VicWytch

Need some advice on nutrition to gain weight

4 posts in this topic

This may seem surreal to those of us who have food addictions and who have struggled for so long with our weight. But I am now battling the fact that I have lost too much weight and need to gain some back. And I can't--I've been trying for 3 months and I've actually lost more lbs.

When I went in for my year surgiversary appointment with my doctor, she said I needed to gain some weight and that she would like to see me at 125-130 lbs. (I'm 5'2" on a good day.) She said to eat foods rich in fat (avocado, nuts, cream) and to add back in pasta, bread and rice if I could handle it. Well, I already ate the high fat foods (I was more into the high protein, low carb, high fat way of eating), and so I started adding back in the starches. It hasn't helped. I can now eat anything, and yes that means sweets, cakes and cookies. Now, I can't eat very much at one sitting--obviously, my pouch has limitations. So I end up grazing much of the day.

For someone who has had to relearn nutrition, this seems like the wrong way to go about it. I don't want to slide back into old habits but I feel as if I am doing so. Part of me is kicking myself that I should be so lucky to have this issue. But when my co-workers say things like "eat more!", "you're too skinny now", it makes me feel awful. I am a size 2/4--the smallest I have ever been besides high school. And while I do feel as if I am too gaunt, I am very satisfied that this way of life has proven to work for me. 

The hard part of all of this is that I was diagnosed with breast cancer in December and I had a mastectomy on my left breast at the end of January. I am now cancer-free (YAY) and undergoing the reconstruction period and I don't really have great use of my arm yet so I haven't been exercising as much as I'd like to build some type of muscle tone. And the Norco I was taking for pain really dulled the appetite, although I am off of that now. (Still don't have much of an appetite.)

Does anyone have advice or have been in the same situation here? It's an odd dilemma, isn't it? Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

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Boy, you've sure been through the wringer! Congrats on being cancer free! I wonder if your cancer docs have any ideas. When my mom was too thin during breast cancer treatment, they really pushed Ensure drinks to gain weight. I think you are so right to be pragmatic about it and not just do a free for all and reintroduce bad habits. I think if you pick a few foods that work and really think of them as temporary means to an end, you'll do well, and be able to eliminate them later. I know peanuts & oatmeal tend to bulk people up, too.

Stephtay likes this

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There is no set number of calories that a person must consume to maintain their weight after reaching their goal weight with a gastric bypass. For "lucky" people with a gastric bypass (like me) a maintenance diet can be an average of 2,000 calories or even more per day without any weight gain, and weight loss with any fewer calories.  For others, anything over 1,000 calories per day can result in weight gain. 

You obvioulsly are "lucky" although it may not feel that way to you. This is your new normal.  You need to increase your calories each day so that you gain weight to reach your goal weight.

So hello butter, chocolate (my favorite), bacon, pastry, potato chips, ice cream, and any other high calorie foods that do not make you dump. You should gain weight, especially if you snack between meals. Watch your weight carefully, and when you reach your goal weight (or a little under it), you simply cut back on some of your excess calories until you find the diet that allows you to have a stable weight. 

Of course, you still need to be sure to eat enough protein, take your vitamins, and drink lots of liquids. 

I understand your fear of regaining bad food habits, but you really need to gain weight and a higher calorie diet may be what you will enjoy the rest of your life. Such are the joys of calorie malabsorption with a gastruc bypass!

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Thanks Gretta and Res--really appreciate the support. Res, you bring up a good idea about counting calories. I just haven't been tracking for awhile. I don't know how many calories I consume in a day, so that really should be my first step, right? Gretta, I always drink the Premier Protein drinks but they are low in calories and carbs, so maybe I need to change my morning drink!!  Thank you both for your suggestions!!

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