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Hunger and dieting



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I was driving home yesterday from a trip and started thinking about this. For those "vets" out there - how many of you battled "hunger" from the start and how did you control/portion what you ate? I know I've read from many that they experienced hunger all along (I DID NOT but NOW do experience strange hunger where I can seemingly never be full/satisfied?) So was it a lot like dieting along with VSG since you still WANTED to eat?

Just thinking through what all of the sudden has made my body shift to this new "phase." 3 years out in June - I eat well for a month or two and then drop the ball and eat junk but even when eating "clean" I am hungry ALL THE TIME! Protein does not in the least slow down the seemingly "bottomless pit" feeling.

I really, really, really (did I say really?) want to get BACK to my lowest goal weight of 150 and even down 5 lbs or so from there but I sabotage myself constantly. For those of you familiar as Paul said, "... for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I."

I am very frustrated and sad. I truly didn't want to be CONSTANTLY thinking about food, worrying about food, snacking on food at this point. I STILL can eat only small amounts of PURE protein/food and that might hold me for a couple hours so is it JUST matter of willpower or what now? Anybody else out there in this situation? Help!!!!

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Nothing can satisfy my bottomless pit, however I try to make the most healthy decision such as snacking on nut etc or even get the hell out of the house. Boy did I say I am plain hungry?

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I'm not a vet but I will be a year out in July and it seems I snack a lot as well...I just try to keep healthier Snacks with me like Greek yogurt and string cheese and a piece of fruit.< /p>

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I am nearly 3 years out and still do not experience authentic body hunger. I have conditioned myself to recognize my new cues of hunger, an empty shriveled balloon feeling in my stomach, sudden manic energy, the inability to concentrate, but physical hunger nope. Head hunger on the other hand ... an aspect that I continue to attempt to understand and do battle with daily. When I feel myself losing that battle I do something that probably isn't the healthiest but it works - I get some of whatever I'm craving, stand there with a fork in one hand, a bottle of dish soap in the other, and take one or two big luscious bites, savoring them deeply and slowly, and before I can think twice - pour dish soap over the remaining portion, thereby making the decision for me.

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I get hungry, but a meal does fill me up and keep me full for a few hours. I still struggle with wanting to eat crap, esp. at night. I have to really watch it because at two years out, I can eat a lot of slider foods. Yeah, not as much as pre-op, but enough to gain weight in a hurry.

In the long term studies I could find for VSG, weight regain was significant between 3-6 years. That one keeps me worried.

http://www.bariatricspro.com/imageServer.aspx/doc213335.pdf?contentID=20352&contenttype=application/pdf page 11

and

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20622654

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I see it as the bane of my existance, a lifetime struggle. Even so, it is much easier to manage then it was pre-surgery.

You know what i do sometimes - leave the house and buy a coffee. SOMETIMES I feel so hungry but it must be at least partially head hunger that a coffee can make it go away for hours.

Carbs do make my hunger much worse.

I have taken to keeping this in my fridge - a cold salad made up of:

-precooked shrimp, rinsed and thawed

-diced english cuke

-diced flavorful Tomato

-diced avocado

-thinly sliced, then diced baby bell pepper

-little bit of diced mushroom

All marinated in some Newman's own Italian dressing. Then, when i serve up a bowl, I sprinkle some feta on it. The meat gives me Protein and all those fresh veggies give some bulk.

I have also made it using the costco low carb / low cal chicken sausages (amy lu and other brands) but that isn't as tasty.

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I get hungry, but a meal does fill me up and keep me full for a few hours. I still struggle with wanting to eat crap, esp. at night. I have to really watch it because at two years out, I can eat a lot of slider foods. Yeah, not as much as pre-op, but enough to gain weight in a hurry.

In the long term studies I could find for VSG, weight regain was significant between 3-6 years. That one keeps me worried.

http://www.bariatric...application/pdf page 11

and

http://www.ncbi.nlm....pubmed/20622654

I had read one of those (the shorter one) but the full blown study report was interesting. I took note that they felt "continued support beyond year three" increased the likelihood of lower regain. Anybody, vet wise, beyond their 3rd year yet? And if so, do you continue to have "support"? To be truthful, I've had no support basically except a once a year followup from my surgeon. Haven't had any problems up to now but knowing that I am losing the battle with junk food, etc, whether or not I can find some support group that would help. I know talking to VSG members helps but truly one on one seems like it would be much better. I know CA has some great groups. Not sure about AR.

