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Old 05-04-2014, 01:38 PM   #1
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Hi--New to this board, but not to Low Carb!

I am glad I found this section of LCF! I am in the pre-surgery phase and going through mandatory classes at the moment. Surgery (VSG) is tentatively planned for July/August depending on when I finish losing the mandatory 10% of weight. I have lost 13 of the required 30 pounds.

I am a longtime low carber, and have lost 50 pounds twice in the last 15 years with low carb eating. My health is definitely much better the second I cut out all sugars, flours, rice, etc. I would go towards low carb instead of surgery if I thought I could stick with it. I am a person who can do low carb for a while (doing strict low carb now, for example, to lose my 10%) but I have certain problems with the diet that make it difficult for me as a long-term choice.

I know from experience that I don't go into ketosis unless I go to extremes (less than 10 carbs/day); even the smallest amount of fruit or too large a salad will stall me; my weight loss on LC has always been very slow (faster than in typical low cal/low fat diets, but still slow) and I always have to calorie-count as well because I get very little appetite suppression even in ketosis and will happily eat an entire package of bacon or 16 oz steak if I don't measure and log my food. Despite all this it is still the only "diet" that ever worked well for me, and it always makes me feel better physically, with fewer urges to binge or overeat compared to alternatives.

The difficulty of being patient with the slow loss is one thing but the real thing that sabotages me is a weird side effect I've gotten both times. I start this WOE liking meat and veggies just fine, but both times about three or four months in, I developed an aversion to meat and fatty foods. I would begin craving fruit and vegetarian food constantly. Eventually I would cave in and the healthy foods I'd binge on (juice smoothies, quinoa salads) would stall me and start me back on the path to high carb eating and processed food hell.

As I approach my surgery date I will be on protein shakes for a week before the surgery and for 2-3 weeks after, slowly moving to soft foods, etc. I have located an extremely tasty, low-carb protein powder (Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard) and have already started drinking it since it saves time and cuts down on the choices I need to make. I currently drink it with almond milk with good results. After I get to the stage of eating real food again....I just don't know. I hope I'll be able to enjoy small amounts of fruits again along with my proteins and veggies.

Can any of you experienced WLS veterans talk about your post-surgery diets? How did you adapt low-carb to your new stomach size? How does fruit affect you? Will it still stall me as it does now, or does the restrictiveness of the remaining stomach mean I will lose weight regardless, as long as I don't go over my portions?

I don't have a nutritionist I can ask these questions. All the dieticians I've met as part of my program are hardcore into low-fat, "healthy carb" eating. I am stuck being silent about my food choices unless I want a lecture. I'm OK with that (I find real-life experience more informative anyway, and as long as I am losing that 10% they aren't very curious how I am doing it).

Thanks for any assistance you can give!
Kim
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Old 05-04-2014, 03:19 PM   #2
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Welcome, and I hope you'll join us on the daily (more active) threads as well!

I'm a little over 4 years post RNY and my diet is not traditional low carb. I eat lean protein, fruits and raw veggies (just a weird quirk I prefer raw veggies over cooked). I attempt to stay away from bread carbs but I do cave. I do not eat sugar, I do not eat high fat foods (both by preference rather than tolerance, you can eat these post op if you don't mind the side effects). I do not eat pasta or rice (from a tolerance standpoint, these don't sit well and cause pain).

My diet is healthy enough to prevent the large amounts of regain that you *can* see with WLS, but I have regained a bit. It always happens when I slack off on the exercise either due to injury or just plain being lazy. So know going into this that the surgery will help you lose weight, but it will not always get you all the way to goal without a change of both eating and exercising habits. It's an awesome tool, but you have to embrace the tool and use it to it's fullest ability!
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Old 05-04-2014, 07:31 PM   #3
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I'll admit I haven't read the entirety of your post yet, but I just wanted to say
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Old 05-04-2014, 08:52 PM   #4
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Welcome! I am almost two years with my sleeve and I couldn't be happier with my decision. To answer your question about diet, I find that the surgery of course impacts how much I can eat due to restriction, but also seems to have changed how I respond to food. There are hormonal changes that occur that are still not fully understood. I focus on protein but I also eat a moderate level of good carbs and good fats. During weight loss I ate around 600 to 800 calories, with a minimum of 60 grams of protein, usually closer to 75. If I ate that much protein, I didn't really need to count anything else, the ratios took care of themselves.
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Old 05-05-2014, 06:04 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse View Post
a minimum of 60 grams of protein, usually closer to 75
I forgot to add that I ate between 120-150 grams of protein just to keep my lab values at a low normal range (6.0 usually). Once or twice it dropped into the 5.something range and it was hard to get it back up. But then again, I had a RNY which has malabsorption and I did (and still do) work out on average 5-6 days a week.

You want to err on the side of higher protein whenever possible so that you can minimize muscle wasting. Your body doesn't care what it eats when you are actively losing weight. It just burns fat or muscle willy nilly to try to make up for the huge calorie deficit. Your needs probably will not be as great as mine were (are) but I would say a MINIMUM of half your goal weight in grams of protein and more like 2/3 your goal weight if you are active. And then adjust by lab results (which is the rule for everything else as well, for life).
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Old 05-05-2014, 06:58 AM   #6
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I know you are still pre-op, but come join us here at our monthly thread.

And here at our Monday accountability thread.

All are welcome and you can ask questions, see "real" life post op, all that!
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Old 05-06-2014, 06:49 AM   #7
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Thanks so much to everyone for the warm welcome! I will start participating in the monthly threads. Wasn't sure if it was OK since I have not had surgery yet. At yesterday's meeting they told us our surgeons were scheduling 1-2 WEEKS after reaching our 10% and finishing our 12 week classes---I am on week 6---that means more like July than August---wow!!!!
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Old 05-13-2014, 03:57 PM   #8
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Glad to hear your surgery sounds soon! It is an awesome life-changing journey!
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