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About VicWytch

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday October 24

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location


  • Surgeon
    Dr. Gisele Hamad
  • Hospital
    Magee Women's Hospital
  • Height (ft-in)
  • Start Weight
  • Current Weight
  • Goal Weight
  • Surgery Date
  • Surgery Type
    Gastric Bypass
  • Surgeon
    Dr. Gisele Hamad

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  1. You need to write a blog or something. Keep going -- you can do it!!! And congrats on confronting your fears--you're an inspiration!!
  2. 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!!
  3. 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.
  4. Polyphemus -- I hear ya. I'm still losing. Saw my PCP yesterday to ask what I could do, and she said eat nuts, oils etc. I said I already do! I asked if I should concentrate on building muscle and she said I would then need to take in more calories. This part of the struggle is a head case, honestly, since we have spent so much time learning how to eat healthy. Grrrrrr.
  5. Thank you for the prompt response. Appreciate it!
  6. This is an interesting topic because I don't think we see it on the boards much. At my one year surgiversary (just a few weeks ago), my bariatric doctor actually told me to gain 10 lbs -- that I was looking way too skinny (size 2-4) for my frame, even though my BMI is in normal range. Since I already eat healthy fats (avocado, nuts, sour cream, etc), she said to add back in pasta, whole grains and bread. !!! I never thought I would ever hear that. So this Christmas week, I've been a bit more diligent about eating those (even though my pouch doesn't really like them), and I still lost 2 lbs!!! grrrrrrr! I guess I will just continue to monitor and see how it goes.
  7. Hi Dr. Gupta, I am about 1 year out from gastric bypass, and have reached my goal weight for the past 4 months. Unfortunately I was also just recently diagnosed with breast cancer, stage 1 (invasive ductal carcinoma) in my left breast. Because of the WLS, the size of my breast is barely a B cup with lots of loose skin. The breast surgeon has said that the area to be taken out (2 inches) would severely impact the look of my breast if I went with a lumpectomy, and so she recommends I investigate a double mastectomy (for symetrical reasons). I meet with a plastic surgeon in about a week, but my question is about whether I would have enough loose skin/fat on my tummy or butt to do any of the reconstruction without implants. I know I have the skin, but I believe the fat is crucial as well, and I'm not sure I have enough of that left. Have you ever encountered this situation before with WLS patients and breast reconstruction after mastectomy? Thanks in advance for your advice.
  8. Hm maybe I'll try ground turkey and see if that works.
  9. Congratulations! you look awesome!
  10. Jolls, Can you use canned chicken breast for the crust as well? I've only seen recipes for ground chicken.
  11. VicWytch

    Goal met!

    Thank you everyone! Just as @WendyH mentioned above, my doc said to just keep doing what I'm doing -- that my body will stop at some point. In fact she chastised me for slacking on the exercise area (the back to school and kids' soccer practices/games have thrown me off) and said that my body's metabolism WILL bottom out at some point and I will start gaining the weight back if I don't exercise to keep it off. That totally scared me. So I need to start small again (just as I was doing in the Spring) by doing at least 10 minutes a day--walking, biking, whatever. And increase it from there. A good reminder to keep my head in the game here. PS: And it was nice to see an extra pound gone on her scale!!
  12. VicWytch

    Goal met!

