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scared...what will happen when I'm an old lady??



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Hi everyone, this is my first post, I'm a 50 year old mother of two from Canada. I was just about to pick my June surgery date when it struck me, what will happen when I'm really old and can't really manage eating/drinking every 30 minutes? Now I'm a bit scared. I have already noticed that I'm not as good at organizing and planning things as I used to be when I'm younger. Is it true for post-surgery, you basically need to either be drinking or eating every half hour or so to get in all your Protein and Water? Is this just in the first few years? I can't imagine when I'm in a home or over 80 (god willing!), that I or my care provider will be able to manage that type of schedule. How easy is it to get dehydrated if you don't take in any liquids for like half a day?

Thoughts? Am I just getting cold feet?

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I am 3 weeks post op and i dont eat every 30 minutes or drink. Maybe like for eating every 3 hours or so i have something. Like today at 8am i had a small omelet, and around 11am i had crab legs and now its almost 4 and i am having some tuna. i drink from my bottle throughout the day.

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10 minutes ago, traceymmm said:

Is it true for post-surgery, you basically need to either be drinking or eating every half hour or so to get in all your Protein and Water? Is this just in the first few years?

Just in the first few weeks (or months, I guess, if you're a really slow learner). I'm only two months post-op, and I go for several hours without eating. As for drinking, that's what 32 oz. Water bottles are for. (You only need to drink two of them per day.) Cold feet are fine, but I'd advise you to find a better excuse. ;-D

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13 minutes ago, traceymmm said:

Hi everyone, this is my first post, I'm a 50 year old mother of two from Canada. I was just about to pick my June surgery date when it struck me, what will happen when I'm really old and can't really manage eating/drinking every 30 minutes? Now I'm a bit scared. I have already noticed that I'm not as good at organizing and planning things as I used to be when I'm younger. Is it true for post-surgery, you basically need to either be drinking or eating every half hour or so to get in all your Protein and Water? Is this just in the first few years? I can't imagine when I'm in a home or over 80 (god willing!), that I or my care provider will be able to manage that type of schedule. How easy is it to get dehydrated if you don't take in any liquids for like half a day?

Thoughts? Am I just getting cold feet?

I'm not sure why you think you will need to eat every 30 minutes. Basically, the only thing I can think of sort of related to this is that you have to wait 30 minutes after eating before you drink.

Right after surgery you will need to remind yourself to drink enough because you might not be thirsty and you can't drink too much at once, but you can use a timer on your phone for that, and it's only for a few weeks. You do have to drink for the rest of your life, but that's true without surgery too!

I'm 8 months out and I eat 3-5 times a day and drink when I'm thirsty (just I wait 30 minutes after eating before I drink, or it hurts and can impair your weight loss).

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Hi, Tracey, and welcome to the site.

I'm a bit less than a year post-surgery. I eat three meals and two Snacks every day. Often, one meal and one snack are Protein Shakes. I tend to blend the shakes with some frozen fruit or with Peanut Butter powder, so it takes a bit of work, but not too bad.

I eat an egg, a strip of bacon, and a slice of toast for lunch virtually every day. My afternoon snack is always cottage cheese and canned pineapple.

Dinners can be very simple or a bit less simple, but they generally involve a Protein, a carb, and a salad. Could be a burger, a steak, or salmon in the air fryer. I made a huge pot of cioppino (seafood stew) that involved a lot of preparation, but it made 12 meals for my wife and me. I'm also not ashamed to use canned Soup with some extra veggies and protein.

I do tend to get dehydrated. Before surgery, I would get most of my Water at meal time, when I would drink almost a quart. Now that I can't do that any more, I have to be disciplined enough to have a water bottle nearby and drink throughout the day. I can now drink about 2/3 of a cup without hurting myself.

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OMG this sounds so much like something I would have come up with to worry about. Lol You will be fine. I am over a year out and I eat on the same schedule I did pre op and I have been for quite a while. You eventually get back to a “normal” way of eating. You will eat close to a normal serving size (not a restaurant serving that is three times what you need) and you will eat that and should be satisfied. You may eat Snacks. Some teams allow them and others do not. But you will be fine when you get old as long as they feed you as much as often as they feed themselves.

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My bariatric center recommends three meals per day and one or two Snacks if needed, and strongly suggest that we do not graze between meals and or snacks. The early days and weeks post op are the only time we have to sip constantly, due to swelling in our stomachs/pouches it just can't accept more than an ounce or two at a time. One of the reasons weight loss surgery is so liberating is because (once fully healed and eating solids) we establish a normal routine with food, the only difference is we eat less than non-wls folks. The whole idea is for life to normalize and not be a slave to food any longer.

Best wishes!

