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Getting Back To The "Green Zone" After Complete Unfill?



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@maygoddess. I've had my band since 2008. Very successful losing 144 pounds. Had some issues being too tight ( prob been that way too long). Had an unfill..when they started refilling...didn't notice any restriction. Long story short. Had a leak and had tubing replaced. While untfilled I gained about 50 pounds. Since we began refilling I've lost 21 pounds. It has been a struggle! I don't remember really thinking about what I ate when I first had my band..the weight just slowly but steadily came off. But now I have to make a daily effort of what goes into my mouth. With my 144 pound loss...never really exercised. But now I try to get some type in several times a week....so I'm like you why the heck is it harder now???

Was it a " honeymoon" stage and new and I really followed all the rules?

Has the band affected my metabolism??

Has my age affected metabolism??

I know how to eat around my band...I need a band for my brain! I've really been trying to focus on physical hunger and ignore the mental hunger...really been trying to plan my daily food..and adding in exercise..I'm also a member of an accountability group on the veterans forum..do I like doing all of this? Do I want to do it forever? I hope I don't have to. But I need to get the weight off that I've gained..

I don't really log my food ( like you, I'm terrible at it) but just making a plan helps me. I hope you start having success again with your band! Think about joining our accountability group...really helps with support!

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I contacted my surgeon at Kaiser (well not really my band surgeon, but now my band caretaker surgeon) and asked to see him for a little more fill. Turns out the nutritionist you have to see first is out on leave so just have to see him. Sure he will ask what I have been doing, but not badger me like she did! Uggh! I don't think they truly get the band intricacies if they don;'t have one. I wish it was as easy as just counting calories..yup..calories in vs calories burned..create a deficit to lose..must have 3500 excess calories to gain 1 lbs..yada yada...BUT in this case with me..I can put on 2lbs overnight after a week of eating at 1400-1600 calories a day AND doing 45 min to hour cardio and weight training..no I don't think I am gaining muscle. No it's not Water gain. It is just soooo inconsistent since being unfilled. Normal dieting pre band was never this hard and frustrating. I should be at least dropping some ounces and not gaining.

I was fighting the urge to get more fill..but realize now I can eat more than I should which I am resisting but the hunger is getting in the way again. I was getting to the point of being bored with food like I was pre unfill..but now I am back to always thinking about food again!! Time for a teeny fill!!

Have my appt in 3 days to see the doc!!

After doing my first motorcycle track day yesterday with the 50 extra lbs on bent up on a sport bike, I am more determined than ever to get this weight off. I felt like an elephant on a tricycle yesterday. muwhhhaah!!

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So just got back from my fill appt. Took all of 5 minutes since the nutrionist just went on maternity leave..just me and the surgeon. He asked what was going on..I had gained 8+ lbs since my last appt 4 months ago. yup!! So after a few cursory questions, he at first was going to give me .5cc but after I mentioned that I was just at the tail end of a chest cold, he decided to go with .25cc. Uggh. At first I thought "I shouldnt have said anything"..why waste my time here..BUT I am glad I did. This puts me to 1.25cc back in my band. I was at 2cc when I was completely unfilled because I was too tight. 1.5cc may have put me too close to the danger zone. I came back to work and am struggling to get a yogurt down. I figure there is usually some swelling and adjusting going on after they suck ALL the Fluid out and put it back in with some extra. I have to remember this is how I was originally filled..in tiny increments. Once I started going to a fill doctor who does blind fills is where my trouble started of being too tight. Perhaps Dr Kuri being conservative with me all along because of my distance from TJ was correct!

I am hoping that this teensy fill helps get that balance back of harmony of hunger and restriction. I never had that "hangry" feeling when I was filled. I was bored with food and could go all day without eating much. Now that I am trying to really watch calories and excercise, I am always hungry..so if I can get back to that lack of appetite again, I would be happy!!!

Only time will tell..will report back after I had time to adjust to my new fill! Crossing fingers it gives me a boost in the downward direction by making this dieting crap easier to do! Sigh..that is why I have the band!!!

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May

Best of luck figuring out a strategy. ????

