The key to staying hydrated after bariatric surgery: slow and steady wins the race
A lot of people hold off on hydrating themselves until they are thirsty and ready to drink as much as they can. The problem with this after weight loss surgery is that you won’t be able to drink too much at once.
Whatever type of weight loss surgery you opt for, the one thing that all procedures have in common is reduced stomach capacity. With the gastric banding procedure the smaller stomach is actually a pouch that sits above the remainder of the stomach. The duodenal switch, gastric bypass and sleeve gastrectomy procedures actually separate portions of the stomach. In all cases, know that the smaller pouch will fill up after you consume just a small amount of food or liquid.
The amount of fluids you need doesn’t change after weight loss surgery, but the way that you can drink does. Here are a few tips you should know about staying hydrated after weight loss surgery:
- Take in fluids in small amounts: Don’t take large gulps as this may cause your stomach to fill up and can potentially cause vomiting; which leads to further fluid loss.
- Don’t drink 30 minutes before or after eating: The fluid will take up space in your stomach, making it difficult for you to reach your nutrient goals for that meal as you’ll likely grow full very fast.
- Stick with water: Water has zero calories, is not caffeinated and has no carbonation, so by sticking will plain water you are less likely to experience an upset stomach.
- Aim for 64 ounces daily: If you are exercising a lot, then this number might be higher. Drinking water in small increments throughout the day can make reaching this goal easier than you might anticipate.
After weight loss surgery, you may find it useful to carry a water bottle with you at all times and to sip from it regularly throughout the day. To accommodate for your smaller stomach size, it will benefit you to make changes to your hydration habits, just as you have to your eating habits.