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Avoid Weight Gain After WLS: Learn the Difference Between Snacking and Grazing


Gastric bypass patients often find themselves regaining weight soon after reaching goal weight. The reason? They return to the poor dietary behaviors of snacking and grazing thus eating around the gastric bypass system. Patients who succeed at weight maintenance understand the difference between snacking and grazing. They learn to chose snacks wisely and eat moderately.

Snacking vs. Grazing:

  • A snack is food eaten between meals, a light or hurried meal.
  • Grazing is daylong feeding, feasting, consumption.
  • A snack can be planned, executed and completed with mindfulness to nutrition and caloric need.
  • Grazing is constant eating or nibbling without end, resulting in the stomach pouch never feeling satiated.
  • A well-chosen snack will boost energy, satiate appetite and fuel the body.
  • Grazing is most often void of nutritional, emotional or satiating value. Grazing is mindless.
  • A well-chosen snack will not defeat the gastric bypass system.
  • Grazing will defeat the gastric bypass by allowing too many empty calories to be consumed and absorbed.

    The wise snack list includes items that are high in protein, low in simple carbohydrates (sugars) and are fairly basic or unprocessed. You will also notice foods rich in calcium, vitamins and minerals to feed the body well. In addition most of these foods will satiate the pouch and it is unlikely one will engage in prolonged snacking on any of these items. In other words, make a good choice, enjoy it and move on with your life. No more grazing.

    You will notice sugar-free Jell-O is on the wise food list, but sugar free items are on the poor choice list. Sugar free Jell-O is a good source of protein (gelatin)and when combined with other ingredients such as yogurt or cottage cheese can be a nutritional snack unlike many sugar-free sweets that are nutritionally void. The sugar-free sweets to avoid are candy, puddings and baked items as they lack nutritional value. They waste pouch space and simply add calories to the diet.

    Enjoy Wise Snack Choices:

  • Protein bars/shakes
  • Lean deli meat (turkey, chicken)
  • Shimp, tuna or seafood flakes
  • Low fat cottage cheese or mozzarella cheese
  • Melons, apple slices, berries or any tolerated fruit
  • Jerky
  • Sugar-free Jell-O
  • Hard-cooked eggs
  • Nonfat, unsweetened yogurt
  • Peanut butter with apples.

    Kaye Bailey © 2005 - All Rights Reserved

    An award winning journalist and former newspaper editor Kaye Bailey brings expertise in writing and personal experience with gastric bypass surgery to EzineArticles.com. Having spent most of her life overweight Ms. Bailey is strongly empathetic toward the obese, particularly overweight children. This compassion compelled her to found the website http://www.livingafterwls.com, a fast-growing resource of information, understanding and support for the weight loss surgery community.

    The LivingAfterWLS.com site is complimented with daily blog. The blog, http://livingafterwls.blogspot.com offers readers the chance to comment or leave feedback about fresh content added daily. This site contains success stories and recipes, general information and WLS inspired topics. Complementing the site is a monthly newsletter titled "You Have Arrived" available exclusively to people who subscribe through the website or the blog.


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