30 Days Before Bariatric Surgery: Pre-op Instructions

Medically Reviewed by Katelyn J. Mock, US-Registered Dietician (R.D.)

Continue to make healthful changes to your diet. By making healthy changes now, you set the stage for lifelong positive habits that will help with long term weight loss and maintenance.

Limit or avoid simple carbohydrates such as chips, pretzels, crackers, granola, popcorn, sweets, soda, etc. Continue to increase your intake of fresh vegetables and fruits at meals or snacks.

Drink 64+ oz of water daily and eliminate high calorie, sugared beverages like specialty coffee drinks, soda, juices, sports and energy drinks. Decrease eating out to no more than 1-2 times per week or less.

Curb Distracted Eating

  • Avoid eating anything in front of the television, computer, or your phone. Distracted eating is one of the top reasons people regain weight after surgery. Make it a focus to sit down at the kitchen table or other designated area for eating. Feel free to listen to music, a podcast, or the radio, but avoid anything that distracts your eyes from the food on your plate.

Do Taste Tests With Various Protein Drinks

  • Look for protein supplements that include Whey Protein Isolate, Whey Protein Concentrate, or Soy Protein Isolate.
  • Avoid buying any protein supplements in bulk as taste preferences can change after surgery.
  • Look for a protein drink that contains at least 15gm protein, has less than 10gm of sugar, and 250 calories or less per serving.

Order a Bariatric Specific Multivitamin

You may get a general Calcium Citrate, Vitamin D3, and Sublingual B12 from your local pharmacy.

  • Some trusted brands of bariatric specific vitamins include; Celebrate Vitamins, Bariatric Advantage, ProCare Health Bariatric Vitamins, Nestle Optisource, Bariatric Fusion.

Make sure your vitamins contain the recommended micronutrient amounts listed below:

Daily essential nutrient supplements

Begin Food Prepping

  • Chili, Lentil, Ham and Bean, Beef and Vegetable, Chicken and Vegetable are all good varieties of soup to have on hand.
  • Make some high protein soups to freeze now that can be blended after surgery.
Video: Why Should you Freeze your Soup

Line up some help for home. This can be especially important if you have young children at home or currently have limited mobility. Having some extra assistance those first 2 weeks after surgery can give you a boost with recovery and allow you to focus on meeting those initial fluid and nutrient recommendations.

Stay active by exercising regularly, taking the stairs at work, and walking whenever you can. Aim for at least 15-30 minutes of activity each day.

Avoid the “Last Supper” mentality with eating. You will eat normally again, just with smaller portions. By overindulging these last few weeks before surgery, you put yourself at increased health risks by gaining weight and potentially having an enlarged liver, which can make the surgery more difficult for your surgeon to perform

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