Issue #209 June 1, 2011
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In This Issue

About My Facebook WLS Private Group

Back On Track with Barbara
Dumping Syndrome
The OAC needs your help
Yikes! Did I Eat All That?

Hernias and Tummy Tucks: Your Responses

Recipe: Cantaloupe and Cucumber Salad

Success Story: Lee D.

About My Facebook WLS Private Group

My WLS Private Group on Facebook is categorized as a CLOSED group by Facebook.  This does not mean it is closed to new members. It is definitely open for new members and I hope you will join. A CLOSED group in Facebook means that only members of the group can read posts and comments. That provides members with the privacy that what they are discussing cannot be seen by anyone outside of the group membership.

The discussions in my WLS Private Group have really been great. Within the past day, the discussions have been about carbonation, eating bread, food and sugar addiction, and should I go back to Weight Watchers.

Here are some comments from members:
“I love this site! I sure wish this was around when I was a new post-op! I think I would be close to 300+ pounds off instead of working my way to 250 off. I am learning so much as well.” Carrie

“I thank you for having this group. I read everything every day.” Lora

“Isn’t this group wonderful? I have learned more here than in months of going to a normal support group.” Shelly

Please join us. We would love to have you. Just click on the box above.

Back on Track with Barbara

Internet Mentoring Program

The Back on Track with Barbara Internet Mentoring Program really concentrates on lifestyle changes. Join our group and receive lessons via the internet and the support of others who are struggling just like you are.

Get Ready for Summertime Fun

Are you suffering from emotional eating and can’t stop?
Are you grazing on carbohydrates and can’t control it?
Are you lacking inspiration to lose the weight you have regained?
Do you feel that you don’t know what to do now that you have had surgery?
Are you dying to be in better shape?

My Back on Track Internet Mentoring Program will give you the
support you need to get your weight under control.

View a FREE Lesson and Listen to a FREE Telephone Seminar by
clicking here and scrolling down to the bottom of the page.

Dumping Syndrome: Blessing or Curse

It comes on suddenly. It can start with sweating or shaking, and then the nausea starts. You thought you might get away with that sweet that you ate.  It didn’t seem like that much, but now you know. You are dumping.

The reactions vary. Yes, some people sweat and shake; others feel nausea and an overwhelming tiredness. Others throw up. Some react to sweets, some to carbohydrates, and some people do not dump at all.

Dumping, also known as rapid gastric emptying, occurs when the undigested contents of your stomach are transported or "dumped" into your small intestine too rapidly. It can occur within the first 20 minutes after you have eaten, or up to 1 to 3 hours afterwards. Dumping syndrome is exclusive to weight loss surgery bypass patients, and to people who have had their pyloric valve (the value at the base of a normal stomach that regulates when food enters the intestines) is damaged. No one else has this experience.

Many patients experience dumping syndrome soon after surgery; however, not all people continue to have dumping syndrome forever. For some, the symptoms fade away with time.

I have always considered dumping to be a blessing. It helped to teach me to stay away from sweets, as well as simple carbohydrates. Fortunately I still dump, 11 ½ years after my surgery!

I know that many patients are extremely fearful of dumping, and it causes them to make sure that they never eat anything that will test it.  This is a good thing, and I admire those who tell me that they never, ever eat sweets. I admit that I do. I think everyone should avoid sweets. However, I have been able to maintain my weight, because I don’t overindulge. I will sometimes have a very small piece of pie or cake, or a cookie. But I am saying, don’t be like me; be like those who never touch the stuff. I am able to control it, but not everyone can.

The remedy for dumping syndrome is simple. Avoid sweets and excessive carbohydrates. Do not drink with meals because that pushes food into the intestines faster. Eat more fiber, because fiber slows digestion. And eat smaller meals more often.

But there are some whose dumping is so severe that they require medications to force slower digestion such as octreotide, cholestvramine or pantoprazole.

