Weight-loss results vary from patient to patient. A weight loss of two to three pounds per week in the first year of the operation is possible, but one pound a week is more likely. Twelve to eighteen months after the operation, weekly weight loss is usually less. But remember that you should lose weight gradually. Losing weight too quickly creates a health risk and can lead to a number of problems. The main goal is to have weight loss that prevents, improves, or resolves health problems connected with severe obesity. Follow-up is the key to long term success with the lap band System. The LAP-BAND System is a tool that helps the patient to feel full for longer on smaller meals. However, it is up to the patient to make the best use of this tool (appropriate food choices, exercise, etc.). Proper adjustment of the weight loss surgery System is required for patients to receive the full benefit of the surgery.
Individual weight loss results vary but if you follow the general nutritional guidelines, you should expect to lose about 1 to 2 pounds every week on average over the first year. Most patients will lose weight immediately due to the dietary restrictions following surgery (transition from liquid to solid foods). This will help them “jump-start” their weight loss, but may also leave them feeling hungry or unsatisfied.
If you follow the nutrition guidelines when you choose your food and then chew it well, you should not feel hungry or deprived. Patients complaining of hunger, or who are able to eat larger meals without a sense of restriction, are likely in need of an adjustment and should be scheduled for a visit. Patients may feel hungry during the first 4-6 weeks following surgery as they transition to solid food. Liquids and soft foods pass easily through the stoma (stomach opening) and do not create an early feeling of satiety. During this period, it is important to have patients focus on their weight loss, and to let them know that this transition is necessary for their safety and for the LAP-BAND to heal properly in place. If a patient is extremely hungry or unhappy, it may be advisable for the patient to meet with the surgeon.
You may eat most foods that don’t cause you discomfort. However, because you can only eat a little at any given time, it is important to include foods rich in important vitamins and nutrients – foods such as those recommended by your surgeon and/or dietitian. Patients often have difficulty with fibrous (stringy, tough vegetables, especially the skins) foods. The fibers can get trapped half-above and half-below the stoma, leading to discomfort. Patients often have difficulty with foods that do not break down well even when thoroughly chewed (doughy bread, tough or dry meat). These foods do not pass easily through the stoma, and can lead to discomfort or vomiting. Patients should not have carbonated beverages. Patients should generally avoid foods high in calories and low in nutritive content (junk food).
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