My Best Tip: Remember that Bariatric Surgery is part of your life. There will be days that are not perfect, but the surgical changes don’t go away. Its important to always move forward with mindful choices and a positive attitude. JUST KEEP MOVING FORWARD!

I have read time and time over this past week on Facebook of folks who HOPE they can deal with all the candy, desserts, cookies and treats over the long holiday weekend weekend. NO NO NO NO NO… what happens when you get there and all there is to eat are foods that are either bad for you, foods you would NOT choose, or foods that are dry or full of sugar that will make you sick? What if all there is on the dessert table is cake and ice cream? Are you going to sit and silently watch everyone eat, or go ahead and eat a little?

The road to failure is paved with good intentions! Before you know it, some of you may be eating dips and chips, a pile of macaroni salad that no doubt will slide right down, topped off with cake, a little ice cream, and maybe even washed down with Diet Coke! Followed by feeling sleepy, guilty, and even more devastating – some of you may discover that sugar does not make you sick.

I was recently at odds with a two year post op who swore she would NEVER eat the ‘wrong foods’ as she went through too much to have surgery and lose her weight. That is noble and most of us felt that way at one and two years into this new life – but she was talking about fruit. With the benefit of hindsight, I now see the huge difference in mindset between 8 months post op, 2 years post op, 6 years post op and 10 years post op! I don’t believe that anyone has bariatric surgery without thinking they will follow a healthier plan – but where can it go horribly wrong? As the memory of fresh post op life fades it is easy to use the same rationale we used in order to grow to 300 pounds in the first place.

It goes wrong when we grow complacent and stop planning – we fail to move in a forward direction and instead give up when we find ourselves in a box at a party with limited choices. Early on, it is difficult to understand the balance needed to live with our surgery rather than fight it or ignore it when we are years post op. I have struggled too – as it is often assumed we lose the weight and then go on with life. We do go on with life – but it’s a Bariatric Life and we are forever changed.

One of the Keys to Eating Well After Weight Loss Surgery for this holiday weekend – BE PREPARED! Take food to the party that you know you love and that you know you can eat – that will move you forward in a positive direction. Take a platter of Bacon and Tomato Deviled Eggs as everyone loves deviled eggs and guess what? YOU can eat them!

Make a platter of BEAUTIFUL Tomato Mozzarella Skewers – you don’t even have to COOK them and guess what? YOU can eat them!

Most of us have a huge wooden or porcelain salad bowl that we seldom use. – fill it with Wolfgang Puck’s Chinois Chicken Salad. It is one of the most simple yet delicious salads you have tasted. It blows away plebeian mayonnaise filled cole slaw, macaroni, and potato salad! Toss your big bowl filled with shredded Napa Cabbage and Romaine lettuce, snow peas, shredded rotisserie chicken and the snappy five-ingredient Chinese Mustard Vinaigrette – this is one of the most FAMOUS salads in culinary history – you don’t even have to COOK Wolfgang Puck’s Chinois Salad and guess what? YOU can eat it!

Make sure you take a sugar free dessert – no one wants to be the freak sitting there eating NOTHING. That is not a happy holiday – it calls attention to your surgery, causes friends and family to feel sorry for you and even though you SMILE and say it doesn’t matter, it is hard to not feel resentful that you are in this situation.

EVEN IF YOU SIMPLY MAKE A BOWL OF SUGAR FREE JELLO WITH BERRIES – take some sort of sugar free treat. You can also go a little fancier and make a Sugar Free Berry Sparkle Dessert. You don’t even have to cook it and guess what? YOU can eat it!