I’ve spent 59 years eating a certain way. I’m kinda used to it. Now, that must change, and I’m finding it incredibly difficult in these beginning stages to adapt. I’m one week (7 days) out from bariatric surgery, and am well aware of the “obvious changes” with my new way of eating ~ smaller portions, no carbs, no sugar ~ but there are so many small nuances associated with eating that I never took into consideration that I’m now having to contend with.
**First, let me explain the term “dumping” ~ it’s something that potentially happens to a bariatric surgery patient, for life, post surgery:
“Dumping syndrome after gastric bypass surgery is when food gets “dumped” directly from your stomach pouch into your small intestine without being digested. There are 2 types of dumping syndrome: early and late. Early dumping happens 10 to 30 minutes after a meal. Late dumping happens 1 to 3 hours after eating. What are the symptoms of dumping syndrome after gastric bypass surgery?
Most people have early dumping symptoms. Typical early dumping symptoms can include:
Abdominal cramps and pain
Stomach growling or rumbling
An urge to lie down after the meal
Heart palpitations and fast heartbeat
Dizziness or fainting
About 1 in 4 people have late dumping symptoms. The symptoms of late dumping syndrome can include:
**From the University of Rochester Medical Center Encyclopedia**
Nobody wants to go through this, right? Least of all me! So, basically, from my perspective, the rest of my life will be dedicated to avoiding this very possibility. Although, I do understand that, as time progresses, you learn what to avoid from experience. I also understand that, just because you might eat a hard boiled egg in the morning and be fine, doesn’t mean you won’t eat the same thing in the afternoon and not dump. And I knew this going in. I’m just trying to help ya’ll understand.
So, imagine going through your life thinking about, thinking ahead, reading ingredients of every morsel that may enter your lips and gauge it for whether or not it’s going to make you sick. I’m already at that threshold. What I didn’t count on are all the little ways we put food in our mouths without much forethought. I went out into the world today, my first post-surgery solo drive to pick up a couple of things at the local WalMart. I had to keep reminding myself that there was literally nothing in that store that I could “safely” eat right now. I’m so used to just picking things up off the shelves, grabbing fruit that looks yummy, some decadent ice cream, and how about that checkout? FULL of temptation! Every single thing there designed to make me sicker than hell. Reese’s peanut butter cup? So innocent! Surely! Ummmm, no!
I managed to leave the store purchasing only a few food items that would be yummy for my husband. I got into my car and sat there for a second. Something from a drive-thru was missing. I typically would go to a drive-thru after shopping, or to a smaller store to get some awesome goodies before I head home. Or maybe stop at the drug store and, while there, just pick up some crackers ~ they’re surely harmless. No again. What made things worse is that I wasn’t even hungry! Imagine if I were even hungry a little bit how much stronger the temptation would be!
I’m probably reeking of paranoia right now. I can currently only eat about 5 items (water, protein drinks, bouillon, sugar free popsicles and just added sugar free pudding. But, even those 5 items were “tolerance tested” prior to consuming. I tried just a taste on my tongue or lip and waited about 5 minutes before even sipping 1/8 of a teaspoon. Sip, wait. Sip, wait. So far, so good! This weekend I can start pureed foods! (digging out my Ninja!)
Indeed, it’s early in the game for me and I’m pretty much scared of everything. I’ve already experience the abdominal pain associated with sneezing and coughing ~ 6 incisions are still healing and very sore. I cannot even think of how painful and frightening it would be to vomit at this point!
Thanks for stopping by, and pardon my paranoia. This, too, shall pass.