Knowing how to plan your meals after bariatric surgery is a vital part of successful weight loss.
At OakBend Medical Group, our bariatric surgeons, Christopher Reilly, MD, FACS, Steven M. Thomas, MD, FACS, and Genna Lubrano, MD, offer aftercare services to support your weight loss journey. We can help meal planning make sense for you, so you can make lifelong changes to keep the weight off for good.
We’ve included some meal prep ideas that we recommend following a gastric sleeve procedure to maximize your weight loss results.
Initial liquid diet
After gastric sleeve surgery, you will follow an all-liquid diet for several weeks. The goals of the liquid diet are to keep your body hydrated and support your body as it adjusts to the changes that surgery causes.
A gastric sleeve surgery reduces the size of your stomach to a small sleeve-like pouch. This means you can eat less food to lose weight. This is a lot of change for your body initially.
You need some time to adapt to your smaller stomach size and the liquid diet will help you readjust to nutrients gradually and with greater comfort.
A liquid diet can include:
- Clear broth
- Pureed soups
- Protein shakes
Focus on foods that are nutritious and sugar-free and follow our surgeons’ instructions for eating on a schedule.
Soft food diet
After finishing your liquid diet phase, you can start eating pureed foods to gently introduce solid foods back into your meals.
There are a number of foods that puree nicely and contain the essential nutrients you need to stay healthy. Opt for high-protein foods that help you build muscle mass and make it easier to burn more calories.
These foods can include:
- Refried beans
- Greek yogurt
Puree your ingredients in a blender until they have a smooth consistency. You should stay away from red meats and starchy foods like oatmeal, pasta, and breads.
Solid food diet
It may take about seven weeks after your surgery before it’s safe to start following a regular diet. Some healthy choices to include in your meals include:
- Whole milk
- Whole grains
- Cottage cheese
High-protein foods like eggs, lean meats, seafood, and lentils are encouraged, as are healthy fats like olive oil and avocados.
Practice portion control
With a smaller stomach size, you need to learn how to use portion control when eating. It’s good to have measuring spoons and other tools that help you control your portion sizes properly. Our team determines how many calories you should be taking in each day based on your health.
When preparing meals ahead of time, use small containers to make it easy to reheat and eat the right amount of food. You can also stock up on smaller-sized plates that fool your brain into believing you’re not depriving yourself of anything.
If you’re dining out, select restaurants that offer a healthy menu. Choose whole foods that are high in protein and ask for a to-go container to portion your food out. Also consider sharing a full meal with someone else.
We can also provide additional meal prep resources to keep you on track with your post surgical diet if you find yourself craving junk or bored with your current meal plans.
Call OakBend Medical Group in Richmond, Texas, to schedule a consultation if you’re interested in bariatric surgery or book an appointment online today.