Is changing one’s food mindset before surgery a critical step?

You know – that’s a pretty difficult question to answer! We are all so individual and go into surgery with different things going on. Some of us have a physiology that has been resistant to weight loss our whole lives –no matter what method was employed. Others have been successful at losing hundreds of pounds – just not keeping them off. Others have gone into the surgical experience with different issues that may have spurred behavioral outcomes that have been harmful.

When it comes right down to it, though, the bottom line is this:

Food = fuel

I don’t know why it took me so long after my surgery to figure that one out, but honestly, it just is. I can choose to put really cheap fuel into my body and maybe get a quick burst of energy from it and not such great outcomes later on down the line. OR, I can choose to put really GREAT fuel into my body – have excellent sustained energy from it, and excellent outcomes later on down the line.

I’ll admit it – I’m a bit of a granola girl. We have ½ an acre and a huge garden and we organically grow as much as we can, I preserve and can pretty much whatever I can find in my own garden, at local farm outlets, etc., and cook from scratch – we’ve got way too many food allergies in our household to do otherwise.

This isn’t new! It was stuff I would have done as a pre-op had my health allowed it. I’ve got a culinary degree – I love food! I’m a certifiable foodie! (I live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest – it’s hard not to be here!) I’m not a food saint. But, I do basic stuff to take care of me first and foremost:

  • Get in 90 to 120 grams of protein daily (from food – I’m allergic to pretty much all protein products)
  • Get in a bare minimum of 64 oz of non-sweetened (artificially or otherwise) fluids daily, with an eye toward actually getting in twice that – gotta love iced green tea!
  • Get in 30 to 35 grams of dietary fiber daily
  • I need at least 50% of my calories coming from fat – or my hair/skin/nails are just too dry.
  • Take all of my supplements.
  • Try to move a little more today than I did yesterday. (I’ve got some orthopedic issues that make this a challenge sometimes.)

I don’t diet. I do go through periods of time where I have to do some self-evaluation and determine if I’m meeting my own goals. (Part of the reason why I love and – they are great resources!)

I don’t count carbs – I just make sure I get in all of my dietary fiber.

I don’t count calories – but I make sure that I’m thoughtfulabout the choices I make. I want to be healthy and strong! I’ve got three very active kids – a 10 and 14 year old boys, and a 15 year old girl – andI’m the chick they spend the most of their time with – so I want to not only be alert – but not a boring Mom, either! And, I’ve got the coolest husband in the history of the world – so I want to be at my best for the time we have to share together, as well.

There’s lots of motivation to make the most of my DS. I guess the one thing that I should say though – is that before my DS it was harder to make healthier choices. After my DS I CRAVE the healthy stuff. It’s like my body knows what a wonderful gift it is! Before DS a cheeseburger would make me happy. Today, yeah, well, I could choke one down, but it doesn’t thrill me at all – I’d MUCH rather have a grilled halibut filet in some yummy sauce. It’s a weird, thing. But something I won’t take for granted – I consider it a gift.