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PLEASE HELP educate the skeptic in me. Doesn't starving equal eventual weight gain?



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I'm really struggling with the decision to move ahead with surgery or not. Here's what I don't understand. How are you not destroying your metabolism by only eating 750 calories a day? Will you never be able to eat regularly again for risk of packing on the pounds? I did the HCG diet years ago (it's terrible. Never ever do it) In a nutshell... you gave yourself a shot every day that kept your body from realizing that it was being starved and then ate about 750 calories a day while your body worked hard to function as usual. The weight dropped off. I lost quickly over about 3 months and then stopped the injections and slowly eased back into a regular diet of about 1500-1800 calories a day. AND THE WEIGHT JUMPED BACK ON so fast I was floored. I was eating a healthy, well balanced diet on the low end of daily intake for my height and weight and activity. But I gained a pound a day until I was 20 pounds heavier than I was before the diet. Explain to me how this forced starvation doesn't do the same thing? My stomach will stretch. We know it does because we are told we can slowly eat more over time. Won't my metabolism think I've starving and halt? Am I really expected to only eat 800 calories a day for the rest of my life or expect to gain?? Thank you for sharing facts and experience.

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Ok, you need to realize that the 750 -800 CALS a day will be mostly if not all Protein. You really need to eat protein as you will stall and not lose any weight even eating less calories. I had to learn this the hard way as I was only eating 400-500 CALS a day and was not losing any longer. I called my NUT and she said eat more protein which at the time 4 months from surgery was a big task. It did work for me and I do love meat, eggs, cheese...etc. I had at one time been on Atkins for 6 years and lost and kept off the weight. So now it is just a more strict version of that low carb life. So far it is working for me.

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1 hour ago, MaybeMeow said:

I'm really struggling with the decision to move ahead with surgery or not. Here's what I don't understand. How are you not destroying your metabolism by only eating 750 calories a day? Will you never be able to eat regularly again for risk of packing on the pounds? I did the HCG diet years ago (it's terrible. Never ever do it) In a nutshell... you gave yourself a shot every day that kept your body from realizing that it was being starved and then ate about 750 calories a day while your body worked hard to function as usual. The weight dropped off. I lost quickly over about 3 months and then stopped the injections and slowly eased back into a regular diet of about 1500-1800 calories a day. AND THE WEIGHT JUMPED BACK ON so fast I was floored. I was eating a healthy, well balanced diet on the low end of daily intake for my height and weight and activity. But I gained a pound a day until I was 20 pounds heavier than I was before the diet. Explain to me how this forced starvation doesn't do the same thing? My stomach will stretch. We know it does because we are told we can slowly eat more over time. Won't my metabolism think I've starving and halt? Am I really expected to only eat 800 calories a day for the rest of my life or expect to gain?? Thank you for sharing facts and experience.

Call your bariatric office. They are better qualified to answer your questions about metabolism Ask if they have an information seminar. It will help you decide on surgery.

All I can offer is my experience five years out from sleeve surgery. (maintaining my weight in the 130's)

Surgery is nothing like my other diet attempts. (I've done every diet and pill) I needed a long term solution. My weight loss/maintenance diet is very livable. I'm not deprived, My hunger is manageable.

It's normal for your surgery restriction to relax after a year. My stomach is NOT back to full size. I still eat within my calorie range,

Maintenance diet and calories are different for each of us. It depends on your surgeons/dietitians plan, activity level, metabolism, healthy issues, medications......The list goes on. I maintain my weight between 1200 and 1300. I do have days that are higher. I take vacations and indulge within reason. If I have a slight gain I eat weight loss calories (My weight loss calories are 1100)

Take your time and research all of this. Do whats best for you and your health.

Jenn

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You really should have a long talk with a bariatric surgeon and nutritionist. But let me see if I can help. I will use gastric sleeve for explanations, since that is the surgery I have. This can also be applied to gastric bypass, but please know there is a lot more involved with a bypass than sleeve. I personally don't recommend lap band.

