Having had the gastric sleeve surgery in July I discovered a rather hugely important issue after surgery. You see I have always needed a high fibre diet for comfort reasons. After surgery they put you on a virtually no fibre liquid diet followed onward by a pathetically low fibre diet. You see you can’t eat enough fruit and veg after eating meat in order to get your fibre and nutrients. Enter a switch in diet as fruit, veg and fibre are non-negotiable.
Protein is tough to fulfill on a sleeve stomach following a plant-based diet…not impossible but it takes work and comes with more calories in the long run. On top of the typical challenge I also get to battle the natural inclination to not eat in the morning as I am not hungry. Why is that a problem? There are not enough hours in the day to eat enough volume without eating breakfast. I do believe my solution will have to be smoothies as it is the easiest to eat and packs the most nutritional punch however oatmeal with flax, hemp seeds, peanut butter and raisins works pretty well if I feel able to eat it all.
I have noticed another challenge for me though. With each meal I feel able to eat a bit less each time. Lunch I often seem to only pull off eating about 15g of protein most days. I have tried to eat left overs from dinner but there isn’t always food leftover. So today I worked on a new plan….perhaps not my best plan. I cooked up a pot of beans (adzuki as I hadn’t had them before) and another pot of grains (kamut) with the intention of having a serving of each with veggies. Kamut is lovely enough but adzuki bean are a vile attack of Satan. The underlying theory of the plan was valid but the start being adzuki was a massive mistake. I am wondering if my best plan might be also making a veggie soup to put my beans and grain in at lunch. No matter, I just have to keep exploring my plan to get it right including a tiny volume high protein ingredient that can boost up the protein so I don’t need a 4th or even 5th meal. I really don’t want to eat all the time.
Dinner is pretty straightforward however I still get stuck on high enough protein. Pizza for instance….high protein topping? I don’t fancy beans or lentils on my pizza personally. The crust has a good bit of protein and the nutritional yeast provides a bit and of course there must be a bit in the roast veggies but still not hitting that 20g per meal target. Bean burgers come pretty close to hitting that target but also falls just short. I have a few other meals that fall just short and since lunch is also falling short my 60g a day minimum isn’t going to plan.
So what did I do to deal with this frustration? Stopped tracking my food and pretended it didn’t matter! Consequences of burying my head? My hair is thinning out and I am regularly covered in loose hair. Ugh. Anything else? Well according to the bodytrax machine at the gym the only weight I have lost for several weeks has been muscle! Maybe the hair and muscle thing would have happened anyway I don’t know. So what to do? Trying to up the protein but my best plan so far is a piece of peanut butter toast before bed but that is an extra 250calories a day. Worth the calories or not? Frustrated.
Today when caught out for breakfast (in the car heading out) I decided I would have meat and berries to see how my stomach felt. Stomach did not cope with the harder to digest meat and I had to wait 20minutes before I could manage my berries. It didn’t cause any reflux problems though so that was a good sign but still come back to not being able to eat enough produce to keep my fibre level up. Just seem to be screwed if I do and screwed if I don’t.