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Bariatric Surgery Dieting

Below is our library of post-bariatric surgery dieting articles. Please read this page first before going on to the next articles.

The Five Post-Op Diet Phases

Post-Op Dieting and Nutritional Articles

Bariatric Surgery General Guidelines

  • No carbonated beverages or alcohol for 6 weeks
  • No heaving lifting or exercise for 6 weeks (walking is fine and encouraged).
  • No swimming, tub baths, hot tubs, or Jacuzzis for 6 weeks.
  • Wound care: clean daily, gently, using only soap and water, cover with gauze or band aid.
  • Follow diet as outlined below

Dieting Outline for Post Baritaric Surgery

  • Keep a food diary.
  • Eat slowly. Take small bites and chew thoroughly - at least 25 times.
  • Avoid items with large amounts of sugars, especially those in liquid form. They are filled with non-nutrient calories and slow down weight loss.
  • Remember the stomach can hold 3-4 oz after surgery. You will probably feel satisfied after 2-3 tablespoons of food. Do Not Overeat! Over time your stomach will stretch. It takes 6-9 months (possibly longer) for your new stomach size to stabilize and allow you determine your normal meal amount.
  • Stop eating when you feel comfortably satisfied.  If ignored, vomiting will follow and you can stretch the size of the stomach. If you are unable to keep anything down and are having extreme difficulty staying hydrated, sip on Gatorade which also has electrolytes necessary for normal cell function. Once you feel better, return to non-calorie beverages such as water and flat diet drinks.
  • Drink at least 6 to 8 cups (48 to 64 oz) of fluid per day to prevent dehydration.
  • Stop drinking liquids 15 minutes before meals and wait 30 minutes after meals.
  • Eat 3 small nutrient dense meals + 1 high protein snack a day.
  • Introduce new foods one at a time in order to rule out any intolerance.  If a food is not tolerated, reintroduce it in 1 week.
  • If you cannot tolerate dairy, try a substitute Lactaid milk.  You can also try soy milk fortified with calcium and vitamin D.
  • Add 1 – sub-lingual B12 vitamin a day (available at all local pharmacies over-the-counter).
  • If you experience heartburn or acid reflux, this will be helped by taking Milk of Magnesia.
  • Don’t abuse your new stomach by eating solids too soon or over-eating!

Stock Your Pantry: Grocery List For Post Bariatric Surgery Patients

It is encouraged that you plan ahead and stock your kitchen with foods that will support your nutritional needs after surgery.  The following are suggestions to get you started.

Whey protein powder
Vitamin/mineral supplements
Natural peanut butter
Almond butter, soy-nut butter
Cocoa powder
Crushed flax seed
Herbal teas  
Bottled water (non-sparkling)
No calorie beverages (non-carbonated)
Sugar free frozen fruit
Sugar free canned fruit
Baby pureed fruits
Low fat cream based soups
Vegetable soups
Lentil soups
Bean soups
Chicken broth
Beef broth
Tomato soup
Fat free refried beans
Pasta/tomato sauce
Canned fish (salmon, tuna, sardines)
Canned white meat chicken
Cream of Wheat  
Kashi hot cereal
Any spice or herb to flavor food
Favor extracts: vanilla / orange / mint
True lemon/lime
Torani or DaVinci Gourmet sugar free    
flavored syrups
Skim milk
Soy milk (Soy slender, Continent 8)
Cottage cheese
Ricotta cheese
Plain non fat yogurt
Sugar free nonfat yogurt
Eggs or Eggbeaters
Silken Tofu
V-8 juice
Canned peas, carrots, beets, squash
Baby pureed vegetables

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