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I'm a month post op. I have started going to the gym. Could this be why I am ravenously hungry? My pouch holds way more than 4 oz comfortably. Taking 30 mins to eat 4 ounces? No way! That's impossible to fathom. Hungry=eat. I'm really freaking struggling here. I've lost the high of the pain meds. Lost the high of food which is my only true best friend I have ever had. I wanna get high!! Or get full from yummy food!! SOMETHING. I'm losing it.

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What exercise are you doing at the gym and have you had the okay to exercise yet from your medical team?

I wouldn't have thought you'd be eating enough calories at this stage to be doing exercise unless it was fairly light on and low impact.

In the meantime do work on your past relationship with food, can't use it so much anymore to soothe emotional highs and lows. Find other things to do that occupy your hands and mind.

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Yes, they gave me the go-ahead to exercise after 2 weeks. I'm wondering if this was a bad idea? If I'm getting 500-600 calories a day and then burning 250 of them by treadmilling and incumbent bicycling, is this why im starvin marvin?

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You're gonna need to get a referral to a therapist who specializes in bariatric food issues.

If it were me, I'd dial back the amount of exercise. Walk daily, do some HIIT stuff. Drop ALL bad carbs to the curb for now. Only eat dense, dry Protein to whatever quantity your doctor specifies. Get all your Water in (no sweet waters). Drink decaff coffee and decaff green tea and matcha. Keep fully hydrated. Drink as much water as you can about 15minutes prior to eating. Then eat slowly as you can for 20 minutes. Then don't drink for 1-2 hours afterward.

The only thing I would eat right now until my hunger comes into control is:

1. Lean dense (very) protein=dry grilled chicken breasts, pork chops (lean), turkey burgers, lean ground beef burgers. Lean steak, salmon, hard boiled eggs, hard scrambled eggs, hard fried eggs (no runny yolks, they make the egg a slider protein at that point). (Only grill it or pan sear it or air fry it. NO meat LUBES, sauces, GRAVIES, or CASSEROLES!!!!)

2. 1 oz of al dente veggies: broccoli, cauliflower, wilted greens and garlic, wilted cabbage, brussels sprouts, broccoli rabe

3. 1/2oz avocado or up to 1 tsp of healthy oil per meal: olive, avocado, grassfed butter, lard, tallow.

Use spices but no artificial sweeteners. Nothing sweet! No fruit, no mashed anything, no potatoes, rice, grains, Beans, nothing til your hunger is assuaged.

Meet your protein needs if you can from solid lean dense protein: 60-80g/day.

That's what I do. Of course I can't tell you to do it. I'm not an RD or a doc!!! It takes about 4 solid days of behaving and doing this for your hunger to come into control...then I'd see what I needed to do after that. I would probably just continue on like that...cuz um, lol, that's what I already do!

Edited by FluffyChix

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I'm two months post-op and I can eat 2-3 oz only at a time and I'm full. I get "hungry" frequently, but I don't eat much at each setting, getting about 800 calories/day. Sometimes I realize it's "head hunger" and ignore the feeling or sip some liquids and wait to eat until it's meal time. I'm learning the difference between "head hunger" and stomach hunger after all these decades of conflating the two.

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It's so hard. I do think maybe you are doing activity too soon - mine says no sooner than 6 weeks. I know they are all different, but you are still on so little food. I think finding a therapist is really important and it's on my list of to-dos! I must do this next week because when I had my sleeve surgery, I could have done with it. I have just had a revision and I still need one. In the meantime, I just bought a book that looks good called Emotional First Aid Kit: A Practical Guide to Life After Bariatric Surgery by Cynthia L Alexander. It has great reviews and I'm hopeful it'll help while I am looking for someone.

I am actually kind of cross with the Bariatric Industry... I think that a therapist specialising in food addiction should come with the surgery. This isn't just about our bodies, it's more about our minds. We can feel so desperately alone after surgery and turn to all kinds of things to replace this addiction. We also go through loss and grief.

