LAWLS Bookstore

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Desserts to make you happy, not guilty!

Happy December First Everyone!

Did you receive your December issue of our newsletter "You Have Arrived"? It was emailed Wednesday evening. Email me if you don't have it yet! In that issue we talk about many of the emotional issues around the holiday season. I hope you found some of the content helpful. Now, to bring on some WLS-safe holiday joy I offer you three desserts to make you happy, not guilty! ENJOY!

NOTE: The following four dessert recipes are WLS friendly and low calorie. When sugar is called for Splenda may be substituted in the same measure, or a combination of sugar and Splenda may be used. Know your body's tolerance and prepare the recipes accordingly.

Chocolate-Espresso Cups
8 Servings
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 12 minutes
Chill time: 2 hours

1 12-ounce can lowfat (2%) evaporated milk, divided
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 teaspoons granulated instant espresso powder (or 3 teaspoons instant coffee)
1/8 teaspoon coarse salt
¼ cup mini chocolate chips
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 ½ tablespoons water
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
Lowfat whipped topping
8 chocolate covered coffee beans

Combine 1 cup of milk with sugar, instant espresso powder and salt in a medium saucepan. Bring the mixture just to a boil, whisk in mini chocolate chips and turn off heat.

In a medium bowl, stir together cornstarch and water until completely smooth. Blend in remaining ½ cup of milk. Sift cocoa powder over bowl and whisk mixture until free of lumps.

Vigorously whisk hot-milk mixture to blend melted chocolate chips. Transfer to cocoa mixture and whisk to combine. Transfer mixture back to saucepan and cook over low heat until pudding has thickened, about 2 minutes.

Ladle pudding into 8 espresso or pudding cups. Lay a small piece of plastic wrap over the surface of each pudding to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate for 2 hours or until set.

Just before serving, top each pudding with whipped topping and garnish with a chocolate-covered coffee bean.

Nutrition per ¼ cup serving (that is an appropriate WLS size serving): 155 calories; 4grams protein, 5grams fat, 24grams carbs.

Ruby Surprise
Serves 6
Prep time: 8 minutes

3 cups red grapes, rinsed
2 pints fresh or frozen raspberries (not in syrup)
6 tablespoons minced candied ginger
6 tablespoons grenadine

Set out six dessert glasses and divide the grapes and berries equally. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon minced candied ginger over fruit and then drizzle with 1 tablespoon of grenadine. Serve.

This portion may be too much for some WLS patients, depending on pouch size and previous foods consumed. Enjoy as a snack or a dessert served about an hour after dinner finishes.

Nutrition: 155 calories, 1gram protein, 36g carbs, 5grams fiber.

Snow Kisses
24 cookies
Prep time: 10 minutes
Bake time: 25 minutes

2 large egg whites
1/8 teaspoon cream of tarter
¾ cup granulated sugar

Heat oven to 300 degrees. Line a baking sheet with waxed paper and set aside.

In a large bowl, beat egg whites until foamy. Beat in cram of tartar. Gradually beat in granulated sugar until stiff peaks form. Drop by heaping teaspoons 1-inch apart on prepared cookie sheet. 24 cookies.

Bake for 25 minutes or until meringues are dry. Remove the wax paper and cookies from the baking sheet and place on a wire rack to cool completely.

Nutrition: 25 calories per cookie; 6grams carbs

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Avoid Holiday Eater’s Remorse

Are you conflicted over enjoying the holidays by indulging in the bountiful foods set before you versus honoring your commitment to a healthier life by way of weight loss surgery? I know for me the abundance of food and Yuletide cheer seems at times overwhelming. Here are a few strategies to consider before noshing your way to eater’s remorse:

- Forget the notion that holidays are for overindulging. Your WLS isn’t taking a holiday vacation, neither should you.

- Assume that certain foods WILL make you sick (vomiting or dumping). Just because it hasn’t made you sick before does not mean it will not make you sick today. Always assume the worst and avoid dangerous foods (sweets, high starch carbohydrates and dairy)

- Enjoy seasonal treats in moderation. Foods you can have anytime of year are not worth the holiday pouch space – indulge only in those once-a-year treats (low-fat sugar-free eggnog or mulled cider sound good right now).

