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Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Popcorn After WLS - Do or Don't?

Is eating popcorn a "Do" or a "Don’t" after gastric bypass surgery?

Brand new patients are not likely to ask this question – the stomach is too tender and sensitive to even consider the intake of roughage like popcorn. But almost universally, you will find patients two or more years out have dipped into the popcorn bowl.

My trespass in the popcorn bowl resulted in a constant state of low-grade dumping and a 5-pound weight gain in two weeks. I called my WLS counselor and she gave me a big “NO! NO! NO!” She said popcorn is a high carbohydrate food that rapidly dumps into the small intestine causing insulin to drop and dumping to result. Patients also tend to out-eat their pouch with popcorn because they usually consume a beverage as they eat popcorn creating a slurry that quickly moves through the stoma – thus more can be consumed in a single setting. Finally, she said, eating popcorn is mindless and not generally related to hunger. It is a perceived to be an acceptable return to snacking and leads to other snacking abuses.

I stopped the mindless munching on popcorn and feel a whole lot better. But I do miss it and when I smell a fresh batch of microwave popcorn I am likely to lose my mind! But it’s just not worth it.

For conventional dieters popcorn itself is a nutritious snack choice, containing more fiber than snacks made with refined flour. In the standard three-cup serving (the size of a small mixing bowl), air-popped popcorn contains just 93 calories and less than 1.5 grams of fat and 3.6 grams dietary fiber. Dietary fiber — also known as roughage or bulk — includes all parts of plant foods that your body can't digest or absorb.

So, let’s take a poll: Is Popcorn a “Do” or a “Don’t” after gastric bypass? Post your comments below.


Kim said...

Popcorn. I used to eat a bag a day before surgery. I loved this salty snack and I would eat an entire bag of Orvel's lite version. On Weight Watchers, it was only 3 points due to all of the fiber, so it was a glorious snack.

My WLS nutritionist banned it from my approved foods post-op. No carbonated beverages, sugar, soft bread, or popcorn. So there. Anything that comes from her mouth is the gospel to me. I haven't had a single kernel since Sept 4, 2003. People eat it like crazy around this office (most of them are on Weight Watchers!). You can smell it coming through the vents every day around 2pm and I must say, it does call my name every now and again. I still stick to the original rule of "protein bars only" for my snacking. It has kept my weight in line. If there is a "snacky" food that I really want to eat, I make it part of one of my meals...after eating my protein of course! Having WLS is only as effective as you allow it to be. If you insist on going back to your old habits of snacking on mindless foods in-between meals, you're sure to gain weight. Who wants that?

Diane; AL said...

To help with the cravings for salty foods I eat pickles. I also eat alot of pork skins. These are great because of the different flavors you can find. I even found one that is cinnamon flavored. They taste just like the cinnamon crispas from Taco Bell.
On my LC WOE, I use pork skins for a number of things. I grind them up to make my own shake and bake for meats. I even make a "bread pudding" from the cinnamon ones. Hey don't knock it til you try it.
Being strict about the LC is how I lost so fast.
Another trick for me is to keep a big pot of cabbage soup made. The original recipe came from the old cabbage soup diet I tried years ago. I just tweeked it. It's chock full of all kinds of "free" veggies, cabbage, tomatoes, carrots(a few, their high in carbs), summer squash, green beans, plus a whole lot more. I switch up with each pot. I also change the herbs I put in for flavoring. Ya'll know my motto, VARIETY.This is the way I get veggies in.

Kaye Bailey said...

Great comments Kim & Diane.

For those not familiar - LC=Low Carb, and WOE=Way Of Eating.

I would caution our community members to use pork skins (pork rinds) sparingly as they are high in fat and not always well-tolerated by a gastric bypass stomach. One 1-ounce serving of plain pork skins is 155 calories, 17 grams protein, and 9 grams fat of which 3.2 are saturated. Just remember, moderation in all things.

Diane - The veggie soup sounds terrific! An excellent way to get your vegetable servings.


Hummingbird1964 said...

Wow...I've eaten popcorn without any dumping or other side effects and it was never put on the "no-no" list for me. But I agree that mindless eating has no place in our lives. I'll start watching the popcorn from now on. However, someone like me who eats 6 or 7 small meals a day rarely has issues with too much snacking. I don't get hungry enough.

The cabbage soup sounds wonderful and I can't wait to try my hand at it!

As has been said before here by the wise ladies of this blog everyone is different. The one thing I avoid is using certain foods (or denial of certain foods except sugar)to control my weight. Thats the way I tried when I was a fatty and it never worked. I don't think it's realistic for me to think that I will always eat the way I did when I was in the rapid weight loss phase. It is my belief that eating in moderation and getting plenty of exercise is what is going to keep me at a healthy weight. And that is something that I can handle. Anyway, it's worked so far for me.

2 years