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Using Protein Supplements Following Bariatric Surgery

If you are extremely overweight and have decided to consider bariatric surgery as a weight loss option, there are a number of things that you need to consider, including the changes you are going to have to make in your current eating habits. For one thing, you will not be able to eat as much, so you will need to eat small portions of healthy foods that are high in protein. Or you could use protein supplements, both in your meals and as meal replacements.

Any surgery, but especially bariatric surgery, is extremely hard on the body, and following this type of surgery, you are going to need plenty of protein, not only for muscle growth and recovery but to provide you with energy. If you are planning to incorporate high-protein foods into your low-calorie diet, make sure that you eat your foods in a specific order, with the proteins being eaten first.

The majority of healthy adults require between 50 and 75 grams of protein daily. Bariatric surgery patients require even more, as much as 100 grams daily. In order to get the protein that you need following bariatric surgery but not add calories, you should consider using protein supplements.

Types of Protein Supplements

There are many types of protein supplements available, so you need to do your research to make sure that you are using the one that is right for you. Sit down and talk with your physician or dietician to create the best meal plan that includes protein supplements. He or she will be able to help you decide which ones will work best with your weight loss plan. Types of protein supplements include whey, soy, rice, egg and casein.

Whey – This is what is known as a complete protein because it contains all eight essential amino acids and all 14 non-essential amino acids. This is an easy-to-digest protein, with effects that begin taking place almost immediately. Whey is a milk derivative, a byproduct from the cheese-making process, so it is not the best choice for people who are lactose intolerant or have allergies to milk products.

Casein – This is another milk derivative and actually is what whey comes from. Casein takes longer to digest than whey, usually up to seven or eight hours, and its effects are longer lasting. Many people recommend that you combine whey and casein to get the best results. This is a product that some lactose intolerant people can use, but it is not recommended for people with milk allergies.

Soy – Soy protein is another complete protein, and because it is vegetable-based, it is great for vegetarians, lactose intolerant people and people with allergies to milk and milk products. This is an ideal protein for people on low calorie, low carbohydrate, high protein diets, because it is gluten-free and is low in fat and carbohydrates. If you are using soy and find that you are experiencing digestive troubles, which has been reported by some, you should switch to a different protein supplement.

Rice – This is also a protein supplement that is good for people who are lactose intolerant or are vegetarians. Also, it is great for people with allergies because it is hypoallergenic. Rice protein is often used for specialized diets following bariatric surgery because it contains no cholesterol or saturated fats. And using rice protein will not cause a rise in blood glucose levels because it is low on the glycemic index.

Egg – Way before protein supplements were invented, people were using eggs to add protein to their diets. Egg protein contains all eight essential amino acids, and you will find many protein powders and other supplements that are made from egg proteins. This is not an option for people with egg or poultry allergies.

Protein Supplements as Meal Replacements

There are many ways that you can use protein supplements as meal replacements. There are a number of delicious protein-packed snacks available on the market today as well as meal replacement protein bars, which are also loaded with vitamins and other nutrients that your body needs.

Another way to use protein supplements to replace meals is to use them to make delicious shakes, smoothies and slushies. By combining protein powder, which is available in many great flavors that include chocolate, vanilla, berry and fruit punch, with other healthy ingredients, such as juice, berries, fruit, milk and yogurt, you can create a tasty meal replacement that will give you all of the nutrients that you would get from a full meal. And you are getting far fewer calories, as well as less cholesterol and fewer carbohydrates. Both milk and yogurt are also high in protein, so a drink with these ingredients will pack an even bigger protein punch.

Also available are liquid protein supplements that are already pre-mixed, so they are ready-to-drink and portable. These are available in many flavors. Because many liquid protein supplements are milk-based, people with milk allergies and those who are lactose intolerant should read the ingredients carefully. Make sure that you are getting a liquid protein that is made from other sources, such as soy, rice or eggs.

Adding Protein Supplements to Your Meals

Following bariatric surgery, you need to make sure that your meals are low calorie and high in protein. In addition to eating healthy, high protein foods such as meat, fish, poultry, eggs and milk products, you can add protein supplements to your meals to increase your protein intake. Not only will this additional protein provide energy and help with muscle recovery, it will also help you to feel fuller quickly, eliminating the need for high-calorie snacking.

Protein powders are a great way to add protein to your meals. There are many flavored proteins, which can be used in some meals, but the unflavored ones are usually preferred for this purpose. Protein powders can be added to just about any recipe without compromising the texture or flavor. Add a scoop or two to a glass of skimmed milk or to a bowl of soup or any other dish you can think of.

Source by Jim Duffy

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