Before you get weight loss surgery, you need to consult a physician and a nutritionist. You usually have a requirement of 6 months of nutrition counseling. During this time, the nutritionist prepares you for your post op diet. They start off giving you education on what you need to eat NOW. What you need to eat in your pre-surgery phase. And what to eat post op. A good program will have you continue nutrition counseling for AT LEAST a year post op, in which they will coach you through the stages of your post-op diet through until you reach maintenance stage where you are just maintaining your weight.

During the pre-op period, you are also seeing specialists and getting testing for any problems that they may need to know about before your surgery. This includes a psych evaluation usually. And if you do have psych related issues driving you to eat too much, you should take this opportunity to deal with them. Many bariatric patients need counseling. Some need medications like anti-depressants or other psych medications. And some like me gained weight for other reasons (physical barriers). You will likely at least get an EKG if not a complete cardiac workup. You may need a sleep study to determine if you have sleep apnea like so many obese people do. If so, you will get treated for it. They will look for how you swallow, do you have a hernia in the stomach, and other issues affecting your surgery. Once you have jumped through the hoops and are treated for anything you need to be treated for... then you will be cleared for surgery (and no... ongoing counseling does not mean surgery will be delayed).

With gastric sleeve, they remove 80% of your stomach, therefore for it immediately restricts how much food you eat. It also resets your metabolism and your hunger/full hormones. In the short term, yes your calories will be VERY restricted. But because you are seeing a nutritionist, they will help you know what to eat during each stage for optimal health. Water and Protein first. Then healthy veggies. And you will learn to either not eat unhealthy carbs or eat very limited unhealthy carbs. It will be up to you to follow the recommended diet and stick with it. If you do follow directions, you will learn to eat frequent small but healthy meals every day. And over time, once you are closer to maintenance, you will start to eat larger portions, but sticking to healthy meals. Your nutritionist will guide you to ensure you do not go into starvation mode and that you eat a healthy amount of calories to maintain your weight. Most people do lose a little more than they need to early on... but then gain 20 pounds back and then maintain your weight there. The key is to stick to the recommended diet so that you don't KEEP gaining.

You will also get blood work done every 3 months or so and have follow up appointments with your surgeon's office for at least a year. So, with the surgeon and nutritionist, you will be closely monitored. They will make sure you don't end up with Vitamin deficiencies or other problems related to rapid weight loss. You will take daily Vitamins and Calcium as recommended. Your diet will be high in protein and low in carbs and fats. (So not really Keto... but many do Keto post op). The carbs and fats you eat will be healthy carbs and fats if you stick to your diet. But this isn't a "diet" per-say... it is a lifestyle change. You are re-learning how to eat healthy. You are re-learning how to eat small to normal portions. And if you stick with it under nutritionist supervision, you will NOT go into starvation mode and you will not gain the weight back.

Problem with all the fad diets is that there is no long term (psych) counseling, nutritional counseling, medical follow up. Most people eventually go back to their old ways. And gain everything back. If you are following the program with the bariatric team, they will help you prevent going back to your old ways. But seriously... only you can decide how successful you will be, based on your willingness to follow through. Again... if you need to, get counseling. See your surgeon and nutritionist regularly and follow their guidance. If you need CPAP for sleep apnea, wear it. If you need other medications, take them. Etc.

I am 2 days shy of 6 months. I am at a NORMAL body weight. I am 6 pounds from my personal ideal body weight. I am following the recommendations of my team. And I can now eat double what I could 3 months post op and still maintain my weight and I am still losing a pound here and there.

Again...talk to your bariatric team for better information, but bariatric surgery is a TOOL for weight loss. It is only successful if you follow your program. But it is also the best tool out there to reach your goals if you have dieted and failed in the past. But if you follow your program, they will give you additional tools to make you successful (nutrition and psych counseling are two of your best weapons... use them!)

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Momof3_angels pretty much broke it down, and I agree with all comments here. I did find a NHS study that discusses body reset points after bariatric surgery, but after reading many comments here, if you put in the post-op work, you will lose a lot of weight.

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