Here are 31 of our favorite tips and tricks to keep your weight loss efforts on track following weight loss surgery.
Bariatric Weight Loss Tips
- Treat your weight loss as a lifestyle change — not a diet.
- Get rid of your “fat” clothes so it’s harder to let yourself backslide.
- Find activities to replace food — do not use eating as an “activity.”
- Always question why you’re looking for food –- head hunger vs. belly hunger.
- Occupy your mind and hands so you are not eating mindlessly/grazing.
- Have positive inner conversations with yourself.
- Come to our support group meetings!
Planning & Accountability Tips
- Weigh and measure foods.
- Keep track of how much fluid you get in each day.
- Always get your protein in first.
- Do not wear elastic waist pants so you’ll notice if they begin to fit a little tigher.
- Observe “Fridge Fitness” — put healthy foods in the front and at eye level to promote better choices.
- If you occasionally have pasta for dinner, make sure your other meals/snacks are high in protein.
- Use My Fitness Pal to log all foods/beverages to be accountable and to make sure you get your protein in.
- Try small condiment cups to portion out nuts (nuts are healthy, but high in calories).
- Cook in bulk, then pre-portion out into smaller portions and freeze for a quick meal at a later date.
- Always have protein drinks and bars on hand in a pinch.
Smarter Eating Strategies
- Eat off of small plates.
- Make a mug of broth for when you get home from work to curb hunger as you make dinner.
- Make your own trail mix with healthier ingredients such as high protein cereal, unsalted nuts – keep portion sizes low by using snack sized baggies to limit portion sizes.
- Don’t make a lot of food at one time, unless you’re going to pre-portion and freeze into bariatric-sized meals.
- Hungry before bed? Try 80 calorie yogurt or small (4 oz.) low fat cottage cheese.
- Eat nuts that come in 100 calorie packs -– this helps keep the portion size in check.
- Heat Quest bars for 22 seconds in the microwave – gives them a different taste and texture.
- Keep snacks under 140 calories.
- Make sure your meal is able to fit into a sandwich-sized bag.
- Consume high-protein cereals (Kashi Go Lean Crunch, Special K Protein, Cheerios protein, etc.).
- Avoid “slider foods” — foods that are high in carbs and go down too easily such as pretzels, popcorn, crackers, chips, etc. Slider foods are very easy to graze on.
- Commit to regular exercise.
- Enjoy your exercise — be kind to yourself and choose activities you like.
- Change up your workout routine every 6 weeks.
After looking at all of the responses from our support group members, the overall themes were:
- Accountability — weigh and measuring foods, document what you eat and drink.
- Pre-planning — plan meals and snacks in advance, pre- portion foods to avoid over eating.
- Safe Environment — Set up your eating environment to promote success!
- Activity — Get regular and varied exercise!
What tip or trick can you add to this list? Add your comment below.
Dietitian’s Corner by Lori Skurbe
Dietitian’s Corner is a monthly column for post-op and pre-op patients of bariatric surgery in NJ written by Prime Surgicare’s Lori Skurbe. Lori has been a dietitian for over 20 years with an extensive background in weight management, bariatric nutrition and diabetes education.