A Happy Medium on May 30, 2012 11:54 pm
Be the first to leave a comment.
About once a month or so, I get the urge to go clothes shopping at my favorite store: Goodwill Select. When I was
growing up in the 60's, my mom used to take me to yard sales and thrift stores. You looked through a lot of
not so pretty or fashionable clothes to find may be a few in decent shape. Not true anymore!
On my shopping trip today, I bought 8 shirts, 1 pair of pants, skirt, and dress. The best part of it all
was being able to fit into almost everything I tried on...and 1/2 the shirts and the dress were a size
M E D I U M. I'm sure some of the shoppers were a little disturbed by the maniacal laughter coming
from the dressing room.
So here I am at work tonight with my new Medium shirt on. Its a wonderful feeling to look
"normal"...like anyone else in the crowd, AND to like what I see in the mirror. I feel like my
real self is emerging from the retreating fat.
In August, I will reach my two year mark. I am hoping that i will be at my initial goal then. Its only 10 pounds
away, right?? I'm challenging myself to actually exercise more than once or twice this week. I think I can,, I think I can
.... I really don't mind anymore that its taking me two years to reach my goal because I don't have major batwings
or parts of my body that make me cringe anymore. Yes, I would like to get my "apron" removed someday ...maybe.
Frankly though, Ive had my fill of surgeries (non WLS related) so i really don't see in plastic surgery in my future.
I'm okay with it because all my curves are in the right places now...and our sexlife has skyrocketed about 50 lbs
ago. I don't need to be a Barbie Doll. It just feels so awesome to like the me I see looking back at me.
...even with my scarred legs and missing kneecaps.
HT 5'3" WT 186 Shirt: MEDIUM Pants: 16P WT: 266 Shirt: 2X Shorts: XXL
My banded journey thus far...almost 21 months on May 18, 2012 7:15 am
Be the first to leave a comment.
I have noticed some posts lately asking folks here if they would do it again. I answered yes I would but events of last week had me 2nd guessing for a little while. I suppose it's natural to fear making a wrong choice because of past bad choices..wondering if this WLS will be like every other failed diet....
Recap of my history so far: 10 years ago, I was critically injured in a head on crash which resulted in 16 months off work, 20+surgeries to repair broken hip and both knees...one which had to be totally replaced. I was 279 lbs at the time and I truly think a physically smaller person wouldn't have survived. As it was, I did code the first night of my 4months in the hospital. Fast forward 8 years later...266 lbs..daily pain meds for chronic joint pains, and pre-diabetic. Then..my husband gets diagnosed with throat cancer.
Well..because of the high costs for cancer treatment, we met the catastrophic limit for BCBS, which meant that any medical costs for the rest of the year would be no cost to me. It was difficult to feel like I was "benefitting" from his cancer but...it was also some good to come out of the bad. My husband DID recover completely, losing 80 lbs in the process.
Because of all the surgeries, including one that gave me a nearly fatal staph infection, I was reluctant for any invasive surgeries. I knew the risks of the lapband but i chose it because I did not want to get my inner anatomy re-routed, nor did I want to lose at a rapid weight, risking gallstones or looser skin. In my experience, some friends that had the gastric bypass were more depressed with all their hanging skin.
I will admit that I too believed Allergans selling points, but I also trusted my surgeon and his track record. I knew the risks but hoped I would be one of the successful ones because this was my ONLY chance to afford this. My doc was careful to explain all the risks.
With all the negativity about the band lately, I have sometimes second guessed my decision, wondering if I should tried to get the sleeve but...then i read about acid reflux being common. Yeah, the band is much more "high maintenance" but...then I look at my life and my results so far.
I was 266 lbs the day before surgery. Size 22-24, waist 46". I am presently 190lbs..size 14-16 (and even a size 12 dress!) with no comorbidities.
I had three fills during the first year with a small unfill at 9 months out when I started PBing too much almost every day for a week. That adjustment lasted almost a year, until 6 weeks ago when I started getting hungry every 2-3 hrs and could eat more if I wanted to. I asked him for only .1 or.2cc but he looked at the pouch under fluoroscopy and added .5cc.
