Following your gastric band, your eating habits and portion sizes will change. We've outlined what you should and shouldn’t be eating after surgery
The long term success of gastric band surgery is largelydependent upon your commitment to a healthy eating plan. The gastricband makes your stomach smaller by closing off part of it and consequentlyyou eat less food. Your calorie intake will normally be between 1000 to 1200kcalper day.
In the first few weeks following your gastric band procedureyour diet will progress over three main stages before you resume a normalhealthy diet. During the four weeks after your gastric band insertion no solidfoods should be taken. Follow the advice of what to eat and any post-surgerydietary guidelines from your surgeon or dietician.
Stage 1 – liquid diet
Weeks 1 to 2
Immediately after surgery drink clear fluids only such aswater, dilute squash, tea (including herbal, fruit, green), clear broth, applejuice, jelly, ice lollies, ice cubes. Drink very slowly by taking small sips.
You’ll gradually progress to a full liquid based diet. Ensureyou have an adequate intake of protein, calcium and other nutrients. A milkbased diet is recommended. You could tryintroducing smooth broths, creamed soups, yoghurt and yoghurt drinks, fruitjuices and meal replacement drinks such as Slimfast and Complan.
Stage 2 – pureed fooddiet
Weeks 3 to 4
Now start to introduce pureed and blended foods into yourdiet. Food should be smooth and the consistency of baby food. Attempting to eatsolid foods at this stage could put pressure on your band and damage it.
You could try cereals such as Ready Brek, Weetabix, groundrice, thick creamy soups, rice pudding, custard, soft cooked and blendedvegetables, mashed potato, blended meats with gravy and casseroles.
Aim to eat small portions four to five times a day. Aportion is around 100g, or five to six tablespoons of food. Eat all your mealsslowly, taking small mouthfuls. Stop eating as soon as you feel full.
You’ll need to drink six to eight drinks (around 1.5 litres or2.5 pints) a day. Water is best. Avoid drinking at least 30 minutes before andafter each meal and never drink with your meals.
Stage 3 – soft foods
Weeks 5 to 6
You can gradually move onto three meals a day of soft foodthat can be mashed easily or cut with a fork with texture but tender and easyto chew.
Soft foods might include ground or finely diced meats, fish,canned or soft fruit, scrambled eggs, cooked vegetables, rice and pasta.
Stage 4 – normal diet
Week 6 onwards
After six weeks you can steadily resume a healthy diet comprisedof three small nutritional, solid food meals a day.
Eat slowly and chew each chunk of food as many times aspossible before swallowing. Stop eating as soon as you feel full. Overeating oreating too fast can cause pain and vomiting.
Eat proteins first as these as they are needed by your bodyto function properly. Protein isn’t stored in your body so must be consumed insufficient quantities every day. Aroundthis time your first band adjustment is usually done and you’ll start to feelthe effect your band is making around the top of your stomach.
You should avoid snacking in between meals but make sure youdrink plenty in between meals. You mustn’t drink during meals as this can flushfood out of your stomach pouch and make you feel less full.
Aim for 1.5 litres of low calorie liquids per day such as wateror zero-calorie drinks such as diet lemonade. Avoid cola, alcohol, sweetenedfruit juices and milkshakes.
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