Protein intake will become the cornerstone of your post-bariatric surgery diet. The reason it is so important is that protein is in every cell, muscle and organ in your body. This protein breaks down over time and needs to be replaced.
What does Protein do?
Protein has numerous benefits for the body. It allows your body to burn fat instead of muscle, for more effective weight loss. It also helps sustain your metabolism and promotes faster weight loss. Protein fills you up for longer, meaning you will feel less hungry in between meals.
So, why does protein become more important after weight loss surgery?
After your procedure, the amount of calories you can eat per day will be reduced. This means that when you do eat, you need to make sure you are making the best nutritional choices. It is important to ensure you are maximising the nutritional value of every bite. Protein will also help your body heal from the surgery, including the wounds themselves.
Good sources of protein:
- Beans (legumes)
- Protein supplements
Tips for incorporating Protein into your diet:
- Eat your protein first, so that you don’t fill up on the other things on your plate.
- The leaner the protein, the fewer calories it has. Chicken and Turkey are good examples and sources of protein.
- If you are a vegetarian, there are plenty of ways to incorporate protein into your diet; such as eggs, beans and tofu.
- Keep a food diary. This way you can ensure you are getting your daily recommended amount of protein.
- Protein shakes can be a great way to add protein to your diet.
Your clinical team will tell you exactly how much protein you need after your surgery. It is important talk to your dietician about your own individual needs. Therefore, it is crucial for you to follow the advice your bariatric team give you.