalk?" Everytime a man gives me attention now, I have to psycho-analyze him for ulterior motives because he can't possibly be genuinely interested in me. I think I'll still feel this way when I'm at my goal weight. Growing up fat messes with your self-esteem and the entire way you interact with people. I also don't flirt back because I don't want to lead guys on when I know I won't let it go any further. I wouldn't have gone to the club either!
  23. Yep, I have one of those stories. It only took the removal of 0.25 of a CC to bring me from coughing up Water every morning in my sleep and vomiting to being restricted and losing quickly without any discomfort (and hardly any effort, to be honest).
  24. Birinak

    Rudeness in the other forums

    I can't remember too many insincere answers in this forum. There's pretty much one member who sticks out in my mind and who is known by many to give very rude, but probably genuine, responses to posts. Her "reputation" number and the treatment she gets from other members after her posts reflects this. Members have their disagreements and debates--I've had a few--but this forum is generally much more civil and supportive than most I've visited.