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Stall, hair loss and other changes (warning, TMI)



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So, I recently posted about Hair loss. While I'm not happy that this is a side effect, it's comforting to know that some of you have gone thru this as well, and for most, your hair grew back. I'm taking all kinds of supplements in addition to the "regular" Vitamins required post-op. I've added liquid Iron, prenatal vitamins, Biotin, and collagen.

The first question is about stalling - again. I've been bouncing between 181-184 for over a month now. I'm not eating much due to the discomfort (I posted about this also). I'm desperately trying to get my Protein in, but I simply can't eat enough to do that. I'm also taking the Unjury powder (which I can barely tolerate due to the taste even though I mix it into food/liquid), but still can't get anywhere near what I'm supposed to. I'm supposed to be getting in 60g-86g protein/day. Unjury only accounts for 22g/day. I can only eat enough to get about 40g-50g/day. My doctor is aware. How do I kickstart this weight loss again?

Secondly (sorry to the men in the group), I'm 48 and suddenly started getting my period again. I'm on a medication that is supposed to stop it completely due to a previous medical issue, but obviously, something has changed so much with my body, that the medication, which has been effective for several years, is no longer working. I emailed my dr. and she started me on estrogen for 10 days but isn't sure why the previous medication stopped working. Have any of you ladies had this issue?

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Just now, GradyCat said:

What about ham and cheese or eggs or something other than Protein Shakes to add some Protein to your daily count?

I snack on cheese and turkey (lunchmeat). I eat eggs 4-5 times/wk, but I'm getting sick of those too. I've also started eating beef sausages (they're like mini Slim Jims), Nature's Valley Protein Bars, etc. Everything I eat is pretty high in Protein, but I just can't eat enough of it to reach my requirement.

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I have a Protein Shake everyday. I tried the Unjury, and the taste literally makes me gag. Right now, I usually have the Syntrax Nectar Cappuccino flavor (it is caffeine free) every morning for Breakfast. Since my plan allows coffee/caffeine, I mix it with some coffee concentrate, Fairlife 1% milk, and Water. It gives me 30 grams in one go, and tastes good. I also sometimes have all or part of a Built Protein Bar during the day as a snack, or lunch on the go. The whole thing provides another 17-19 grams of Protein. The Built Bars are really good, if you have not tried them. For lunch and dinner, I follow the protein first rule and have no problem getting my >60 grams per day (usually around 80 grams), thanks to the protein shake for breakfast. I was having more Hair loss, but it got better when I started getting adequate protein. It really is that important. Getting the protein might help get your stall to un-stall.

For the period issue, rapid weight loss can really mess with your hormones. Things will probably go back to normal in another few months. Check in with your doctor next time you see them.

Good luck! 😊

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3 minutes ago, WishMeSmaller said:

I have a Protein Shake everyday. I tried the Unjury, and the taste literally makes me gag. Right now, I usually have the Syntrax Nectar Cappuccino flavor (it is caffeine free) every morning for Breakfast. Since my plan allows coffee/caffeine, I mix it with some coffee concentrate, Fairlife 1% milk, and Water. It gives me 30 grams in one go, and tastes good. I also sometimes have all or part of a Built Protein Bar during the day as a snack, or lunch on the go. The whole thing provides another 17-19 grams of Protein. The Built Bars are really good, if you have not tried them. For lunch and dinner, I follow the Protein first rule and have no problem getting my >60 grams per day (usually around 80 grams), thanks to the protein shake for Breakfast. I was having more Hair loss, but it got better when I started getting adequate protein. It really is that important. Getting the protein might help get your stall to un-stall.

For the period issue, rapid weight loss can really mess with your hormones. Things will probably go back to normal in another few months. Check in with your doctor next time you see them.

Good luck! 😊

Thanks so much for the info! I've never heard of Built Bars, but will look into them. I have a bunch of Premier Protein shakes onhand, but was told they're off-limits as they're not on the "recommended" list for my specific bariatric program. Sucks because they are 30g of protein and I figure it's better than nothing. I follow the protein first rule as well, but as I mentioned, I can only eat so much of it before I'm full/very uncomfortable. BTW....glad I'm not the only one who can't stand Unjury! LOL! I keep getting told by my dietician and doctor that it's not that bad...YES, it is! LOL!!!