It is a bit scary for some of us long term bandsters to read what can happen. One change of events can set off long term weight challenges.

Gosh... I was naive enough to think my life would stay the same after 8+ years of banded living. Im thinking it must mess with your mind/ body image after all those years of considering those issues were laid to rest .

Please keep us updated. I truly want to see how you resolve band issues. (You are like a canary in a coal mine) any of us could face this issue!

And thank you for all your input

Jewels

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May

Best of luck figuring out a strategy.

It is a bit scary for some of us long term bandsters to read what can happen. One change of events can set off long term weight challenges.

Gosh... I was naive enough to think my life would stay the same after 8+ years of banded living. Im thinking it must mess with your mind/ body image after all those years of considering those issues were laid to rest .

Please keep us updated. I truly want to see how you resolve band issues. (You are like a canary in a coal mine) any of us could face this issue!

And thank you for all your input

Jewels

Thank you Jewels! WiIl definitely keep you all posted on how this works. I just know in my heart that our bodies are no longer normal after being banded for so long. The doctor and nutritionist are just assuming "well you can eat more now, so you must be overeating like a pig, so stop it" Well..maybe..but even with really watching calories and excecising, I am still struggling. I really feel my body is trying to get back up to a higher "set point". Where I was for years...200+ lbs..285 at my highest pre banded. I am sure if I was NOT really calorie counting and working out, I would have walked into the surgeon today close to 250 than 200 I am at now. I am now 50lbs over what my body has been used to for many years. It really has mentally and physically put a toll on me. I know my confidence in the world out there has dropped. I am more self conscience. In my eyes, I feel like an elephant. I have friends when I tell them I gained 50lbs in 4 months look at me like I am crazy and say I look great and don't look like I gained. Well probably because I don't gain in my face as much so I look thin in the face. Given that I stayed at 150lb for years and BMI shows I should be close to 130ish..I was still considered overweight for my height..BUT never could imagine being THAT small.

Now that it is Spring and already getting warmer here, time to strip off the winter fat clothes..but I have no Spring fat clothes. Been wanting to resist having to buy more fat clothes, but unless I get at least 1/2 this weight off, my old clothes won't fit at all! So bummed! This has been an expensive journey since unbanded. I know for my health it was necessary, but still hard to deal with it!!

I will be back..hopefully with good news that the scale is finally moving back down in the right direction!!

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So 5 days out from my extra little fill and I am HUNGRY!!! ALL DAY AND NIGHT!!! UGGHH!!. I am not sure what happened, but I was hoping to get back that lack of appetite and now I am feeling like I am not eating at all. I am in HANGRY mode all day..even after eating something. I swear my calories are the same as before this fill. I counted 1400 calories yesterday..probably missed a few hundred so I know my calories are not in starvation zone, but feels like my body just is rebelling this time around.

Good news..I think and hope...is that I am down "about 3-4lbs" since the fill. I weighed 200.2 the morning before my fill. I of course started my period the next day,so figured scale would pop up..I went to 198.6, then down to 197.0 and then back up to 198.6. This morning I was 196.4. I am cautiously optimistic because my body has been doing this up and down since my complete unfill..well mostly up, up, up and then I got stuck in the 190-200 zone no matter what I did or ate or excercised. So will give it another week. If I continue to drop, I know this fill is working..just wish I was not constantly this hungry...not belly hungry as much as the low blood sugar, head dizzy hungry..

This has not been fun at all!!!!

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Well..thought I would come in for an update since it has been almost a month. Thankfully the appetite suddenly went away. No longer in "hangry" mode all day. I can go longer without food. My body is still stuck and just bouncing up and down..196, 198, 200, 197, 198...sigh...watching calories and working out and just maintaining where I should be seeing scale drop.

I am just figuring my body is confused with all the changes and being stubborn and holding on to what it just quckly gained. I figure I just need to relax and give time to adjust and perhaps it will let go and start to lose again.

It has been very frustrating to have two sides to my closet where most of what I want to wear is too small and I don't want to buy much more new in my current size.

