Jump to content
×
Are you looking for the BariatricPal Store? Go now!

Online "support group" not very supportive



Recommended Posts

I am a person who always wants to know the "why" behind a rule (unfortunately!). So, as I've slowly been progressing through my surgeon's plan (still on pureeds for two more weeks, and I'm 7 weeks out), I've started wondering if we will always have to drink Protein Shakes. I hate them, they taste gross, and the ingredients list is like 5 paragraphs long full of things I can't even say - besides that, they're full of carbs and often high calorie. And if we do have to always drink them, why? Why can't we meet our Protein goals through eating real food? For example, an egg and a morningstar Breakfast sausage patty is 16 grams of protein and 150 calories. The Protein Shake I drink is almost 300 calories (bariatric advantage with PB2 over a plant based milk). Also, Bone Broth, cottage cheese, greek yogurt, tuna are all high protein, low calorie options that taste way better than protein shakes. If a person is able to meet protein goals and still stay around 600 calories a day during weight loss phase, why the shakes? (I don't know if that's feasible, I haven't tried it - I am still drinking the nasty protein).

So, I posted the question to the online support group my surgeon keeps on Facebook. I asked if a person can meet their daily protein goal through real food, are protein shakes still required. Man! You would have thought I asked if I could eat a full meat lovers pizza from Papa John's! People launched on me, accused me of eating too much food, told me if I wanted to lose weight and maintain it I HAD to drink protein shakes for life. Then the surgeon came on and publicly shamed me, said I was way off track and wasn't following the plan. What bomb did I set off???

And nobody ever explained WHY the shakes are required???

The previous time before this when I asked a question, almost the same thing happened. I asked if I could drink the Unjury ready made shakes instead of the powder because they taste so much better. People berated me, and told me the ready made shakes were not good for me. Then the surgeon chimed in and said the ready made were not as good because they are protein caseinate instead of whey isolate. Um, the packaging clearly says the Unjury brand is whey protein isolate. So now why are they bad for me?

The next day, my surgeon posted a long post about people having this surgery and not taking it seriously. I can't help but think it was in response to my question about protein shakes.

I didn't even have Facebook, I deleted it in 2016 when things started to get so nasty online. I only started using it again to join my surgeon's group.

I cancelled following the page. I was really ticked off at the responses. I'm so angry I don't even want to continue with my surgeon's office. AND, by the way, I am not way off track, I've lost 41 lbs. in these last 7 weeks, and I'm really happy with that. Started at 235, now 194 (and have been losing about 1 lb a day for the last few days).

I know I'm being a baby, I think I just needed to vent. I do like my surgeon when we meet one on one for appointments. Facebook is evil.

Sent from my SM-N976V using BariatricPal mobile app

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

no - most people are able to get off them once they can meet all/most of their Protein requirements via food. So after the first few weeks or months, most people are able to get off them.

I still drink them at 6.5 years out because we found out early on that I malabsorb protein (and fortunately, I'm one of those weirdos who actually LIKES protein shakes), but I'm an anomaly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

44 minutes ago, ColieCallwell said:

I am a person who always wants to know the "why" behind a rule (unfortunately!). So, as I've slowly been progressing through my surgeon's plan (still on pureeds for two more weeks, and I'm 7 weeks out), I've started wondering if we will always have to drink Protein Shakes. I hate them, they taste gross, and the ingredients list is like 5 paragraphs long full of things I can't even say - besides that, they're full of carbs and often high calorie. And if we do have to always drink them, why? Why can't we meet our Protein goals through eating real food? For example, an egg and a morningstar Breakfast sausage patty is 16 grams of Protein and 150 calories. The Protein Shake I drink is almost 300 calories (bariatric advantage with PB2 over a plant based milk). Also, Bone Broth, cottage cheese, greek yogurt, tuna are all high protein, low calorie options that taste way better than protein shakes. If a person is able to meet protein goals and still stay around 600 calories a day during weight loss phase, why the shakes? (I don't know if that's feasible, I haven't tried it - I am still drinking the nasty protein).

So, I posted the question to the online support group my surgeon keeps on Facebook. I asked if a person can meet their daily protein goal through real food, are Protein Shakes still required. Man! You would have thought I asked if I could eat a full meat lovers pizza from Papa John's! People launched on me, accused me of eating too much food, told me if I wanted to lose weight and maintain it I HAD to drink protein shakes for life. Then the surgeon came on and publicly shamed me, said I was way off track and wasn't following the plan. What bomb did I set off???

And nobody ever explained WHY the shakes are required???

The previous time before this when I asked a question, almost the same thing happened. I asked if I could drink the Unjury ready made shakes instead of the powder because they taste so much better. People berated me, and told me the ready made shakes were not good for me. Then the surgeon chimed in and said the ready made were not as good because they are protein caseinate instead of whey isolate. Um, the packaging clearly says the Unjury brand is whey protein isolate. So now why are they bad for me?

The next day, my surgeon posted a long post about people having this surgery and not taking it seriously. I can't help but think it was in response to my question about protein shakes.

I didn't even have Facebook, I deleted it in 2016 when things started to get so nasty online. I only started using it again to join my surgeon's group.

I cancelled following the page. I was really ticked off at the responses. I'm so angry I don't even want to continue with my surgeon's office. AND, by the way, I am not way off track, I've lost 41 lbs. in these last 7 weeks, and I'm really happy with that. Started at 235, now 194 (and have been losing about 1 lb a day for the last few days).

I know I'm being a baby, I think I just needed to vent. I do like my surgeon when we meet one on one for appointments. Facebook is evil.

Sent from my SM-N976V using BariatricPal mobile app

P.S. I don't think there are any ready to drink shakes that are 100% whey protein isolate, not even Unjury's. Someone asked this on one of Unjury's virtual support groups one night, and the owner said they've tried doing them with whey protein isolate, but the texture is "off".

once you're a ways out, you can probably switch to a protein blend since you'll be getting more protein from your food, but early out, the isolate is best because it's the most absorbable form.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Different people, different ideas.

Take what info you deem useful for YOU and leave the rest.

Personally, i give kudos to you for questioning and researching and educating yourself. Too many people follow heaps of advice given to them because they believe these people surely must know better.

Sometimes they may, sometimes they may not.

For what its worth, i stopped drinking Protein Shakes around the time I reached goal. Since then, I’ve probably reached my Protein goal (60g a day..NOTE: i am on the the small side: 5’2”, 115.9 lbs this morning, and exercise regularly) with just regular food maybe 75% of the time.

Im 3 years out now, have been maintaining my current weight (+/- 5lbs) for over 2 years; every single one of my labs have come back satisfactorily (last one in April, my next one is end of this month); my body fat percentage in April was 19% (so i have zero issues regarding muscle mass) ; and I feel fab.

Do you, boo. You’re doing great.

Edited by ms.sss

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I believe all of us should know the "why" of things WLS. Most people don't want to know why, they just want a list of what to eat when, then get stuck when their life doesn't easily sync with the plan. Knowing "why" let's you understand how to make adjustments that aren't obvious but are still following the plan. Keep it up.

I stopped going to (in person) support after the third meeting and left the online portion about the same time. The main topic was how to cheat, and the second was women stuff. Not my cup of tea.

I never did Protein Drinks except when I was binge running and then it was more for the running than my plan. Even on puree I was at my appropriate Protein level by about week 3-4.

For RNY patients there is always the question of how much protein are we NOT absorbing because of our surgery. So popping in a Protein Drink can ensure enough is being absorbed. Or, like @catwoman7who have a specific need. My RNY had a small bypass so I don't malabsorb much. My doc was four square against protein drinks, he wanted us learning to eat correctly from the very beginning.

My sense, though, is generally they are a Meal Replacement for the crash diet many surgeon's put their patients on so that they will lose weight faster.

Keep on thinking and learning.

Tek

Edited by The Greater Fool

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A lot of surgeons (of all stripes, not just bariatric) have God complexes, and a lot of patients want to follow a rigid set of rules to feel they're doing things "correctly." I'm in the my-body-my-choices group, myself. If someone can give me a reasonable explanation why they feel I shouldn't make a particular choice, I'll listen and then decide.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, the goal of my program is for you to get Protein from real food and not rely on Protein Shakes beyond the soft food stage.

I only have them now if I want to add to my coffee, or my protein is lower for the day. But it’s probably no more than 1 every other week now.

I do like using Devotion Angel Food Protein Powder for things like pancakes. I have never actually tried it as a protein shake🤣

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm 20 months out and still drink 1 Protein Shake a day. But then I had a surgery that requires a minimum of 80g of Protein a day and I stress less if I get in a 30g protein shake (yes, a little high calorie as it's 160 calories, but I'm less stressed out trying to cram protein in when I drink it). It's possible for most people to eventually get their protein in with just food. Honestly, I could probably do it, but again, I stress myself out less if I just drink the protein shake and am only responsible for getting 50g in via food.

And, with the way that so called 'support group' treated you I don't blame you at all for dropping them. I would have too were I in your shoes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My program definitely wants you to wean off Protein Shakes as time goes by and switch to real food. I don't think they mind you using them to ensure you get to Protein goals for as long as you need to (or if you just like them) but the intent isn't that you keep using them.

I also would quit the unsupportive support group. You should be able to ask reasonable questions in a safe space.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think a lot of bariatric programs adopt a "one-size-fits-all" strategy because, frankly, it's easier than tailoring it to each individual patient. They go with something conservative and simple that should be fine for everyone, even if not ideal for all patients. To be clear, I don't think there's anything wrong with your asking these questions, and you're probably better off for looking at it this way and trying to optimize your own nutrition.

But I can also see how this kind of discussion can be confusing for some patients. Hang out on this site for a while and you'll see a lot of posts from people who have alarmingly little knowledge about what they're supposed to be eating post-op (although I suspect some of these are trolls). Some patients basically need to be micromanaged and told exactly what to eat and drink at every stage. Plus, the surgeon might be afraid that if he tells you that a different shake is ok, other patients will either hear what they want to hear ("If Unjury shakes are ok, I guess that means I can drink any shakes I want, and I like McDonalds shakes!") or start bombarding him with questions about other specific products. That could explain why he is more reasonable when you meet with him one-on-one as opposed to in a support group setting with other patients.

