Friday, September 19, 2014

5DPT: Soups for Liquids - Refresher Course

We get a lot of questions about the soups for the 5 Day Pouch Test. Here is an explanation directly from our forthcoming book: The 5 Day Pouch Test Owner's Manual. Many who have done the 5DPT and used the soups swear by them. Another question that I get frequently is, "Can I have the soups when I'm not doing the 5DPT?" The answer is a big resounding YES!

Link to the Soup Recipes

Soup Alternatives to Protein Shakes
The 5 Day Pouch Test calls for two days of protein rich liquids. Normally we think of ready-to-drink protein beverages or homemade concoctions using fruit, yogurt and protein powders. This is quite typical of the early post-op diet prescribed by many surgical weight loss centers. The 5DPT begins with two days of protein liquids in order to baby the pouch, much as we did immediately post-op. In addition, the liquids are useful in breaking a processed carbohydrate snacking habit or slider food addiction.

Ideally one would spend Days 1 and 2 drinking only protein drinks, clear broth, tea and water. However, depending on your food habits leading into the 5DPT this can be quite drastic causing hunger, dizziness and frustration. As I developed this plan I learned that more substantial soups made of animal protein, legumes, beans and low-glycemic vegetables work well to alleviate the discomfort of a liquid diet.

5 Day Pouch Test Website

These satisfying soup recipes are made of foods low on the Glycemic Index: a measure of how your blood glucose levels are affected by food. That means they will stick with you without causing a rapid rise (and then drop) in blood glucose. These great comfort soups will help keep you feeling full longer, help you achieve and maintain a healthy weight, and provide you with more consistent energy throughout the day.

It is easy to confuse soup with slider foods since both are liquids that flow more rapidly through the stoma than solid protein. But the thing to remember is the soup recipes we recommend are nutrient dense. Slider foods such as crackers or pretzels washed down with liquids have no nutritional value.

A final note, the soup recipes we offer are less expensive than processed protein beverages and they are family friendly making the 5 Day Pouch Test more practical to incorporate into our busy schedules.

For best results with the 5DPT read the full plan: 5 Day Pouch Test Owner's Manual.

ISBN: 978-1-62890-183-2 SALE! $22.95
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Learn more about the new second edition:
An Interview with Kaye Bailey

Cinnamon and Ginger: Healing Herbs

It is not uncommon, after surgical weight loss, to experience frequent bouts of indigestion or mild stomach discomfort. We simply do not have enough digestive enzymes. Foods that may cause indigestion tend to be processed simple carbohydrates or high in fat. Often we turn to over-the-counter digestive aids that may or may not help. Some actually do more harm because they are time released made for people with a full intestinal tract and our short-circuit systems cannot handle them either.

But what I've learned over years of tending my tiny stomach pouch is that food mindfully prepared with limited fat and processed ingredients, and rich in protein seasoned and flavored with herbs and spices seldom results in stomach upset.

Cinnamon and Ginger are carminative herbs that contain compounds that can soothe the stomach and prevent gas. They are ideal for preventing and treating indigestion. They may give our tiny pouches a boost when it comes to digestion and prevent stomach upset that might otherwise occur.

In reviewing the culinary history of the world we learn that ginger has been the herb of choice for seasoning fish and seafood. Recipes date back thousands of years in China's history, to when fish and seafood weren't always fresh and often caused indigestion or worse. James A. Duke in "The Green Pharmacy" tells us, "Ancient Chinese cooks discovered that if they flavored their fish with ginger, it was less likely to cause stomach upset. Ginger has been the spice of choice for fish ever since." (Rodale Copyright 2001 - Page 103).

I think as people recovering from morbid obesity we owe it to ourselves to take advantage of the best natural remedies whenever possible. I believe this with all my heart. Research and experience has taught me it is possible to achieve nutritional balance, in most cases, with the inclusion of the best ingredients in mindfully prepared meals. Don't you agree?

In addition to cinnamon and ginger the following carminative herbs can be included in the diet to avoid and/or relieve stomach distress:
anise, cardamom, chamomile, cilantro, coriander, lavender, lemon balm, licorice, peppermint, red pepper, and spearmint.
Peppermint may very well be the best digestive herb available. It is antibacterial and will fight-off food borne bugs. It promotes gastric secretions so you digest food more efficiently. It is antispasmodic, helping to prevent and relieve abdominal cramps and it is carminative to settle the stomach and prevent gas. Try a nice cup of peppermint tea one hour before meals and see how it works for you.