As for my fill, I think my current fill of 1.25cc is good for now. I was too tight at 2.00cc when I was unfilled. I don't think I could take any more at this point. I wanted to achieve that "lack of appetite" feeling I had before and I think I now have that. I do have restriction. I am worried I may start packing my esophagus again, so I have to be mindful of that and not ignore the STOP!

I pray this stubborn body of mine gets with the program again and let's go of this weight!! I miss my size 8/10. Size 14/16 is NOT fun!!!

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May

First.. Glad to see you posting????

Please remind yourself, tho you don't care for the size you are, it is the AVERAGE size of American women.

You exercise and eat right so know you are healthy!

That said, I get you are frustrated over the numbers after years of being lower.

I'm suggesting you try to love what ya got today... And hope for what should be a drop in numbers soon

Best wishes

Jewels

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Thank you Julie for stopping in and sharing your kind words. I totally get that..some of my friends have even looked at me and didn't think I gained or look bad..BUT my whole life is at 150lbs. Sounds wierd..but my life revolves around motorycles. I have three. I ride one on the track that requires a tight one piece leather suit. I quickly grew out of my one piece and was lucky enough to be handed a suit that fit at my bigger size with some alterations. I hate it as not as comfy as my smaller one. The extra 50lbs is a burden on the bike as well. None of my motorycle gear for the street fits me and I feel less safe with what I am making do with. It has cost me at least $2000 in casual, work and moto gear since I gained this weight. I find it harder to ride street or track. So It is very hard for me to be at peace with this weight and patient with my body deciding what it wants to do.

I don't feel as confident as I did because I don't feel I look good. I feel sloppy fat and hate seeing rolls and fat hanging where I had none before. I am a confident person regardless, but I guess I am knocked down a few notches now because of this.

Health wise..yeah overall I feel okay..but my joints ache more now..the extra weight is hard to carry around. I don't want to settle and feel comfy here for very long..the more I "buy" into this size, the more chance I feel I have I will just settle here. I am fighting it all the way!!

May
First.. Glad to see you posting

Please remind yourself, tho you don't care for the size you are, it is the AVERAGE size of American women.
You exercise and eat right so know you are healthy!
That said, I get you are frustrated over the numbers after years of being lower.
I'm suggesting you try to love what ya got today... And hope for what should be a drop in numbers soon
Best wishes
Jewels

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Thank you for sharing your story and to keep updating!

the last fill i received was in July 2014 and i was pretty happy with where i was, i also learned the quirks and was very slowly losing/maintaining the weight.

About 3-4 days ago, i couldn't get any food down and Water was uncomfortable. I have a herniated disc and the pain was more bothersome than normally so i attributed my tight band to that.

Well then band pain came, a different kind of "stuck" feeling that i cant even explain. That same night i woke up coughing/vomiting. i started freaking out thinking my band slipped and got back to my doctor's office the next day (yesterday). She took out all the saline to let my stomach rest and i have an upper GI Friday to check the position of the band and if there is any damage.

I never had reflux before so i dont understand how this can just happen out of nowhere and so aggressively. I dont understand how the band can just magically become too tight and show symptoms now.

Anyhow, i am afraid to eat!!! i feel like a recovering alcoholic in a bar. Just one drink and im going to spiral.

I've been trying to stick to a liquid diet but the hunger is REAL!

Not to mention my i am in my brothers wedding June 6 and my bridesmaid dress currently fits right now... I'd be mortified if the day comes and i cant get into it.

When you were unfilled, did you have this fear? I dont know what to do about it.

I'm scared i'll end up gaining lots of weight.

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Thank you for sharing your story and to keep updating!

the last fill i received was in July 2014 and i was pretty happy with where i was, i also learned the quirks and was very slowly losing/maintaining the weight.

About 3-4 days ago, i couldn't get any food down and Water was uncomfortable. I have a herniated disc and the pain was more bothersome than normally so i attributed my tight band to that.

Well then band pain came, a different kind of "stuck" feeling that i cant even explain. That same night i woke up coughing/vomiting. i started freaking out thinking my band slipped and got back to my doctor's office the next day (yesterday). She took out all the saline to let my stomach rest and i have an upper GI Friday to check the position of the band and if there is any damage.

