Diet and Weight Loss News

Holiday challenges are greater for people who have undergone weight loss surgery.

Written By Betty van der Mark on Wednesday, December 24, 2008 | 12:05 AM

For most of us, the holidays are a non-stop food fest that challenges our resolve to eat healthy. From office parties and cookie exchanges to holiday parties and tasty gifts, the temptations are all around. Holiday challenges are even greater for people who have undergone weight loss surgery. “Because people who have undergone weight loss surgery can only eat a half cup of food at a time, they have to focus on portion control,” said Gregory Barnes, M.D., weight loss surgeon on the medical staff at Baylor All Saints Medical Center in Fort Worth.

Portion restrictions, along with the need to avoid drinking any liquids within 30 minutes of eating, require some special eat-smart strategies for enjoying the holidays. “Although the holidays may challenge their commitment, I believe that weight loss surgery patients can stick with their goals and remain on track if they’ll do some advanced planning,” said Dr. Barnes.

Try these tips for not just surviving, but actually enjoying holiday parties and food:- Eat something healthy before a party so you don’t arrive hungry.

- Consider bringing a healthy tray of vegetables and dip or other healthy dish to your family gathering or a holiday party.
- Because you’re limited to only a half cup-sized portion, be very selective at a buffet. Look for non-fried, healthy options, and keep in mind that a bite or two of a dessert can often satisfy your craving.
- Grab your drink and focus on socializing since you will need to wait before eating.
- Stand away from the table or buffet so you’ll be less tempted.

More than any other time of year, the holidays are a time when a support system is critical for success. “Our weight loss patients need to find a friend or group that can hold them accountable and keep them focused on their goals at this time of year,” said Dr. Barnes. “Having support is one of the most effective ways to achieve all the benefits of weight loss surgery.”

Source: Baylor All Saints