Also known as vertical sleeve gastrectomy, gastric sleeve surgery is a surgical procedure that reduces the size of the stomach by 85%. During the surgery, a section of the stomach is removed leaving a thin tube-shaped stomach. Because the stomach is so much smaller, the patient will feel full faster and consume less food leading to weight loss.
Before surgery, patients must prepare their body for the procedure. At least two weeks before gastric sleeve, food restrictions are made. This diet prepares the digestive tract and the liver for the procedure. This pre-surgery diet also helps prepare the body for the lifestyle changes it will experience following surgery.
While the types of foods each patient should avoid will depend on their particular body and how it processes and digests food, there is a list of foods that all weight loss surgery patients, whether gastric sleeve or any other surgery, should always avoid. These foods include and are not limited to:
Some commonly consumed foods before and after gastric sleeve surgery include scrambled eggs (egg whites only), oatmeal, yogurt, low-fat cottage cheese, lean meat, fresh fruits and vegetables, sugar-free Jell-O, whole grains and protein shakes.
Protein is a major component of the post gastric sleeve diet and helps the body to fat burn while on a low-fat diet. For gastric sleeve patients, protein shakes or protein-rich foods should be consumed at the right time in order to prevent blockages from occurring. Drink a lot of water in order to digest properly, however never drink water while eating as you will feel full fast and not consume enough nutrition.
There are four stages of the postoperative gastric sleeve diet: clear liquid, full liquid, soft foods and regular foods.
Phase 1 Clear Liquid Diet (the First week after surgery)
During this time all sugary drinks, caffeinated drinks or carbonated drinks should be avoided. Patients can drink water, ice chips, flavored water, broth, Propel, 100% Whey Protein Isolate Bullets, skim milk, sugar-free Jell-O or Popsicles, mild tea, just to name a few.
Phase 2 Full Liquids (Weeks 2-3 post op)
Patients will focus on consuming more protein during this phase. Some approved full liquids are soy beverages, fruit juices without pulp, low sugar, plain sugar-free gelatin, creamed or chunky soup blended, drinkable yogurt without fruit chunks, ice milk, sugar-free popsicles, blended fruit smoothies, low-carb shakes, applesauce, and protein shakes. It’s important to note this is just some of the foods you can consume during this phase.
Phase 3 Soft Foods (Weeks 3-4)
This phase focuses on transitioning from liquids to soft foods. Patients should consume 60-70 grams of proteins while making sure to minimize the amount of sugar, fat, and carbs consumed. Fat intake should be less than 30 grams a day and carbohydrates no more than 40 grams daily.
Some approved soft foods include:
The goal of this phase is to eat a low-sugar, low-fat, low carb and high protein diet.
Phase 4 Solid Foods (Week 5 and onward)
While the body has healed considerably at this point, it’s important you still do not eat many foods that are hard to digest or aren’t nutrition based.
Some things to avoid include: