Could You Limit Thanksgiving to 1/4 Cup of Food?

MakenzieR on 19 Nov 2011 at 9:00am

Can you imagine a Thanksgiving where you were only allowed to eat a ¼ cup of food?  That’s the reality for the growing number of Americans who’ve had weight loss surgery -- over 200,000 in 2010 alone. Not only are they limited in size intake, but they’re told to stay away from starches like mashed potatoes and stuffing.

We compared how much food a typical person eats on Thanksgiving (and this plate belongs to one of our tiniest employees!) and compared it to the amount a post-weight loss surgery patient could consume at one time.  Pretty drastic!

weight loss surgery Thanksgiving

We made one mistake in the serving though -- the starches! Bariatric surgeon Dr. David Buchin says “75% of your meal should be a protein, the other 25% of your meal should be a fruit or a vegetable. Starches such as pasta rice or bread should be limited.”

So how do post-op patients deal with Turkey Day?

Barbara L. had a plan that helped cut her cravings: “My first Thanksgiving I was 8 months out. I did all the cooking and had family members taste as I went along. If I did all the tasting I would have been full before dinner. I had turkey, carrots, and turnips and a little bite of sweet potato. I was so full from that I didn't have to worry about desserts or avoiding anything. The desire was not there.”

But what if your favorite dish is on the no-no list?

“My plan is to nibble, little bites of whatever I want, except anything like bread or rice,” says Annie, who is facing her first Thanksgiving post-op. “Why not? It's always gonna be part of my life and I'm certainly not gonna show up with a bottle of water and a protein bar. A little turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes and pie will not make or break my entire diet.”

Do you have waistline worries on Thanksgiving, or is it a day where calories don’t count?

Photo credits: RealSelf
Surgery stats based on CBS report

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