Thursday, 27 June 2013

26th June 2013 Visit to the Nutritionist

Today I had an appointment with the nutritionist, Nicola Page, to go over my blood results and also the diet I will be eating after the laparoscopic gastric sleeve operation. She also wanted to know how I was coping on the Optifast diet. With my starting weight I am having the Optifast for just over 4 weeks. I think others have a lesser time as she seemed a little surprised about the length of time. I am coping most of the time because the amount of fluid 2+ltrs is very filling in your stomach. You know the location of every toilet in your area when out shopping especially when the days are cool.

 Our days are quite cold at the moment as it is just past the winter solstice. The saying is: as the days go longer the cold gets stronger. Our snowfields in the South Island have had some of the highest bases of snow this early in the season for decades.

The first thing Nicola checked was that I knew what I could and couldn't have on the Optifast diet.

Pre-op Optifast Diet
I am enjoying the delightful taste of my vegetables. I eat them as my mother has her tea so she feels as though she is not eating in front of me as I drink down a sachet of liquid diet. I have also started to put the liquid into a glass mug instead of drinking it straight out of the shaker. I feel it makes it more of an occasion to my mind (half the battle).
The most important part she dealt with though was the post-op phases and what you can have at each stage.  She did make the Important Point of saying each person is different and the time taken in each stage varies depending on how the person tolerates the food.
The Stages:
  • 1st Stage - fluids only, sips of water or chips of ice on day of op, 30 mls of water every 15 minutes to a total of 1000ml
  • 2nd Stage - Pureed food. This can start on the second evening if you tolerate the water and normally lasts 2-3 weeks.
  • 3rd Stage - Soft food that can be cut with the side of a fork
  • 4th Stage - Progression to normal food when you tolerate a variety of soft foods.
1st and 2nd Stage 
3rd Stage 

    4th stage                                                                  100 Calorie snacks
The booklet also gives some possible recipes that are useful. It is good to have as you can have a good read beforehand and refer to it later. Many years down the line it can still be useful.
They also did some pre-op bloods to check on vitamin levels, cholesterol levels etc. Nicola went through each result and had some suggestions about areas to keep an eye on and possible supplements needed to keep them at good levels. As a LGS leaves you with a stomach (though greatly reduced size) your body will still absorb vitamins and minerals. The need for supplements is because of the reduced food quantity. I also have another consultation with her at the 3 month post- op time to see how I am managing. It will be good to catch up with her then. The booklet contains her email address so I can contact her if I have any food concerns I need help with. These consultations are included in the total cost of the Operation. ($NZ18,900).
I will repost these pages as I reach each stage as well.