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Board Newbie: Advice/Input Sought



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Hello DS Community:

I am new to the forum and happy to have stumbled across this site! I'm a 32 y/o female, 5'2.5" tall and currently weigh 263 lbs. I've had an interesting weight loss journey and was told by my doctor that it was somewhat atypical. I lost about 75 lbs on my own from 2007-2008 but then regained a great deal of that weight and in 2009, I decided that I needed to take surgical intervention. I had a lap band in 2009 and immediately had issues following it: both issues with finding my "sweet spot" in terms of fills (either I would feel no restriction and would eat a lot or I would feel so much restriction that I would throw everything up) as well as throat infections. Between those issues and my losing my job in 2010, I ended up not using the band.

In 2011, after finding new employment, I sought information on the DS. After reading forums and support pages and getting my insurance to approve the procedure after months of a diet and exercise plan (that yielded about a 20 lb loss), I had the first part of the DS (the switch) in May of 2013. I was 310 lbs at that time. My doctor did not do the sleeve at that time because I had a lot of scarring that was contributing to the terrible GERD I had post-band. From May of 2013 to March 4th of this year, I lost 30 lbs. Admittedly, I was not very diligent about changing my lifestyle as I was helping with a family member going through ongoing chemo treatments and also studying for a graduate school admissions test and then applying to graduate schools.

Since having the sleeve on March 4th (at 277 lbs), I've been trying to pour all of my time and energy into eating healthy (lots of protein), making healthy lifestyle choices, and increasing my exercise. I am fearful that I am not going to see the type of success that others (i.e. my family) expects though. I also suffer from PCOS and am finding that while my hunger has basically gone away on most days, I'm still having cravings and wanting to eat everything in sight around my period. Also, I am experiencing strange spikes in my weight. I'm trying to weigh myself no more than once a week but realistically, I'm weighing myself at least 2 times a week. My weight fell from 277 to 262.4 between March 4th and April 7th. I then went to a conference out of town for a week (where I thought I ate pretty well) but came back on the 15th to a whopping 269 lbs. My time of the month started on the 19th (and just ended today) and I have come down to 263 lbs so far (so about .6 lbs heavier than my low on April 7th).

I'm concerned that my weight loss has not been on "track" with the averages that I saw of losing 25% of excess weight at two months out. I'm under that target by quite a bit: I've lost ~17-18 lbs out of the 36.5 lbs that I'm supposed to have lost by May 4th. When I spoke to my doctor, he said I should not worry about the spike in my weight loss (that it was probably Water weight from traveling on a plane for 5 hours or my period being near) and that I should not focus on the numbers at all, given my unique history of having the switch first. He also said that he thinks I need to dramatically increase my water intake.

In the past week, I've started eating a lot of salads (now that I'm allowed to eat them again!). For the past few weeks, since I've been post-op (and as I was cleared through the stages), I've been eating salmon, grilled chicken, eggs, Babybel cheese wedges, and a piece of fruit each day. I've just started eating Peanut Butter crackers as Snacks. I've also been trying to walk 1-2 miles almost every day and to climb the stairs at work. I'm in the process of moving so my evenings are often spent packing but I'd also like to start swimming now that the weather has improved.

I'm not looking for the weight loss to occur over night and am extremely grateful even to be almost 260 lbs when I was 310 a year ago but I would like to be able to get down to one-derland (and I'd be over the moon to get down to 150-165 lbs) in the next year to 18 months. As such, any advice from veterans would be much appreciated. My past history paired with this recent blip/spike has shaken my confidence a bit about my ability to be successful with this so I'd love to hear from others!

Edited by starlight82

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As stated many times, everyone is different...just follow your program. I would stay away from the cracker, etc. you don't need to be adding carbs.

My NUT also said for me to stay away from fruit, also high sugar and carb,.. one or two servings a week, but limited... so you may want to try that as well.

Don't let the scale discourage you... you have to work at this every day to get to where you want to be...

Good Luck!

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Hello @@starlight82 - I feel you! I also was banded in 2008 and I had mine removed for nearly the same exact reasons. I was revised to the VSG on 9/15/10 and for the first 3 years I did fantastic. It worked awesome but something happened in the last year that I gained some weight back. My surgery turns out that it morphed into 2 stomachs. I have no idea how that happened but since then my eating stinks because I get literally hungry an hour after eating. Also, I have extremely bad GERD that I have to take medication for it day and night. I am working on a revision to the bypass hopefully soon.

My advice is it sounds like you're doing really good. I do agree with your surgeon that you add more Water to your day. How much are you getting? The minimum really is 64 Oz, so if anything try to shoot for that. Also eat low sodium it will help with the Water retention you have going on.

Good luck to you and I'm interested to follow your progress! :)

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Thanks for the advice ladies! I was advised to get in 75-90 g of Protein a day and to eat that first but it sounds like most switchers eat VERY little carbs, whatsoever. Is that just when you are trying to lose weight? My NUT said that salads are great but to make sure to eat all of the chicken first.

We also talked about how I can no longer eat Pasta or South Asian/Thai dishes (my favs) b/c I I cannot eat more than 3 or 4 spoons of rice before filling up. I'm okay with this but it is hard to turn the brain to just eating Protein all the time!!!

1.4 lbs down this morning! So finally seeing my first drop since 4/7!!!

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I am still preop but what I have is that we need a minimum of 100 g of Protein, I was told to shoot for 120-150g. You need lots of fat too. On average DSers only aborb 20% of the fat they intake. So you need about 100g of fat a day. Then carbs are about 100% absorbed. So they should be kept to 50g or less during the loss phase. I didn't see your liquids intake but at the minimum you should get 64 oz, while 80-100oz is preferred. Once you get dehydrated it is hard to catch up with out IV fluids. You also have to make sure to be getting your Vitamins in.

When the DS is done in two parts some of the "rapid" weightloss is lost. But you will get there.

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I am still preop but what I have is that we need a minimum of 100 g of Protein, I was told to shoot for 120-150g. You need lots of fat too. On average DSers only aborb 20% of the fat they intake. So you need about 100g of fat a day. Then carbs are about 100% absorbed. So they should be kept to 50g or less during the loss phase. I didn't see your liquids intake but at the minimum you should get 64 oz, while 80-100oz is preferred. Once you get dehydrated it is hard to catch up with out IV fluids. You also have to make sure to be getting your Vitamins in.

When the DS is done in two parts some of the "rapid" weightloss is lost. But you will get there.

Thanks for the encouragement! I'm at 256.8 today. So 6.2 lbs in 2.5 weeks. Not bad. I will take it! 20 lbs total loss since surgery on 3/4, which is 10 weeks as of yesterday. While 2 lbs a week is not that "rapid" of loss for someone of my size, I'm just going to be happy that I am losing. I really hope that I can get down to one-derland by my one year anniversary though. That gives me a little over 9 months to lose 57 lbs :)

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Question: how hard are you guys working out? I'm in the process of moving and doing a lot of other stuff to prepare for starting grad school so I have not been the best about doing a lot of exercise at the gym. I was just curious about your exercise routines.

Edited by starlight82

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Only walking till April of 2012. I didn't need to. So that was about 7 years out. Then I realized my muscles were doing nothing and I started having osteo. issues. I began lifting weights in April of 2012 and I love it. In fact, I'm recovering from wrist surgery and can't do it again till the surgeon says to and I really miss it.

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