- Avoid salty foods – they aren’t good for you, they cause dehydration, they cause grazing and over-consumption. Why bother?

It sounds trite and we’ve said it all our dieting lives: “Nothing Tastes as Good As Thin Feels” - - This time, with WLS, the “thin” is for real. Give yourself the chance to enjoy your weight loss without the eater’s remorse.

For more helpful LivingAfterWLS Holiday tips watch your inbox for the December 1, LivingAfterWLS Newsletter – “You Have Arrived”.

Subscribe Me to "You Have Arrived"

Monday, November 28, 2005

Easy-Tasty Meatball Soups

This time of year we need to have warm comforting food that is quick and convenient to prepare, while being nutritious and delicious. Here are two very good quick soup recipes that take advantage of pantry staples and ready-made fully cooked chicken meatballs from the freezer. Enjoy!

Chicken-Meatball & Ravioli Soup

Chicken-Meatball Mexican Soup with Garnishes

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Nov. 28: Monday Message From Kaye

Hello everyone! Did you survive the Thanksgiving feast and enjoy yourself and your new LivingAfterWLS lifestyle? We enjoyed a very nice holiday with weather so lovely we were able to eat outdoors – keep in mind I live in Wyoming, so this truly was a Thanksgiving Day Miracle. I found myself grazing on the marinated mushrooms and artichoke hearts. But I did manage to avoid the chips and dips so all was not lost. Post your experience here – what went well for you and where can you improve at the next big food day.

Warm Wishes!

We have eight members of our community undergoing WLS this week. Please send your warmest wishes to Dana, Jerry, Paula, Lorri, Clara, Betty, Melissa and Kathy. You can learn more about Melissa by reading her Blog, Big Grandma. To all of you best wishes & welcome to your new life.

WLS Blogs:
Have you read Sandi’s blog recently? She had her surgery last week and is home and doing well! Stop over and pay her a visit, she’s got a wonderful way with words and an honest sincere heart - just read her account of her stay in the hospital. I enjoy her very much! Speaking of blogs, we’ve added four great online journals to our blog list. Take a minute to read what some of our community members are up to – some are pre-op and Mayablue at “Starting Over After WLS” is 14-months post-op. I’ve always said our best resource is one another – thank you “Bloggers” for sharing your WLS with the community. And if you are keeping a blog and would like a link drop me an email – I’d love to get to know you!

  • Starting Over After WLS

  • A Shrinking Violet

  • She Shrinks

  • Former Fat Girl

  • Why WLS?

    This week at LivingAfterWLS we are going to take a hard look at WHY we had weight loss surgery and what we are doing to move forward in a healthier life that supports our decision to have the surgery. We will look at nutrition, fitness and emotions associated with life after WLS.

    December Issue: You Have Arrived
    And finally, Coming to inboxes Thursday is the December issue “You Have Arrived” newsletter – it’s all about celebrating holidays and nurturing our new healthy lifestyle at the same time. The “You Have Arrived” newsletter is available exclusively to subscribers: Link to join the LivingAfterWLS community and enjoy this free benefit.

    I wish you the best this week; take your vitamins, drink your water, move your body and live well after WLS!

    Take care,

    You Have Arrived Newsletters
    2005 Collection Available on CD

    The Complete 2005 You Have Arrived newsletter collection is now being offered on CD! All of your favorite LivingAfterWLS newsletters in one convenient location. The CD includes:

  • 16 You Have Arrived Newsletters
  • 3 Recipe supplements (40 recipes!)
  • The LAWLS Personal Self-Assessment Worksheet
  • 2005 You Have Arrived topic index (available only on CD)
  • Exclusive "Thoughts From Kaye" (available only on CD)

    The CD's will begin shipping December 19, 2005, just in time to make a great stocking stuffer for yourself or a fellow WLS friend. Pre-order your CD today!

    $12.00 - - Includes shipping.

    Reserve your copy today by clicking the PayPal Button below:

  • Saturday, November 26, 2005

    Boring!!! Why Eat More Turkey?

