Bariatric Surgery/belly weight

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Question
Good afternoon Jacqueline,

I had gastric bypass in June of this year and have lost a total of 80lbs so far. My problem is I seem to be losing every but my stomach. I have lost some weight in my stomach but not much. I was wondering if there were any foods that help fight belly fat? Currently I take in about 700-750 calories a day. I think a big problem is I also take in carbs....Not so many maybe about 50 a day. I exercise about 4-5 times a week focusing on my abdominal area and trying exercises that are geared towards belly fat. My doctor nor my nutritionist gave me a good plan to follow so I am kind of doing this on my own. They just gave me the amount of protein I am suppose to take in and told me to stay away from sugar. Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks Denise.

Answer
Hi Denise,

There is never a good way to predict how and where someone will lose weight after a gastric bypass.  This can be partly how much weight you needed to lose, weight distribution, genetics and more.

Despite the myths, there are no specific foods or exercises that cause weight to be lost from on part of the body over another.

That said, you should have good guidance on how to eat. I would start by making an appointment with the dietitian from your surgeon's office to discuss this. Your calories sound about right for being about 5-6 months out, and you have good weight loss, so the RD might be able to help you fine tune the specific foods you are getting - but from what you are reporting, your progress is good.

There are some great resources for eating after surgery. Check out blogs like The World According to Eggface, or books like Margaret Furtado's Eating Well After Weight Loss Surgery.

I'm going to toss out one final thing to think about, it's possible that you are seeing more the impact of excess skin and/or a pannus in the area of your abdomen. It is not at all uncommon that after bariatric surgery people will need/desire reconstructive surgeries like panniculectomecty (removal of the pannus), tummy tuck, or body lift. Usually, it is advised that you wait unitl you are weight stable to consider these procedures, but if the skin or pannus is irritating, impairs mobility or leads to skin infections it may be desirable earlier. In this case, you would want to seek out a surgeon who is highly experienced in plastic surgery afer massive weight loss. Usually the bariatric surgery office where you had your gastric byapss would have a referral if you asked.

Hope this is helpful.

In Health,

Dr. Jacques

Bariatric Surgery

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Jacqueline Jacques, ND

Expertise

My expertise is in nutrition and weight loss surgery. I can answer questions related to nutritional care, vitamins, deficiencies, diagnosis, treatment and management. I can answer nutrition questions related to any procedure: gastric bypass (RNY), duodenal switch, lap-band, etc

Experience

I have spent seven years working almost exclusinvely in the area of weight loss surgery and nutrition.

Publications
Bariatric Times, Beyond Change Obesity, WLS Lifestyles, Nutrition and the MD, OH Magazine

Awards and Honors
Health Professional of the Year 2004 - Bariatric Support Centers International

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