Phase 1: Clear liquids days 1 and 2
• Water, diluted juice, sugar-free Jell-O, popsicles, tea, Crystal Light, broth
Phase 2: Drinkable full liquids days 3-14
• Thin yogurt, creamy soups, milk, protein shakes, smoothies
Phase 3: Pureed foods weeks 3 and 4 (and maybe 5)
• Runny eggs, low-sugar apple sauce, cottage cheese, pureed meats and fish, refried beans, and anything you can puree to the consistency of baby food
Phase 4: Regular foods one month and beyond
• Start with soft, healthy foods including fish, canned chicken or tuna, soups, veggies, and beans. Only try one new food at a time, and go very slowly. Small bites. Small amounts. Emphasize protein. Initially, avoid chewier or drier meat, such as chicken breast and steak.
Eating Tips after Bariatric Surgery
• Do not drink liquids during meals. Wait 30 minutes after eating before having something to drink.
• Chew, chew, chew
• Eat slowly and take 30 minutes to eat your meal.
• Eat proteins first, then fats and carbs.
• Grazing, snacking, poor food choices at meals, and not exercising can sabotage your weight loss.
• Initially, breads will be difficult to eat unless toasted.
• Sugar-free doesn’t mean calorie-free. And there’s no such thing as diet ice cream.
• Sugar, simple carbs, and starchy foods can cause dumping syndrome. High fat or greasy foods can cause immediate diarrhea.
• Avoid carbonated beverages as they will cause discomfort and excess gas.
• Avoid gulping and swallowing air when you eat. Otherwise, you may have discomfort and a lot of gas.
• Some medications may need to be chewable, crushed, or converted to liquid or capsule form in the first month after bariatric surgery. In general, if the pill is small enough to fit into a regular size straw, you can just swallow it.
• Initially, use chewable or liquid vitamins and calcium. But don’t forget to change to regular, adult multivitamins and calcium within 2 months after surgery.
• Go to a support group. Other patients understand the changes in your life and can help you.