    So, like the rest of America you have loads of leftover Thanksgiving Turkey. We all know we should use it to avoid being wasteful. But have you considered that turkey is a fabulous low-fat high-protein nutrient-rich source for your LivingAfterWLS lifestyle? Here are a few things to consider about the bountiful bird:

    3 Ounces of Roast Turkey (mix of light & dark meat) Contains:
  • 145 Calories
  • 25 grams protein
  • 4.2 grams fat
  • 23% daily value of Niacin
  • 20% daily value Vitamin B6
  • 17% daily value zinc
  • 11% daily value iron

  • I know there are tons of “disguise your leftover turkey” recipes out there. But you know, in a sentimental moment I’m willing to slice off three ounces from the T-Day carcass, enjoy it plain and simple paying homage big bird! “Thank you turkey, for making me a lean-mean-healthy machine!”

    Enjoy those turkey leftovers!


    Nutrition 101:

    Niacin: Helps maintain healthy functions of the nervous system, digestive system and skin.

    Vitamin B6: Aids in the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and proteins to produce vital energy for the body.

    Zinc: An essential mineral to human nutrition and body processes involved with physical and mental development and protection. Zinc is found in every cell in the body and involved in the synthesis of protein and the action of many enzymes.

    Iron: a mineral that aids in the formation of red corpuscles and is a necessary component of hemoglobin, the oxygen carrier in the blood, and is also important for energy utilization.

    Friday, November 25, 2005

    The Day After...

    by Julie Hullinger
    LAWLS PR Director

    Last week I started mentally preparing myself for "The Big Day". I did this by taking a paper plate and drawing out what I would eat and the size portion that would be appropriate for me and my weight loss goals and strategies. Secondly, I always carry with me my food journal. I always write down everything that goes in my mouth. always. without exception. My family and I were lucky enough to be invited to Kaye's house for Thanksgiving. Now I know I can eat right! So I packed up my paper plate "map" and my food journal and we were on our way with our food assignment - mashed potatos, which we made with fat free cream cheese and horse radish. When we arrived at Kaye's house, I started to feel a little silly about my mapped out paper plate and thought - I'll just leave it in the car. I know what I wrote on it and I'll be fine. I did take my food journal into the house, but left it in my baby's diaper bag. I thought, I'll write down what I eat when I get a minute. The day went by, we enjoyed a lovely meal - eating outside - which is a miricle in November. I ate what I wanted, turkey, potatos and gravy, vegetables and one roll. I was winning! My portions were right on target. Then it was time for dessert. I passed up the pies, no problem..... but..... then came the heavy whipping cream home made - Oh, Lord Have Mercy! I stuck my finger right in the bowl. Then I was a gonner. I dipped and double dipped my finger into that whipping cream bowl until I ate what was probably the equivalent of a stick of butter. I didn't write it down in my journal - I of course would do that later. And the worst part is a while later I UNZIPPED my pants, layed right down on the floor - in front of KAYE BAILEY. Mortified! Can you imagine? But our kind, gracious hostess understood my dilema. She excused herself, changed from her gorgeous lemon yellow dress into her "casual wear"... just to make me feel more comfortable. My plan to wear tight jeans to "remind" me not to eat too much was not the greatest plan. Anyway, my family and I got into the car to go home, I dug my food journal out of the diaper bag and began to write down my day's food/calories. I'm happy to report that I came in pretty much on target for what I had planned on my paper plate map, except for the whipping cream dipping. I did not feel guilty. Even though I hadn't taken my paper plate to the table, the mental preparation I had done before hand really helped me keep it under control. Thank you to Kaye and her husband for the beautiful day of food and friendship.

    Thursday, November 24, 2005

    Thanksgiving Message From Kaye

    Dear LivingAfterWLS Friends:

    Happy Thanksgiving! It is with profound gratitude that I celebrate this American Holiday today. Gratitude for the kindness of the LivingAfterWLS community members who have come together to share our common goal of living healthy and well after WLS. Gratitude for the health and wellness that I’ve enjoyed since achieving weight loss. Gratitude for a loving husband and family who have supported me in my WLS experience and who encourages this web project.

    Today I wish you the best as you surround yourselves with those important to you. Make wise food choices, live well and celebrate your new life, You Have Arrived!

