Never in my lifetime did I ever think I would…
In the pre-op and initial stages after bariatric surgery your diet and the range of foods you can eat is quite limited. You need to look after your tummy and new plumbing and it’s almost too easy to stick to the few things that go down well and that you like. This works well until flavour fatigue strikes and I wanted to talk about it today, give tips on how to avoid it and how to get past it.
There are a number of weird and wonderful changes that you experience after bariatric surgery and flavour fatigue is one of them. During the pre-op diet you need to follow a specific dietary programme such as Optifast or Celebrate to help get the excess fat out of your liver and shrink it down to make surgery safer. The specifics of the pre-op diet differ depending on your surgeon, procedure and the amount of weight you need to lose. It’s important to stick to the prescribed programme during this time and if you haven’t had much of the Optifast or Celebrate beforehand you have a much lower chance of flavour fatigue hitting.
If you’ve experienced flavour fatigue you will know exactly what I’m talking about. You’ll be in a good routine with the selection of things you can and should be eating at the stage of your journey. Initially, you quite liked or could tolerate (in the case of Optifast for me) it, but one day you go to eat/drink it and your body goes, NOPE! It can honestly turn on you as quick as switching off a light switch.
In an effort to avoid flavour fatigue there are a few things you can do.
1. Try new things on a regular basis. If you are trying new things and introducing them into your diet it helps keep things interesting. Even if you have a staple, for me that would be chicken salad, change the salad ingredients in it every now and then to keep it fresh.
2. Rotate through flavours of things like protein powders. I am very picky with protein powders, if it is at all ick I just can’t. That means when I find something I like I tend to keep using it for a longggggg time. Then guess what, flavour fatigue hits and I need to figure out something new quick smart. Now when I find a brand I like I will figure out two or three flavours that I like and cycle between them to avoid flavour fatigue.
3. As I mentioned above, if there’s something you simply must have (like Optifast or Celebrate) for a certain period of your journey don’t start on it too early if you don’t need to. If you wait to use it until you have to, you will get through the critical periods fine.
Flavour fatigue can be a real pain if, like me, you are a creature of habit and don’t mind eating the same things over and over. Until that point where you can’t. As well as flavour fatigue some of us have quite dramatic changes in taste preferences after weight loss surgery. Some things you loved beforehand might not do it for you anymore. The exciting bit in all of that is it may open up a whole new world of food you didn’t like before that you can start exploring and enjoying.
Have you struggled with flavour fatigue after weight loss surgery? What was it in particular you just couldn’t stomach anymore? Comment below and let me know your experiences with flavour fatigue, I’d love to hear from you!
If you’re struggling with Optifast and getting it down check out this post that has suggestions on how to make it a bit more tolerable.