Whenever researchers consider negative side effects of weight loss surgery, they always include dumping syndrome. So I guess for them it is a curse, as well as for those who have severe dumping. But I admit that I have always considered dumping to be a blessing.  How about you?

The Obesity Action Coalition
  Needs Your Help

The Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) needs your help! As some of you may have seen on the OAC Facebook or Twitter pages, they are participating in a Facebook contest for nonprofits sponsored by Vivint. This is a great opportunity for the OAC, because the grand prize, going to the nonprofit who receives the most overall votes, is $250,000!

Right now, Phase 1 of the contest is taking place, and will come to a close on June 11. At that time, the top 20 nonprofits from each region (there are five different regions and the OAC is part of the Eastern region) will advance to Phase 2. The top 20 nonprofits from each region will be announced on June 14 and then voting will resume.  As of today, the OAC is close but not yet in the top 20 for our region.

The OAC is reaching out to help advance in this contest. They are asking that you vote for the Obesity Action Coalition and that you share this contest with all your followers on Facebook. This contest allows individuals to vote for one charity, once a day, every day, by signing in with their Facebook account. You can vote for the Obesity Action Coalition by visiting this Web site:

Please note the Privacy Permissions.

You place your vote by clicking the “endorse” button. Right above that button is a message that says “I just endorsed Obesity Action Coalition on the Vivint Gives Back Project. Vivint is giving away $1.25 million dollars to local charities and I want Obesity Action Coalition to win.” If you click yes, this message will then be displayed on your Facebook for all your Facebook Friends to see. If possible, the OAC asks that you share this link on your Facebook so we can get the word out to as many people as possible.

With everyone’s help and support, they can win this contest and use the money to continue helping those affected by obesity through education, advocacy and support.

Yikes, Did I Eat All That?

Cyndi had weight loss surgery about 6 years ago, and was maintaining her weight fairly well.  She had regained about 10 pounds over the years, but was still relatively happy with her weight.  She certainly didn't want to regain any more.

One evening, she attended a banquet that included a buffet. She filled her plate, sat down and ate until she was full, which was about half of what was on her plate. Because she was eating slowly, her plate was not taken away with everyone else’s. As the banquet speakers droned on, she began nibbling and nibbling and didn’t realize that she had eaten everything on her plate. When she was ready to leave, someone who was sitting at her table commented, “I’m surprised at how much you can eat. I thought people who had weight loss surgery could only eat a little bit.” The reality hit her, she had consumed everything on her plate and it was a real eye opener for Cyndi.

That happens to many of us. We start getting back into the way we ate before surgery. Some of us, like Cyndi, realize it and do something about it. Others realize it and don’t know how to stop it. And stopping it, and then trying to reverse its effects becomes very difficult.

Take a look at these steps. They just might help you.

Take a good hard look at the way you are eating. Most, if not all of us, are experts in nutrition. That’s from all of those old nutrition classes and talks with our family physician.
Are you eating a lot of carbohydrates?
Do you have cravings for sweets?
Do you have cravings for just about everything?
Are you grazing?
Are there emotional issues that you are dealing with?

Many of us forget what life was like before surgery. Think back to how you felt, how you were treated, remember the state of your health, and the overall quality of your life. Take a good look at your before pictures and put them up somewhere prominent if you need to. Let this be your motivation to make changes.

Ask yourself why you are doing this.
Is it that you don’t plan for meals?
Is your kitchen stocked with healthy foods, or are foods that are unhealthy present in abundance?
Are you using other family members as excuses for having unhealthy food around?
Are you dealing with emotional issues that are causing your eating to be out of control?
Are you comfortable being thinner?

Take a good hard look at your refrigerator and pantry. Are their foods that you would consider really healthy? If you wanted to have a healthy meal right now, and a healthy snack later, what do you have in your house that you could eat? If your food looks like it came from 7/11, sit down and make a shopping list for the entire week, and go to the grocery store.

Emotional issues cannot be ignored. If you try to push those feelings down, they can surface as eating patterns – grazing, over eating, or seeking out unhealthy comfort foods. Somehow, you need to address this. Counseling, and especially with someone who is skilled in dealing with food addictions is an ideal solution.