Two weeks later (last week), I started PBing again and during the weekend, my pain pill got stuck and I couldn't even drink water except for a small swallow at a time.
Soooo, I got in to see my doc first thing after the weekend and he took out 1/2 of what he put in last time and I am happy to report that I am back to normal...and losing again. The doc said I was right 6 weeks ago when I asked for a smaller fill. And now I know what is "too tight" for my pain pill.
If I had to do it over again, I would've still chosen the band but..if something happens to make me lose it (getting another pill stuck), I would most likely revise to the sleeve because the risks of losing a 2nd band is even higher. I just want to keep it,as long as it works for me, grateful that my problems have been minor and fixable thus far. I know if I lost the band, the sleeve would help me maintain the weight loss i have already achieved via a slower route.
Right now, my life is great. My husband has been back to work over a year now, successfully working as a Critical Care licensed paramedic, with every other weekend off. After 26 years in my shiftwork job, i finally made it to the top of the seniority list so I have weekends off now too. Both our kids left the nest in February and we have been loving every minute of this new chapter. We are both skinnier and enjoying a sex life like we've never had before. He reminds me to get "my drink on" every night before dinner and makes sure I get the tenderest cuts. We go out a lot more often and sometimes just share an entree since both our appetites are much smaller. Good lord, we haven't had to go major grocery shopping since the kids left in February! It's so amazing to not buy a gallon of milk every other day....or to find my leftovers are STILL there the next day. :)
I especially love feeling beautiful again. I know I still have 20ish lbs to go but I am inching my way there steadily and wearing clothes that fit me instead of HIDING me. I look in the mirror every day and like what I see....even the not so pretty parts because I know it's just a shell anyway. I love my husband and his nickname for me. (little butt!).
In closing, I have to say for the sake of pre-ops, that I would not encourage someone to get the lapband, knowing what I know now, thanks to those who have shared their unfortunate experiences with the band. That's the big reason I am quick to call my surgeon for any issues. In almost 21 months, 4 fills & 2 unfills, and only 2 stuck episodes, I am doing well.
I can eat almost anything except for reheated chicken, doughy bread, or meat that is too dry....just much much smaller portions
To those that still choose the band over the other options, I would encourage them to follow the rules and never hesitate to call their doctor. Many issues can be remedied if handled promptly. I know I was reluctant to call at first because I was losing weight but...too many scary cases here made me call.
I thank everyone for sharing their experiences, good or bad andThanks for reading :)
4th fill today/20 months post-op on March 30, 2012 6:53 am
About two weeks ago, I started waking up hungry. My stomach has been growling at me ever since. So, I decided to make an appointment with Dr. Collier to take a look at my pouch under fluoroscopy and see if I need a fill. The last time I had an adjustment was in May 2011 when I had a small .5cc unfill.
Be the first to leave a comment.
So, I get to the doctors office this morning and their scale says I am down 22 lbs from 10 months ago. That means I lost 50 lbs in the first 10 months and 22 lbs between then and now. I have a follow up visit in three months. My goals are to really make an effort to exercise AT LEAST 4-5 days a week. That has been the hardest thing to do...not overdoing it as well because my hip and knees rebel and make me pay for it a few days. Ugh. Easy to make excuses.
My pouch looked fine said the doctor but I could use a fill. It looked like little tube sock above the ring, not overlapping the edges at all. Whew. I asked him if it looked stretched out at all and he assured me it looked great. He gave me back the .5cc that he took out last May. He says I need to up my protein and really exercise. Okay, okay, I *will*- I PROMISED him I would and then made my next appointment before I left the office. I go back in three months on June 29th.
I look forward to seeing the changes between now and then. I can do it, I can do it, I can do it.
Onederland on March 4, 2012 7:48 am
I arrived into Onderland sometime during then night. I am so excited!
Post Date: 3/4/12 7:46 am
After 19 months, I made it to ONE-DERLAND!!! I am so thankful my my little band!!! 23 lbs to go!
| Leave a comment.
10 Hidden Sources of Salt on November 4, 2011 6:28 am
Top 10 Hidden Sources of Salt
Be the first to leave a comment.
Rebecca S. Boxer, M.D., Caring.com senior medical editor, and Melanie Haiken, Caring.com senior editor After a diagnosis of heart failure, "reduce salt intake" is one of the first pieces of advice doctors offer. Sodium contributes to fluid retention, and too much sodium is one of the most common triggers for exacerbation. For this reason, doctors recommend that those with heart failure limit salt intake to 1,500 to 2,000 milligrams of sodium per day. But how to do that? Start by following recommendations for managing diet for heart failure. Putting away the salt shaker helps, as does learning to cook with other flavors, such as garlic, citrus, and herbs. However, many people find it's much harder than they expected to reduce sodium intake, and the culprit is often hidden salt. Here's a list of some of the biggest "salt traps" to avoid.
The condiment shelf
Many people are surprised to discover that many salad dressings, sauces, dips, and condiments such as ketchup, mustard, and relish rely on high sodium content to achieve a concentrated flavor. Soy sauce, for example, has about 1,160 milligrams of sodium per tablespoon, while ordinary chicken bouillon has about 1,100 milligrams per packet. But while bouillon and soy sauce taste recognizably salty, this is not true of many other condiments. Your taste buds may not recognize the flavor as salty despite high quantities of sodium. Some examples:
Barbecue sauce, store-bought gravies, meat tenderizers, and steak sauce are also offenders; almost all brands contain extremely high levels of sodium. Olives, capers, and anything pickled are on the bad list too, because pickling requires salty brine. It's also important to realize that the salt content in condiments is often listed for small quantities, so those who eat ketchup on everything or like their pasta with lots of sauce could be eating double or triple the dose of the sodium listed. And that dehydrated onion soup mix used to make so many party dips? It's one of the worst traps of all, with more than 3,000 mg of sodium in one packet.
- Italian salad dressing: 430 milligrams in 2 tablespoons
- Spaghetti sauce: 850 milligrams in a half-cup
- Alfredo pasta sauce: 1,080 milligrams in a half-cup
- Pickle relish: 240 milligrams in 1 tablespoon
- Sun-dried tomatoes: 1,050 milligrams per cup
Cheese and other dairy products
Salt is used in the making and preserving of many cheeses and cheese products, yet often we don't think of them as salty. Rich, piquant cheeses like blue cheese, gorgonzola, and Roquefort are among the saltiest, all of them coming in between 350 and 500 milligrams per serving. Cheese spreads and dips often have as much as 500 milligrams of salt per serving, as can good old cheddar cheese. Parmesan, Romano, feta, and many of the other cheeses used in cooking are high in salt. Milk itself has 120 milligrams of sodium per half-cup serving; choose buttermilk or chocolate milk instead and the level rises to150 milligrams. And a half-cup serving of a low-fat cottage cheese has twice as much sodium (360 milligrams) as a bag of potato chips.
Canned soups, stews, and vegetables
The Campbell Soup Company made headlines recently by putting the sodium back into some of the company's canned soups that had previously had the salt content reduced. The reason? Consumers weren't buying the products because they didn't taste as good—and therein lies the problem. Many flavors of canned soup, from home-style chicken to simple tomato, contain 700-1,300 milligrams of sodium per serving. French onion soup is one of the worst, with 1,300 mg per serving. Canned beef stew and chili both have 1,000 to 1,200 milligrams per serving, and vegetable soups, like minestrone and split pea, contain 800-1,000 milligrams per serving. It's also important to realize that a serving is often just half a cup, much less than the average person eats at a sitting. One last surprise lurks in some types of canned vegetables. One can of kidney beans contains 440 milligrams of sodium, and canned tomatoes with spices added ("Italian style," for instance) can contain up to 600 milligrams of sodium per half cup.
Store-bought breakfast cereals vary widely in salt content, so read labels carefully. Some of the most popular brands—including Chex, Total, and Wheaties—contain between 250 and 300 milligrams of sodium in a one-cup serving, though many people eat double that much at breakfast. And beware the "healthy" label; some of the highest-sodium cereals are those we consider healthiest, such as raisin bran. Kellogg's Raisin Bran has 340 milligrams per cup; instant oatmeal has as much as 350 milligrams per three-fourths cup serving, depending on the flavor.