I never had reflux before so i dont understand how this can just happen out of nowhere and so aggressively. I dont understand how the band can just magically become too tight and show symptoms now.

Anyhow, i am afraid to eat!!! i feel like a recovering alcoholic in a bar. Just one drink and im going to spiral.

I've been trying to stick to a liquid diet but the hunger is REAL!

Not to mention my i am in my brothers wedding June 6 and my bridesmaid dress currently fits right now... I'd be mortified if the day comes and i cant get into it.

When you were unfilled, did you have this fear? I dont know what to do about it.

I'm scared i'll end up gaining lots of weight.

HI! SOrry to hear about this incident. The band can definitely be quirky..filled or not. My band can get tighter when I am sick, when I go up in altitude..though the doc and his nurse thinkI am crazy because it is a "closed pressure" system..blah blah..but yeah whatever..I know what I feel!!

WHen I got unfilled, I didnt know what to expect really. I had a really bad painful experience the first weekend..felt like air pressure was releasing and it sent me to ER. Turned out to be nothing..could have just been a release of pressure or air between the two parts of my stomach and the band..who knows.

It was pretty scary how quick the weight piled on. The dietician just assumed I decided to go out and binge on all the things I could not eat beore like pizza and bread and yummy carbs! NOPE! I actually craved salad because that was always hard to get down. I didn't gorge..I am sure I was able to get in more calories than before...but I was not pigging out. It just piled on no matter what I did. I think our bodies hit a set point and when it can..it will try and get back to where it was before..

It is super easy to pile in calories..even if you are careful. I switched to Water only..no calorie drinks other than milk in my Meal Replacement shake in the morning. Even counting calories and eating only what I SHOULD lose on I was gaining.

The weight gain has stopped with an additional 45lbs on my body. Most of that was gained in the first few months! Yeah quick!! Right now I am bouncing up and down between a few lbs. That would be GREAT if I just wanted to maintain where I was!

The worse part for me during the unfill period was having a normal person appetite again. The hunger pangs..I missed my loss of appetite from the band being filled. As I got refilled that finally has gotten back down to where I can forget about food for quite awhile. I am considering doing a pure liquid diet like HMR to control the calories I am taking in and get this weight off. It is not as easy as 48 as it was in my 30's when I was first banded.

I would suggest REALLY watching your calories. Eliminate ALL caloric drinks and go to water only. No diet drinks either. I never liked fake sugars anyway..but stay as "pure" as you can without adding chemical crap to your body. Go to my fitness pal and enter your daily calories. Don't go off your maintenance weight calories..go off of calories for your body that you would need to LOSE on. If you see the scale going up rapidly, cut down further!

It can be tempting to eat stuff that may have been hard while filled properly but don't tempt fate!!! So not worth it! I don't even want to think about how many hundreds of dollars I have spent on having to quickly replace an entire wardrobe in a few short months including expensive motorcycle gear! Sigh..

Best of luck with the band..praying for you that it is not anything serious and you can get refilled! Hang in there!!

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Hi all! I have been been banded now just over 12 years and lost 130lbs and last 5-6 years have been at the same weight..pretty much at what I would call a "goal" weight..not what BMI charts say. My last fill was at least 5 years ago..don't even remember. The last fills were not done under flouro as I did not go back to my surgeon in Tijuana. Found a "local" dr willing to fill me..but he does "blind" fills..so we never saw my restriction level. The last fills I felt like I finally had restriction enough to get off the last 40 or so lbs I needed to still lose. I was never a really compliant bandster, so it took me awhile to get the weight off. I have been happy at the same size for years. I learned to live with the quirks of the band..I was careful about eating foods that I know would get me stuck. I probably compensated for too tight of a band by drinking liquids alot. I did PB daily, but thought this was just because I was not careful enough. I avoided eating or drinking too close to bed so I would not reflux up..though sometimes still did. This all was just the way it was for a bandster. I was happy to be keeping this weight off. I only even went up and down by 5-7 lbs but knew what I was doing to gain and stopped.

