Top tips after Gastric Sleeve Surgery
After a gastric sleeve surgery, establish a regular meal pattern of three meals a day and a couple of snacks if required. This will help to stimulate appetite and ensure your body is getting the nutrients it needs to remain healthy. It will also help curb your desire for unhealthy snacks in between meals.
Eat your proteins first to ensure your body gets the protein it needs to function. Also include lots of fruit and vegetables in your diet.
Eat slowly and ensure you chew all food well.
Avoid foods that are not nutritious and make the most of the foods that you enjoy. Foods and liquids rich in calories, fat, and sugar such as fizzy drinks, milk shakes, alcohol, and sugar-rich desserts don’t provide nutrients and can cause hunger pangs and vomiting instead.
Try using a smaller plate and serve meals which are attractive and colourful.
If you’re too tired to prepare a meal, have a ready meal instead or tinned foods.
When introducing foods add breads last as they tend to form a ball and may be difficult to swallow and to pass through your stomach pouch. If this is the case, try toast and crispbreads as they may be easier to manage.
Stop eating once you feel full or if you feel any discomfort.
If you feel hungry between meals take a drink as you may be confusing hunger with thirst.
Drink at least eight cups of liquid every day to keep your body hydrated and to avoid constipation.
Do not drink with meals. Filling your stomach with liquids instead of foods will deprive your body of the much-needed nutrients for healing and recovery. Drink fluids at least 30 minutes before and after your meals.
Avoid alcohol and caffeinated drinks. They can act as appetite stimulants.
Exercise will help you to achieve long term success in losing and maintaining weight loss. Develop a program that takes into consideration your personal exercise preferences, your ability and your goals for weight loss and a healthy active lifestyle.
Stay positive and do everything in your power to stay motivated. This may involve reading inspirational books or blogs, buying a Fitbit to record your steps or just keeping busy and not procrastinating about food.
Go to a support group. You might get some tips, be inspired by other people’s weight loss journeys and find a new friend who is in the same situation to offer mutual support.
Attend your follow up appointments and ask for help if you need it. Be honest with our staff if you have any questions or you’re struggling.
Immediately after gastric sleeve surgery, you’ll start to lose weight very quickly. Drastic weight loss leads to changes in hormone production and often results in patients feeling scared, uncertain or moody. You may also feel tired due to your reduced food intake and recovery from surgery. Let your family know that this is probable, particularly in the first two months after surgery.
Following gastric sleeve surgery you may also experience many emotional effects of adjusting to a new life after weight loss surgery such as depression, frustration, anxiety, loss, and excitement. You may be sad that the reality of life after surgery may not exactly match your hopes or expectations before surgery. You may be anxious about maintaining your new diet and lifestyle. You may feel more confident with your new body. Your relationships with family, friends and your partner may change. They are adjusting too and some people may be more supportive than others.
We are here to support you through these changes through personal consultations and support groups. You may benefit from talking to family, friends or a professional such as a psychologist or counsellor.
Time off work
The time you take off work will depend on many things such as the type of work you do, your general state of health, your motivation and your energy levels. Immediately after your gastric sleeve surgery you’ll be eating very little whilst your body is also trying to recover from the operation.
We recommend that you don’t rush back to work too quickly and take approximately two weeks off work. Some patients want to keep their procedure private from their employer and family members. Whatever your choices we will support you to manage it appropriately.