The Bariatric Diet Grocery List: What to Buy

by Cheryl Ann Borne Patient Advocate

Preparing a healthful grocery list was not easy for me after bariatric surgery. It took a long time for me to learn what the most healthful choices are for my bariatric life. Before you set about making a bariatric grocery list, I suggest that you read my post Bariatric Diet: Planning the Bariatric Grocery List so that you are best prepared to make the most healthful choices for your bariatric life.

Pre-Bariatric Surgery Diet Grocery List

In order to better promote a good beginning for your weight loss program, pre-surgery dietary changes are recommended. Some surgeons require that weight loss patients lose 10% of their body weight prior to gastric bypass surgery while other surgeons may restrict weight loss patients to a liquid protein diet for two weeks their gastric bypass surgery. This dietary changes will not only better prepare weight loss patients for surgery but will also help define the change in diet that will follow bariatric surgery. A high-protein, calorie controlled diet prior to surgery is a good starting point.

Recommendations for a liquid diet prior to weight loss surgery may be something similar to 6 Slim-Fast Originals per day, or 7 Slim-Fast Optima per day, or 7 Slim-fast High Protein per day, or 7 Slim-Fast Smoothies 99% lactose free per day.

After your gastric bypass surgery, you will then move through the phases of your new bariatric diet. Here are Post-Operative Guidelines for the Bariatric Patient.

Bariatric Diet Phase One Grocery List

The initial phase of your bariatric diet will take place while you are in the hospital. You will be restricted to a clear liquid diet and will be required to sip fluids slowly. Your post-surgical diet during these few days will consist of water, ice chips, clear broth, sugar-free jello, sugar-free drink mixes, and sugar-free popsicles.

Bariatric Diet Phase Two Grocery List

Following your discharge from the hospital, you will return home and be on a full liquid diet for about two weeks.

The greater part of your phase two bariatric diet will consist of protein shakes, cream soups, and clear liquids.

Protein shakes should include about 20-25 grams of protein per serving, have less than 200 calories per serving, and less than 10 grams of sugar per serving. Learn about the Best Protein Powders for Weight Loss.

Your phase two shopping list should have strained cream soups (or you can make your own), low-fat or light almond milk, protein powder, broth, sugar-free jello and popsicles, and light yogurt smoothies.

Bariatric Diet Phase Three Grocery List

The third phase of the bariatric diet extends from days 14-28 and consists of a pureed diet.

Provided the liquid diet has gone well, you can now have foods that have been pureed to the consistency of baby food. The foods should have minimal fat and sugar contents and should be chewed well and eaten slowly. When eating, the order of consumption should be lean proteins first, fresh vegetables next, and fruits last. Fresh or frozen food choices are best. Avoid canned food as it is devoid of nutrients and high in chemical additives. You should not be drinking liquids with your meals. And you should not be eating grains (FYI, corn is a grain not a vegetable).

A blender and a measuring cup will come in handy at phase three.

The phase three shopping list will include all foods from phases one and two as well as ground or pureed chicken and beef, low-fat mayonnaise and fat-free gravy, canned tuna or chicken, eggs, pureed fruits and vegetables, mashed or pureed beans, low-fat ricotta cheese, and sugar-free pudding. Try to use as few processed foods as possible. This will set you up for weight-loss success and optimal health for the rest of your life.

Bariatric Diet Phase Four Grocery List

Phase four of the bariatric diet begins at week five and is a diet of soft-solid foods. There is no longer a need to blend or puree foods.

The stage four grocery list includes all foods from phases one, two, and three as well as high protein foods such as boneless chicken breasts, fish fillets, turkey, low-sugar yogurts, eggs, tofu, and beans.

Vegetables such as green beans, carrots, cauliflower, spinach, and broccoli can also be eaten. They can be fresh or frozen.

Fruits in phase four are pears, peaches and mandarin oranges. The fruits may also be fresh or frozen but make sure that frozen fruit is sugar-free.

Cheryl Ann Borne
Meet Our Writer
Cheryl Ann Borne

Cheryl Ann Borne, writing as My Bariatric Life, is a contributing writer and Paleo recipe developer. Cheryl is an award-winning healthcare communications professional and obesity health advocate who has overcome super obesity and it’s related diseases. She publishes the website MyBariatricLife.org, and microblogs on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Cheryl is also writing her first book and working on a second website.