Bariatric surgery is a type of weight loss technique which involves reduction of the stomach size to eventually minimize the consumption of food. The general criteria to be an eligible candidate for this surgery is extreme obesity, with the Body Mass Index (BMI) being above 40. It is highly recommended for weight loss in excessively obese people, taking into consideration its success rate. Doctors recommend that a proper diet be followed by the patients right after surgery, as the success of the operation depends on that. Hence, bariatric diet recipes have become very popular to avoid any complications.
The diet involves four stages, the main aim of these stages being to help the patient gradually get used to a normal diet. Hence, after discharge, patients are provided with a diet menu in order to guide them on what can be consumed for breakfast, lunch, afternoon snack, dinner, and evening snack from day one. Consuming proteins is very important after this surgery, and there are many recipes available for patients.
Immediately after the surgery, the patient is allowed to have only liquids for a week. Since the stomach is reduced to the size of a walnut, only liquids like milk, juices, broth, water, etc., can be taken in sips at quick intervals and without gulping. Following recipe for a Green Banana Porridge can be an easy as well as delicious option in this stage:
- 1 green banana
- 1 cup water
- 2 tbsp. milk or cream
- ½ tbsp. butter
- ½ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. vanilla extract
For this stage, only blended or pureed food is allowed. The diet in this stage should be rich in proteins and should not be taken in chunks. Food items like eggs, yogurt, cheese, etc., should be pureed in a blender and taken for easy digestion. Following is the recipe for Blended Chicken with Pepper that would be ideal for consumption in this stage:
- ½ cup cooked chicken
- 2 tbsp. of hot broth
- ½ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. black pepper
For the third stage, which starts from the fifth week onwards, the diet should consist of soft solid preparations. The food must be swallowed only after proper chewing, as the stomach is getting slowly accustomed to solid food. The diet can include items like fish, cottage cheese, rice, meat paste, eggs, etc. The following recipe for Mini Turkey Meatballs can be consumed in this stage:
- 1 lb. ground turkey
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup bread crumbs
- ¼ cup grated cheese
- ½ cup finely diced onions
- 1 tbsp. minced parsley
- ½ tsp. black pepper
The fourth stage, which starts from the tenth week onwards, can include all solid food items taken in a normal diet. Care should be taken that the food is low in fat and sugar content, and is consumed in smaller amounts to reduce the chances of weight gain. The following recipe for Breaded Chicken Parmesan can be a good option for this stage:
- 2 ounces boneless chicken breast
- 1 tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup bread crumbs
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tbsp. dried onion
- ½ tsp. red pepper powder (optional)
- 1-2 tbsp. olive oil
Drinking lots of fluids is recommended for patients, but avoid drinking during meals. It is advisable to stop eating once the stomach feels full. Also, food should be chewed well before swallowing. As it might not always be possible to maintain the recommended levels of necessary nutrients through diet, doctors often advise supplements of proteins, vitamins, and minerals after a bariatric weight loss surgery. Regular diet, not exceeding 1400 calories per day, can be followed from the fourth month onwards. Maximum care should be taken to include as much proteins as possible in the daily menu, along with vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Foods containing fat, sugar, and alcohol are a huge hindrance in losing weight, so are best avoided.
Note: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.