So..here is where I am now. Since my band had not really been checked by flouro since my last fill in Mexico at least 7-8 years ago, I figured I should at least have a look at it to make sure all was okay. Figured it was since band seemed to be doing its job. I figured a slip or erosion would make it self know. I didn't need a fill..so just plugged along. I finally made appt with Kaiser here in Nor Cal to just do a routine Flouro this past August. The flouro showed that the barium would barely drain down. They had me practically dance around the room to try and move it down..nope. What this restriction caused was for me to pack my esophagus and it was double its size. The band was perfectly in tact, upper pouch was there..but now my esophagus was dilated. The bariatric surgeon saw the results and told me to get an appt to get an unfill. So a week later, the doctor drained my band. I have a 4cc band and had 2cc in it.

For at least a week, I had horrible pain off an on..lots of air and gas..that subsided and the weight started piling on. I was unfilled Sept 19th and as of today, December 17th, I am up by 40lbs! Doesn't matter what I eat or don't eat for that matter, how much I work out at the gym..the weight just piled on. Most of that was right away..at least 1/2 but I continue to go up. This has been an expensive lesson as I have had to buy new work clothes, casual clothes. All my clothes have been size 8 and 10 for years. I quickly went through 10s to 12s and now to 14s. I ache in joints I haven't ached in for years. Dramatically gaining 40lbs in 3 months has been difficult.

What I miss the most is the lack of hunger..not necessarily the restriction. This is what I fear the most..that I won't get to that "green zone" where I don't have an appetite. I always told people to not wait on me to be hungry because they would starve. I could go most of the day and not care about food. I want that back!! I worry that getting to that spot again won't happen.

So I had a follow up flouro done a month ago and my esophagus had improved enough where my doctor is willing to start refills. He wanted to give it another month at that point, so I am scheduled for a first refill in two days. I have no idea how much we will start with. I am sure he will increment me back up again. I know we won't be going back to a total of 2cc's again since that was obviously too tight...but all I want is that hunger to go away!

Has anyone else had to go through this and get back to where they were. I just need to stop this weight gain. I am trying so hard to stop it and nothing works. I watch calories, I am excercizing..even on weeks where i had walked thousands of steps around the city for a conference and ate very well as far as calories and food types, drank tons of Water and managed to pack on 5lbs that week anyway!! I should have at minimum maintained if not dropped a 1lb!

I really do think our bodies are thrown into some long term low calorie survival mode when banded and restricted properly. If the vagus nerve controls our appetite and is effected by band restriction against it..perhaps not feeling like you are starving helps us survive on less calorie intake. When that pressure against the nerve is reduced due to unfill, your body is sending signals to get back to where you can store it up again for possible times of "starvation" again..who knows..everyone has a theory..SOMETHING happens. This is not normal to gain this much weight in short amount of time when your calorie intake is at a level where any normal person would at least maintain or lose the avg 1-2lbs per week. I could eat celery sticks or a box of chocolates and still gain weight right now!! I am tired of people telling me I just need to reduce my calories and get in some excercise! I AM I AM I AM!! Doesn't matter!! I am sure I have ONLY gained 40lbs because I have been trying hard not to. If I decided to just fully let loose every day, I am sure 100lbs would have already been packed on!

OKay...enough of my rant...I am praying that in 2 days,I get a starter fill that will get me back to wherever it was to help me keep the weight off so I can now get off this excess 40lbs. I am sure it will take work, but right now I feel like I am swimming against a riptide with a wide open band. Maintaining on extremely low calories is impossible right now, never mind weight loss..Uggh!!

If anyone else has gone through similar with unfills to refills, would love to hear how it went!!

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I am gaining weight very rapidly after unfil because if being hospitalized due to sickness! Very upset!

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I had complete unfill. So nervous and upset. Noticed hunger came back like a mad dog!! Took phentermine to get through. I was only unfilled 3 weeks because of a slip. I gained 3 lbs but i was freaking miserable. Cancelled all plans. No one could be around me or i would bite their head off. Now slowly getting refilled and just maintaining. Not losing ????