    Happy Thanksgiving,

    Monday, November 21, 2005

    Thanksgiving Week
    Celebrating the New Normal

    This is a good week to review our "New Normal" after gastric bypass - - consider this list when you are thinking of things to be thankful for:

    What is "Back to Normal" After Gastric Bypass Surgery?

    By Kaye Bailey

    It is common for new WLS patients to ask, “How soon after surgery will I get back to normal?” This is understandable. We’ve spent a lifetime dieting for the short-term – the 30-day diet, the six-week program, the lose-ten-pounds-over-the-weekend diet. Remember thinking, "If I can stick with this plan for just 10 days, then I can go back to normal.”

    The diet industry has conditioned us to think long-term lifestyle changes are unnecessary to accomplish weight loss. We are impatient and demanding, we want a quick fix. Expectations are unrealistic and result in failure, disappointment and self-loathing.

    But weight loss surgery is for life.To that end, we must re-define normal:

    Normal is living without co-morbidities: asthma, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, heartburn, and knee and back pain.

    Normal is feeling your body in motion, walking up stairs briskly, and bending to tie your shoes.

    Normal is playing children’s games on the floor and getting up without struggling.

    Normal is hearing compliments about how great you look.

    Normal is ACCEPTING compliments about how great you look.

    Normal is fastening an airplane lap belt and pulling it tight.

    Normal is enjoying clothes shopping.

    Normal is the thrill of amusement park rides.

    Normal is waking up early to jump on the scale – and thrilling at the number.

    Normal is living without the incessant distraction of food and the relentless hunger.

    Normal is feeling proud – not ashamed – of your body.

    Normal is savoring food one bite at a time, not ravaging it.

    Normal is having the power – the tiny tummy - to control eating behavior.

    Normal is eating three meals a day and not snacking in between – and doing just fine.

    Normal is feeling immediate discomfort when too much food, or the wrong food is consumed.

    Normal is taking vitamins every day.

    Normal is drinking water – lots of water.

    Normal is enjoying exercising!

    Normal is boundless energy.

    Normal is a positive outlook, not fearing the doom of an early, miserable death for obesity related health complications.

    Normal is eating lean protein at every meal.

    Normal is declining doughnuts or pizza – and not feeling deprived!

    Normal is making healthy eating and behavior modification a lifestyle for the whole family.

    Normal is quality food, not gluttonous quantity.

    Normal is taking responsibility for your own health and wellness.

    Normal is respecting the science of your body, respecting the tiny tummy, and respecting yourself.

    Normal is constant attention to weight maintenance.

    Normal is feeling deep compassion for the obese.

    Normal is being scared of the rapid transformation your body makes.

    Normal is bouts of anger over years of self-loathing, discrimination, isolation and suffering.

    Normal is the occasional departure from the rules that results in dumping or vomiting.

    Normal is a rapid return to appropriate eating behavior.

    Normal is seeing, for a time, a stranger in the mirror.

    Normal is freeing yourself from obesity’s prison.

    Normal is understanding that the pre-surgical behaviors and habits were unhealthy, destructive and abusive.

    Copyright © 2005 Kaye Bailey - All Rights Reserved.

    Kaye Bailey is a weight loss surgery success story having maintained her health and goal weight for 5+ years. An award winning journalist, she is the author and webmaster of and Fresh & insightful content is added daily, check in often.

    Article Source:

    Sunday, November 20, 2005

    11/21: Monday Message From Kaye

    Hello Everyone & Happy Thanksgiving Week!

    We have four LivingAfterWLS community members who are celebrating Thanksgiving week by starting their new lives. Please wish Jenille, Sandi, Maura and Elinda well this week – Welcome to your new lives!

    I’ve added a charming new blog to our list of WLS folks writing about their WLS experience – Marla is a 25-year-old who will undergo WLS on December 12. Please visit her blog, Soon to Be a Former Fat Girl – wish her well as she begins her new life. Are you writing about your WLS on a blog? Email me and let’s link! Email Kaye

    The LivingAfterWLS special edition newsletter “You Have Arrived” was issued last week – the topic: Intimacy After WLS. Some spam blockers refused the newsletter because it contained the words “sex” and “sexuality”. If you missed it, drop me a note and I’ll send it to you as an .html file. Email Kaye

    We are now in the countdown to Thanksgiving – the biggest eating day in the United States. During the next few days I’ll continue to post tips, hints and ideas to help make this a WLS friendly holiday. If you missed them, link back to these very good articles:

    Thanksgiving Grazing

    Delicious Tofu Desserts

    Thanksgiving Pie

    Thanksgiving Pre-Op Strategy

    The Thanksgiving Plate

    Best wishes!


    Friday, November 18, 2005

    Grazing Through Thanksgiving Day?
    Think Twice Before You Bite

    Grazing through Thanksgiving Day is a sacred American rite - we gather with family and friends and surround ourselves with vast quantities of delicious foods. And we eat all day long and then sit down to a bountiful Thanksgiving meal and eat some more.

    After WLS the pouch will protect us from over-eating at the Thanksgiving table. But it is entirely possible to graze through the day and consume over 1,500 calories noshing on traditional appetizers. This is thin ice for WLS patients because grazing allows us to out-eat the pouch. Grazing is the number one reason patients report weight gain after weight loss.

    I present a list of 16 appetizer-type foods that may be available in our homes on Thanksgiving Day. Over the course of four hours a WLS patient could easily consume one serving of each of these items which totals 1,652 calories. Please look at this list and take note - is it really worth it? Perhaps even more damaging than the 1,652 calories (109 grams of fat, by the way) is the trespass into grazing behavior - once we trespass justifying the next grazing opportunity becomes easier and soon we are grazing from habit. Is it worth it?

    You will note this list includes only savory appetizers as I know all of us WLS people are avoiding sweets to prevent dumping and weight gain, right? Speaking of sweets - the sauce on Buffalo Wings is usually loaded with sugar and molasses - proceed with caution - extreme caution.

    Nutrition: 1,652 Calories: 59% of the calories are from fat, 19% from protein, 22% from carbs.

    Classic Hot Appetizers:
    Two Stuffed Mushrooms - 386 calories, 31 grams fat, 15 grams protein
    Three Buffalo Wings with Blue Cheese Dressing - 237 calories; 19 grams fat, 13 grams protein

    Classic Crudités Plate:
    3 Broccoli Florets - 29 calories
    3 Baby Carrots - 10 calories
    3 Cauliflower Florets - 6 Calories
    1 ounce Creamy Ranch Dip - 55 calories, 4.5 grams fat, 1 gram protein
    1 ounce slice cheddar cheese - 114 calories, 9 grams fat, 7 grams protein
    1 ounce Mozzarella cheese - 72 calories, 5 grams fat, 7 grams protein
    12 each ripe black olives - 44 calories, 4 grams fat

    Chips & Dips:
    1 serving (20 chips) regular potato chips - 158 calories, 10 grams fat
    1 ounce French Onion Dip - 55 calories, 4.5 grams fat
    1 serving (20 chips) corn tortilla chips - 149 calories, 9 grams fat
    ½ cup salsa - 36 calories, no fat

    Cheese & Crackers:
    2 ounces (20 crackers) Original Wheat Thins - 170 calories, no fat, 18 grams protein
    2 ounces reduced fat Veggie Cream Cheese Spread - 130 calories, 11 grams fat

    For more on Thanksgiving Day eating read:

    WLS Thanksgiving Plate
    Pie Plate

    Thursday, November 17, 2005

    Shhh - Don't tell anyone!
    These tasty desserts contain tofu!

    I know, I know! – These recipes include that “icky” thing – tofu. But before you move on consider this: tofu is a nutritional super-model with the remarkable ability to disguise itself as many things – in this case, Thanksgiving dessert. Silken tofu takes on a phenomenal life as a dessert and a healthy protein source. I encourage you to set these tofu desserts on your Thanksgiving dessert table. Shhhhh - - don’t tell your guests these are “healthy” desserts – let them enjoy the decadence!

    These cheesecake recipes are WLS friendly, but as with all things after WLS, proceed with caution in moderation.

