Although this may sound like a weird rite of passage, it isn’t. It happens to just about everyone who is about to have weight loss surgery. There is a lot of hype and fear around giving up certain foods when individuals embark on the journey of bariatric surgery. This can be a very overwhelming time. I see on message boards, and even from my clients, pre-op patients will discuss “what will I have as my last meal”?
Also, it’s important to note that the “last meal” is typically before the pre-op diet and not right before surgery. This is a question many people have because food has been such a big part of their lives for so long, or they may see food as pleasure, a reward, or a need to cope with life struggles.
So it’s only normal that people want to engage in a food funeral or have their most favorite food one last time before having bariatric surgery. As it is understood, food funerals are a way to say goodbye to your most beloved foods. There is a fear for those who have weight loss surgery that they will NEVER get to eat those foods again. It is common to mourn the change in their relationship with food.
Prior to surgery, there is the feeling of loss and sadness, thus using the term food funerals. When individuals shift their mindset around food, they can soon realize that most often, they can eat things that are delicious and nutritious.
Avoiding Pre-Op Food Funerals
Since this is just as much of an emotional journey as it is a physical one, there needs to be some mindset shifts around eating and food preparation to help people bridge the gap from where they are to their new lifestyle. It can be helpful for pre-ops to change their thinking in terms of their future lifestyle as they move forward with their process to get bariatric surgery. This can ease them into the new lifestyle even before having surgery.
There are many foods that can be “bari-fied” or made “bari-friendly” (bariatric-friendly) so that individuals can have these foods even after surgery. The overall goal is to reduce the carbohydrates and eat foods high in protein and nutritionally dense foods.
You can read the full article with 5 Tips to Enjoy Food More and Avoid Pre-Op Food Funerals by Kristin Lloyd at ObesityHelp here.
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