I've delayed posting since I've been busy teaching all-day workshops (at days 12 & 13 post surgery) and getting ready to begin a new childbirth education series tonight. Here's what's been going on...
I still supposed to be on "mushy", pudding-like consistency foods to allow the stitches holding the band in place to heal. There is no saline in the band at this time, hence little restriction to how much food goes into the pouch. The food that lands in the upper pouch can pretty much flow through the open stoma into the rest of my stomach. Now, combine low restriction with eating food the consistency of baby food that's designed to have no resistance as it travels through the new stomach pouch and you've got a recipe for...HUNGER.
My food volume at meals is about 1 cup. I am trying eat that cup of food slowly to feel the first inklings of satiety. If I'm very hungry when I sit down, though, every fiber, every cell of my being is screaming "Throw away that baby spoon, get a ladle and fire it down NOW!". I try to imagine that I have a small, very expensive sports car wrapped around my stomach that requires a driver that is attentive and knows how to drive it, how it like to be handled in the turns, for optimal performance. It requires special fuel, a knowledge of when to release the clutch and when to downshift. Pop the clutch too early, and it's going to stall. Don't flood the engine. And God forbid, don't run off the road by eating a 2-3 cups quickly and popping out all those stitches!
The medical advice for this phase of the process is to increase protein intake (via cottage cheese and a high-protein/low-carb drinks). Two more weeks. Two more weeks.
It's been helpful to be told and to remember that "you just have to get through this hard part". Once I get my first band fill (March 16th), the restriction begins and presumably (and as promised), the hunger ends.
So far, I'm down about 14 pounds, with the majority of that occurring the first week. This last week, I consumed a higher percentage of carbohydrates than the first week and added back about 300 - 400 calories a day so that I'm at 1,100 - 1,200 calories per day now and consuming about 60-80 grams of protein a day. I also exercised for the first time since surgery yesterday.
I have a couple ideas for posts coming up:
Restricted eating and consequent emotions
How I chose my bariatric surgeon
Eating in social situations with a band.
Let me know you're out there!