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Understanding the Negative Effects of Overeating after Bariatric Surgery

The doctors and nutritional counselor working through the Tijuana Bariatric Center can help frustrated patients undo the effects of overeating after bariatric surgery at a Tijuana, Mexico, hospital. In addition to getting you back on track, we can help patients learn healthy habits and lay the foundations for a fitter lifestyle. 

Why Do I Keep Overeating?

Eating too much is frustratingly easy. Many factors can contribute to the problem, but two are particularly common: poor adjustment and long-established habits.

While it might seem counterintuitive, snacking can be an effective way to curb overeating.

Adjusting to the bariatric diet can be difficult for a number of reasons, ranging from frustration over restrictions on what you can eat, to simply misjudging whether or not you are full. Further complicating this problem is a tendency to overeat. Many bariatric patients struggle with limiting their portions, and this habit often contributes to any existing weight issues.  In addition to following tips and guidelines, many of our patients join support groups or online forums as well. 

The Complications of Overeating

Bariatric surgery dramatically changes the digestive system, so overeating will result in substantial repercussions. Because the stomach is physically limited in its capacity, there are immediate physical consequences to overeating, including:

  • Nausea
  • Gastrointestinal discomfort
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Dumping syndrome

These physical side effects can both deter and motivate patients. While highly unpleasant, they give patients a concrete reason for sticking to their diet. However, if you overeat regularly, this discomfort will fade because the stomach stretches out. Ultimately, then, sticking to the prescribed diet is up to the patient.

How to Avoid Overeating

Healthy snacksAvoiding the tendency to overeat mainly relies on improving old habits. While revisional surgery may be necessary in rare cases, your nutritionist is more likely to recommend a number of tips for limiting your caloric intake:

  • Snacking between meals: While it may seem counterintuitive, snacking can be an effective way to curb overeating. The urge to overeat is often strongest at large meals like breakfast, lunch, and dinner. But by snacking in between these meals, you can reduce your appetite – and if you are not as hungry, the urge to overeat is lessened.
  • Smaller dishes: By shrinking the size of your plate, the difference between your portions before and after surgery becomes less obvious. Even when you know in theory that the difference remains, it is easier to overlook without a constant visual reminder.
  • No fluids during or immediately after meals: One of the most important elements of post-bariatric recovery is staying hydrated. However, liquids take up more space in the stomach, while providing fewer nutrients than solid foods. And in an attempt to ingest sufficient calories, many patients accidentally overeat. Consequently, it is important to drink liquids throughout the day rather than during meals, so that you remain adequately hydrated but do not lose important stomach capacity.
  • Moderation: Many patients default to one extreme or the other: overindulging or extreme deprivation. However, neither is a good solution. Overeating has its obvious consequences, but not allowing yourself a treat once in a while can make sticking to a diet more difficult – and make the temptation to overeat even more attractive.
  • No exceptions: While a small treat now and then is a good idea, expanding the size of your meal is not, even around the holidays. This can make returning to small portions that much more difficult. Try switching out another part of your meal for a favorite indulgent food rather than increasing portion size.

Reach Out Today

The doctors and counselors coordinating with the Tijuana Bariatric Center are dedicated to ensuring the best possible results for every patient. Contact the network today to take advantage of the post-surgical support and counseling offered through the center. 

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