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HI all! Just wanted to give an update on this as it seems there is definitely some commonality here with unfills and getting back to the "green zone"..I don't know if we can ever really achieve where we were before. I think the initial fill series and weight loss is our chance to do it. From there the band, for me, was a tool to keep the weight off..and it did that for quite a few years. Turned out I lived with being too tight, stretched my esophagus..but my weight was maintained. Who knows what my caloric intake was at that time. I did get food and drinks in and didn't count calories..but I stayed within a 5lb range usually.

Now I am approaching almost a year since my unfill..it was September of last year. So 10 months later I am still up 40lbs. I got my last fill a few months ago..I was up 50, but my boyfriend of over a year unexpectedly left me in May. I lost almost 10lbs on the "heartbreak" diet..wouldn't recommend it, but it finally pushed the lbs down. Now..I am maintaining that loss. What I will need to do to kickstart the rest of it...not sure. I don't think I want to get any tighter. I don't want to go back to where I was. I was talking to someone about this last night..explaining my journey over the last year of rapid gain even though I was severely restricting calories. I think I am back to almost "mere mortal" status where I really have to restrict low, exercise my rear off and work harder to get off these 40lbs..and THEN..let the band do its job of keeping it off. I don't think these last 40lbs will come off solely relying on the band. My hunger has dimished to back where it was pre-unfill..of course the stress and heartache also help curb the hunger..I have lost interest in food, but still eat and maintain.

For now..letting myself heal from the breakup and other things going on before I start full force to lose again. I also am kinda waiting for track season to wind down as my larger motorcycle suit I got to replace the one that no longer fit will be dangerously too big if I lose another 10-20lbs now and it is too costly to have it altered again and again..so waiting until I am back to my normal weight before I alter it one last time..so torn about losing too much before November comes....ahhh priorities!!

Keep sharing stories..I don't think the surgeons REALLY understand what isgoing on with the unfill process. They assume we are all gorging on the things we couldn't eat when we were filled. Sheesh I gained 5lbs on air!! Seriously..the initial few weeks were scary fast weight gain..even on nothing!!!

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      Saturday morning I tried the Syntrax Nectar Cappuccino latte with pb2. Not bad. Some of these Syntrax latte's have that sweet after taste even though they say they are aspartame free. I have no idea what it is but I'm not a fan. The PB2 or banana kind of takes that away.
      Hubs took me to see a movie and my n-laws watched our son. I didn't think ahead so I grabbed a smoothie at the Jamba Juice to stay hydrated. I could have totally snuck in my own shake or drank water but I was tending to my son's needs ahead of mine. I need to learn to make more time for myself. I do have anxiety and this kicks in right before we leave to go out whether it's the family or just me and my hubs. My mother-n-law and father- n law are great with my son but sometimes they don't listen to instructions I give them and thus causes the anxiety to come out. Ugh. Anyway, back to it....
      So this Jamba Juice I had ordered was the PB Banana Protein and MAN did it have ALOT OF SUGAR IN IT. I should have made my own but I'm only human right....Yes, It was tasty but a medium size with 34g of protein, okay......58g carbs, 23g fat and ....eekk....49g of sugar .
      Not, the best choice. Again, I'm only human but I need to really research my nutrition info. before just looking up and seeing "oh protein, that's what I need, I'll take that, please" on the big board of what looks good.
      For dinner, I had a hoagie bowl from my local Wawa which was grilled chicken (all 3 stripes of it ) REALLY?!  packed with veggies and some honey mustard dressing. 
      Breakfast Sunday morning was Syntrax Nectar Strawberry Mousse. I swapped out water with almond milk and added 1/2 a banana. That was a 5 for sure! Very tasty!
      Lunch I tried the Syntrax Nectar Caribbean Cooler with almond milk and 1 banana. Tasted just like a daiquiri. So good. One of my favorites so far! 5!!!!
      Dinner I made turkey chili. Very good! High protein and so good!
      Breakfast this morning, I tried the Syntrax Nectar Vanilla Latte with 1 banana and almond milk. Bit of an after taste again. I need to find out what the hell that is. Again, all of these protein shakes are aspartame free yet, I have this horrible sugary, "sweet-n-lowy" kind of after taste. I give this one a 3.  
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    • BTmom


      Losing my mind fighting the enemy telling me I can't do this!!

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