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How to prepare for your post op visits – Bariatric Edition

How to get the most out of your post-op calls with me 🙂
It’s been a super busy summer bariatric season for us (even during a pandemic). The summer months are always busy with surgery scheduling. Our patients have summer vacations and they use their vacation time to have their surgery performed. 
At first, I thought that we would slow down a bit due to the pandemic but it has been extremely busy. This time of year we slow down a bit as students return to class (online or in-person) and as the holidays wind down once again.
Being busy means that I am also busy with post-op follow up calls Monday to Friday. This is how I spend a lot of my days, on the phone with you making sure that you are hitting your water goals, protein goals, and weight loss goals, etc.
I enjoy speaking with you and I especially enjoy adding back food to your life post-surgery! It makes me happy when I ask you if you are ready to try an egg and you respond “yayyyyyyy” 🙂
So what is the best way for you to prepare for our calls so that you can get the most out of them? 
I want to be sure that you are getting exactly what you need and that your weight loss is right on track. The best way to make sure that I have the right tools to best assist you is to keep a simple log. It doesn’t have to be a fancy app. It can be a simple piece of paper. It can be an email. Use the format that is easiest for you to use.
Please send me your food log the day of or the day before our set appointment. Make sure to jot down the things you are eating but also the things which you are drinking. You can also add your sleeping patterns and how you are feeling throughout the day. How are your stress levels? If you have started exercising, jot it down. If you take supplements, jot them down also. Note your protein intake. The more you can send me, the better idea I have as to where you are in your journey and what improvements you can make. 
If you’ve had recent labs, you can also send me a copy to keep on file. This helps me to see if you are experiencing any nutrient deficiencies which we can correct through food and supplementation.
Weigh yourself on the day of your appointment with me. I want to help you stay accountable as the scale moves in the right direction.
Make sure that you stay close to me during your first-year post-op. This is when we want to work HARD to reach your goals. If it takes a bit longer than a year to get there, that’s fine also. Make sure you are constantly setting new goals. If you’ve reached your goal weight, then what’s next? How does maintenance look? What does your activity level look like? What are you doing to try to reduce stress? 
I guess what I want to say that the journey to health and wellness doesn’t have an expiry date. It is a constant project. Let’s make it fun and enjoyable. If you need to touch base or to make an appointment, feel free to do so at this LINK
If you’ve had surgery and it’s been a while and you would like to get back on track – you are welcome to join my 1-on-1 Bariatric Nutrition Coaching  This is just you and me getting down to business, 1-on1, getting work done. 

About the Author: Sheri Burke is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and Bariatric Surgery Coordinator at International Patient Facilitators in Tijuana and Cancun, Mexico. She has worked with bariatric surgery clients for over 10 years and especially enjoys providing nutritional guidance to pre and post bariatric clients.  In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two teens and cooking up a nutritional storm in the kitchen.

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