For great recipes with health promoting ingredients check out Cooking with Kaye.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

5DPT: Carbohydrate Withdrawal and Nausea

It is not that uncommon, when making any kind of dietary change, that our bodies go through a rebellious phase. In the case of withdrawing simple carbs from the diet, when using the 5 Day Pouch Test or quitting cold turkey, many people experience nausea, sweating, or disorientation. A reasonable remedy is eating a piece of low glycemic fruit which will relieve the symptoms and provide beneficial vitamins and  nutrients.

From the 5 Day Pouch Test Owner's Manual:

If you notice symptoms of carbohydrate withdrawal you can eat a small piece of melon, some berries, an apple or orange. Any low-glycemic fruit or vegetable will reduce the symptoms of carbohydrate withdrawal.

You may also try a dose of Emergen-C, which should reduce headache, dizziness or cramping from carbohydrate withdrawal.

Feeling nauseated? Try sipping some freshly brewed warm green tea. You can add fresh ginger juice to further ease the symptoms of stomach distress and nausea. The nausea may be the result of a switch from carbohydrate slider foods to richer proteins and the ingredients in the protein shakes.

Include: Low-Glycemic Fresh Fruit: apple, avocado, banana, blueberries cantaloupe, grapefruit, kiwi fruit, lemon, lime, mango, orange, peach, pear, plum, raspberries, and strawberries.

Avoid these fruits: fresh apricots, cherries, papaya, pineapple, rhubarb, and watermelon.

Include Low-Glycemic Dried Fruit: apple, apricots, dates, and prunes.

Include: Low-Glycemic Fresh Vegetables: alfalfa sprouts, artichokes, arugula, asparagus, bean sprouts, bok choy, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, chili peppers, chives, corn, cucumber, eggplant, endive, fennel, garlic, ginger, green beans, herbs, leeks, lettuce, mushrooms, okra, peppers, radishes, scallions, shallots, snow pea sprouts, spinach, squash, Swiss chard, tomato, turnip, watercress, and zucchini.

Avoid these vegetables: Beets, fava beans, parsnips, peas, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and yams.

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High Protein Energy Breakfast!

I just found this great recipe from the American Egg Board: Mini Breakfast Pizzas. What a great way to start your day and what a healthy way to send the kids off to school.

4 EGGS, beaten
1/3 cup pizza sauce
2 English muffins, split, toasted
1/2cup shredded Italian cheese blend (2 oz.) Dried oregano leaves

HEAT oven to 450°F. COAT large nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium heat until hot.

POUR IN eggs. As eggs begin to set, GENTLY PULL the eggs across the pan with an inverted turner, forming large soft curds. CONTINUE cooking - pulling, lifting and folding eggs - until thickened and no visible liquid egg remains. Do not stir constantly. REMOVE from heat.

SPREAD pizza sauce evenly on muffin halves; place on baking sheet. TOP with eggs and cheese, dividing evenly.

BAKE in 450°F oven until cheese is melted, about 5 minutes. SPRINKLE with oregano.

For more great recipes visit the LivingAfterWLS Kitchen

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Weekly Digest: The ABC's of WLS

Don't you just love Back to School time, a mid-year start-over so to speak? This is my favorite time of year and as luck would have it, my ultimate start-over -- gastric bypass -- was on September 13, 1999. Talk about going Back to School in a big way! Last Saturday marked 15 years since my surgery. Where did the time go? While visiting with my husband about this milestone I said to him, "After 15 years you would think I'd have this down to a science. But I still have to work at using my tool and weight management every day, it is so hard!"

Because he is a wise person he replied, "It's hard work because it IS hard."
So today, in the spirit of Back to School I present our newly published Infographic: The ABC's of WLS. You can view it in full down below or click on the image to open a PDF file for download and printing. I hope you find the alphabetic snippets inspiring and useful.

Download the PDF File here: ABC's of WLS

One thing I have learned with absolute certainty is weight management can only be achieved when we have a plan. Leaving our menu to chance didn't work before surgery and it doesn't work after surgery. The plan need not be elaborate. Some days I scribble on my planner: B-eggs; L-tuna; D-chicken. There's my protein. I'll manage the details when I get there. On better organized weeks I plan the weekly menu and post on the refrigerator. This produces stellar results. Regardless of the level of detail, a plan is essential. Read more in this article: I Love DIET. And if you are looking at a truly fun way to get motivated to move check out Wiggle Therapy.
Welcome Back to WLS School of Living!  I hope you find this digest useful in your ongoing efforts for improved health with weight loss surgery. You have the power to make this your healthiest Back to School ever! Let's do it together!