    I hit my 9 month surgiversary yesterday and I'm very thankful that not only did I meet my goal last week, but I surpassed it! Now I'm very worried about maintenance. I have my 9 mo appointment with my doc tomorrow, and I will ask her, but what happens if I keep losing? Will my body stop at a certain point? I'm so used to eating the healthy way, and I even already eat healthy full fats like nuts, avocado, etc., so 'adding those' into my diet has already been accomplished. Do I need to worry about this? Thanks for any advice, Victorria
  13. Well, I certainly didn't expect this to happen so soon. I am 8 months out and only 2 LBS (!!!!) away from *my* goal of 130 lbs. I'm pretty amazed at this process, honestly, and a little fearful for the future. I know that I will probably weigh less than 130 lbs in the next few months, but I don't want to go too far. I'm 5'2" so presently I'm at the high range of the 'normal' BMI now. I have been 120lbs before and I was WAY too skinny and looked unhealthy. Even now people are saying "don't lose too much" and "you look great but don't lose anymore". I have my next NUT/doc appointment in another month and my topic of conversation will be about maintenance. Is it too soon to start thinking about that? Everything I've read has people adding back in 'good fats' to maintain, such as nuts, avocado, cheese, etc. But these are foods I already eat--I've never gone the low-fat route on this journey as I believe good fats are essential to a healthy body. My normal blood work proves this to be true FOR ME. YMMV. Some things I've noticed at the 8 month mark: My appetite has not returned yet. There are times when I 'crave' certain foods, but I've not experienced hunger like I used to. I do notice when I have low blood sugar and need to eat, however. Same jitters as before. I cannot tolerate chicken or turkey. At all. I've tried at various times and I still feel as if it gets stuck at top of my pouch. This saddens me greatly as I feel most of the food choices and recipes center around chicken. For substitutions, I eat shrimp (probably more than I should), ground beef, regular beef steak, white fish, tuna, and pork is ok. I'm still not getting more than 900 calories a day. I try and try to add more, but I just can't do it. This worries me. I absolutely love the Premier Protein shakes and usually use it as creamer in my coffee every morning. (My fav is the new Banana flavor and Chocolate of course.) This also means I've been able to cut the Splenda and Half & Half that used to be the staple. I think it's a better substitute. While I haven't added any breads, pastas or rice in my diet at all, I have tried a few things: wheat thins with tuna salad, for example. Rice noodles with veggies and cod. When I was in Amsterdam a few weeks ago for work, I tried 1/2 slice of their brown bread (brod) with salted butter. (Yes, it was delicious.) But again, I notice that my pouch fills up quickly so I still tend to focus my meals on the protein first. My body is entirely different than it was when I weighed this over 15 years ago. My butt sags, as does my arms and tummy. And I wear clothing very differently--which has been eye-opener. Before when I would look for the right pair of jeans to fit my booty, now I fit into every size 8 I try on, as there is no booty left to stuff in!! :-) Second-hand stores are my friends. Goodwill has been a lifesaver, as has which sells nice used clothing for very cheap. If anyone has any advice or words of wisdom, would be very glad to hear them!!!
  14. I can eat chicken if it's in stew or soup, but the chicken straight from the grill is a no-go. I hope in a few years it is different. I agree with you about goal weight. I have a number in my head (130) and only 17 more pounds to get there. I have been less than that in my life but then I start getting the "are you alright" comments so I know that means I'm too skinny. I am honestly grateful that this tool works as long as you follow the rules.
  15. Today was my 6 month post-op doctor's visit. It was the first time I had seen Dr. Hamad since my ER visit in February. I have had regular check-ins with Nurse Judy, but I was anxious to hear what Dr. Hamad would say. I'm pleased to report that I am down 76 lbs from my heaviest! My BMI is 26.9 and my doctor says I'm doing great! When I asked her what she had in mind for my goal weight, she said they encourage us to be lower than a 25 BMI to be considered healthy. I asked her if my goal weight of 130 lbs was realistic (I'm 5'2"), and she said of course it is. But that my body would start to slow down losing weight as I get closer to its ultimate place. I asked her how do I 'maintain' once I'm there, and she said "well, it's just a matter of calories in and calories out at that point". Your tool does wonders but your new lifestyle is really the goal. She wanted to know what my exercise consisted of, what I was eating, if I was getting in my protein and water. I told her that chicken and I had a horrible relationship because every time I eat it, it gets stuck and I have to throw up. She sympathized but said I may never be able to eat chicken in the way I had before. That makes me sad since it is such a staple protein. AND I asked her if my hair loss will ever stop, and she assured me it would. "You won't go bald, I promise. And if you hadn't told me, I never would have noticed." That makes me feel better, but I really wish I could stop pulling handfuls of hair out of my brush every morning. All in all, feeling great and moving great (even with a bad arthritic knee). I will keep repeating it ad nauseum: best decision I ever made.