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Drinking water – big ol’ drinks! Questions…

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Okay so I had something unexpected happen this morning. I took a big-o-drink of water. More like three consecutive drinks. Swallow, swallow, swallow….you get what I am saying. I actually felt the water being held up. Like not super drastic, but I felt it in my stoma and throat. I felt a mild alert over the situation. Um, never had that happen before! Wow! Until this happened this morning I have been able to chug-a-lug my water at a good rate, any time of day. I know, some don’t understand why people like me drink so fast, but we are all different. I am a fish! Ha! Just kidding but I have a habit of drinking a couple of swallows each drink. Not all the time now as I am working on slowing down….but I am a drinker.

I have been reading on this board for a while now, so there have been many subjects covered. Which I love, by the way, because it feels good to have working knowledge of the band, even if it is not my own working knowledge. : ) So, thank you all for sharing your band experiences! You are appreciated! That being said, I’ve thought it is strange when people talk about having a hard time getting there liquids in. Sipping through out the day….sucking on ice cubes, ect. I’ve read many posts about not being able to tolerate food in the mornings. Even some posts about not being able to eat anything solid until evening.

That being said, I know our bands are fickle. Each person can have there band affected differently. Some talk about weather, flying, stress, their monthly visitor, a bad PB episode, drinking cold liquids, and much more, and how it can affect the bands tightness. What I would really like to know is how tight you prefer to keep your bands’? Do you keep your band snug enough to feel water back up if you drink a big ol’ drink? Are you a sipper? Can you eat in the mornings, or afternoons? Do you have to wait on your band to loosen up before a meal? Can you put into words what band restriction means to you?

I am curious on what the “norm” is and if is varies a great deal from person to person. I am working on getting to my sweet spot or being in the green zone. For me, I can enjoy breakfast everyday. Depending on the food, I can eat a cup to ¾ cup of food at a meal. I focus mainly on protein and often feel like I leave out veggies and fruits almost completely. I seem to have better success when I eat steamed veggies vs. fresh veggies using broccoli and carrots as a good example of this. My band tolerates muffins and cake well, wish came as a surprise to me. We had treats at work and I tried these yummies and had no issues. I have no idea if I can eat bread, because I have cut it completely out of my diet. I no longer eat a sandwich or anything like that. I stick to the guts, the insides of a sandwich. Protein, protein, protein…

I am planning on posting this in the forum as well as a blog entry. Please reply and share how you like your band, and what works best for you. Last monthish there were some great posts about a few gals feeling there bands were too tight. I know from your posts that being to tight does not equal weight loss or a safe way to keep your band. So all experience is valuable! I am scheduled for an up coming fill in December and I have been on and off the fence about it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, and if you don’t feel comfortable posting, please PM me. You guys are the best!

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Great topic Angie. I was wondering the same as lately people have had tight bands. I too like you, can eat muffins and cake and can do breakfast. If I stay within my calories for the day, I do feel restricted, much more than before I had the band and bottom line.... I'm still losing wt and doing it much easier than I had before. Like the Dr said at OCC.. once you get above 3.0 in the band... he has seen more people have to come back for unfills and have problems. I'm hoping I can stay at 3.0 as I am losing wt at a nice rate and with ease. Thats not to say someone above 3.0 will have difficulty..... We are supposed to be able to eat what we want only in smaller portions. I figure if I'm losing and not struggling... why get filled.

As to fluids. I have had the experience of feeling liquids in my throat or sitting on top of the stoma before. Its only happened once or twice and not enjoyable. :o


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I am like both of you in that I can eat any and all breads, rice and pasta. I did well in losing my weight, but never really felt like I had good restriction, partially because I could eat anything I wanted. I had a fill last Tuesday and I finally have the elusive restriction that so many people talk about. I still can eat anything I want, but I simply don't get hungry anymore. I leave home around 6:30 most mornings and drink 16 ounces of milk between then and 7:30. I used to get hungry by that time and was more than ready to eat at 8. The last three days that I have been on solids I have not felt hungry for breakfast. Sunday I had four saltines and a piece of cheese just because if I didn't I was afraid the donuts in Sunday School would be calling my name. Yesterday and today it has been almost 9:30 before I remember to actually eat my peanut butter sandwich. I ate lunch around 1:30 yesterday and today even though I wasn't hungry. No longer are my mealtimes ruled by my hungry tummy, they are now ruled by the clock when I look at it and realize it is way past a mealtime. I love the fact that I now have the ability to forget to eat.

As for your drinking water - PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE BE CAREFUL! The PA that does my fills had a couple of people this summer stretch out their pouch because they were drinking too fast. I do not chug or even come close to chugging my water. What I do is take a mouthful of liquid and then swallow it in about three swallows. I have become so accustomed to doing this over the past 20 months that I have started noticing that I cannot even swallow a pill without swallowing a portion of the liquid in my mouth and then going ahead and swallowing the rest of the liquid and the pill. If you are able to feel the liquid in your pouch then I think you should probably slow down on how fast you drink. It is more physically and financially cost effective to change your drinking habits than it is to dilate your pouch and esophogaus.

