Burgers (whether they are turkey burgers or lean beef burgers) make a great ‘go to’ meal for gastric sleeve patients. Burgers are packed with protein, can be made small to accommodate the smaller portion size of weight loss surgery patients, they are inexpensive, and quick to make. And best of all, you can vary the toppings to add a variety of flavors to keep your meals interesting.
For gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, and lap band patients, the key to fitting burgers into your weight loss lifestyle is to forgo the bun in order to reduce the calories and carbohydrates. But, that doesn’t mean you forgo taste. In fact, you may even enjoy the flavors of a burger more without the bun getting in the way.
We’ve rounded up a few ideas to help you expand your burger horizons while still keeping it high protein, low carbohydrate, and gastric sleeve friendly:
- Hawaiian burger- add bacon crumbles and a little crushed or grilled pineapple
- Caprese burger- add a slice of fresh mozzarella, a slice of tomato, and a basil leaf
- Mushroom burger- sauteed mushrooms and a slice of swiss cheese
- Cheddar bacon burger- top with some shredded cheddar and bacon crumbles
- Blue cheese burger- simply add some blue cheese crumbles
- Pizza burger- a spoonful of marinara sauce and shredded mozzarella cheese
- Standard burger- a leaf a lettuce, a pickle slice, and a cherry tomato
- Taco burger- slice of colby jack cheese, green chiles, and a dollop of salsa
- California burger- sliced avocado and chipotle mayo/plain yogurt
- Mediterranean burger- thinly sliced cucumbers, feta crumbles, and tzatziki sauce
- Colorful burger- red onion slices and guacamole
Sure you could add sauces like ketchup or BBQ sauce to add flavor, but you will also add sugar with those condiments. By adding bacon, cheese, or vegetables you can nutrient rich foods that add flavor as well as protein, vitamins, minerals, and/or fiber.
While you are making your burgers, it’s a good idea to make a few extra. If you freeze them individually, they are super easy to pull out of the freezer for a quick lunch or dinner when you’re running low on time. You’ll thank yourself.
These suggestions are offered by Dr. Shillingford, MD, PA, a board certified surgeon specializing in advanced laparoscopic and bariatric surgery. His gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, and gastric band patients come from Miami, West Palm Beach, Tampa, Orlando, and as far away as Jacksonville to have their weight loss surgery performed by the Medical Director at Northwest Medical Center’s Center of Excellence in Bariatric Surgery. Dr. Shillingford reminds his bariatric patients to consult their post bariatric surgery dietary guidelines and not to progress to eating foods beyond their stage until their body is ready.