Bariatric Diet: Planning a Bariatric Grocery List - My Bariatric Life

Patient Expert

Preparing a grocery list was a much more simple task prior to my gastric bypass surgery. Buy those foods I liked regardless of the quality of the choice, but the least expensive offering for that food, and buy a generous amount of that food. It's not that there wasn't at least some kind of an effort made at balance; much of the problem was the quality of product.

Time was also an important factor that was given consideration when making my choices for a grocery list. When I mention time, I do not mean minutes used to make the list. What I mean is the length of time it will take to prepare what is on that list. The quicker the better.

And don't forget snacks. I'll need plenty of those. Small portions of food slotted between larger portions of food so that the flow is not interrupted.

It's not that a list was all too critical anyway. It was more of a guideline to deviate from the moment some product jumped free from a shelf into my line of vision. It would reflexively make its way into my cart and as for the grocery list --well, what grocery list?

If you wish to grow obese and maintain that standard, think of the preceding words as instruction. If you wish something different, then read a bit more.

Planning  a Bariatric Diet Shopping List

Before you begin penning a grocery list, a plan will be needed. Concentrate on purchasing your food along the perimeter of the store. This is where the fresh and least processed foods are kept. Stay away from the center aisles which are filled with junked food. You do not want to tempt yourself at this early stage. Willpower will increase over time as will your desire to eat more healthful foods.

Your diet after gastric bypass surgery will be quite different from your pre-surgery diet. As you assemble your support team, either a dietician or nutritionist should be involved to help insure that all your dietary needs are met. For one thing, most of your stomach will be bypassed after weight loss surgery. Instead of being able to hold about four cups of food, your holding capacity will decrease to about one ounce or two tablespoons until your pouch expands.

Begin your list with an emphasis on proteins. Protein may very well be the most important component of you new diet. Without it, your wounds from surgery may not heal, you may lose mean muscle mass, and there could also be a loss of hair. You will need about 60-80 grams of quality protein per day. Lean organic meats are the best quality sources.

Fruits and vegetables should be fresh. If you cannot buy fresh then buy frozen. Stay away from canned fruits and vegetables, which are full or sugar, sodium, and devoid of flavor and nutrition.

Where possible, make every effort to shop at farmers markets, Community Supported Agriculture, fish markets, butchers, and the like. Here you will find higher quality, more nutritious foods than at your big box grocer. You may even find it fun to shop in these environments, like I do.

Your diet will need to be supplemented with vitamins because you will not be eating enough food to obtain a sufficient amount of vitamins. Two multivitamins a day that contain iron are recommended. Sublingual vit B12 is important because a deficiency can lead to anemia. Compromised intrinsic factors can negate the absorption of vit B12. Also, 1200-1500 mg. of calcium citrate per day is recommended.

It is important to stay hydrated, and you must drink an ample amount of liquids each day. Water is your best bet for optimal health.

Immediately after surgery, you will only be able to drink 1-2 ounces of liquid at a time. All fluids should be non-carbonated and non-caffeinated. Fruit juices should be heavily diluted with water. Fluids should be had between meals but never during meals, and you should stop drinking no more than fifteen minutes before a meal and resume drinking one hour after you have eaten.

Begin by drinking 4-6 ounces between meals per day and gradually increase to 8 ounces eight to ten  times per day.

Now that some guidelines have been established, you are ready to create your bariatric shopping list. Please continue to the next post Bariatric Diet: The Bariatric Grocery List. See you there.

The Hamptons Center for Bariatric Surgery  - accessed 6/14/12

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You can read about  my decision  to have weight loss surgery back in 2003 and  my journey  to maintain a lifetime of obesity disease management since that time. My wish is to help you on your own journey of  lifetime obesity disease management  with shareposts along the way to help you navigate that journey successfully.