Many people think that weight loss surgery is the easy way out. However, as many bariatric patients know, it is far from easy. Adhering to lifestyle changes and supplementation after weight loss surgery is an extreme adjustment. It is not uncommon to experience some bumps along the way while adjusting to lifestyle changes.
It can be very challenging consuming the micro and macronutrients you require through food sources after weight loss surgery. With restriction and/or malabsorption after surgery, nutrients can be lacking from your dietary intake. Not to mention, some food sources may no longer be tolerated, making things more complicated.
Luckily, there are bariatric specific supplements available in order to compensate for the lack of nutrient dense dietary intake.
A high protein meal replacement or protein powder is a great option to assist you in reaching daily protein goals. That being said, you need to make sure you are choosing supplements that are suitable for your individual needs to provide the best results.
Let’s take a closer look at how unflavored protein powders can be incorporated into the bariatric diet and why they may be helpful.
Why Bariatric Patients Need a Protein Supplement
After bariatric procedures such as gastric bypass, gastric sleeve and gastric band, food portions will decrease significantly.
While the idea is to promote rapid weight loss, it will be nearly impossible to get all of the essential micro and macronutrients due to decreased dietary intake, including protein. In that case, protein powder is a great option to have on hand to avoid protein/calorie malnutrition.
Protein is necessary in order to help the body maintain muscle, promote healing, and support metabolism after bariatric surgery. Proteins essentially make up your entire body, so they are extremely important.
If you want to know more about the benefits of protein after weight loss surgery, check out this blog.
Flavored vs. Unflavored Bariatric Protein
Taste changes can occur after bariatric surgery. It is common for someone to love a certain flavor before surgery and hate it after. Some people may even be more sensitive to sweeter flavors after weight loss surgery.
Sometimes it's beneficial to have options, such as savory or unflavored. An unflavored protein powder can be very versatile. You can mix in your own flavoring with the help of extracts or sugar-free syrups. Unflavored protein powders are also a great way to increase the protein content of food sources.
You can mix unflavored protein powder into applesauce, mashed potatoes, pudding, and yogurt to boost the protein profile of the dietary source you choose.
The Best Unflavored Protein Supplement for Bariatric Patients
There is a difference between protein powders and high protein meal replacements. Both options can be beneficial based on what nutrition you are looking for.
Protein supplements do just that, supply you with a source of protein. They usually do not contain anything additional and are very low in calories.
High protein meal replacements offer more nutrients than just protein. In a high protein meal replacement the formulation is designed to mimic a small meal, including fiber, vitamins, minerals, and high protein.
If you are looking for a high-protein, low-carb meal replacement that was formulated for bariatric patients, then take a look at Bariatric Fusion Unflavored High Protein Meal Replacement.
With high protein, low carbohydrates, low fat and low calories, Bariatric Fusion high protein meal replacements are suitable for bariatric patients, as well as anyone looking for a high quality protein supplement.
Many bariatric patients find that they have an issue with lactose after surgery. The high protein meal replacements are gluten and lactose-free, perfectly suitable for bariatric needs.
Although Bariatric Fusion high protein meal replacements contain vitamins and minerals, this product does not replace your bariatric multivitamin supplement. You still require the consistent intake of your bariatric multivitamin daily in order to prevent common deficiencies after weight loss surgery.
How to Prepare a Bariatric Protein Shake
There are a wide variety of bariatric recipes to choose from when it comes to making protein shakes. It's always good to balance out your meals, so including a source of healthy fat and fruits/vegetables to your protein shake provides a variety of nutrients.
You can get creative with unflavored protein powder by adding sugar-free syrups and extracts. You can even add the protein powder meal replacement to foods like oatmeal, applesauce, and pudding for an extra boost of protein.
Make sure you consult with your dietitian before experimenting with food sources. Depending on the diet phase you are in, you may not be able to consume certain foods yet.
Is Whey Protein Good for Gastric Bypass Patients?
Yes, whey protein isolate is an excellent supplement for gastric bypass patients. The filtering process extracts lactose, making whey protein isolate an option that lactose intolerant individuals can tolerate.
Whey protein isolate also contains a higher amount of protein in smaller volumes when compared to whey concentrate, a cleaner taste, and provides better mixing.
Does Unflavored Protein Powder Have a Taste?
Some unflavored protein powders have a natural taste to them. It is usually unnoticeable and is likely being mixed with flavors of a different food or beverage.
How Much Protein Do You Need After Bariatric Surgery?
The ASMBS nutritional guidelines recommend to get at least 60-80 grams of protein daily. This number can be higher based on the recommendations made by your provider. It can be difficult to reach 60-80 grams of protein daily when you are restricted to a small amount of food due to your stomach being the size of an apple.
Protein supplements will be essential after weight loss surgery to help you reach daily protein goals.
What Else Do Bariatric Patients Usually Need?
All bariatric patients require a life long vitamin and mineral supplement as well. Bariatric surgery increases the risk of several vitamin and mineral deficiencies, making a bariatric multivitamin essential for life.
A chewable multivitamin is typically recommended initially following bariatric surgery to allow for the stomach to heal and promote absorption. This will be helpful in preventing common deficiencies.
Bariatric probiotics may also be recommended at some point in your weight loss journey. Probiotics can help to reduce GI issues (bloating, gas, bowel irregularities), increase the absorption of vitamin B12, increase weight loss, and enhance immune response. You can learn more about probiotics here.
To sum up, unflavored protein powder is a great option available that can increase your daily protein intake after bariatric surgery.
If you are looking for the best product a bariatric patient can take, aim to choose a bariatric protein supplement that is formulated for weight loss surgery patients. This will ensure maximum benefits and focus on nutrient dense intake.
Not all protein powders are created equal, so make sure to do your research before purchasing a supplement.
**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. A qualified healthcare professional can best assist you in deciding whether a dietary supplement is suitable based on your individual needs.