    Pumpkin Tofu Cheesecake

    1 1/2 pounds silken tofu
    1 cup canned or fresh, cooked pumpkin
    1 1/4 cups Splenda
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
    12 ounces soy cream cheese
    1 tablespoon vanilla extract
    2 graham-cracker piecrusts (9 inches each)

    Have all ingredients at room temperature. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

    In a food processor or blender, puree the tofu and pumpkin. Add the Splenda cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, soy cream cheese and vanilla and process until smooth. Scrape down the sides as necessary. Pour the tofu mixture into prepared piecrusts and bake for 50 minutes, until firm. Turn off oven and leave the cheesecake in the oven for 1 hour. Remove and cool to room temperature. Refrigerate overnight. Serve cool.

    16 servings (normal portions)

    Nutrition: 210 calories, 14.5 g fat, 0 cholesterol, 4.5 g protein, 13 g carbohydrates, 1.2 g fiber, 138 mg sodium, 49 percent calories from fat.

    Chocolate Hazelnut Cheesecake

    1/3 cup hazelnuts
    1 cup graham cracker crumbs (5 ounces)
    1 tablespoon vegetable oil
    ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

    1 pound silken tofu
    1 cup creamed (4%) cottage cheese
    1 ounce semisweet chocolate, melted
    ½ cup granulated sugar or splenda
    1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
    2 tablespoons flour
    1 egg
    2 egg whites
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    1. Preheat the oven to 367 degrees. Toast the hazelnuts on a baking sheet for 7 minutes, or until the skins begins to crinkle. (Leave the oven on). Transfer the hazelnuts to a kitchen towel and rub to remove as much of the skin as possible (some skin will remain). When the hazelnuts are cool enough to handle, coarsely chop them. Set aside.

    2. In a small bowl, stir together the crumbs, oil, and 1 tablespoon of water. Press the mixture into the bottom and partway up the sides of a 9 ½” spring-form pan. Bake for 8 minutes or until the crust is set. Cool on a wire rack. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees.

    3. In a small bowl, combine the cocoa and ¼ cup of water until well moistened. In a food processor, combine the tofu, cottage cheese, melted semisweet chocolate, granulated sugar, brown sugar, flour, whole egg, egg whites, vanilla and the cocoa mixture. Process until very smooth.

    4. Pour the batter into the prepared crust and bake for 40 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 250 degrees. Sprinkle the nuts on top and bake for 10 minutes or until the cheesecake is just set. Cool to room temperature; refrigerate for 2 hours or until chilled. Serves 12 (normal portions).

    Nutrition: Calories, 205; fiber, 1 gram; protein, 8 grams; fat 7 grams; cholesterol 20 mg; sodium 189 mg.

    Wednesday, November 16, 2005

    Intimacy After WLS

    The special issue LivingAfterWLS Newsletter “You Have Arrived” - Intimacy & Relationships: The Skinny on Sex After WLS was emailed Wednesday evening. Because the newsletter discusses sex and sexuality many spam filters refused it. If you are a LivingAfterWLS subscriber and would like to receive this newsletter please EMAIL me and I’ll send you the .html file.

    If you are not yet a subscriber why not join the LivingAfterWLS Community and receive the exclusive newsletter "You Have Arrived" twice a month in your email inbox. It's free and loaded with tons of great LivingAfterWLS information. Subscribe Today!

    Support Group Leaders

    Need ideas for your support group meetings? Don't forget about our LivingAfterWLS "LEADER HELPERS" They are here for you in an outlined, step by step format, made especially for those of you leading a group. Just email Julie and the LEADER HELPERS will be sent to you asap! If you've already tried our LEADER HELPERS and would like to send suggesstions, comments or ideas - email Julie

    Tuesday, November 15, 2005

    Pie Chart – What’s on your Pie Plate?

    We all know we shouldn’t reach for the Thanksgiving pie after WLS – it’s against the rules and the potential to make us sick is very high. If that’s not enough to motivate restraint how about considering the nutrient analysis of some favorite American pies. Take a look and see if it is really worth it to taste that full-fat, full-sugar dessert:

    (Based on a 1/8 slice of the pie)
    Pumpkin Pie: 461 calories, 21 grams fat, 9 grams protein and 60 grams carbs

    Pecan Pie: 436 calories, 17.2 grams fat, 3 grams protein and 67 grams carbs.

    Apple, Blueberry or Cherry: 340 Calories, 16 grams fat, 3 grams protein, 46 grams carbs.

