Hosted by Barbara Thompson
Weight Loss Surgery:
Finding the Thin Person Hiding Inside You.
Share this Newsletter
If you have a slow internet
connection, wait 1 minute to play.
The above video
requires free Flash Player.
In This Issue
* Magic Bullet
* Am I Losing Fast Enough?
* Gaining Weight and Desperate
* Recipe: Almond Chicken Pear Salad * Success
Story: Maureen Gonzales
The Magic Bullet
If you have ever heard about a miracle diet that
will melt away the pounds while you sleep and longed for that, then
you will be interested in the article that I recently wrote for WLS
Am I Losing Fast Enough?
I have a question about weight loss after surgery. Can you give me
some idea based on your own experience of what an expected weight loss
will be during the different stages after surgery? For example, what
can one expect during the first three weeks while they are on
liquids and what can be expected during the soft food stage?
I had laparoscopic RNY surgery 16 days ago.
Before surgery, I was told by some of the nurses and dieticians that
the weight would melt off after surgery. As of today, I have lost 19.5
lbs which does not seem like a lot. I want to make sure I am not
expecting too much too fast or that I am not behind the point I should
be at. I want to be sure that I am on track based on an average
because I know that everyone is different. I keep telling myself the
weight will really begin to fall off when I start the soft phase at
three weeks. I had the surgery to rid myself of the “Fat Freeloader” I
had been carrying most of my life and to correct some medical
conditions. I drink my protein drinks and other liquids on schedule
and exercise every day. What is realistic? Can you help?
Congratulations on your surgery! There is a general rule for weight
loss after surgery, but it is very much a rule of thumb. Patients tend
to lose 20 pounds the first month or 2 followed by a couple of months
of 15 pounds of weight loss for awhile and then it gradually slows
until you have lost approximately 70 to 80% of your excess weight.
This is dependent upon a number of factors:
1.If you lost weight prior to surgery. If so your weight loss
following surgery will be less because you have already gotten rid of
the water weight which is so easy to lose.
2.If you have a great deal of weight to lose. If you are on the
higher end of morbid obesity according to your BMI, or are super
morbidly obese, then you will lose weight faster. Those who have less
weight to lose will lose weight more slowly but have a greater chance
to reach their goal weight, generally speaking.
3.Weight loss is dependent upon your age. If you are older, your
metabolism is slower and you will lose weight more slowly. The older
you are the more important it is to exercise so that you can increase
4.Speaking of exercise, you will lose more weight if you
exercise. You will also lose more weight if your protein level is
higher. These factors really do make a difference because they affect
how much muscle mass you are able to maintain and grow. This directly
5.It depends upon how many times you have “yo yo” dieted and how
long you have been obese. These factors affect the set point of your
weight which is the weight which your body wants you to maintain.
This set point is not always a healthy weight. Nature is always trying
to get us to gain weight so that we are prepared for the coming famine
and lack of prey to hunt down with our spears. Nature doesn’t know
that going from home to work we pass 5 fast food restaurants and a
6.It depends upon whether you are taking medication that causes
you to gain weight such as some anti-depressants or if you have a
disease or condition that makes it more difficult to lose weight.
These are some of the major factors that make it
impossible to accurately say how fast you should be losing weight.
But I would say that losing 19.5 pounds in 16 days means that your
weight is melting off. In fact, you may be losing weight too fast. I
have seen many patients who lose in excess of 20 pounds the first
month only to reach a plateau until their bodies have caught up with
the weight loss. But then it all seems to even out.
Just that you are showing so much concern
indicates to me that you will do very well. I will be waiting for
your success story next year!
Gaining Weight and Desperate
I am sitting here in tears reading your
newsletter about regaining weight. Every issue is mine. I am 3 1/2
years post-op. I lost 170 lbs but have regained about 30. I seem to
always be hungry. I fill up fast but a little while later I am hungry.
I crave something sweet all the time. It seems I am always depriving
myself. I know that word is wrong, but it is how I feel. Then if I
get angry at my husband, we have been married 40 years and happy but
you know it does happen, I go to food right away. Where do you suggest
I go for help? I am at a loss and getting depressed. The surgery was
not easy. I love buying clothes and feeling good but see this slipping
Your newsletters are wonderful. Maybe you can
suggest other things for people like me. We are in desperate need of
help, as much as people wanting the surgery!
Thank you so much.
I think there are many of us who feel your pain.
You are describing what all of those in my Back on Track Program and
thousands of people who have had surgery more than 3 years ago are
going through. It is a very complex problem, but please let me offer
just 3 tips based upon what you wrote.
“I seem to be always
hungry. I crave something sweet all the time.”
I believe that those of us who have been or are
morbidly obese are very sensitive to carbohydrates. When we eat
carbohydrates like white bread and pasta and especially sweets, it
causes our blood sugar level to spike. After awhile our blood
sugar level then drops and our bodies, that enjoyed the spike of
energy that goes along with a spike in our blood sugar level says
to us, “Hey, do that again, I liked it!” We then feel cravings,
cravings for something sweet. It is very important for you to keep
your blood sugar level stable so that you are not feeling those
cravings. To keep your blood sugar level stable, cut out all
carbohydrates for at least 5 days. Eat a diet very heavy in
protein but be sure to drink lots of water. You will no doubt go
through a withdrawal, but it will be worth it. Then gradually
reintroduce good carbohydrates into your diet like fruits and
vegetables. Avoid getting too hungry. That should really help your
“I fill up fast but a
little while later I am hungry.”
It sounds like you may have stretched
your pouch. There are a couple of things you can do about this.
You can go on a liquid protein diet
for a day or two. You should then feel your pouch – become
reacquainted with it. It is a very hard thing to do, but again, it
is worth it.
And lastly you can look into
revisional surgery like the stomaphyx procedure. If the opening
from the pouch into the intestines has stretched, or if your pouch
itself has stretched, then the stomaphyx procedure will make both
smaller. Some patients are also having a band placed around their
“If I get angry at my
husband, I go to food right away.”
This says that you are using food to soothe your
emotions rather than to sustain yourself. Anytime that you use
food in a way other than as just food, you are engaging in
emotional eating. You need to discover why you do this and remedy
it, otherwise you will always have a problem with food. You can be
helped with counseling.
You would be an excellent candidate for my
Back on Track program. There you will get lessons, advice and support
to get through this. Details are below.
Get Help to Get
Back on Track with Your Weight.
Back on Track with Barbara
Internet Mentoring Program
Suffering from emotional eating and can’t stop?
Grazing on carbohydrates and can’t control it?
Lacking inspiration to lose the weight you have
Feel you don’t know what to do now that you have
Dying to be in better shape for
Then you are in luck! My Back on Track Internet
Mentoring Program is just what you need!
2 cups boned and skinned chicken breast halves,
cooked and cubed
½ cup green or sweet red peppers, sliced lengthwise
¼ cup diced celery
¼ teaspoon seasoned salt
½ cup plain low fat yogurt
2 Tbl. low fat mayonnaise
½ tsp. prepared mustard
¼ tsp. ground ginger
2 fresh ripe pears cut into 1 inch cubes
2 tsp. slivered almonds, toasted
Toss together chicken, green or red sweet peppers
and celery. Sprinkle with seasoned salt. Combine yogurt, mayonnaise,
mustard and ginger. Add to the chicken mixture and slowly add in ripe
pears. Serve on individual lettuce lined plates. Sprinkle with almonds.
Note: be sure that the pears are ripe before using them.
Makes 4 servings. Each serving:
213 calories, 7 grams of fat. 16 grams of carbohydrates, 21 grams of
If you have a recipe that you would like to share in future issues of
thisnewsletter, please send it to me at
I want to offer a special thanks to Maureen
Gonzales for sharing her success with us.
