Obesity occurs not in the course of one night, but it’s the consequence of years of unhealthy habits, stressful life, lack of motivation, and so on. So, there is no doubt putting these habits away and picking up new healthy ones is not easy and can’t happen immediately.

Except for the all-liquid diet 2 days prior to surgery, depending on your BMI, you need to go on a special diet. So, it all begins a few weeks pre-surgery. Most gastric bypass and gastric sleeve patients worry about what happens if they cannot control themselves and replace the prescribed meals with not-very-healthy ones?

Even though I have explained everything about the pre-surgery diet in a specific article, but I’ll give you a brief summary of what it is and why you have to follow it. Also, we’ll review the consequences of cheating on your diet, and finally how to stick to it more easily.

What is the Pre-op Diet?

I presume you have made a definite decision to undergo bariatric surgery, so I won’t explain the basics of weight loss surgery anymore. But if you still think you need more information to become sure, just take a look at this complete guide I’ve prepared for people who are looking into this subject.

Can you guess what should become less in this diet and what should be more? You’ve done your research if you said: calories, protein!

Mostly consisting of high-protein foods and fluids, this LCD or low-calorie diet helps your body adapt to healthier eating habits.

The bariatric pre-op diet is a very low-calorie diet (VLCD) that will consist of high-protein foods and liquids. Mostly supplements to remove any and all guesswork.

You might think why should I go on this diet? Why should I change my life when my body hasn’t changed yet? Yes, these are logical questions. But I have logical responses for them as well.

Why go on a Pre-op Diet?

1- It Shrinks Your Liver

Having a big liver increases the chance of complications and makes the whole surgery procedure more difficult for your bariatric surgeon because it might fall down on your stomach.

2- Helps Your Body Adapt to a Healthier Lifestyle 

The sooner you start making basic changes in your life, the easier is your post-op life, and of course, the higher your surgery’s success rate is.

3-  Empties Your Stomach

This is especially achieved after the 2-day liquid diet because, with a full stomach, the surgery is canceled!

4- Weight Loss Prior to Surgery

All patients are not recommended to lose weight before surgery, especially if their BMI is close to 35. But losing a few pounds of your excess weight, for obese patients, in particular, most of the time reduces the risk of complications.

How Long is Pre-op Diet?

The answer is directly related to your BMI and of course, your doctor’s suggestion. But generally, it varies from 8 to 3 weeks before surgery. Patients with BMI between 35 to 40 are not advised to go on diet, but no one is an exception to the 2-day liquid one.

– BMI>60: 8 weeks

– 50<BMI<59: 6 weeks

– 46<BMI<49: 3 weeks

– 40<BMI<45: 2 weeks

– 33<BMI<39: 1 week

And finally, the 2 days clear liquid for EVERYONE!

What Happens if You Cheat on Your Pre-op Diet?

– First of all, you can never trick your surgeon.

Your intestine tract and stomach must be empty before the surgery and your surgeon will check your body before the actual operation to see if there is food in your stomach. If they’re not empty, surgery is canceled or postponed.

– Your big liver causes problems for your surgery.

As I’ve mentioned earlier, a big liver puts the whole surgery at risk. If you don’t want to add up to the complications, please stick to your diet.

– Your surgeon can and will cancel your surgery.

– If you put all the habit-changing process for after the surgery, you’re doubling your hassle.

After the procedure, you have a lot to deal with. Pain, nausea, vomiting, and other side effects. Do you really want to add up to this?

– Whether you’re having a sleeve gastrectomy or gastric bypass surgery, not following your doctor’s advice puts you at risk both during and after surgery.

What to Do if I cheat on My Pre Gastric Sleeve Diet?

First and foremost, be honest with your doctor. Don’t be afraid of the cancellation of your surgery. It will be postponed to the time when your body is ready.

Also, this is not always the case because sometimes patients cheat on their pre-op diet at the beginning of their new eating habits, so there’s still time to get back on track. Just tell your surgeon and dietitian. With their help, you can take the proper course of action.

Tips to Eat Healthily before Weight Loss Surgery

1- Fill your fridge with healthy food.

If you don’t have unhealthy food, you’re making your options more limited. But if you put junk food right in front of your eyes, you’re just tempting yourself every moment. So, start shopping healthily. We’ve got a complete healthy shopping list for bariatric patients here.

2- Follow your designed diet.

Most dietitians provide their patients with a detailed diet before and after the surgery. In case your dietitian just offers you some general guidelines but you feel like you need an organized, detailed eating plan, just ask them to give you one.

3- Motivate yourself.

This tip helps you to stay on track for the rest of your life. Whenever you feel like you want to disobey your eating rules, think about all the hassle you’ve gone through, all the challenges obesity has brought up, and how you can change all this for the better.

4- Stay away from the junk food section in the supermarkets.

Don’t even think about checking those parts. Your happy place is where vegetables, fruits, and proteins are found.

5- When necessary, consult with your dietitian.

Your dietitian, bariatric surgeon, and psychiatrist are like your family. Even if you hide some things from your family, don’t do this with them. Rest assured they know what’s best for you and will definitely help you!

If you have any questions, just ask me in the comments section 🙂