Read the newsletter in our Archive: Back to School: The ABC's of WLS

Monday, September 15, 2014

Fall Coupon! Save $3 in LivingAfterWLS General Store

LivingAfterWLS General Store: Your premier resource for our Publications and 5 Day Pouch Test Support. Shop now and SAVE!

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2014 Fall Special: $3 off orders of $29 or more!
Enter code: FALL14 at checkout to take $3 off order - $29 minimum!!!

Offer expires midnight 10/31/2014.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Find an Apple Orchard Near You

Apples are an excellent selection for weight loss surgery patients because they rank medium on the glycemic index therefore impacting our blood sugar only slightly. In addition apples are fat-free and a good source of dietary fiber, pectin, potassium, and Vitamins A and C. Apples are a healthy choice at any time of year, at any time of day. They are delicious on their own but fare well as supporting cast in many savory protein recipes, as I share with you today in Cooking with Kaye. I usually have an apple a day this time of year, 1-half in the morning for a mid-day snack, and the other half in the afternoon.

"An apple a day" may keep more than the doctor away. In fact, apples may keep a whole host of illnesses away, from heart disease and asthma to cancer. New research has shown a wide range of apple health benefits. Apple pie hasn't been declared a health food just yet, but nutrition researchers around the world are discovering there is more to the apple than meets the eye. Long known to be a great source of fiber, apples are now poised to take their place among such super foods as garlic, broccoli and red wine, thanks to a growing body of research documenting potential health benefits provided by other apple nutrients.

Find and Apple Orchard Near You

To learn more about apples go to All About Apples. There you will find a national orchard listing with many links to orchards in your area that host festivals and pick your own events.

United States Orchards Directory

Apples in Savory Dishes: Two Recipes

A great way to reduce carb cravings and enjoy a high protein diet is to include low-glycemic fruits and vegetables in savory dishes. With apple harvest season upon us now is a great time to experiment with a variety of crisp fresh apples in our main course high protein dishes. Here are two of my favorite apple savory dishes. Enjoy!

Apple-Turkey Meatloaf

The delicious flavor of fresh fall apples lends itself perfectly to tender ground turkey in this easy to prepare weeknight supper. If you prefer, make mini-meatloaves for easy left-over packaging. I used granny Smith apples, but any firm tart apple will be delicious in this recipe.

Cooking spray
1/2 cup whole oats
1/2 teaspoon Provence Seasoning (optional)
1/2 cup apple juice

1 1/2 pound lean ground turkey
1 medium granny Smith apple, shredded
1 small onion, shredded
1 egg, beaten
salt and pepper to taste

Apple slices, for garnish

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside. In a small bowl mix oats and Savory Provence Seasoning: add apple juice and mix. Soak for 5 minutes until oats absorb apple juice.

In the meantime, in a large bowl combine ground turkey, shredded apple, and shredded onion gently. Blend in beaten egg and soaked oats. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Form mixture into a loaf and place on prepared baking sheet. Bake in heated oven 35-40 minutes or until internal temperature measures 160°F. Remove from oven and rest 5 minutes before slicing. Serve garnished with apple slices.

Optional: Core and slice 3 apples and 1 onion. While meatloaf cooks melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir apples and onions in butter until tender and nicely caramelized. Serve with meatloaf slices.

Balsamic Pork Chops & Apples

The bright flavor of balsamic vinegar enhances the sweetness of the onion and apples and lends richness to a rather bland cut of pork. You can build on this recipe adding shredded cabbage and kielbasa-style sausage for an Oktoberfest tradition.

Cooking spray
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 (6-ounce) pork tenderloin chops
salt and pepper
4 gala apples, peeled, cored, sliced
1 medium white onion, sliced
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup chicken broth, low sodium

Spray a large 12-inch heavy-bottom skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Add olive oil. Season pork tenderloin chops with salt and pepper. Cook 3-4 minutes per side until cooked through. Remove to plate and tent with foil to keep warm.

