Bariatric surgery works by restricting the amount of food that you can consume. If your stomach can only hold a cup of food, then you should only put that amount of food on a plate. The bad news is that when when we have more food on a plate than will meet our needs we will eat it without thinking about it. But the good news is that when given less food, we eat that amount and are satisfied.

Why does grazing yield more calories? The pasture is large with no end in site. People who sit down with a defined amount to eat will eat less than someone in a kitchen who simply has a bit here and there (grazes).

So, how do you snack? Plan your snack. Put it on a plate and sit down and eat it. Do not walk into a kitchen with open hands and mouth—you won’t be satisfied and you will put in a lot of calories.

Snack Planner

What are the keys to success for weight loss surgery patients who make it to goal?

Never skip a meal. Meals contain fewer calories than unplanned snacks.

Portion food according to a simple formula of 70 per cent protein and 30 percent vegetables.

When you need a snack, plan it: put the snack on a plate, in a defined portion—and sit down to eat it.

Never graze. Never stand while eating.

Know your Weakness:

Everyone has a weakness for one kind of food or another. Not only for a certain type of food, but also for needing that food at a certain time of day.

Find out when you snack. Keep a record of when you feel hungry or when your body says you need a snack.

Tips to decrease the urges:

If you have high calorie items sitting out in full view, have them put away. Candy sitting on the kitchen counter is waiting to be seen and eaten.

An hour before you will be wanting the snack have two full glasses of water. You need the fluid anyway, and this will decrease the hunger.

Make certain what is in view are things that you can eat, and that you like to eat. If you like apples, have them out, if you like some jerky, have that available.

Plan on what time of day the snack you are going to have. You can determine the calories you will intake, and you can plan to sit down and eat it.

Example:

Harry always found himself hungry on his way home from work, and as soon as he arrived he would be in the kitchen eating the candy his wife had left out. His wife did not have a weight problem and enjoyed candy. They didn’t eat dinner until two hours after Harry got home so he was ready to have something.

To break the after-work snack habit, Harry drank two glasses of water at work before driving home. In the morning he put the candy and the potato chips in the cupboard and put out the apples and bananas.

When he got home he fixed himself a plate of sliced apples and some cheddar cheese (one slice 94 calories, one apple 81 calories for a total of 175 calories)—instead of potato chips (one grab bag 305 calories) and candy (234 calories for a handful) which would total 539 calories. The net savings was 359 calories.