Post Gastric Bypass Food Issues

When you are thinking about having weight loss surgery such as a gastric bypass you do eventually find out that one of the things that can happen afterwards is you end up having issues outside of your control with food. I think this was one of the things that made me think long and hard about having surgery because there’s really no way to know beforehand what is going to happen after.

I have been pretty lucky in terms of having issues with food after my surgery. I can tolerate pretty much everything and any issues I have are usually brought on myself through my behaviour around food or eating things I shouldn’t eat. One of the things I was most scared about was randomly throwing up all the time afterwards and that has never happened.

One of the biggest things that gives me issues with food is eating too fast. Eating slowly and chewing lots is a very important thing you need to do every time you eat after surgery. If I eat too fast I usually get a pain in my chest and if I don’t stop or slow down fast enough I can end up having one of my ‘episodes’.

When I have an episode it will start with my chest hurting when I’m eating. If I pick it up fast enough and wait for it to pass I can usually finish eating and I’m fine again. Sometimes they can pass in 5 or so minutes and sometimes it can take about 15 minutes. If this happens I know I stopped early enough and I take it as a warning.

If I don’t realise early enough or mistakenly keep eating thinking its going to help (spoiler: It never does!) then it’s all on. I get the pains in my chest and they get worse. It’s kind of like a weird sore indigestion pain. Then I start getting lots of thick, gloopy spit collect in my mouth. If I swallow the goopy spit it only adds to the problem and makes the episode last longer. This is gross because it means I need to spit the gloopy stuff out all the time and depending on the time and the place it can be quite inconvenient.

If this goes on long enough then I will eventually throw up. This is super annoying because I basically need to be spitting out goop until it goes away and that can last anywhere up to about 5 hours. What I have figured out is if I make myself sick and get out what’s bothering my tummy the episodes tend to pass quicker and while it’s not the nicest it does help to take the chest pains away for a bit until its completely over.

I have times for a month or so when I will have no issues with food and I’m fine for ages and then times like the last couple of weeks where I seem to have food issues all the time. Lately I think I have been having so many issues because I have been really stressed (there is so much going on at the moment) and because I’m so distracted all the time I don’t think I’ve been focussing on eating how I should when I am.

I also find that things like eating out in big groups I pay less attention and I am more likely to have an episode and if I drink alcohol before I eat (even waiting the necessary half hour between) I can’t seem to get food down. There are also things like tomatoes and tomato sauce that my body just says a big NO! to now and I can’t have without almost straight away getting the funny feeling in my chest.

How I manage this is I always try to stick as closely to my 10 Golden Rules as I possibly can. I try not to do any of the things that I know do not agree with me like drinking before dinner or having tomatoes. I have got to a point where my food issues are manageable since I know its my behaviour that causes them and I’m happy to work around them. The only one I’ve found hard lately is stress and how that’s been affecting me but I’m trying to manage my stress as well as I can and this week has been much better on that front.

What food issues do or did you worry about post bariatric surgery? Comment below and let me know.

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There are 2 comments for this article
  1. Melissa at 5:37 pm

    I can’t eat meat anymore. Surgery at the end of Feb and it’s just getting worse. I used to be able to eat mince and meat that was in a lot of sauce, now even that bothers me. Just the smell of meat is distasteful now. I was a full-on carnivore before. Strange

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