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I truly enjoyed this post and the comments. I too have had hunger return with a vengeance. I am 17 months out, find I can and do eat a lot more "naughty" foods, but so far when I'm bad, I try and substitute that day's calorie intake with more exercise or a Protein drink for a Meal Replacement. I still use a bread and butter plate as my guide, I try my best to use portions that I remember from the earlier days. My Dr told me to use the smaller plate for the rest of my life and I'll not regain the weight. I also try to stick to the the 5 meal rule. Breakfast, lunch and dinner and two Snacks at 10:00 am and 3:00 pm. Overall we are human, we will make mistakes, but I think the hunger pangs come and go. I agree with Cowgirl Jane, a good cup of coffee with a flavored Creamer and it knocks the hunger out for me. I also notice my severe hunger comes after eating carbs like sugary things. I have battled my weight my entire life, I've always been able to lose, but never maintain. I have not lost any weight in nearly 6 months, but I don't want to. I want to maintain my current weight for years.

Keeping my fingers crossed that we all can...

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This is a great thread, because this is the reality of surgery for many of us. Whenever I talk to someone about, I always stress that it is not magical cure. Losing is the easy part, maintaining is the harder part.

I am 2.5 years post op, and I always have to watch what I eat and think about what I am eating. I don't get really hungry, but I do still get hungry sometimes. That is not what I struggle with though. I struggle with the head hunger. Just wanting to snack on something and have something in my mouth. The only way that I have been able to combat this is just not having the food in my house. If it is there, I will eat it and I have no will power. The only thing I do notice is, the more crappy foods I eat, the more I crave them.

I wish I had better advice for you, but know that you are not alone. For me, I know that food will always have to be in my mind and I will always have to be conscious of it. I think you will have to find what works best for you. I always try new recipes to see what I will like so I don't get bored with my food. I don't track anything, but I do weigh myself everyday to keep me accountable. Some people use the 5-day pouch test to kill the carb cravings and get back on track.

It is also important to give yourself credit for what you have accomplished. We forget how far we have come sometimes. I kept an old pair of pants and if I am feeling really down, I throw them on to remind myself where I have come from.

The sleeve is great and, as you even said, still gives you great restriction. Work with it and you will find a solution that you can live with and that will help you succeed!

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Honestly, sometimes I can't tell the difference between head hunger(emotional?), real hunger(what is that? Empty stomach?Many here eat so little, I would think we could experience real hunger a lot of the time!)and perhaps other kinds of hunger....craving some nutrient for a good reason...carb or more likely, high glycemic index food addiction.. Thats the one that gets me... if I eat more high glycemic index foods, I crave more. This was my prob in the past, pre surgery as well... having the sleeve is def an advantage, but those sliders go down pretty easy and in quantity if allowed. I have always eaten lower, but not low carb for the past 28 months, sometimes being good with the glycemic index...sometimes not. I had a gaining spurt at around 18-24 months, then got it under control by upping my exercise and mostly being more accountable for what I was eating. I have tried a few different approaches since the first of this year...eating more, tracking my energy expenditure with fitbit/myfitnesspal.... and managed to lose 5 of the gained pounds...this week I decided to eat under the Vegetarian/southbeach stage one program...(REALLY struggeled to get started on that...I didn't want to cut the bread and such...) which is a low glycemic index and higher Protein plan...and I just dropped 1 1/2 pounds the first day..., know its Water, but happy to see a different number. I am making this change because I have noticed increased hunger, and when I used this plan years ago, I felt a huge relief from hunger I had never felt before. After one day, I have very little hunger and it is easy to tell when I am wanting to eat for the insulin rush. That is only after one day.

Here is my nutrition breakdown for the day yesterday if you are interested.

post-3718-13813666255538_thumb.png

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FYI, is this from myfitnesspal? Is your goal really 196 carbs daily? I know that I am grabbing just to be eating at times now seemingly wanting to EAT or have something constantly now. At work I can, most of time, curb it and eat Breakfast, snack, lunch, snack but THEN I go home and sit and snack all night. Everyday I tell myself I'm going to stop and "eat clean" but, alas, I do it again!!! Yep, I know it's up to me! I seriously think constantly that I've got to do better so, once again, I've got to try to figure out ME and change ME.

