In my years of working with weight loss surgery patients the best advice is to follow directions, especially in the first weeks and months after your surgery. I have seen people get themselves into trouble, and back into their surgeon's office, by advancing their diet too quickly. Guidelines for the diet progression vary greatly between surgery types and surgical practices. Even with these variations, I am certain you won't find any surgeon or dietitian allowing a sub sandwich on the way home from the hospital or pepperoni pizza three weeks postop.
Allow time for healing.
The diet progression is necessary to allow for healing of sutures and/or staple lines. You want to avoid any food that is going to cause retching, regurgitation, or vomiting because any of those reactions puts pressure on those sutures and/or staple lines. Your dietitian will give you diet steps and guide you through the progression until you are able to tolerate a regular diet.
The typical diet progression to a regular diet is
- Clear liquids,
- Full liquids,
- Puree or smooth foods, and
- Soft foods.
Yes, it can seem like forever before you can eat "normal" food again. But remember eating "normal" is what got you to weight loss surgery. It's time to develop a new normal as you work with your new tool. Even though a food may call your name, don't push the envelope.
Vicki Bovee, MS, RD, LD