You Can't Expect Change Without Hearing (and Embracing) The Hard NO's
Most Support Groups will give you a hug and tell you it's okay that you ate the potatoes and bagel with your eggs because everyone makes mistakes. The official comment will be followed by a chorus of 'me too' by hundreds of others.
We are not that Group.
Groups who tell you not to worry because it's 'Everything in Moderation' are not doing you any favors... they are simply WRONG. They are telling you what you WANT to hear while you wander straight down the road to regain. We know this to be fact. Whether you are ready to hear it or not is up to you, but weight loss after bariatric surgery does not last without change.
The Hard No's of Bariatric Surgery
- Don't eat that bread.
- No... that coffee shop latte has 45 grams of sugar!
- No macaroni salad.
- Ummm, NO, you don't NEED crunch.
- NO tortillas.
- Keep your fork out of that rice.
- Drop the crackers.
- We know the potatoes in that Facebook pic are not 'your husbands'.
- NO, you do not *need* real sugar in your coffee!
- Do NOT drink with your meals.
The weight you lost does not stay off without your participation
There is no delicate way to say this. We have always set ourselves apart from other bariatric support groups in that we don't look the other way while folks continue to eat *bad* carbs. We try and bring people back to bariatric reality. We firmly encourage you to knock off the pasta, rice, tortillas, bread and PROCESSED JUNK FOOD and very often people get mad or fight to justify it.
For years we have watched people blow through this surgery and they all have the same story. Everyone thinks they are different, that they can handle bad carbs in moderation, a little raw sugar instead of *gasp* Splenda and because they have lost 100 pounds in 7 months they must be doing something right. That last part is always said with hands on hips in an obnoxious defiant tone.
Please understand that YOUR BARIATRIC SURGERY was responsible for your 100 pound drop. It was a gift.
THE FIRST HUNDRED POUNDS IS THE SURGERY
It is a critical point so we repeat it often - your surgery did it, not you. You are not driving the car for the first year. While it works early on, eating smaller amounts of the same foods that grew you to 300 pounds is not a good long term plan. Eventually you will be able to eat larger portions. Ask yourself WHY eating the same bad carbs and processed foods would be a good plan. No doctor has advised any of us to eat the same way post op as we did pre op. Post ops pick this up somewhere, latch on to it and defend it, often to the bitter end of a total regain. If we defend our habits, we have no intention of quitting them.
NO ONE FIGHTS FOR BROCCOLI CARBS!
It's not that the bagel will kill you, it's that this type of carbohydrate makes you hungry. Bread carbs rapidly turn to glucose, burn, raise and then drop your blood sugar. Poof, gone, hungry, #lookingformore. They don't create a feeling of satiety or lasting fullness. The empty carbs work against what you are trying to achieve.
If you were arguing for eating salad carbs or green bean carbs, we would back you, but most people are fighting to hang on to the other kind of carbs. If this big argument was for VEGETABLES, well it wouldn't be a debate as vegetables didn't make us fat, did they? Did you ever meet an obese vegetarian and silently wonder 'HUH?, how'd they get obese if they are vegetarian?' Spoiler Alert: it was the mac & cheese, fries and bread... not the kale.
Same deal. It's not the vegetable carbs that are NO's, it's the other stuff, the processed carbs like Red Baron frozen pizzas and Little Debbie Iced Oatmeal Pies, the fries, potato chips, frozen pizza rolls, baked potatoes with both sour cream and butter, bread, macaroni, rice, Mountain Dew, tortillas and cakes cookies & smoothies full of sugar! NOT broccoli. NOT tomatoes. NOT watermelon.
SQUARE PEG...ROUND HOLE
Please stop looking for slightly better substitutes for bad choices - find new healthier foods to love instead. Most post ops just keep trying to force that square peg into the round hole. Stop eating crackers and chips, don't buy ones that have fewer carbs and count them out into a dish. Enough with the terrible fishy shirataki miracle noodles and chick pea macaroni and coconut flour wraps. You will not keep using these strange specialty foods. Learn to live without bread and pasta so it will not call your name. We aren't changing the behavior or trend if we continue eating these foods with a slight twist. Without change, your hand will be back in the Doritos bag in no time.
LOOK, PROTEIN CHEESECAKE!
Don't add protein to muffins and convince yourself they're good for you. Stop with the Starbucks Mocha Lattes because 'they're your one indulgence'. They have 500 calories and thin people don't drink them. For gosh sakes do not make taco shells from cheese! Stay the heck out of Wendy's. I saw the headline of a bariatric blog touting all the 'good choices' in fast food restaurants. A better headline: STAY OUT OF FAST FOOD RESTAURANTS. That's the best choice of all! Why go to the place where you know the danger lives. Before you know it, oops - there are fries in your bag!
YOU KNOW SOME PEOPLE GAIN BACK ALL THEIR WEIGHT, RIGHT?
In our first year of our Support Group on Facebook, I cried for new members who had gained back all their weight. I am not immune after 20 years, three bariatric books and knowing better. When my life hit the fan, I comforted my bruises in the way I knew best and it took me twelve months to lose fifty eight pounds of regain. That's where the Inspire Diet came from. My own need to get serious, lose the weight and change.
Every day, more and more people ask us about having a revision, a nice word for a second horrific organ damaging operation. What would more surgery do? If you have already had most of your stomach removed, what other organs would you consider giving up? Unless YOU change your thinking and your food choices, you would have the same result. Unless there is a hole somewhere, more surgery does not fix anything. [before anyone gets their shorts in a wad, I'm not talking about medical revisions for reflux]
STEP AWAY FROM THE BAGEL!
Own that there was and maybe still is something wrong with your food picker. Use surgery as an opportunity to change, not cheat. I used to be bothered by the 'word on the street' that we were called food police, but I am now proud of it. If you want to promote the virtues of 'Everything in Moderation' while eating half a Subway sandwich, there are plenty of groups that will do that.
If you want to eat right and learn new behaviors to make the feeling of slipping on those skinny jeans last, we are the ONLY Support Group and the BEST Bariatric Website to help you make that happen.
BARIATRIC SURGERY *IS* THE EASY WAY OUT
Our surgery is a personal food cop that is always with us, that helps us push away from the table. We make it hard when we don't live by the bariatric rules we've been given. There is nothing harder then gaining weight back after surgery. There is nothing better than losing it a second time. Control is empowering.