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Bariatric Surgery

Eating Well After Bariatric Surgery

What will I be able to eat right after surgery?

You will need to eat fluid-type foods right after your surgery. Fluid-type foods are easier on your stomach while it heals and recovers from surgery. Your healthcare team will tell you what you can eat and drink after surgery and how long you need to eat fluid-type foods. Most people will need to eat fluid-type foods for about 2 weeks.

It’s hard to get all the nutrients you need with only fluid-type foods. You will need to take nutrition supplements to help meet your energy and protein needs after surgery. Talk to your dietitian about fluid-type foods and the type and amount of supplement that is best for you.

Some foods and drinks may bother your stomach while it heals. Avoid the following right after your surgery:

  • any solid or semi-solid foods
  • carbonated drinks (drinks with bubbles)
  • higher-fibre foods
  • caffeine
  • alcohol

How will my eating change after bariatric surgery?

After surgery, you will need to make changes to what you eat and how you eat. Your dietitian will talk to you about the changes you need to make and help you meet your nutrition needs. This includes:

  • eating a balanced meal of small portions of solid food (when you no longer need to eat fluid-type foods only)
  • eating foods higher in protein at each meal and snack
  • eating slowly and chewing your food well
  • avoiding having a drink with meals and waiting 30 minutes after eating solid food before you drink fluids
  • avoiding carbonated drinks
  • limiting foods and drinks higher in sugar
  • avoiding foods that are hard to chew, such as sticky, gummy, stringy, or tough fo​ods

It takes time to learn how different foods and drinks make you feel after surgery. Some foods may cause discomfort because of their texture. How certain foods make you feel may change over time. Everyone handles food differently, so what bothers you may not bother someone else. Your dietitian will talk to you about which foods are best to eat and those to avoid after surgery.

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