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Reprogramming the swallowing center



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Posted (edited)

My nutritional consultant talked about reprogramming my swallowing center with surgery; learning to chew more thoroughly to process foods into a paste before swallowing to get the most nutrition and satisfaction from meals.

since then I have been trying to pay attention to my swallowing while trying to begin my preop diet changes (no surgery date yet but I will do 3 weeks at 50 carb hard limit) . It really i difficult to do properly without paying 100% attention to your mouth’a actions!!! I like to gulp drinks and take only a few chews before swallowing. It is making me even more mindful of my eating process.

what was your experience with reprogramming your swallowing center?

How long did the process take to “stick”?
Is it like other habits which take a month or so of constant attention to start to change?

Edited by KimA-GA

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I'm 10 months out and sometimes I still catch myself eating just a bit too fast. The first time I did it, I got terribly sick and have been MUCH more mindful since. Its a hard habit to get into, but it is a MUST post-op. Just keep trying. Count chew or sends if you need to. Eventually it will be come second nature and won't feel so weird.

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I reprogrammed before surgery also.

Started counting my chews and learning to sip rather than chug.

Put your fork down between bites while you are chewing. Then your mind isn't already preparing for the next bite and you will focus more on chewing the food already in your mouth.

Sipping sucked. I drink a lot and always have chugged. But I managed.

I am just about 4.5 months post op, I still count and put the fork down while I eat.

As far as Water, I chug now and it doesn't bother me at all. Probably don't chug as much as I used to, but definitely chugging. 5/6 big drinks/gulps at a time.

I started sipping, tiny tiny sips (1oz cup was 2 or 3 sips) and just naturally it got easier and easier until I realized I was taking normal sips and then it excelled from there.

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I struggle with the same thing right now.

One thing I figured out is that I have to start taking MUCH smaller bites first. For now, that's all I'm working on. Once smaller bites become a habit, I'll work on more thorough chewing.

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I thought I trained myself enough before surgery but I have found sometimes I still eat quicker than I should and I assure you....it only takes once for you to learn especially if you have an adverse effect from it lol. I did and I learned real quick....take your time retrain yourself and you will do just fine

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Oh this is interesting. I haven't learned to eat more slowly after surgery because I have a busy job and a busy life. I have no idea how people have the time to spend 30+ minutes eating a small meal several times a day. Once I learn how much food my pouch will handle I just gulp that (or close to it - maybe 90%?) down as quickly as possible, and then wait to see whether I'm done. If I'm not quite full I will eat the remnants of my meal in one swoop. I have never vomited, and never had the foamies yet, although I understand this is pure luck. Think my surgery has worked so well in my favour - I would find to extremely hard to tolerate what some people have to.

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13 hours ago, Spinoza said:

Oh this is interesting. I haven't learned to eat more slowly after surgery because I have a busy job and a busy life. I have no idea how people have the time to spend 30+ minutes eating a small meal several times a day. Once I learn how much food my pouch will handle I just gulp that (or close to it - maybe 90%?) down as quickly as possible, and then wait to see whether I'm done. If I'm not quite full I will eat the remnants of my meal in one swoop. I have never vomited, and never had the foamies yet, although I understand this is pure luck. Think my surgery has worked so well in my favour - I would find to extremely hard to tolerate what some people have to.

From my understanding gulping meals will lead to pouch stretching and weight regain over time. May want to check with your surgeon to confirm.

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