The Lap-Band will help control how much food you can eat, but it will be up to you to make healthy food choices.
Once you have progressed thru your post-op diet of liquids and pureed foods, you will once again be able to eat normal foods.
Eating with the Lap-Band
The biggest change will be in the size of your meals and the new eating behaviors you will have to adopt. The Lap-Band will help control how much food you can eat, but it will be up to you to make healthy food choices.
The LAP-BAND® procedure works best with solid foods to decrease hunger. Solid foods stay in the stomach pouch longer, so you should feel full after eating only a few ounces of food.
In order for your body to remain healthy and function properly, it will be important to choose foods are high in protein and nutritional content. Your diet will ideally include:
- low-fat proteins (select meats, fish, skinless poultry, eggs)
- fruits and vegetables
- healthy breads and cereals
- dairy products (good source of calcium, but choose non-fat or low-fat)
- heart-healthy fats
Your doctor will work with you in developing a new diet plan. Some of the important guidelines for eating with the LAP-BAND® are:
- Eat only three small meals a day - this is all you need. Do not snack between meals.
- Eat only solid foods at mealtime - this is how the LAP-BAND® works to restrict food.
- Eat slowly and chew your food thoroughly, about 15-20 times a bite, until it reaches a liquid consistency - this will help to create the feeling of fullness and make it less likely for food to get stuck in the LAP-BAND® pouch.
- Stop eating when you feel full - eating too much can result in pain, nausea and vomiting. It can also stretch the LAP-BAND® pouch.
- Choose healthy foods - make sure you are getting enough protein and nutrients.
- Do not drink while you eat - this will wash down the food and you will not reach the feeling of fullness, defeating the purpose of the LAP-BAND®. Do not drink for 30 to 45 minutes before or after meals.
Liquids with the LAP-BAND®
It is important to drink plenty of fluids during the day in order to stay hydrated and replace the fluid that is lost due to weight loss. If you become dehydrated you may experience a loss of energy, lightheadedness, dry skin, and nausea. You should choose low-calorie liquids and try to drink about 6 - 8 cups of fluid a day Water is a good choice, but other drink options include low-calorie, non-carbonated liquids, such as artificially flavored drinks, broth, tea, and black coffee (without sugar). Avoid drinking fluids with meals as they move food thru your LAP-BAND® pouch too quickly.