Counseling is also important if you feel that you are not comfortable with your new body, or if you are having issues with someone close to you. Counseling can be expensive, but you may not be able to deal with your eating issues without it. If cost is an issue, group counseling may be an option.

Relaxation, meditation, yoga and visualization can all help. You have to believe in yourself to make changes. You have to see yourself as successful, and be calm enough in your daily life to make rational choices. All of this will help you sort out what you know your behavior should be.

Hernias and Tummy Tucks:
  Your Responses

In the last newsletter, in response to a reader’s question about having plastic surgery done the same time as a hernia repair, I asked people who had this done if they would respond.  I had quite a few responses. For the most part, those who had it done were quite happy with the results. Thanks so much to those of you who responded!

Click here to read the responses

Recipe: Cantaloupe and
  Cucumber Salad

Here is a wonderfully light summer recipe that I hope you enjoy.

Cantaloupe and Cucumber Salad

1/4 cup freshly-squeezed lime juice
Salt and freshly-ground black pepper to taste

1/2 large English cucumber, peeled in alternating strips and coarsely chopped
1 ripe cantaloupe, coarsely diced
3 green onions (scallions), thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves (optional)

In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, salt and pepper; set aside.
In a large bowl, add the cucumber, cantaloupe, green onions, and cilantro.
Add the lime juice mixture, a little at a time so as not to overdress the beautiful produce.

Makes 4 servings.

If you have a recipe that you would like to share in future issues of this newsletter, please send it to me at

Success Story:
Lee D.

I still need more success stories.  So please email them to me, and be sure to include a before and after picture as jpg attachments. 

There are many people out there that need your story for motivation!

I want to offer Lee special thanks for sharing her success with us. Here is her story:

Dear Barbara, 
I haven't written because so many people have lost so much more weight than me.  I had gastric bypass surgery in September, 2005.  I was a "lightweight" by my surgeon's requirements, as my BMI was less than 40, but I was insulin resistant, had high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. I could not lose weight even on a 1,000 calories a day diet. Luckily my health insurance paid 100 % of my surgery.  

I weighed 250 lbs on the day of my surgery, and now weigh between 153 and 156 (size 10-12).  The only medications I take now are my nutritional supplements and allergy medications. 

Living near a large medical university, I was able to get into a nutritional clinical study prior to surgery, and they continued to monitor me for 2 years post-op.  I was paid for my time for every test, so I even had money to buy clothes throughout my weight loss journey!  I have maintained my weight loss for 5 years.  I follow the rules of protein first, lots of water and very little sugar. 

I had an abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) with muscle repair 15 months ago, and am delighted with the results.  I did not qualify for insurance for my tummy tuck.   I originally decided not to have plastic surgery, but was having sciatica, and my family physician felt it might be because of all the excess skin on my abdomen.  The surgery has helped the sciatica.   My plastic surgeon removed over 6 lbs of skin.  My only regret is that I waited until I was in my 50's to have this done.   

One thing I think needs to be addressed more is the problems with alcohol that people having bypass surgery may have post-op.  I did not have any alcohol for 2 years after surgery.  Now one glass of wine can make me legally drunk, and I can black out with two.  People need to be made aware of the dangers of alcohol both in the way we synthesize it, and with the danger of transferred addictions.  

Lee D

I love good news.  If you have good news, a success story to share, or inspiration, please send it to me at so that I can include it in future issues.

Congratulations Lee

Drink Your Vitamins


Vitamin D,
and more

Chew Your Vitamins

The OAC is the ONLY non profit organization whose sole focus is helping those affected by obesity.  The OAC is a great place to turn if you are looking for a way to get involved and give back to the cause of obesity.

There are a variety of ways you can make a difference, but the first step is to become an OAC Member.  The great thing about OAC Membership is that you can be as involved as you would like.  Simply being a member contributes to the cause of obesity.




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