How to Live with Your Gastric Bypass

With your new stomach, you’re going to need a new routine in order to successfully lose weight and stay healthy

A common misunderstanding surrounding gastric bypass surgery is that weight loss occurs because the pouch is so small that the patient has to eat less. Although this is true for the first six months, a regime must be maintained to achieve success. Some doctors have assumed that failure to lose weight after surgery is because some patients aren’t trying hard enough. The truth is that weight loss is as much a mental change as it is physical. Patients haven’t learned how to get the ‘satisfied’ feeling of being full to last long enough.

How does the pouch make you feel full?

The nerves surrounding your new stomach tell your brain when the pouch is distended and that cuts off hunger with a feeling of fullness. When it comes to large pouches vs. small pouches, there is no difference in percentage of weight loss among the patients. This important fact essentially shows that over time it is not the size of the pouch but how it is used that makes weight loss maintenance possible.

Within the first six months after your gastric bypass, you must sip water constantly to consume enough water each day, which causes you to always feel full. After six months, about two thirds of the pouch has grown larger due to the natural healing process. At this time, you can drink one cup of water at a time.

Success after a gastric bypass essentially depends on when you eat and how much water you drink. You must get enough water every day to stay hydrated, and with a reduced stomach size, the liquid can help you gain that feeling of satisfaction.

Our tips for the ideal diet plan following gastric bypass:

1. To avoid getting too hungry between meals, you must eat meals five hours apart.
2. For a healthy diet, eat finely cut meat and raw or slightly cooked veggies with each meal.
3. Try to avoid liquids for one to two hours after each meal to make sure you are getting adequate nutrition from food without filling yourself up too quickly. This also helps to avoid vomiting and dumping syndrome.
4. Between meals sip water slowly and regularly to hydrate yourself and keep yourself full until it is time to eat again.
5. Three hours after meals, increase your intake of water. You should be drinking around six to eight cups per day.

6. Avoid foods that are high in fat or sugar. Instead focus on high-protein foods.

Keeping a journal of your food and water intake can help you monitor your diet to make sure you are getting the nutrition you need without overeating.

In addition, exercise has a big influence for gastric bypass patients. Start slow and build up the amount of exercise you do every day. Your metabolism after the shock of surgery tends to slow down and exercise will help to maintain your metabolic rate. Besides helping to increase the weight loss, it is important to understand that exercise is a natural antidepressant and will help to keep you motivated.

Living with a gastric bypass should be a lifestyle that will benefit you for years to come. While it may not be an easy fix, with proper care your surgery will help you keep the extra weight off.

Need more help or information? Please call or mail Chris Deprez, Patient Care Manager on +32 472 303 321 – .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or via

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