Please, look in to finding a therapist. You can look online for one in your area that specialises in addiction. Don't let it slip away from you like I did where you have to end up having a revision surgery.

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On 2/12/2019 at 8:57 AM, FluffyChix said:

That's what I do. Of course I can't tell you to do it. I'm not an RD or a doc!!! It takes about 4 solid days of behaving and doing this for your hunger to come into control...then I'd see what I needed to do after that. I would probably just continue on like that...cuz um, lol, that's what I already do!

FluffyChix, it looks like you are almost exactly a year since your surgery. I have heard that hunger starts to return after the "honeymoon phase" and that's when the real work starts as you try to figure out what you need to do to maintain your weight at that level. What was your experience?

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Hi, I am new to the forum. I am just 12 days post op, and I am hungry, too. I am also a bit light headed and dizzy if I get behind on the fluids. My doctor wanted me to start walking right away, working up to at least an hour/day and at least 10,000 steps. I am getting over 10,000 steps now, and did my first post op hike yesterday - but only eating about 230 calories per day from the broth and Protein Shakes. I should start the soft Protein foods in a couple of days which should double the daily caloric intake. I am hoping that will be satisfying - at least more than now.

I have been surprised by the number of food triggers I am noticing - smells of food, the sight of someone reaching for a snack, commercials on TV, etc. I never resisted these before, so it is taking some real mental reframing as each one is encountered. Today was a big family dinner - Mexican food, and I cooked most of it. It was hard to watch everyone putting down my absolute favorite foods while I sipped my broth, but...… it was also amazing to see how MUCH everyone ate! A month ago, I would have eaten and eaten and eaten without being able to stop. So today I tried to reframe by thinking how wonderful just one bite of each of the dishes will take in a few months.

So I am hungry, but I am also losing a pound per day, and I NEVER WANT TO GO BACK. This is hard work, for sure, and the mental part is definitely the hardest. BUT...… what choice is there really? I think regular therapy is a really good idea, because we absolutely cannot undermine the sacrifice we have made by having this surgery. I think the name of the game is mental reframing - looking at the triggers, hunger, and temptations through a new lens.

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AZhiker, what a wonderful post. You have very clearly and candidly discussed the challenges we will all face, and then showed the exact kind of discipline and mental process that makes this work. Some people get the surgery but don't do the psychological work, but I can tell from your post that you are going to be a success story!

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16 hours ago, Recidivist said:

FluffyChix, it looks like you are almost exactly a year since your surgery. I have heard that hunger starts to return after the "honeymoon phase" and that's when the real work starts as you try to figure out what you need to do to maintain your weight at that level. What was your experience?

I've had hunger since about 4 weeks post op. (physical + head) :) I've honestly worked and worked HARD for every pound I've lost. There haven't been many "gimmes" from the surgery. I can eat more than most, have had very little complication. And if I don't work my plan each day and make sure I stay true to my diet, get my fluids in, get my vits/mins in, and exercise I either stall, or gain. And if I eat the wrong things? My hunger goes off the charts and I just want to eat and eat and eat. :)

So I do IF (intermittent fasting), and also eat low carb. I focus on eating very simple meals with a separate lean, dry, grilled Protein + al dente veg + a small serving of healthy fat. I eat 1cup/meal by volume and get 60-74g of protein per day. I try to stay at or under around 30g of net carbs per day (the lower the better).

I'm still lowing slowly toward my 2nd goal at 1 year.

Edited by FluffyChix

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At 9 months out, my best advice for you is drink when you begin to feel hunger. If that doesn't satisfy it for a while, go to low carb Protein. It's not what your head wants but it will keep you on the right track.

I had to retrain my brain to understand that food is fuel. Not recreation, reward or comfort...simply fuel.

I'm fairly sedentary so I have a lot of time, working at home, to think about what I'd like to eat. Instead I grab a glass of Water, a cup of decaf tea, some peppermint tea, whatever...it generally does the trick for a couple hours until it's time for an actual meal.

Hope this helps.

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