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I agree be very very careful with the liquids!! It is my understanding that even if your water isn't coming back up, that doesn't mean that you might not be stretching your pouch! I am similar to Smiley, I take a small drink and then let it go down in several gulps. I also do this with food I just can't seem to take tiny bites so I do the "chipmunk" move and put it in my cheek and swallow in multiple bites.

I've never gotten sick on liquids, but i've definitely been too tight. I just had an unfill a couple weeks ago due to stress. Stress definitely tightens my band up big time! TOM doesn't seem to and I have seen that flying does as well. With an unfill i'm really hungry, but am doing my best until I can go back the first week of Dec. I'm trying to get lots of proteins in, but i'm having trouble keeping to the program. At my tightest fill I could still eat more than others talk about, but my band is very fickle - could eat one thing one day and the same thing the next day was a no go.

On a regular day i'd eat:

breakfast: oatmeal, dry cereal, or just have some juice

snack: if it was a juice only day a snack was a must - cheese and crackers usually

lunch: small can of mini ravioli, lunchmeat and cottage cheese, or going out would be one cheese enchilada and some beans, chips and salsa

dinner: weight watchers meal maybe 3/4 of it and a small amount of veggies or about 1 cup of chili

Those are just some examples of what I would eat. Didn't focus on portions so much I aim for around 1,000 calories a day. I did get a talking to from my NP saying b/c I work out I should be more like 1,200 to 1,500 cal a day and she might be right as I haven't lost much. But i'm also within 10 lbs of where I want to be so not sure if that is why.

Like you said everyone is different so I work hard not to compare to others. YOu just have to tinker with your eating and calories and find what works for you.

Good luck!!

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Andrea - I've will take your words of caution against drinking to fast to heart and will be work on that habit. Since being banded my "gulps or chugging" has changed into swallows, now I need my swallows to slow down to a swallow at a time. Up until yesterday, I haven't had any back up feelings. I do not want to dialate my pouch or stretch or stress my esophogaus that is for sure. Especially my esophogaus as it is not made to stretch.

It's funny how we get into habits. The band has really helped me to change some habits that were not so good into good habits to have. I love how it has worked on the inside of me as well as the outside.

Congradulations on feeling the sweet spot! With my band I do feel hungry. The hunger has changed and become a different hunger than pre-band. Heck, pre-band my stomach never spoke to me, it didn't have a need. I was shoveling food in my mouth so it didn't have to say - Hey feed me please! When my stomach first started telling me I was hungry, it caused a mild panic feeling inside of me....like oh my goodness, I need to eat right now! I think that is funny now. The band has been a good tool and it has helped me uncover issues with eating I was in denial about.

Thanks for your reply.

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Shelby - thanks for bringing up the possibility of streching the pouch without have water back up. I've thought if I don't feel any warnings then there is not a issue. Next habit to work on. I've been fortunate that since June, I've had 4 looks at my band, esophagus and pouch. Each time they have looked great. So that gives me peace of mind up until now. Taking care of my body and band is really important to me.

Getting comfortable with the band is interesting. It is a fickle tool and seem to have personality all it's own. :P I have been so focused on protein protein protein that for some meals that is most of what I eat. So now I am going to add some veggies and fruits into those meals. I think I got so stuck on protein because of my hair loss. Now I know my protein levels are A-OK and understand what is happening with my hair, I am relaxing more. Funny how we have to find our way with the band.

I hope your brother is doing well. Has he been moved to a rehab place?

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Thanks so much for asking! Yes, we sent him down this past weekend to live with my parents in TX for a while and to do rehab there for a couple months. It's wierd being in the house alone but I have three dogs to protect me! He is doing better every day so that makes me feel good. The stress has definitely decreased and I can sure tell b/c I am HUNGRY! :o I'm so glad I got an unfill, but it is taking a lot more work now to keep me full.

I totally understand the hard habits to break. I used to drink a ton of water when i'd eat and I thought that would never be able to change but luckily it has. I still eat too fast but it is something I work on every day. Old habits die hard huh!!

One last thing is be careful w/ the protein - you can eat too much. My old roommate got a talking to by her doctor b/c she was eating just about only seafood and he told her to start working on more fruits and veggies too b/c too much protien I guess can have an effect on your kidneys. Definitely get those fruits and veggies in there too. I'm terrible about that but have been trying to get more.

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Hi there, Im the laziest typer so Ill keep it short lol! Great topic btw!

My band is tight in the mornings, and its very very tight anyway, i can only have liquids mostly. Even Cream consistancy is oretty tough on me. Last night i had a table spoon of Salmon at an event and i managed that but that was scary because the soups are the norm for me now. As for drinking its okay sort of but like you i have to pause and i cant chug chug it down lol. I dont do the ice cube thing lol! Thankfully! But I also dont do the food thing, Breakfasts arent till after 9am when it loosens and then its a small or half a singe yogurt.


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