How to Avoid Hunger
after Stomach Banding

The process of stomach banding divides your stomach into 2 distinct parts:

  • a small "pouch" (that will hold about 1/2 cup of food) above the gastric band
  • the rest of your stomach below the band

gastric lap band

When the pouch above the gastric band is full, you're "tricked" into thinking your entire stomach (which can normally hold as much as the size of a football) is full.

YOU, as the "operator" of the stomach band should have one goal in mind in order to prevent hunger:

Keep Your Pouch Full!

This doesn't mean you have to constantly eat. It does mean that you need choose the right foods when you do eat.

That's because some foods (and combinations of foods) keep the pouch fuller longer than others.

Live by these 2 simple guidelines:

  • Choose solid foods over soft, mushy, or liquidy foods
  • Don't eat and drink at the same time

Your stomach is like a funnel after the gastric band operation

cartoon funnel

If you pour water in a funnel, it runs through very quickly, right?

If you put a chicken breast in a funnel, it wouldn't move an inch through the funnel unless you ground it up.

As a result of stomach banding, you have a narrow passage created by the presence of the gastric band that food must pass through on its way from the pouch to the lower portion of the stomach. Kind of like a funnel!

If food runs through that narrow passage quickly, it leaves the pouch empty. When the pouch is empty, you have a greater chance of feeling hungry. Therefore...

Avoid Foods that Are Runny, Mushy, Liquidy, Soft

  • soup
  • ice cream
  • milkshakes
  • frappuccinos
  • sugar sweetened beverages

Bariatric banding will never help reduce your portions of these types of foods, and you'll be able to eat as much of them after the gastric banding procedure as you could before surgery.

Avoid them!

Instead, choose foods that have more "substance" and are more "solid," such as chicken, fish, shrimp, turkey, fruits, vegetables, and any whole grains that you can tolerate.

Example: Soup is NOT a good choice for lunch. Shrimp cocktail IS.

I even include cereal with milk in the "avoid" category, because the combination is mushy and liquidy and won't fill you up as much as turkey sausage, a vegetable egg omelet, or a protein bar would for breakfast.

Important Stomach Band Diet Guideline: Don't Eat and Drink at the Same Time

Solid Food + Liquid Beverage = Mushy Mixture that will run out of the pouch quickly.

Don't drink anything 15-30 minutes before you eat and don't drink anything 15-30 minutes after you eat.

Note: Be sure to follow your surgeons recommendations on the timing between eating and drinking. Recommendations vary.

Eating "soup and salad," "soup and a sandwich," or "cereal and milk" is really the same thing as eating and drinking at the same time too because you're combining solids with liquids.

More of My Professional Advice You May Find Useful

Everything you need to know about what to eat after stomach banding.

Post Lap Band Diet Recipes

Go to Lap Band Surgery Site Home Page