Here is her story:
I never thought I would be writing a success
story. I always felt “normal” inside, but it was others that made me
notice I was obese. When I was 22 years old in 1993 I had a little
girl and while pregnant I gained 150 pounds with her. I was thin my
whole life until then so I didn’t know how to eat right. I always just
ate whatever I wanted.
After gaining that weight while pregnant, I only
lost 30 pounds after giving birth. I went on every diet like everyone
else. I tried everything, even Phen-fen. I was desperate. I lost 90
pounds doing the “non” fat approach, gained it back and then some. I
then lost 75 pounds on Weight Watchers and kept that off for 3 years
then gained it back and then some.
For years I was in denial saying I was happy
being fat and if anyone didn’t like it they didn’t have to look, and
they shouldn’t speak to me about it. I couldn’t help not seeing the
laughing behind my back at restaurants or if I was shopping for
clothes. Then when my daughter was in school I walked up on her
fighting with her friends defending me because they were making fun of
me. I was devastated.
In 2004 I met the love of my life. He loved me at
300+ pounds for who I was! We got married in October 2006. A few
months later I was at my lowest point in my life because I realized my
husband was taking care of me all the time. We would go out to eat
and I couldn’t fit in the seats and he would just say “it is ok honey
I will get a different chair without arms.” Talk about embarrassing!
He didn’t even bat an eye. We would go to movies and I would sit
sideways in the seats yet he didn’t care. He would drop me off by the
door of a store so I wouldn’t have to get out of breath walking
through the parking lot. I am 35 years old, and I thought to myself,
‘this is crazy!! I was too young to act like this.’
My back hurt, my knees hurt, everything hurt! I
went to the doctor and he told me I had high cholesterol and that I
was a candidate for gastric bypass surgery. I went home crying to my
husband. Later that year I came home, sat my daughter and husband
down and said I had decided to have the surgery and I needed their
110% support. They both said “absolutely!” I called my doctor and got
started. I went to all the doctors’ appointments, they tested me for
everything and in a few weeks I was approved and they wanted to get me
right in! I scheduled my surgery on my birthday March 20th
2007. I thought it was a perfect day, the day I was reborn!
I was so scared, and that is an understatement.
I cried all the way to the hospital that morning. I thought I had made
the wrong decision. Dr. Endo of the John Muir Weight Loss Center,
Concord, Ca. performed my surgery. In my eyes, he is my life saver. I
woke up from the operation and had absolutely no pain whatsoever. I
was having a hard time keeping my eyes open, but it was weird I felt
wide awake. I was in the hospital overnight and went home the next
day. I never had any pain. just a little tenderness. I can say it
was not that easy after a few days not being able to eat whatever I
wanted, but I stuck to the diet because I didn’t want to hurt myself.
It has been 2 years now and I have lost 135
pounds! My weight went from 306 pounds to 171 pounds. I hit that
goal in 1 year. I went from a size 26/3x to a 12/Large. I feel
absolutely fantastic and have no regrets. It was the best decision I
I couldn’t have done it without the love and
support of my family and friends. I finally look like I always felt
I was on the inside!
You may reprint any items
from this newsletter in your own print or electronic newsletter. But
please include the following paragraph:
Barbara Thompson’s free e-newsletter featuring helpful information and
research material to help patients succeed following weight loss
Did someone forward this newsletter to
you? Would you like to receive a personal
notification when it is ready for you to read? It's
simple! Just go to
http://www.barbarathompsonnewsletter.com andscroll down to the subscription form.
After filling out the form and submitting it, watch
for an email that asks you to CONFIRM your subscription.
Your subscription is not complete until
we get this confirmation back!
If you like this newsletter, please pass
it on to your friends and family and have them
signup for our notification service.
Do you want to
unsubscribe?Go to the bottom of your
newsletter notification email message and click the unsubscribe link.
You will be automatically deleted.
If you have any problems with this
call our office toll free at (877) 440-1518.