I think I'll do a modified 5 day re-set and get the sugar cravings under control again. Then I'm going to try something new, alternate fast days, knowing that I can look forward to every other day of "normal" but within reason. First thing I've got to do is get rid of all the junk in my house I've allowed. With two little girls "Grands" here every weekend, I end up with stuff that they want and then I eat!

I also know I've GOT to make myself exercise which I don't. I've been trying to walk but even that I can talk myself out of. :( NEVER been big on exercise and I cant see myself changing at 59 1/2 but I CAN increase the amount of days I walk and add some low impact stuff.

Yes, I know, (truly I do) that it's going to be ultimately my choice. I loved the fact that the sleeve allowed me a new life and ability to lose quickly and safely with little work. NOW 3 years out, its finally hit home that this "tool" is just that. Not a magic bullet. Thanks for listening! You are truly my "go to" place.

And realistically, when I hear myself saying I need to lose this TWENTY POUNDS! Holy cow, it's 20 POUNDS. Where it was 100 POUNDS! And I think that is the problem - I'm rationalizing that it IS only 20 lbs. But at three years out, unless I change it now, it will be 35 next year!!!

Again, thanks for being my sounding board and I know we are truly a "family" of sorts. I feel my strength gaining!!! :)

This time next week, I'm gonna be better and hopefully, LEANER!

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Hey NannieG, the only thing that works for me as far as exercise goes is I gotta do it, whatever it is, first thing. I walk 3-4 days per week for at least an hour, leaving my house before 7 a.m

As far as late night Snacks, the more I have the more I want of junk food. If I manage to snack on greek yogurt cheesecake pudding (greek yogurt, whipped cream cheese, splenda, frozen blueberries, and a crumbled graham cracker) or have soy milk and Cereal, that fills me up enough I stop it.

It is going to be a life time struggle for me too. I'm hoping that, just like when I quit smoking, it gets easier as the years go by.

When I'm really working it, I weigh and measure all foods and track calories and Protein on a white board on my fridge door. I also track fluids because if I'm drinking as much as I should, I have less room for junk.

Lynda

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FYI, is this from myfitnesspal? Is your goal really 196 carbs daily?

That is MFP's goal for me.. I never reach it. I always go over their goal on Protein as well. They have some sliding scale numbers, as I do more exercise, the numbers all go up. If I don't move much in a day, they say eat 1200 and the other numbers are low too. I try to keep my exercise up so I have more wiggle room to eat. I don't usually eat back all my exercise, but most days I do eat some/most of it.

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This is so me hungry all the time it is the most disappointing part of this surgery. Every day I say Ill be better then I'm not 25 # left to go but life is in the way work home life leave me little time to exercise making bad choice here and there How did I ever do pre diet wish I could just one more time Pity party done I will do this thanks for all the great post it helps to know I'm not the only one

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I reset the nutritional goals on MFP manually - I do really well with hunger / cravings if I keep carbs around 40 grams net carbs a day, so that's what I set as my goal. But it takes a couple of weeks of eating like that before the cravings subside and I'm not obsessing about food. I certainly FEEL like I'm hungry quite a bit of the time, but I notice that if I'm out having a good time doing something, like on vacation, I don't have any urge to snack or overeat, so it's pretty clear I'm still confusing head hunger with real physical hunger.

I consider the low-carb approach to be a permanent part of my future. When I slip off it, I can end up back in full-blown binge mode, and gain frighteningly rapidly. So yes, I suppose you could say I'm still dieting. But I think of it more along the lines of finding what makes my life easiest. It's hard to give up some of the foods I have trouble with, but it's much harder to spend the day obsessing about food and fighting cravings and feeling out of control. So I work on finding a balance of food that's tasty, satisfying, provides variety, and gets me through the day without feeling hungry all the time. And each time I get sucked back in by those old bad habits, I just keep fighting my way back. I don't expect the battle will ever end, but like Lynda, I really hope it will get easier over the years.

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