On Wednesday I attended a pre-op class required by my surgeon. It was at the hospital and went from 7:45 am to 2:30 pm. I can't believe how much I learned! I was presented with a very professional binder titled Patient Educational Handbook. But first things first....I had to select the spa treatment I wanted the day after surgery. All part of the package. I opted for a pedicure and facial! One of the tidbits I learned is that our stomach is the size of a flat football (hence, mine is the basketball) but surgery will reduce it to the size of an egg! After about 9 months, it should stretch and stabilize at around the size of a baseball.
There were a group of us there. First up was the bariatric floor's head nurse. She reviewed the surgery and the hospital stay. The staff clinical psychologists helped my understand they way we might feel and he addressed our fears. He gave us a checklist on managing our weight and reminded me that this was not a diet. He provided a lot of info on who to address our feelings after the surgery as well. In the notebook is also a self tracker for eating habits to chart our progress. Then he lead us in some relation techniques. Included in our packet was a meditation CD to take home. The respiratory therapists came in and showed us how to use a spirometer so our lungs would be clear after surgery. The Dietitian/Nutritionist portion answered the most questions for me. She broke down what we would eat the first week and what we would eat and review in the 1 week post-op class. She went over all the vitamins that are very necessary for the rest of the WLS patients life: Multi-Vitamin, B-Complex, Iron, Calcium Citrate and sub lingual Vitamin B-12. In the notebook, she also provided a bunch of charts on the vitamin options and prices a a bunch of different stores! It was all about the ABC's of nutrition for the weight loss patient. Next was the exercise physiologist. She gave us all a pedometer so we could start charting the amount of steps we take every day. Exercise is great, but you don't need to do it to lose weight. You do it so you won't be all flabby. I think when I lose about 100 pounds, i might feel like being active again!
What all of them stated time and time again it that to succeed we must follow these five rules:
1. Protein first at every meal. easy... meat fish or legumes first
2. Drink at least 64 ozs of water each day Arizona residents do that anyway
3. No snacking...it promotes eating for non-hunger reasons. You have a smaller stomach and smaller appetite, plus there is twice monthly group therapy meeting for support and one specifically geared toward resolving emotional eating issues.
4. Exercise at least 4 times per week for 30 minutes this is what thin people do by way of walking and general daily activities
5. You must take vitamin and mineral supplementation daily for life. I already take daily meds for depression and diabetes...I'd be much happier swapping those for vitamin's!
The five rules are rules we should always follow and pass along to our families to help shape their eating habits.
I can do this!!! I will succeed!
By the way, I fell in love with girl's blog....she's so clever and funny! It's good to be able to connect with people that are living the WLP life. Plus, she reviews products in a very real way! Check out my girl Melting Mama.