Gastric Bypass Diet

What to Eat After Bariatric Surgery

A New Way of Eating

After bariatric surgery, you will no longer be able to eat like you once did. This can be one of the biggest psychological hurdles for some people when considering bariatric surgery since food is more than just fuel for the body—it’s also an integral part of family life, culture, and heritage for many of us.

Yet, changing what and how much you eat will be absolutely essential for successful long-term weight loss maintenance.

If you’re considering bariatric surgery or have recently undergone a gastric bypass or sleeve gastrectomy (gastric sleeve) procedure, know this: Your health and well-being matter most. Also know that the vast majority of patients report that the dietary changes were well worth it, as their quality of life improved dramatically after surgery.

A gastric bypass diet serves several purposes: to allow your stomach to heal properly after surgery, to help you adjust to eating smaller amounts of food, to help you lose weight and maintain weight loss, and to avoid the side effects (such as dumping syndrome ) and complications.

Your weight loss surgeon and registered dietician will guide you in understanding which foods you can eat after surgery and about portion control. Your specific diet after surgery will depend on which type of bariatric surgery you had. Below is a general idea of what most people can expect in terms of diet after surgery (note that the timeline is approximate and may vary from one person to the next).

Stage One: Liquids

For the first day after surgery, you will be on a diet of clear liquids only. Once you’re handling clear liquids well, your doctor will advise you to add in additional liquids, such as broth, decaffeinated tea or coffee, skim/low fat milk, unsweetened juices, and sugar-free gelatin or popsicles. Portions should be small—no more than a few ounces at a time—and you should sip slowly. this Phase is followed the second day after surgery by adding more nutritious” full bariatric liquid diet” liquids including yogurt, pudding, protein shakes, cream of chicken, cream of mushroom, to be on with no solids at all for two weeks in general. these liquids on top of the clear liquids that should be continued, should keep you hydrated, and provide you with needed nutrition, while letting your stomach heal well.

again no solid food should be consumed throughout this period of time, very important.

Stage Two: Pureed Foods

Your doctor/dietician will determine when you’re ready to move on to stage two, which consists of pureed foods that have been blended to the consistency of a thick pudding or custard. This stage will likely last for few weeks.

Not all foods are appropriate to puree—for example, fruits with seeds, such as strawberries and kiwi fruit, should be avoided. Also avoid any fried, spicy foods and seasonings, which can irritate the gastrointestinal tract. Instead, choose foods that liquefy well and which don’t have small seeds, including:

Fruits & Vegetables

  • Applesauce

  • Melons

  • Peaches and nectarines

  • Pineapple

  • Bananas

  • Pears

  • Carrots

  • Squash

  • Spinach


  • Scrambled eggs

  • Yogurt

  • Cottage or ricotta cheese

  • Chicken, or turkey

  • White fish (tilapia, cod)

Don’t drink fluids while you eat, as this can fill your stomach too fast, which can stretch your stomach pouch or lead to regurgitation.

Stage Three: Soft Foods

Once your doctor determines you’re ready, you can move on to soft, easy-to-chew foods. It’s especially important to take small bites and chew food thoroughly during this stage. Using mindful eating techniques can help. Soft foods during this stage may include:

  • Soft-boiled eggs

  • Ground or finely-diced meats

  • White fish (cod, tilapia)

  • Canned fruits (such as peaches or pears in juice—not syrup)

  • Cooked vegetables (without skins)

Stage Four: Reintroduce Solid Foods

Reintroducing solid foods usually begins around four to six weeks after surgery. You’ll still need to cut or dice food into small pieces to prevent pain, nausea, and vomiting. You should reintroduce foods slowly, one at a time, to see what your body is able to tolerate.

You should be able to introduce a fairly wide variety of foods during this stage; however, certain foods are difficult to digest and should be avoided. These include:

  • Nuts and seeds

  • Breads

  • Fried foods

  • Tough/fatty meats

  • Carbonated beverages

  • Dried fruits

  • Popcorn

  • Raw Stringy or fibrous vegetables, like celery, corn, cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli

You may eventually be able to reintroduce these foods into your diet, at your doctor’s discretion. Many patients are able to resume a normal diet around two months after surgery. Portion control will always be important to prevent stretching of your new stomach pouch. Your post-surgery diet should consist mostly of fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.

Here are some important eating guidelines to follow after surgery:

  • Eat and drink slowly.

  • Manage portions carefully.

  • Listen to your body—stop eating if you feel full, and avoid foods that you have a hard time digesting.

  • Avoid fatty, sugary foods.

  • Avoid drinking with meals. but stay well hydrated in between meals.

  • Always take the vitamin and mineral supplements your doctor/dietician recommends, to avoid nutrient deficiencies.

Following these guidelines will help you avoid complications of surgery, pain, nausea, vomiting, dumping syndrome, obstruction, and stomach perforation…

Comprehensive Bariatric Care in Houston, TX

The highly skilled bariatric surgeons at 1st Choice Weight Loss offer compassionate care in a patient-centered environment. 1st Choice offers the following weight loss procedures:

Contact us today at 281-888-7767 to learn more about weight loss surgery in Houston, TX. Our friendly staff will guide you every step of the way—our passion is improving quality of life for each and every one of our patients.

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