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Seriously you gave me such a chuckle because that is exactly the kind of thing I worry about. Pre WLS I was a Coke Zero fiend. I drank like a 12 pack a day (so yes you can live without Water I’m proof). Anyways, as I left from visiting my grandma in her nursing home each week I would begin to wonder about things like how will I get my Coke Zero and my Snacks since I do not have kids. I was glad when Walmart delivery started in my area because a lot of times Amazon is out of Coke Zero and I will be counting on those services someday to get my stuff. PS you don’t have to continue on Protein Shakes but some of us choose to stay on one a day even after it’s required but don’t worry Amazon delivers these as well 🤣

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Thanks everyone for the replies! It's good to know things aren't so strict as you progress months out from the surgery. I was thinking I barely have the cognitive skills now to be that organized let alone when i get older! (Currently I don't eat until about 3pm every day and often work all day without having a drink - obviously I will have to do better than this after surgery). Sounds like you all have hit a rhythm that isn't too overwhelming. I'll just have to use all my concentration skills for the first few months. Luckily I will be off work for the summer. I have my consult with my surgeon on Monday and then I'll be able to set a date... Wish me luck, I'm terrified and so excited at the same time!

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3 minutes ago, traceymmm said:

Thanks everyone for the replies! It's good to know things aren't so strict as you progress months out from the surgery. I was thinking I barely have the cognitive skills now to be that organized let alone when i get older! (Currently I don't eat until about 3pm every day and often work all day without having a drink - obviously I will have to do better than this after surgery). Sounds like you all have hit a rhythm that isn't too overwhelming. I'll just have to use all my concentration skills for the first few months. Luckily I will be off work for the summer. I have my consult with my surgeon on Monday and then I'll be able to set a date... Wish me luck, I'm terrified and so excited at the same time!

This will definitely have to change. I would highly recommend that you work on changing this (start eating three meals a day and drinking regularly) as soon as possible, so it's a habit BEFORE you have surgery. After surgery, you will have a lot to focus on, and trying to change bad habits is hard.

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3 minutes ago, lizonaplane said:

This will definitely have to change. I would highly recommend that you work on changing this (start eating three meals a day and drinking regularly) as soon as possible, so it's a habit BEFORE you have surgery. After surgery, you will have a lot to focus on, and trying to change bad habits is hard.

That’s a really good idea. Maybe try to change one habit at a time but before surgery so it’s one less thing to worry about.

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2 hours ago, traceymmm said:

(Currently I don't eat until about 3pm every day and often work all day without having a drink - obviously I will have to do better than this after surgery).

There's an app that I use called Baritastic and you can set reminders on the app for Water, Protein Shake, meals and even Vitamins. You can also track your macros and calories per meal/day. It's a very helpful tool to create routines.

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2 minutes ago, BypassingMyPhatAss♡ said:

There's an app that I use called Baritastic and you can set reminders on the app for Water, Protein Shake, meals and even Vitamins. You can also track your macros and calories per meal/day. It's a very helpful tool to create routines.

I have repeating alarms on my phone for all the same things. See most of us need reminders to keep us in line.

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Posted (edited)

In the beginning you are eating very small portion sizes & can only sip so you have to drink every couple of minutes. I certain,y didn’t & wasn’t encouraged to eat every 30minutes but only three times a day . (You are advised not to drink 30mins before or after you eat. Maybe you confused the eat every 30mins???) And yes it sometimes can be a struggle to meet your Fluid & Protein goals every single day but you’ll work out ways around this. It all improves & gets easier.

By around month 3 I ate three meals a day & one or two Snacks one of which was a high protein yoghurt (15-22g protein) to ensure I got all my protein in. Some continue to have a Protein Shake which counts as fluid as well as protein. By the time you are in or close to maintenance your portion sizes will have increased to being about the recommended portion size for all food for an adult e.g. 3-4ozs of meat & you’ll be able to do more than just sip. Some say they can get back to drinking whole glasses in one go.

Everyone should be drinking 2L/64ozs of fluids a day & everyone should be consuming about 1g of protein per kg of body weight (multiply your weight in pounds by 0.36). Doesn’t matter if they’ve had weight loss surgery or not so it’s not something special to us.

By maintenance, If you eat three meals a day, with about 15-25g protein each, you’ll be getting about all the protein you’ll need +/-. Age, activity level, gender does affect the amount you will need of course. Of course while losing we’re given a specific protein goal to compensate the restricted diet. Check out this protein calculator for when your weight has stabilised: https://www.nal.usda.gov/human-nutrition-and-food-safety/dri-calculator

Oh & I’m almost 57 & days out from my 3 year anniversary.

Edited by Arabesque

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Yes, I was overwhelmed by the “schedule” at first, with timers going off throughout the day. It is SO much better now! No worries after the healing is done and you are back to a “regular” diet.

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