Post-Bariatric Surgery SmoothieUltimately, if you can dream it you can drink it, but clearly some smoothies go down more easily!Following bariatric surgery (gastric bypass/lap band), patients are generally on a very restrictive liquid diet for the first three weeks consisting solely of high protein drinks with no more than 30 grams of sugar and at least 10 grams of protein in an eight-ounce serving and instructed to avoid high fat and fiber.Here's a variation on a smoothie I’ve recommend to several post-bariatric surgery clients made from all-natural ingredients. I understand your frustration. It blows my mind that most of the high protein drinks recommended are highly processed, completely unnatural and frequently high in sugar or artificial sweeteners. For example, each 8oz Boost High-Protein beverage has 33grams of carbs, 18 from sugar in the Strawberry flavor, and 27 in the Chocolate! Downing one lab-created isolate-based protein beverage after another is miserable. Not only do they taste pretty foul, but our digestive system really hasn’t evolved since prehistoric man, it likes simple food. Erring from what was naturally growing or grazing in the field (or sea) gave cavepeople the runs, constipation and gas just as the largely-processed foods affect us today. A healthy person is not fully equipped to utilize the synthetic protein and added vitamins in these beverages; thus, someone who’s key digestive organ is in repair will especially benefit from going all-natural.To be fair, there are two drawbacks to this smoothie. One, a little effort is required to throw the ingredients in the blender. Hopefully, you’ll have someone helping you in the first few days anyway! Two, it allows you to enjoy the taste of your beverage, a potential danger for previous overeaters. Just remember the seriousness of your chosen means to a healthy weight: you’re literally going to be sedated and have an operation followed by a lengthy recovery. Keep that in mind as you develop a new healthy relationship with food. Eat to live, don’t live to eat. Yes, this smoothie does contain nuts and fruit, both on the bariatric diet no-no list. Patients are asked not to consume nuts because they contain fiber, which expands in the belly, are high in fat, and are very dense, thus, hard to for the recovering digestive system to break down. However, the two tablespoons of almond flour only contributes 1.5 grams of fiber and 7.5 grams of fat. Regarding the density/digestibility issue, almond flour is already a powder made of very finely ground almonds. Blending it in a blender further eliminates the density issue. Enjoy the flavor, unlock an additional 3.5grams of protein, and utilize the monounsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids, both which reduce inflammation and assist protein in the cell repair essential post-surgery. Recovering patients are also asked to avoid fruit because of the high sugar content. The 1/8 banana provides substantial flavor and sweetness as well as Vitamin C, Potassium and Manganese and Vitamin B6, all with only 4 grams of natural sugar.Again, far less than 30 grams of sugar guideline and the processed beverages recommended!Try the smoothie first without the cinnamon and ginger especially in your first week, as they are mildly inflammatory. If Round 1 goes well and your doctor approves, try one in Round 2, and possibly add the second spice in Round 3. Cinnamon and grated ginger root contribute flavor, and are recently being linked with anti-cancer causing properties, lowering blood sugar levels, soothing the stomach and improving memory function.INGREDIENTS:1/8 small banana (ripe or even past-ripe w/ brown spots; they’re sweeter and easier to blend) * If you hate the taste of bananas, try 1 ounce (about 10 frozen blueberries)1 cup unsweetened soymilk 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract2 tablespoons almond flour1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder Dash of cinnamon1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger (no skin!) OR wet jarred stuff)DIRECTIONS:
Put the ingredients in your blender, ideally, in this order as the banana hitting the blade first lubes it for crushing the ice and nuts. Blend. Add a bit more liquid if the blades get stuck.
Caution:Doctor’s rules apply. Still drink slowly and only two ounces at a time during every hour you’re awake as you learn how much volume your new tiny tummy can comfortably hold without disrupting your sutures or stretching. Smoothie makes just over 8 ounces and still passes the strainer test designed to avoid dense/difficult to digest liquids.NUTRITIONAL INFO:Calories:200Fat:11.5gTotal Carbohydrate:10g(Dietary Fiber: 3g, Sugars: 5g)Protein:11g
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