Eating with Lap-band surgery - three steps:
First Step: personal accountability - weight is what I eat, not something imposed by an outside force
Second Step: if you want to manage it, you have got to measure it. Not only the calories, but knowing the serving size.
Third Step: Finding out what works with the Lap-band and what doesn’t work with the band.
Certain foods keep you satisfied for a long time. That is, you can eat them and not really feel hungry for a long time. Those foods “stick” with you, they don’t leave you hungry. Certain foods, or certain ways to prepare foods, will not stick with you. You will eat them and you will feel hungry again in a short period of time. Then there are those foods that you will eat that will really stick, I mean they will get “caught up” in the Lap-band, and there are two outcomes — they will come back out through your mouth or they will pass.
Lets talk about the sticky foods first. These are foods that stick in a bad way, that is, they get stuck in the Lap-band. These are foods you will either learn to avoid, or you will have some bad experiences.
Top Foods that get stuck in the Lap-band:
Breads • Pastas • Sticky rice • Rubbery eggs • Chicken
Sometimes these foods will pass, but often they will become stuck. Sometimes people try to put things on the foods to make them flow easier down the Lap-band — like butter, fatty dressings, or other vehicles to try and slide these foods down the Lap-band. This overcompensation simply leads to calories added to your daily diet — translated — you become fat.
The last two items on the list can be modified so that they can be consumed. Eggs do not have to be made rubbery — often these are scrambled eggs. You can make scrambled eggs that are not rubbery (see recipes). Lets make another jump here — a portion is one egg, not two eggs, not three eggs, not those silly four-six, or eight egg breakfasts advertised as value — such is not value, such is gluttony.
Chicken is good for Lap-band surgery patients to eat if you....beat it, beat it
Chicken is a meat that is healthy for you, but often it is made where it is too dry, or too tough. When going to holiday meals, in my particular group of friends, chicken is cooked in one manner — so that it is dried out, and one step from being chicken jerky. In fact, I never knew that chicken could be moist — and I eat at a lot of restaurants. Once I discovered that chicken can be tender I was amazed (and I don’t mean those fried strips called chicken tenders, because they are simply another road to fatville). Part of making chicken tender appeals to me a lot — you get a hammer and you beat it. There are some moist chicken recipes in our section, and again, these work well — but lets talk about beating a piece of chicken meat.
Get a meat hammer - available from those great little stores that sell kitchen items at much higher prices than grocery stores - but the higher priced stores are so much more fun to browse through. You can beat that little piece of chicken, and beat it, and it is a great way to get rid of aggression. Try it — kind of fun. Do not picture your boss when pounding the chicken, nor should you picture your spouse who just forgot to take out the trash, nor should you picture your least favorite politician. But beating the chicken will tenderize it, might help rid you of aggressions, and will certainly allow it to pass once through the Lap-band seamlessly.
Bread, pasta, sliming and the danger of vomiting with Lap-band surgery
Bread is something that people learn very quickly is not worth the price. It becomes a bit of mashed up dough that sticks in the stomach and results in either a PB (productive burp) or results in getting slimed.
“Slimed” is a term used by bandsters that means your body producing excess saliva and mucous to coax the bread out of the stoma and into the lower stomach. Sometimes it works, sometimes it facilities regurgitation of the bread.
Pasta - same thing. Forms a nice little ball (micelle) that collects in the upper part of the stomach like a bezoar that won’t leave until it is expelled out forcefully or passes.
There is a danger in vomiting - it can cause the Lap-band to dislodge, it can cause the band to slip such that you will need another surgery to either replace the Lap-band or you will need to have surgery to have the band moved. That is just the Lap-band danger; there is also a danger that you can injure your stomach or your esophagus, causing a rip or tear leading to excessive bleeding, perforation, or even death. Not that we cannot vomit from time to time, but vomiting needs to be avoided. The classes of foods that need to be watched are those that don’t stick with you, or mechanisms that you can use to put more food inside.
Making Lap-band surgery not work - beating the band
One patient of mine, who we talked about in our first book, is a great guy. He is a big burly fellow, as gentle as they come, and came to me at over 400 pounds. He had a Lap-band placed, and discovered he could overcome the Lap-band if he drank when he ate. So, he drank when he ate. He became upset at one of my staff who told him that if he ate and drank at the same time he would end up eating more and defeating the purpose of the Lap-band. Eating while you drink enables you to eat more, and the idea of the Lap-band is to not overcome the band, but to be able to eat less and be comfortable with eating less.
The same is true with carbonation. Some folks believe that carbonation is evil - and certainly an argument can be made that soda, which is nothing more than compressed and liquefied sugar with flavoring, has one, and only one purpose — to get you to buy more, and in the process of the addiction to these carbonated beverages you store the excess calories as fat. But carbonation for someone who has a Lap-band serves another purpose — it pushes food through the band and makes you feel hungry again.
So you can take foods that work (next chapter) and make them not work by drinking fluid to wash the food out of the upper stomach, or to drink carbonated beverages and push food into the lower pouch.