Baked goods and bake mixes
A bagel might not taste particularly salty, but one bagel can contain 500-700 milligrams of sodium, depending on the size and flavor, while one piece of whole-wheat pita bread has 340 milligrams of sodium. Baked goods made with white flour aren't necessarily worse than those made with whole wheat; one slice of whole-wheat bread contains 132 milligrams of sodium, and a sandwich doubles that. Sweet baked goods can be loaded with hidden salt. One doughnut contains close to 300 milligrams of sodium, and a blueberry muffin is close behind at 250 milligrams. But an even bigger surprise lurks in baking mixes: One box of self-rising cornmeal contains a startling 1,860 milligrams of sodium, or 440 milligrams per one 3-tablespoon serving; a single corn muffin made from a mix has 400 milligrams of sodium; and one slice of yellow cake made from a mix has 220 milligrams of sodium.
Cured, smoked, and deli meats
Three ounces of sausage—a very small serving—contains 600-900 milligrams of sodium, while one hot dog has 600 to 800 milligrams. And that's just the beginning. Bacon? 621 milligrams per 3 ounces. One piece of beef jerky has more than 400 milligrams, while two slices of salami tops 600 milligrams. There are low-sodium deli meats available, but read labels carefully for the actual amount of sodium per serving rather than the percent reduced.
Products labeled "reduced salt" or "less sodium"
The key word here is "reduced"—the definition of this term is that any product labeled "reduced sodium" must contain at least 25 percent less sodium than the regular version of the same product. The problem is that if the original product had a high sodium content, then reducing that by 25 percent may not in fact result in a low-salt food. Fast food, including "healthy" choices
It's probably no surprise that French fries aren't the best choice for those trying to avoid salt, but where many go wrong is in choosing supposedly healthier choices such as salads and sandwiches, which can be loaded with salt hidden in sauces and dressings. At McDonald's, a premium bacon ranch salad with grilled chicken has 1,010 milligrams of sodium, while a grilled chicken ranch BLT sandwich has 1,190 milligrams of sodium. Compare that to a large order of McDonald's fries, which contains 350 milligrams. Hamburgers are also big offenders, particularly once you add cheese; a double Whopper with cheese from Burger King or a Wendy's double cheeseburger with everything both weigh in with approximately 1,450 mg of sodium—pretty much a full day's maximum for someone on a low-salt diet.
Products labeled "low fat" or "heart healthy"
This one's seriously counterintuitive; wouldn't you think products that make health claims, particularly regarding heart health, would be low in sodium? Not necessarily. An investigation by Consumer Reports found that low-fat processed foods are often higher in salt than their full-fat counterparts, probably because salt is added to compensate for the lost flavor that comes with reducing fat. For example, Newman's Own low-fat Family Recipe Italian salad dressing has a whopping 730 milligrams of sodium per each 1.5-ounce serving. And Ruffles Original potato chips have 10 grams of fat and 160 milligrams of sodium, compared to the baked version with just 3 grams of fat but 200 milligrams of sodium. Specific heart-healthy claims can be misleading as well: Prego "Heart Smart" pasta sauce, which carries the American Heart Association logo, contains 430 milligrams of sodium in a half-cup serving; it's allowed to carry the AHA logo because it's low in saturated fat and cholesterol
We don't usually associate sweets with sodium. In fact, we think of them as just the opposite. But many prepared desserts are high in sodium, often from preservatives. Puddings and cream pie fillings can contain as much as 285 milligrams of sodium per serving, for example. One piece of gingerbread has 240 milligrams of sodium, cake has between 250 and 300 milligrams per piece, and even a crumb piecrust adds 180 milligrams of sodium to a slice of fruit pie. Home baking uses sodium, too; one teaspoon of baking powder has 488 milligrams of sodium, and one teaspoon of baking soda (the amount used in classic chocolate chip cookies) introduces 1,259 milligrams of sodium per batch. Of course, that's not so much when you consider it on a per-cookie basis, but if you eat the whole batch over a couple of days, it's important to keep the sodium content in mind.