Love My Lap Band!

Everything you want to know about life and weight loss with a Lap Band!

Archive for September, 2009

Day 19. Still Not Hungry.

Posted by Lori on September 29, 2009

Dr. Ortiz keeps his patients on liquids for the first three weeks. He says that if you lose your pre-surgical weight and stick to liquids for three weeks, you can hope to lose between 30% and 50% of your excess weight in the first 8 weeks or so. And since I want to lose 100% of my excess weight, I have been almost perfect on this diet. I will admit to crushing three bite sized pieces of pineapple in my mouth, chewing them and swallowing what was left. So, I did cheat a little.

I am getting healthier. It’s an amazing thing. I’ve always been someone who walked a lot and I try and walk between 3  and 5 miles most days. But for the past several years, it’s been very difficult to do and I’ve had to stop and rest along the way – sometimes several times per block. Three nights ago, I walked 2.7 miles, stopped to rest maybe twice for only a few seconds, and covered the distance in 72 minutes. Pokey, it’s true, but gratifying nonetheless. The next night, I walked the 2.7 miles in 66 minutes and didn’t have to stop and rest even once. Last night, I walked it in sixty minutes. That was a real delight. Still, I should be able to cover a mile in under 15 minutes, so I have distance to go. But it remains, that 19 days after Lap Band surgery, I can do something I haven’t been able to do in years. And I’m 54 years old so that impacts the equation. I’m getting healthier already.

I feel fine. Today, I  forgot to eat anything besides my chicken broth. I’ll have to make up for that when i get back from my walk. I don’t have cravings. I don’t miss eating. My husband fixes himself dinner right next to my work space and it hasn’t been an issue in the least. I do avoid the grocery store because of the aromatic roast chicken that they have, but other than that, I haven’t given food much thought. I had been worried that I would have the worst case of munchies known to human kind, but no, no munchies. I’m so happy to be free of hunger that it’s just natural  and effortless to avoid food.

I haven’t weighed myself yet. I weighed 225 in clothes and shoes the day of surgery. This Thursday, on my 3 week anniversary, I’m going to weigh myself to see how much I’ve lost. I can tell you that my jeans are looser and a neighbor who didn’t know I had surgery commented that my face was changing and that I looked thinner. I’m hopeful that I have lost more than 5 pounds, but we’ll see. I’m trying to concentrate on the process rather than the scale.

I live right around the corner from Los Angeles’ Hugo’s Tacos. Some of the taco blogs consider them among the best tacos in LA with amazing light, crispy shells. So for my coming out dinner, I am going to have one taco. I have a very slender girlfriend and she and I went to Rick’s Tacos and Burritos in Pasadena one day. I ordered three tacos. She ordered one. She got done eating and pronounced herself stuffed. LOL Now, I get to be one of those women who can eat one taco and be satisfied. Yahoo.

Next on my list is ordering Bodylastics Bands to work out with. They’re pretty inexpensive but business is very slow right now so I’ve put off buying them. My dream is to get a Concept II rowing machine but right now, I’m not sure where I’d put it. I do have to figure out a way to work out during the rainy season.

Posted in Lap Band Basics, Lap Band Weight Loss Stories, My Lap Band Experience, Weight Loss Surgery, What You Can Eat With A Lap Band | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Day 5 Post Op. Still Not Hungry.

Posted by Lori on September 15, 2009

The last time I ate solid foods was last Wednesday afternoon. I had my Lap Band on Thursday. Since that time, I still haven’t experienced any hunger. I’m drinking a couple bottles of protein water a day and a cup or two of diluted fruit juice. I stopped by a grocery store today and the smell of the roast chicken really got me for a couple minutes. But then I was out of the store and quickly forgot about it.

It’s interesting being this disconnected from food. I wonder how long it will last. I’m expecting that when my stomach heals, hunger will return but for the time being, I” going to take this as far as I can.

Posted in Lap Band, My Lap Band Experience | Tagged: , , , , | 6 Comments »

Day 5 And I’m Still Not Hungry!!!!

Posted by Lori on September 14, 2009

I was banded last Thursday and haven’t eaten solid food since last Wednesday afternoon. Much to my delight and surprise, I’m subsisting quite well on the diluted fruit juice and protein water diet prescribed by the luverly Dr. Miranda. I’ve had about a cup of apple juice today and 2 bottles of Kellogg’s Protein Water (50 calories, 5 grams of protein, 5 grams of fiber). Two more days and I get to add some broth and some liquid yogurt. Yahoo!!!

I don’t know if I’ve lost any weight because I don’t have a scale right now. I thought I’d wait a few weeks before I purchase one, just so I don’t get too crazy.

