Kiwi berries are an unusual fruit. Have you ever seen them? On the outside, they look like an opaque green grape but a little bigger. Definitely not brown, definitely not fuzzy. But on the inside, they definitely look like a kiwi. Cut it the down the middle and you’ll see green flesh and a whitish centre surrounded by little black seeds just like its namesake, the kiwi.
These miniature fruits, also called hardy kiwifruit, arctic kiwi, dessert kiwi, grape kiwi, or cocktail kiwi, are often a little hard to find. You may not regularly see them in your standard grocery store, but they can be found at stores that like to stock unusual fruits, like Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and Sam’s Club. Or, if you’re lucky, you can find them locally grown and available at a farmer’s market.
Kiwi berries have some benefits to gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, and lap band patients. A one-ounce portion provides about 22 calories, 5 grams of carbohydrates, and 1.3 grams of fibre. Plus, it’s packed with vitamin C. Unlike the traditional kiwi fruit, you’ll eat the skin of the kiwi berry which provides some dietary fibre. Another benefit to bariatric patients is that the kiwi berries are small, making it easier to control your portion size and limit your intake of carbohydrates. Limiting calories and carbohydrates is critical to maximizing weight loss after gastric sleeve surgery.
Kiwi berries can fit into a post-op gastric sleeve diet when raw fruit is allowed, which in Dr. Shillingford’s post-op bariatric diet is in Stage 6. They can make a great addition to a high protein snack, like a hard-boiled egg, plain greek yoghurt, string cheese, or ham roll-up. Or, you can eat them alongside your omelette at breakfast or as dessert. As always with your bariatric diet, protein comes first, then vegetables, and then fruit. Also, remember to chew your foods thoroughly to a paste consistency.
This Food Highlight is offered by Dr. Shillingford, MD, PA, a board-certified surgeon specializing in advanced laparoscopic and robotic surgeries, including gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, and lap band surgeries. Gastric sleeve surgery is by far the most common weight loss surgery Dr. Shillingford performs in recent years. This is due to its weight loss effectiveness and because there are fewer side effects than gastric bypass. To find out if you are a candidate for weight loss with gastric sleeve surgery, call Dr. Shillingford’s Boca Raton office today at (561) 483-8840. His bilingual office staff can help you navigate the process and help you with insurance coverage.