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check with your doctor about the menstruation. Although it's fairly common to have weird hormone things going on after WLS. Estrogen is stored in fat cells, and some of it is released when you're losing weight rapidly. A lot of women have screwed up cycles for a few months - but then it stabilizes when weight loss slows down. But in your case, given you haven't menstruated in awhile and you're on a med that's supposed to stop it, I'd check in with my doctor just in case.

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5 minutes ago, catwoman7 said:

check with your doctor about the menstruation. Although it's fairly common to have weird hormone things going on after WLS. Estrogen is stored in fat cells, and some of it is released when you're losing weight rapidly. A lot of women have screwed up cycles for a few months - but then it stabilizes when weight loss slows down. But in your case, given you haven't menstruated in awhile and you're on a med that's supposed to stop it, I'd check in with my doctor just in case.

Thank you - I did check with her. She said she is stumped as to why it started up again (she's fully aware of the surgery) and started me on estrogen for 10 days. She said it "should" stop it, but no guarantees. Kind of frustrating... LOL!

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I second the Built Bars! I've tried a lot of Protein Bars, and Built Bars are the best by far! (But taste is a very individual thing, and it seems like most people either love Built Bars or hate them, so I would suggest starting with one box to see if you like them.) Nature Valley Protein bars only have 10 grams of protein. There are a lot of bars with higher protein. Built Bars have 17-19 grams. Quest Bars (which are available in most grocery stores) have about 20 grams.

I mix Protein Powder into food to boost my protein intake. My go-to Breakfast is half a container of Triple Zero Greek yogurt with half a scoop of protein powder, which is 19 grams of protein. Or protein oatmeal with additional protein powder mixed in. Quest protein chips are also high in protein and I often incorporate them into my meals to add a little protein (for example, crushed as a salad topping, or topped with taco meat for nachos). Can you give some more examples of things you eat and maybe we can suggest ways to add protein?

What are your program's criteria for Protein Shakes? There are A LOT of protein shakes on the market, and if you don't like the brand you have, you can try some others to find something you like better.

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14 minutes ago, BigSue said:

I second the Built Bars! I've tried a lot of Protein Bars, and Built Bars are the best by far! (But taste is a very individual thing, and it seems like most people either love Built Bars or hate them, so I would suggest starting with one box to see if you like them.) Nature Valley Protein bars only have 10 grams of Protein. There are a lot of bars with higher protein. Built Bars have 17-19 grams. Quest Bars (which are available in most grocery stores) have about 20 grams.

I mix Protein Powder into food to boost my protein intake. My go-to Breakfast is half a container of Triple Zero Greek yogurt with half a scoop of protein powder, which is 19 grams of protein. Or protein oatmeal with additional Protein Powder mixed in. Quest protein chips are also high in protein and I often incorporate them into my meals to add a little protein (for example, crushed as a salad topping, or topped with taco meat for nachos). Can you give some more examples of things you eat and maybe we can suggest ways to add protein?

What are your program's criteria for Protein Shakes? There are A LOT of protein shakes on the market, and if you don't like the brand you have, you can try some others to find something you like better.

Thanks for all the info & tips! Most of what I eat is pretty high in protein, it's just that I can't seem to eat enough of it due to the discomfort I'm experiencing. It's not crippling pain, just very uncomfortable, like a stomachache. I love seafood and eat a lot of salmon & tuna. I also love veggies and eat a lot of steamed broccoli, sweet potatoes, assorted grilled veggies, etc. chicken is big in our house too. I occasionally eat red meat & pork (nothing against it, just feel like I get more protein from chicken). As for shakes, the program I went thru pretty much denounces any kind of pre-made shake, and they really encourage the Unjury. I had been drinking Premier Protein shakes pre-op and they didn't have a problem with it, but post-op, I was told it's a big no-no. That said, I feel like it's better than nothing. I just feel like my appetite isn't where it should be (it's almost nonexistent) so between that and the discomfort when eating, I just can't get all the protein in...but I'm also at a stall and haven't lost anything in over a month. I don't get it.

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2 minutes ago, LAJ23 said:

Thanks for all the info & tips! Most of what I eat is pretty high in Protein, it's just that I can't seem to eat enough of it due to the discomfort I'm experiencing. It's not crippling pain, just very uncomfortable, like a stomachache. I love seafood and eat a lot of salmon & tuna. I also love veggies and eat a lot of steamed broccoli, sweet potatoes, assorted grilled veggies, etc. chicken is big in our house too. I occasionally eat red meat & pork (nothing against it, just feel like I get more protein from chicken). As for shakes, the program I went thru pretty much denounces any kind of pre-made shake, and they really encourage the Unjury. I had been drinking Premier Protein shakes pre-op and they didn't have a problem with it, but post-op, I was told it's a big no-no. That said, I feel like it's better than nothing. I just feel like my appetite isn't where it should be (it's almost nonexistent) so between that and the discomfort when eating, I just can't get all the protein in...but I'm also at a stall and haven't lost anything in over a month. I don't get it.