One of the women who commented said that I made the process sound so simple and easy. I want to reiterate that Dr. Ortiz makes it very simple  to get through the pre-surgical process. There is no drama in Dr. Ortiz’ facility. It’s one of the most well-organized and direct experiences I’ve ever had. They know exactly what they need to know to make sure that surgery is safe, and that’s what they find out. Everyone knows what their job is, and they do it quickly and move you on to the next stage. It’s just wonderful. And that’s what it’s like when you’re in the hands of someone with tremendous experience who is thoughtful – Ortiz has worked through it all and has the entire order worked out. I can’t say enough about the experience that I had there – they are wonderful people.

Posted in Bariatric Surgeons, My Lap Band Experience | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Finally! Banded In Mexico!

Posted by Lori on September 13, 2009

This past Wednesday I went to Mexico and had my gastric band procedure performed by the masterful, mystical, magical, hyper-competent and good-humored Dr. Ariel Ortiz. Let me tell you – his patients love him for a reason. My surgery was on Thursday afternoon and I’m on my post-surgical all liquid diet. The good news is that it’s Sunday and I am not yet hungry despite having consumed fewer than 1000 calories total in the past few days.

So, what’s it like? I’ll tell you the whole story. We drove to border crossing where Fernando picked us up and took us across the border. Because I was coming in fairly late in the day, he took us straight to the Marriott. We checked in and went downstairs for my last meal before surgery. I had  chicken in chile sauce served over mashed sweet potatoes. It was divine. Looking around the dining room, I noticed a casually -attired, similarly-sized lady eating alone and went over to introduce myself. Sure enough, she was here from Canada to have surgery with Dr. Ortiz as well. We chatted for a while before each of us headed off to our room.

The next morning at 7 am sharp, the van arrived for us. We went straight to the clinic – which is a five minute drive or so. We pulled into the basement parking and took an elevator to the second floor. We entered the waiting room lobby – a pretty, sunny space with stone tiles – and were greeted by name by the receptionist. First, I was taken off to the dentist to make sure my teeth were in good order for the amount of chewing they are about to embark upon and then off to the cardiologist. Dr. Heurta tested my lungs for capacity and discovered that they only functioned at about 78% – this explains why I can’t walk as far as I used to. They have a little box that you blow into as long and as hard as you can for six seconds – it’s very simple. Then, I was on the table for a quick EKG which required slipping into an open front patient gown over my jeans. Then it was off to meet with the marvelous Dr. Miranda – OCC’s beautiful, brilliant nutritionist. She laid down the law about what I could eat and not eat. For the first week, clear liquids only – preferably diluted fruit juice for seven days. Broth can be added after the third day if essential. Also, Pedialyte, Gatorade, Kellogg’s Protein Water and coffee or herbal tea with non-dairy creamers. At the second week, a half cup serving of liquid yogurt can be added. For the third week, protein drinks and creamy soups. Okay.

Finally, I was taken off to my room –  a charming little space, with a hospital bed, soothing dark colors and a small water fountain by the side. Dr. Ortiz designed the space himself and it is comfortable, cozy and modern. I changed into my hospital gown and a nurse came in to insert my IV and draw blood for a few more tests. It was painless and very quick.  From that point on, it’s kind of a blur. I vaguely remember being helped out of my bed and into a wheelchair. I remember chatting with the anesthesiologist about how everyone loves their anesthesiologist and he said that I was wrong about that. LOL. Next thing I know, I’m being waken up and walked down the hall.

I’ve had major surgery twice in my life and this walk down the hall was easy. After a c-section with a full transverse cut getting out of bed and walking is incredibly painful. This isn’t like that at all. The biggest problem was that I was still woozy and wanted to walk into the wall, but the nurse kept a strong arm on me and I was fine. Then I went back to the room and sat down on the love seat where I promptly fell asleep. After snoozying there for a few hours, I climbed back into bed and slept for some more. My dinner companion from the night before was alert and wandering up and down the hall way but that wasn’t for me. I did get up a couple more times just to walk around and it was easy. They have a station with computer where patients can check their email. I logged in to find out what Obama had proposed in his health care reform speech, thinking all the time how ironic it was that I was checking from Mexico while on a health care vacation.

The next morning, Dr. Ortiz checked in on me but I was so sleepy that I barely remember that.  My husband showed up later on, and Fernando loaded us into the van for the trip across the border.

Since that time, I have not experienced any real pain. I’ve only taken one of the pain pills that they sent me home with. I can sleep in whatever position that I want without problems. The IV was removed easily and did not leave any bruising. I didn’t get taht nurse’s name, but she’s really good at IVs.

I’m not hungry yet.  I’ve been drinking out of a small, antique crystal wine glass. I’ve had maybe four cups total of orange juice since Friday morning. I need to get some protein water in there but we haven’t been to the store yet. Like I said, I’m not hungry yet. The juice is keeping me full. That’s a big relief.

So, that’s what my experience was like. It was as simple, easy and sensible as anything I have ever done. Dr. Ortiz’ facilities are state of the art – elegant but not ostentatious, well designed and sparkling. He has lots of health care professionals from America as patients and one very quickly sees why they come here.

If you have any other questions about what it is like, I’m happy to answer them.

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