Why the post-op diet is so important, specifically the liquid phase after lapband surgery?
People seem to think that while they are in the liquid phase and can “cheat” by eating some solid foods nothing would happen but the truth is that lapband dislocation due to the increased force by solid food and the increased pressure over the “New Stomach” or “Pouch” at this time could be an early cause of the slippages that we can see later on a banded patient.
I try to tell people that their stomach is moving and trying to push the food down to the restricted area and churning on the inside to digest solid food and we want to keep the stomach as still as possible for that first week after surgery. So even though they don’t “feel” like it’s hurting anything, they could be.
Let’s remark that the purpose of the diet it’s not for starting the weight loss but mainly for the healing after the Lap Band surgery, that way you will avoid stretching the pouch and also will help you by letting the sutures to be firmly attached and to hold the lapband in the right position.
Stomach irritants as coffee, alcohol, coke, concentrated orange juice, vinegar, hot food, etc, will increase an early restriction to food and will also cause vomiting that appears to favor the lapband dislocation.
I like the patients to have the 1-2 diet, this means: One week of liquids, two weeks of soft foods and after that you can start with normal food.
You will achieve some weight loss during this time depending on the excess weight you started at and can be from 10 to 25 pounds.
I personally like to recommend the “South Beach Diet” after the lapband, the sleeve or the gastric bypass because is mostly a protein diet and is a healthier diet for the circulatory system than other type of diets.