One of the most common questions I get asked:
What’s the “right” portion size after my gastric sleeve surgery?
Well unfortunately the answer isn’t a simple and straight forward one.
Immediately after weight loss surgery, your new stomach will
be swollen and will therefore only tolerate a very small amount…
…possibly only 1-2 Tablespoons at a time. Don’t be surprised by this!
As you heal from the surgery and the tissue inflammation subsides, you’ll slowly be able to increase your portion sizes.
There is no guide to follow that says:
That’s because everyone heals and progresses at their own rate.
YOUR journey will be unique to YOU.
You’ll gradually be able to eat more over the course of the first year after surgery. This is normal. No reason to worry that your pouch has “stretched.”
It’s possible that by the end of the first year after surgery you’ll be able to eat 1 cup at a time.
You’ll be able to eat
different portions of different textures.
Don’t be surprised when you can eat ½ cup of yogurt and only 2 bites of chicken.
This is why there’s no universal guideline to “eat ½ cup food 3 times per day” or “1 cup food 3 times per day.”
It just depends!
What You Should Focus On
Rather than worrying about eating the “right” portion size after gastric sleeve surgery, simply focus on
The portions will then take care of themselves. And then you’ll be eating the “right” gastric sleeve meal size for you, at that given moment.
Portion control dishes can be useful if you want to monitor how much you’re eating and see the changes over time.
This is my favorite. It’s a portion plate designed for bariatric patients. The portion sizes are adjustable from 1-4 ounces in each plate.
Please note that some foods are considered “slider foods”. This
means they sliiiiiiiiiiiide down very easily…
…even though you’ve had weight loss surgery!
Translation: You'll be able to eat a lot of these! Big portions!
These include processed, packaged foods like:
Your bariatric surgery will do NOTHING to help you control portions of these. (Maybe in the beginning yes, but NOT in the long run).
So best to plan to AVOID these foods!
Your goal after surgery isn’t just to eat smaller amounts of the foods that got you in trouble in the first place. Your goal should be to totally overhaul your diet.
That means finding alternative to these types of snack food when the cravings occur.