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Small changes Huge losses – Bariatric Edition

It is challenge time for all of you reading this !

For bariatric clients it sometimes feels like we need to have the “all or nothing” mentality.  I am here to tell you that making small changes and tweaks to your daily nutrition and lifestyle can make a huge difference on the scale.  Instead of overhauling everything you eat and drink, take baby steps and make one change at a time to get the scale moving again.  You will be surprised how a small change can lead to big losses on the scale.

Let’s talk a bit about some of those tweaks and how we can add them (or take them out) of our daily routine.  After reading this, you can email me to begin your personal challenge.

My first suggestion is pretty obvious – eliminate sugar, soda, candy and alcohol from your diet.  If you are wanting to see the numbers on the scale move, this is the very first place to start. Try this for two weeks and email me to tell me how your results were. I can guarantee you that you will see a difference in the numbers on the scale !

Instead of visiting Starbucks for the tall, cafe mocha, make it at home or eliminate it.  There is a ton of sugar in the Starbucks version.  You can find sugar free recipes to make it at home using almond milk or coconut milk instead of regular dairy.  This can make a big difference in your daily caloric intake.  Cutting the mocha means cutting a lot of calories and sugar.

Make your breakfast high in protein and low in refined carbohydrates.   Typical breakfast foods such as bagels, toast, english muffins and breakfast cereals are notoriously high in refined, processed carbohydrates.  Instead of eating these food items, reach for eggs.  They will keep you feeling full and satisfied and if you eat them with a serving of high fiber vegetables, even better!

Get rid of the diet soft drinks.  I know that they don’t have “calories” but they do create an insulin response which means that you will feel hungry after drinking them.  Our goal is to balance our blood sugars and if we drink these diet soft drinks, we will crave sugary treats.  Swap the diet coke for plain water or soda water please.  It is the easiest tweak and it can get you the biggest bang for your buck when wanting the scale to move in the right direction.

Go for a walk.  I believe that weight loss occurs in the kitchen and that we all need to exercise to stay healthy.  It’s even more than that – I think we all need to exercise to stay happy.  When we walk outdoors, we breathe fresh air and we have the sun shining on us.  It lifts our mood and makes us feel good.  Open the front door, walk for 20 minutes and then turn around and walk back.  It’s a free activity and it means taking time out of our day to care for ourselves.  Love yourself and go outside for a walk.  

Get serious about your sleep schedule.  Sleeping is the best free medicine there is.  Weight loss will always be hindered by a lack of sleep.  Lack of sleep is stressful for the body and it raises cortisol levels.  High cortisol levels makes it much more difficult to lose weight.  Choose a bedtime and turn off the light and get some good quality sleep.  It will show on the scale.

If you want to email me and tell me what you are going to do this week to help the scale move, I would be more than happy to help you stay accountable.  Just choose one thing and reply to this email telling me what small change you are going to make.   I am your biggest cheerleader !

I salute you on your journey to excellent health.

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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