I think it's BS when programs push specific brands of Protein Drinks. Unjury is recommended by a lot of programs, but there are tons of other options for whey protein isolate. Premier Protein ready-to-drink shakes use milk protein concentrate, which is not as easily absorbed as protein isolates, but I would think they're still better than nothing, especially since you are past the liquid stage and you're consuming protein from meat as well.

I've tried a bunch of samples of Protein Powder and my favorite is IdealLean (I love the birthday cake flavor mixed in my yogurt), but again, it's a matter of personal taste. I found that once I started shopping for protein powders, Facebook started advertising them to me nonstop, and I've discovered different brands that way. Syntrax Nectar is also whey protein isolate, and they have lots of flavors (including a lot of fruit flavors that are more like juice than protein shakes).

Do you drink coffee? A lot of people use Protein Shakes instead of Creamer in their coffee, which is an easy way to add a little protein. I don't drink coffee, but I love protein hot cocoa. I make it with Fairlife milk instead of Water for even more protein.

Unfortunately, you may have to cut back on the veggies for a while to give you more room for protein. I know that seems weird since it's been drilled into us that veggies are good for you, but right now, since you are so limited in the volume you can eat, you have to reserve most of it for protein. You can add a little protein to your meals by incorporating protein Soups, plain Greek yogurt, or cottage cheese into toppings or sauces. You can mix unflavored protein powder into anything liquid or pureed like Soup or refried Beans. I prefer flavored protein powder to mix with sweet foods like yogurt, pudding, and protein oatmeal.

As for the stall, it may or may not have anything to do with what you are or aren't eating. Even if you are following your program perfectly, stalls still happen to everyone. You've done really well with your weight loss, so your weight loss is going to slow down and you might just need to give your body time to adjust. If you're working out, you might be building some muscle as well, which can increase your weight even as you are losing fat.

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About the stomach discomfort, are you taking a PPI (omeprazole, Nexium) daily?

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8 minutes ago, km13118 said:

About the stomach discomfort, are you taking a PPI (omeprazole, Nexium) daily?

No, I'm not. I've asked the doctor/his staff about this several times, but never really got a definitive answer. When I asked if this could possibly GERD, they said it was unlikely and started pushing for an upper endoscopy. I'm hesitant to do that because the pain isn't unbearable, just uncomfortable, and I don't need any more medical bills.

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Peel-n-eat shrimp! They are my number one go-to. My whole foods store sells ready to eat containers of 9 "jumbo" (not that big) chilled shrimp with cocktails sauce and 3 pieces are 2 oz. 2 oz have TWELVE GRAMS OF Protein in them. If I can eat all 9 that's 36 grams of pro. Now... I've not been able to but I can eat 4 and then a few hours later eat 4 more (6 months post bypass).

Also... I tried Unjury and didn't like it. genpro is SO much better. Tasteless.

And finally as I believe others have already mentioned when you burn fat you release estrogen trapped in the fat and many people have re-started their periods after surgery due to that. I believe it's temporary. I went thru menopause at age 43 and was kind of hoping I'd start again after surgery... Nope.

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In my support group last week, they said bypass patients should never have collagen Protein, because it inhibits absorption of some nutrients (can’t remember which ones). I was surprised, and I can’t find any article anywhere to back this up, but maybe ditch it for a while, or take it 1-2 hrs after eating instead of with food or other Vitamins. I have been stuck in the 180s for a while too. I am in a stall most of the time haha. I lose for about 1.5 weeks each month and then stall for the rest.

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1 hour ago, Lilfootie said:

In my support group last week, they said bypass patients should never have collagen Protein, because it inhibits absorption of some nutrients (can’t remember which ones). I was surprised, and I can’t find any article anywhere to back this up, but maybe ditch it for a while, or take it 1-2 hrs after eating instead of with food or other Vitamins. I have been stuck in the 180s for a while too. I am in a stall most of the time haha. I lose for about 1.5 weeks each month and then stall for the rest.

I haven't heard that - I've just heard it's not as absorbable as whey Protein isolate. I should look that up (although I've never really considered doing that one).

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