After the first six months of bariatric surgery, there is something in our body mechanisms that changes. Our weight loss slows down, some of us reach our goal weight (or are getting very close to), and for some, the weight loss stops completely. It’s at this point that we need to change something up either to gear up for maintenance or to continue losing, getting us to that goal.

For bariatric patients, there are more than one WOE (ways of eating – also known as POE or plan of eating). The hard part is finding exactly what it is that will work for you.

Take note, if you have regained weight, these are not intended for that purpose. Later, we’ll do a series focusing on regain and how to lose it (as this is something that Jen is learning a lot about right now!)

Last newsletter we talked about the standard bariatric WOE.
This week we’re going to talk about the Plant-Based WOE.

There are several doctors right now that are prescribing plant-based WOE’s for their patients following the first six months to a year. These doctors include Dr. Matthew Weiner and Dr. Duc Vuong, among others. The idea is that, after the first six-12 months, the body has healed enough from surgery that a high protein diet is no longer necessary. Rather, they believe that the body and metabolism change enough that in order to continue to lose weight and maintain healthy weight loss, a plant-based way of eating is the way to go.

The Plant Based Way of Eating has several componants:

1. Eat Mostly Plants. This includes raw fruits, vegetables, nuts, and beans/legumes. They also suggest eating at least one raw vegetable salad a day.

2. Drink At Least One Green Juice/Green Smoothie Daily. A green juice is usually made up of a base of spinach or kale with a few other green veggies added such as celery, cucumber, and/or zucchini. Usually a green apple or a handful of grapes is added for flavor. A green smoothie also has a base of spinach or kale with other fruits and veggies added such as cucumber, avocado, banana, apple, or citrus. A smoothie will also have a liquid such as coconut milk or almond milk added.

3. Eat Lean Protein as a Side Dish, If At All. Lean protein includes chicken breast, egg whites, lean beef, fish, shellfish, and lean pork products. The serving size for protein drops from 3-4 oz to 1-2 oz.

4. Eat Healthy Fats From Plant-Based Sources. Olive oil, avocado oil, and nut oils are the most recommended oils to use, however SOME non-plant fats are allowed such as butter from grass-fed cows or ghee.

WHO THIS WORKS FOR
Anyone who is 6 months to a year + from surgery who has stalled for longer than four months.

PROS
This WOE is naturally low in calories, high in vitamins and nutrients, and high in fiber.
This WOE is fairly simple to follow, with foods that can (generally) be found readily in most supermarkets.

CONS
This WOE can be high in carbs, as plant-based whole grain foods such as whole grain toast and whole grain pastas are allowed.
This WOE can require special equipment such as a juicer.
This WOE is generally lower in protein, which puts off many die-hard protein fans.

SAMPLE MENU PLAN
Here is a sample one-day menu that one might eat on this plan (we did not do a protein count on this eating plan because nutrients rather than protein is the focus):

B/F: ½ C Steel Cut Oats w/ 2 T Greek Yogurt and ½ C Berries
L: 1 C Salad Greens topped with 2 T (or about 1 oz) of chopped raw veggies, 2 oz cooked shrimp, and 1 T oil-based dressing.
D: 4 oz roasted asparagus, 1 small baked sweet potato, 2 oz lean steak
Snacks: Nuts, small apple, or celery stick with nut butter

We hope this was helpful for you! Next time we will be exploring the Paleo Way Of Eating.
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