Add apples and onion to skillet and cook and stir until apples are tender and onions are golden. Scrape bottom to pull-up brown bits which will add flavor to onion and apples. Add balsamic vinegar and broth and continue cooking until liquid is slightly reduced. Return pork to pan and reduce heat. Cover and allow to simmer on low 6-8 minutes. Serve warm: 1 pork tenderloin chop and 1/2 cup apples & onions per serving with a drizzle of sauce.

Seasonal Hint: Apples and Exercise Promote Body Fat Loss

It is apple harvest season across the country so what better time to enjoy the health and weight loss benefits of including apples in our post weight loss surgery diet. Learn more in this article from our archive:

Apples and Exercise Promote Body Fat Loss

We have all heard about marathon runners chowing-down on pasta heavy meals the night before a 26-mile race in what is commonly called "carbo-loading". It is an effort to supply the body with energy efficient carbohydrates that will be a ready fuel source come race time the next morning. But for the average person engaging in modest physical activity for weight loss or weight control, such carbo-loading is detrimental to our efforts. In fact, there are very few occasions where one will require the energy to perform physically that warrants a carbo-loading meal.

Weight Loss Surgery (WLS) patients who are following their bariatric guidelines know they must exercise daily in order to lose weight and maintain that weight loss. As they lose weight their endurance and intensity of physical activity will naturally increase. Often traditional physical activity enthusiasts will encourage WLS patients to eat high energy carbohydrate-dense snack bars before exercise. These may negate the caloric benefits of exercise for the patient and lead to discouragement when weight loss stalls or weight gain occurs.

For many WLS patients a better solution is to eat a nutrient dense apple about 30 minutes before exercise. Apples are low-glycemic* which means eating one instead of a high-glycemic energy bar will reduce the amount of insulin needed to digest it. That makes it easier for the body to burn fat and when the low-glycemic snack is followed by exercise the body will continue to burn body fat for the next few hours. Our goal in weight loss is to lose body fat, not muscle, so the combination of a low-glycemic snack with exercise is beneficial in reaching this goal.

Apples are available year round and they are affordable. They are exceptionally high in antioxidants, which can help offset the damage caused by free radicals, an unfortunate by-product of daily exercise. They are also rich in vitamin C as well as potassium. A medium apple provides about 81 calories and nearly 4 grams of fiber. Some of the fiber in apples is pectin, which may help lower blood cholesterol. Before exercise try slicing a tart apple and spreading the slices with peanut or almond butter (2 teaspoons). This will add a perfect balance of protein and fat to your healthy low-glycemic pre-exercise snack.

At the market look for apples that are hard and unbruised. Most of our better supermarkets now offer less-common apples alongside the familiar varieties of Golden Delicious and Red Delicious. Try Empire, Fuji, Jonagold or Crispin apples. But do not forget the old favorites including the tart and juicy Granny Smith.

*Low-Glycemic foods have less effect on your blood glucose than foods with a high glycemic index. High-GI foods tend to cause spikes in your glucose levels, whereas low-GI foods tend to cause gentle increases. Different carbohydrate foods can behave quite differently in the body. Some break down quickly during digestion and release glucose rapidly into the bloodstream; others break down gradually and slowly trickle glucose into the blood stream.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Magical Corn Husking Solution

If there is one universal complaint about corn on the cob it is the effort of husking and removing the silks. Over the years I've tried all manner of methods to efficiently and effectively remove the husks and silk with very little success. So recently I saw this method of husking on the Internet. And we all know we can believe everything we read on the Internet. But I'm a gamer. I gave it a try. IT WORKS! This method has all the qualities of the good corn husking experience I've been chasing for years: low labor investment, quick, efficient, low mess factor, and stellar results. Give it a try: this is one Internet legend you can believe!

  • Step 1: Cut the stalk end off the ear of corn, about an inch above the lowest kernels.
  • Step 2: Remove the first layer of leaves from the ear of corn, leave the silk in tack. Place in microwave oven. My oven fit 3 ears perfectly when criss-crossed. Cook on high 2 minutes for the first ear and 1 minute for each additional ear. Four minutes on high for three ears worked perfectly in my microwave, but experiment with your oven.
  • Step 3: Immediately remove the ears from the microwave with a clean cotton towel, they are very hot. Holding the ear in one hand grasp the corn leaves and tassel and shake the ear loose. A little wiggling and it will release from the leaves and tassel.
  • Step 4: Done! A perfectly clean ear of corn that is blanched and ready to enjoy, no further cooking is necessary!