Anyway, I'm with you about real food vs. shakes. For the first several months, I relied on Protein Shakes and other protein-fortified products a lot, but I'm 15 months out now and I can easily get enough Protein from real food, so I don't want to waste my calories on protein shakes that I don't even enjoy! I would much rather have a grilled chicken salad or a Mr. Tortilla turkey wrap or a broccoli slaw omelet than drink a Protein Shake.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I haven’t touched a Protein Shake since my two weeks of post surgical liquids finished. I lost all my weight plus more, met all my Protein goals & got all the nutrition I needed through the food I ate, even stopped Vitamins just after I reached goal. My plan was always to get the nutrition I needed through what I ate not through supplements.

I’m a question asker too. Plus I do a lot of my own research - love me some googling. I think your questions were very sensible. Can’t say the same for the responses from what you said though. Sheesh!! Do you have to be your surgeon’s support group? And why does he have you still on purées? That seems to be taking it too far at 7 weeks unless there are other health considerations at play of course.

Though I’m a stick to your plan person, I think you could slowly start to add real food sources of protein & other nutrients to your diet. Maybe don't jump to a steak tomorrow but move to soft food for a week or so. Check with your nutritionalist, make sensible nutrient dense healthy food choices & then tell your surgeon when you see them.

You’re doing well with your loss so far. Congratulations.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Arabesque I have the same question about why am I still on pureeds! I am STARVING all the time! Even my surgeon's diet guide says soft foods start approximately 5 weeks after surgery. The surgeon scolded me on Facebook and said at 7 weeks out I should only be eating 3 tbsps of pureed food. I think the plan has changed or something happened to make the surgeon change the method, but the diet guide was never updated. It could be so that people lose more weight more quickly. I ditched the support group, it's not a requirement. I have started testing the Water with soft foods. I've been doing some tough workouts in the mornings, and I feel like I need an egg every now and then, lol (soft boiled or poached of course!).

Thank you to everyone who responded! I feel less like a failure hearing from all of you! And I really appreciate all the thoughtful input.

Sent from my SM-N976V using BariatricPal mobile app

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wouldn't mix Protein Powder with milk unless you are deliberately choosing more calories and Protein. One normally mixes them with Water.

There are protein mixes for Soup, not sweetened, for example, Bariatric Advantage and ProtiDiet.

I prefer plant-protein Protein Drinks and shakes over whey-based.

You can make your own Protein Shakes by adding unflavored protein powder to smoothies, for which there are lots of recipes online. Google "bariatric protein smoothies" or get a couple of bariatric cookbooks.

You probably won't need protein drinks once you are eating solid food.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So sorry to hear that! 😥

Protein Shakes made me vomit, for real. I tried drinking them for a couple weeks post-op since I somewhat liked them before surgery. But then said no, and got Protein through other sources.

I now use unflavored Protein Powder for 45g a day, in addition to food sources, and have done well with weight loss. I would say you can definitely be successful without the shakes!

And your weight loss sounds great!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Trending Products

  • Trending Topics

  • Recent Status Updates

    • QUEEN2021

      Hello everyone.. I had my surgery on Sept 30th 2021.. and it has been an horrible experience to me. I can't hold down fluids or soft food. so much mucus is coming up!! and I'm spitting all day. I'm so sad over this journey. is anyone having this same issue? if so, what are you doing about it. 
      · 0 replies
      1. This update has no replies.
    • Meganator

      Tomorrow is the big day! Getting sleeved in the morning and possibly spending a dark and stormy night in the hospital after. I'm actually excited about that because rain on wedding days and birthdays is considered a sign of good luck- so wouldn't a commitment of re-birth qualify as well?
      Can't wait to see y'all on the other side!
      · 0 replies
      1. This update has no replies.
    • summerset

      Hope everyone's doing ok so far.
      Incidence numbers are on the raise again and hospitals need to treat more COVID patients again. Looking with some kind of dread towards autumn/winter season. 
      · 0 replies
      1. This update has no replies.
    • LeeLee57  »  dtorrice

      Mine is 10/12 with Dr Schmidt! I am very nervous about going home the same day!
      · 1 reply
      1. dtorrice

        I am post op day 2 now , you’re there pretty much the whole day. They send you home with a lot of support. Are you local to Birmingham and driving in for the surgery or staying at a hotel in the area?

    • Garay27

      Doing to much protein can make you gain weight? Because I gain 3 pound one day and I’m so frustrated 😭🥺 I did a hard work to be in 220 😭😭 
      · 0 replies
      1. This update has no replies.
  • Recent Topics

  • Hot Products

  • Sign Up For
    Our Newsletter

    Follow us for the latest news
    and special product offers!
  • Together, we have lost...
      lbs

    PatchAid Vitamin Patches

    ×