Following gastric sleeve surgery, you should be implementing your new bariatric diet. Typically, carbonated beverages do not fall into your bariatric diet. They are not recommended for patients who have had gastric sleeve surgery for several reasons.
This article will provide the reasons behind this recommendation, offer healthy alternatives to carbonated drinks, supply helpful tips, and discuss other beverages that should be avoided.
Can I Drink Carbonated Beverages After Gastric Sleeve Surgery?
The short answer is no. Each surgery center will have different policies, however, it is typically not recommended by medical professionals to drink any form of carbonated beverages for at least the first year after having gastric sleeve surgery. There are multiple reasons why you should not be including them in your gastric sleeve food list or gastric bypass foods list.
What Are Carbonated Beverages?
Carbonated beverages are drinks that contain carbon dioxide, either naturally due to a fermentation process or artificially added. Many people enjoy the bubbles in carbonated beverages.
Soda is one of the most common and popular carbonated beverages. Carbonated water is also a popular alternative to still water. Alcoholic drinks, such as beer, champagne, and ciders are examples of beverages that are naturally carbonated.
Why Are Carbonated Beverages So Bad For Bariatric Patients?
Gastric sleeve surgery changes your digestive system by removing around 80 percent of your stomach to create a small stomach pouch. When you drink carbonated beverages after gastric sleeve surgery, the carbon dioxide is released into your stomach. This occupies space in your stomach, causes it to expand, and puts pressure on the incision site.
Patients experience uncomfortable bloating symptoms which can be very painful due to the reduced stomach size. Symptoms of excess gas and acid reflux are commonly experienced when consuming carbonated beverages.
Apart from this, the carbon dioxide occupies space in your stomach that could be taken up by nutrient-dense foods and liquids. Reaching daily protein goals after drinking carbonated beverages will be more difficult when eating 6 months after gastric bypass or gastric sleeve.
Carbonated beverages have almost no nutritional value and will be wasting space in your stomach. These drinks give you a false sense of satiation. Soon after, you will be craving something else to satisfy you.
Soda usually contains high levels of sugar and calories which negatively affect your weight loss and do not fit into the meal plans for gastric sleeve patients. They cause spikes in blood sugar and then result in low blood sugar after gastric bypass surgery. The calories in soda are considered “empty” because they do not nourish your body in any way.
For example, a 2 liter Coca-Cola bottle contains around 800 calories. If you drink one of these per day, it would account for nearly your entire 1000 calorie bariatric diet plan.
Soda can often have caffeine as one of the ingredients. Caffeine can be a diuretic when consumed in excess, which means it causes water loss and excess urination. Drinking soda that contains caffeine throughout the day can increase your risk of dehydration. Diuretics and caffeine can also affect how you absorb your bariatric vitamins and minerals. This can negatively effect your recovery after gastric sleeve surgery.
What Are The Best Alternatives To Sodas And Other Carbonated Drinks?
Water will always be the best alternative to any drink. It is really important to prevent dehydration in the recovery period after any bariatric surgery.
If you find plain water boring and difficult to drink, try adding a slice of lemon, cucumber, strawberries, or a couple of mint leaves to give it some flavor. You should be used to drinking water because you would have had a clear liquid diet before gastric sleeve surgery.
If you are wanting a hot beverage, then decaffeinated tea or coffee is probably your best choice. Why no caffeine after gastric bypass or gastric sleeve? Caffeine is not recommended for the first couple of months after surgery because of its diuretic effect and its ability to cause stomach irritation and acid reflux.
Caffeine, like diet pills after gastric sleeve, suppresses your appetite and may cause you to not consume enough calories. It should not be included in your after gastric bypass surgery diet plan.
You can drink your decaf coffee and tea with or without milk, depending on your preference and your body’s ability to tolerate milk. Some individuals do not handle the lactose in milk well after weight loss surgery.
Your choice of milk should be low-fat or skim milk. Remember, you should only be taking small sips of fluids after bariatric surgery to avoid any discomfort and promote hydration.
When eating out after gastric sleeve surgery, be sure to visit bariatric restaurants.
Some of the best restaurants for bariatric patients will offer low-calorie and low-fat options that would be suitable for your diet. They usually offer smaller dinner plate options that mimic the size of bariatric portion control plates. Special cutlery and bariatric portion plates can assist you when eating your first bariatric cheeseburger pie or bariatric pancakes. These restaurants may provide some inspiration for eating after gastric bypass surgery.
Protein drinks for bariatric patients (using bariatric whey protein) are also a nutritious and tasty alternative for carbonated drinks. These bariatric protein shakes are high-protein foods for gastric sleeve patients and provide the calories that your body needs. You can also check out gastric sleeve protein shake recipes in a gastric sleeve cookbook.
These cookbooks also provide good recipes for after gastric bypass surgery. Some cookbooks can even offer recipes that fit into the keto diet after gastric bypass, however, you should avoid fad diets unless you dietitian has directed you to do so.
Some Helpful Tips If You Need Your Soda Fix
If you love soda and you want to drink it in small quantities, only on special occasions, you may be able to drink calorie-free and sugar-free soda. It's also recommended to open the drink ahead of time and allow it to become flat before drinking it.
This might take away the pleasure of drinking a soda, but it will certainly spare you a lot of pain and discomfort associated with carbonation.
Beverages should not be consumed with meals to avoid dumping syndrome or a false sense of fullness when eating.
Everything in moderation is the key idea for patients after bariatric surgery. Keep in mind, the reason you had bariatric surgery in the first place is likely linked to your love of unhealthy sodas and bad lifestyle habits.
Which Other Drinks Should I Avoid After Surgery?
As previously mentioned, caffeine should be avoided for at least the first couple of months after having surgery because of its diuretic and acidic effects on your new digestive system. Coffee, tea, and energy drinks that contain caffeine should be avoided.
Drinking alcohol after gastric sleeve surgery should be avoided for at least a couple of months, or even up to a year. Alcoholic drinks, such as beer, ciders, champagne, and some cocktails are carbonated and should be avoided for the reasons mentioned above.
Alcohol is also a diuretic and can lead to dehydration if it is abused. It also has the potential to cause acid reflux in patients that have had gastric sleeve surgery. Your tolerance to alcohol will be significantly decreased after surgery and you may not be able to handle alcohol like you could before the surgery.
Keep in mind, alcohol is also considered "empty" calories due to the lack of nutrition it provides.
Some Other Helpful Articles Include:
- What to Eat Before Gastric Sleeve Surgery
- Week 3 Gastric Sleeve Diet
- Gastric Sleeve Benefits
- Bariatric Surgery Options
- Acid Reflux or GERD After Bariatric Surgery-3 Tips!
**This blog is for information and education purposes only. This information is not intended to substitute professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Please consult with your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions in regards to a medical condition.