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Give Fish a Try After Bariatric Surgery

Give Fish a Try After Bariatric Surgery

Give Fish a Try After Bariatric Surgery

Fish can be surprisingly well tolerated after bariatric surgery. Many gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, and lap band patients say that even if they didn’t like fish before their weight loss surgery, they liked it after their weight loss surgery. Food preferences do often change after surgery. Many patients report being unable to stomach their previously favorite proteins, and liking proteins they never used to eat or prefer. Bariatric surgery patients may be able to benefit from this change in food preferences and begin to include fish and seafood into their diets.

The flakiness of fish may also contribute to its popularity after bariatric surgery. Although some fish are flakier than others, many types of fish can easily be broken up into smaller pieces that are lighter in texture than other proteins such as beef, pork, and poultry. Taking small bites after bariatric surgery can be crucial to tolerating your meal. Even if you never liked fish, it’s worth a try after bariatric surgery to see if your new stomach can tolerate it. 

Although different types of fish have varying amounts of calories, protein, and fats, they are all rich in protein and low in carbohydrates, which is ideal for gastric sleeve gastric bypass,and lap band patients. Consuming food high in protein and low in calories and carbohydrates is the ideal way for bariatric patients to maximize their weight loss while preserving muscle mass. 

Fish shouldn’t smell fishy. If it does, it most likely isn’t fresh. Frozen fish can be a great choice since many are sold in individual vacuum-sealed packages that are easy to grab out of the freezer and thaw in a matter of minutes. Some good choices of fish to try are:

  • Mahi-mahi
  • Cod
  • Pollock
  • Halibut
  • Sea bass
  • Sole
  • Flounder
  • Tilapia
  • Salmon

Baking, broiling, grilling, steaming, or poaching are good choices to cook the fish without adding the calories and fat from frying. Another method that can be fun is to cook the fish along with some vegetables in a foil or parchment paper pouch. This method can make a whole meal with very little cleanup. Check out another one of Dr. Shillingford’s blogs for a delicious recipe. 

Dr. Shillingford, MD, PA is a board-certified surgeon specializing in advanced laparoscopic, robotic, and weight loss surgery. His weight loss surgery patients usually opt for the newer gastric sleeve surgery, although some do choose gastric bypass and lap bands based on different health concerns and weight loss goals. For more information about gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, and lap band surgeries, join Dr. Shillingford for a free Zoom-based information session to learn about which surgery may be right for you. Call Dr. Shillingford’s office to schedule your session at (561) 483-8840.

American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Realize Obesity Help American Medical Association Obesity Medicine UNIVERSITY of MICHIGAN Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin