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Not for months, and then only a little bit.

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Doctors' philosophy on this vary from a few weeks to never again depending upon their experiences. The basic issues are:

Healing - alcohol is somewhat corrosive to the stomach lining so one needs to give things a chance to heal first,

Alcohol tolerance - rapid stomach emptying means it tends to hit faster, and with less (i.e., a "cheap drunk") so care must be taken there,

Transfer addiction - we can no longer satisfy whatever addictive tendencies we have with food, so it is easy for transfer that addiction to something else, like alcohol, drugs, shopping, gambling, etc. What was a casual habit of a glass of wine with dinner occasionally can easily turn into full blown alcoholism.

Liver health - starting as morbidly obese, or worse, our livers are not usually in very good shape to begin with (hence the "liver shrinking" pre-op diets that are often prescribed) and the liver is further stressed from its role in metabolizing all that fat that we are rapidly losing. It doesn't need any more stress from ingesting a known liver toxin like alcohol (not a judgemental thing, just our physiology at work).

My surgeon is also a biliopancreatic (livers and pancreas) transplant surgeon, so he is in the no alcohol as long as we are losing weight camp (and ideally forever) and indeed we sign a contract to that effect - he doesn't want any of his bariatric patients coming back onto his transplant table!

Those are the issues in play, and some aspects bother different surgeons to different degrees, so they have different policies. Check with what your surgeon's policy is, and decide for yourself - we are all adults here.

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Ok Coming out of the closet on this one - I was advised to stay clear of it for 3 months - I did not and still do not follow direction very well. I will have a few drinks a few times a week -

But

Let me say it sucks - I drink vodka with juice ice Water anything i can to soften the pain, I was a heavy drinker and now just 4 oz knocks me to obliteration. However it is really rough on your stomach and you will be miserable the following day. My view is take your time feel it out, but get ready it is painful

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My doctor didn't really give advice on alcohol, although based on my own research I knew about all the issues @RickM discussed above. That being said, I had a glass of wine at about 6 months out while at a dinner for work. I sipped very slowly but still felt like a total light-weight. Thankfully, it wore off pretty quick.

Since that time, I have the occasional glass of wine or a cocktail for social gatherings. I wasn't much of a drinker before and I'm certainly not now. We're talking less than once a month. Since I'm very strict about not drinking while eating, that kind of limits my indulgence, but that's not a problem.

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I had one drink at a holiday party about two months out and felt pretty badly. Now, over a year out, I have about a drink every 2-3 weeks (usually whiskey on the rocks). One is enough to give me a buzz. It doesn't help with weight loss, especially if there are also Snacks around. I'm such a light drinker my surgeon didn't really think it was a big deal.

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10 hours ago, Suryna said:

Are alcohol allowed after gastric sleeve surgery?

Sent from my ELE-L29 using BariatricPal mobile app

I had my surgery on July 30 and was told no wine until my husband's b'day December. I did take a sip a week ago and it was nasty. Maybe I lost my taste for it. Alcohol is my gateway drug for mindless eating. So I'm in no hurry.

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My surgeon didn’t say anything about alcohol consumption. I just avoided it because of the calories & lack of nutrients. I did have a drink 4 weeks out at a cousin’s 40. I nursed that gin & tonic for 3 hours - lol - & no side effects. A couple of weeks later I tried some champagne (the real stuff too) but it was disgusting - way to sweet & blah. My changed tastebuds meant I just didn’t enjoy alcohol as much.
Now, 5.5 months out & 400g shy of my goal weight, I have a small glass about once every 3/4 weeks at social outings. I’ve found a gin or scotch easiest to drink at social events. I still take ages to drink it & often don’t finish the glass.

Have to admit I’m a bit nervous for this weekend as I’m off on a girls’ weekend & there will be lots of bottles of bubbles consumed. I intend to sip my one glass all night long.

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I had my first post-op drink about 2 months out with no issues. I'm now 14 months out and average 2-3 drinks every other weekend. Usually vodka-cranberry or other vodka based drinks. Doesn't seem to effect me any faster than before surgery. Only thing is that my stomach can't handle as much volume as before. Sometimes I'll have doubles to get around it. I am aware of the precautions mentioned above. Just wanted to throw in my experience.

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5 hours ago, AJ Tylo said:

Ok Coming out of the closet on this one - I was advised to stay clear of it for 3 months - I did not and still do not follow direction very well. I will have a few drinks a few times a week -

But

Let me say it sucks - I drink vodka with juice ice Water anything i can to soften the pain, I was a heavy drinker and now just 4 oz knocks me to obliteration. However it is really rough on your stomach and you will be miserable the following day. My view is take your time feel it out, but get ready it is painful

As I have said before, as a GI nurse, I have seen the horrible effects of alcohol on post WLS patients - even years down the road. Those surgical tissues remain fragile and vulnerable. There is nothing like alcohol or NSAIDS to totally erode and ulcerate the tissues. The worst ulcers i have ever seen are on WLS patients who return to alcohol. It's not worth it, but if you want to play with fire, that is your choice. You may well end up with a bleeding, potentially life threatening, GI emergency. You have gone through too much for that. If you felt your life was worth having surgery for, then your life is certainly worth giving up alcohol for.

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My surgeon said no alcohol at all for the first year, and ideally never.

I had a tiny sip of expensive champagne when I retired six months after surgery. (I swear is was such a tiny sip that it barely counted!) I was a very light drinker before surgery and do not miss drinking at all, so I intend to avoid alcohol forever.

Alcohol is empty calories that take up space in your pouch that could be used for something more nutritious. Just because you can drink doesn't mean you should.

My post probably sounds judgmental, and that's really not the case. It's just my perspective. 🙂

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Every body is different on how it reacts to curtain things. I had a small margarita 4months post op and its fine. Ive had probably a glass of wine or margarita only once a month sence then. Calories was the big issue for me or the sugar contant. But it all went down fine!! :) my surgeon is a gym rat who says stick to Protein Drinks and Protein Bars thats all u need none of that unhealthy bad stuff i think what he says and throw it out the window most days that is not a normal way to live. So a alcoholic drink after 3months every now and again shouldnt hurt you. Limit it to 1 tho when u get in a habit you start adding in more and more and it could slip away from u and effect ur weight loss.

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