    Coconut Cream Pie: 485 Calories, 25 grams fat, 6 grams protein, 48 grams carbs.

    Chocolate Cream Pie: 401 calories, 21 grams fat, 6 grams protein, 50 grams carbs.

    Top that slice o’pie with real whipped cream – add another 104 calories, 11 grams fat, 41 grams cholesterol and a gram each of protein and carbs.

    I’m laying down my pie fork right now! It’s just not worth a taste of pie to risk being sick, uncomfortable or worse weight gain. (I know – you can’t gain weight with one taste of pie – but I have never been able to restrain myself to one taste. What about you?)

    Still don’t want to go without pie on Thanksgiving? Here are two sugarless and relatively safe dessert recipes for Thanksgiving LivingAfterWLS style. Indulge with caution – though they do not contain sugar they are sweetened with artificial sweetener and contain high amounts of fat, calories and carbs.

    Pumpkin Pie
    Pastry for single-crust 9-inch pie
    1 can (16 ounces) pumpkin
    1 can (12 ounces) evaporated skim milk
    3 eggs
    5-1/2 teaspoons Equal® for Recipes
    or 18 packets Equal® sweetener
    or 3/4 cup Equal® Spoonful™
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

    Roll pastry on floured surface into circle 1 inch larger than inverted 9-inch pie pan. Ease into pan; trim and flute edge.

    Beat pumpkin, evaporated milk and eggs in medium bowl; beat in remaining ingredients. Pour into pastry shell. Bake in preheated 425°F oven 15 minutes; reduce heat to 350°F and bake until knife inserted near center comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

    Nutrition (1/8 slice of pie): 175 calories; 8 grams protein; 22 grams carbs; 7 grams fat

    Chocolate Cream Pie

    Pastry for single-crust 9-inch pie
    1/3 cup cornstarch
    1/4 to 1/3 cup European or Dutch-process cocoa
    10-3/4 teaspoons Equal® for Recipes
    or 36 packets Equal® sweetener
    or 1-1/2 cups Equal® Spoonful™
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    3 cups skim milk
    2 eggs
    2 egg whites
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    8 tablespoons thawed frozen light whipped topping

    Equal® sweetener can be substituted with other sweetener products. Nutrition contents might be different from those listed below.

    1. Roll pastry on lightly floured surface into circle 1 inch larger than inverted 9-inch pie pan. Ease pastry into pan; trim and flute edge. Pierce bottom and side of pastry with fork. Bake in preheated 425oF oven until crust is browned, 10 to 15 minutes. Cool on wire rack.
    2. Combine cornstarch, cocoa, Equal® and salt in medium saucepan; stir in milk. Heat to boiling over medium-high heat, whisking constantly. Boil until thickened, about 1 minute.

    3. Beat eggs and egg whites in small bowl; whisk about 1 cup chocolate mixture into eggs. Whisk egg mixture into chocolate mixture in saucepan. Cook over very low heat, whisking constantly, 30 to 60 seconds. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla.

    4. Spread hot filling in baked crust; refrigerate until chilled and set, about 6 hours. Cut into wedges and place on serving plates; garnish each serving with dollop of whipped topping, if desired.

    Nutrition (1/8 slice of pie): 188 calories; 7 grams protein; 25 grams carbs; 7 grams fat.

    Monday, November 14, 2005

    Pre-Op Thanksgiving:
    One Member's Strategy

    One of our community members, Jerry Ann is having her WLS one week after Thanksgiving, but that's not stopping her from adopting a healthy WLS mindset for the great American feast next week. She writes, "My surgery won't be until a few days after Thanksgiving. But I'm trying to get in the mind-set of one who has had WLS. I'm trying to put more emphasis on who I spend the holiday with, rather than what we're going to eat. I'm hoping for a day of fellowship and not having to undo my pants at the end of the meal!"

    Here is Jerry Ann's detailed plan for Thanksgiving:

  • I plan to eat a regular breakfast and not "save my hunger" for the gorging.

  • I plan to have fresh veggies to munch on as I'm cooking and to serve to my guests before dinner.

  • I'm going with a menu that is fresh and different from what we've had before: Turkey breast; green beans; asparagus, I'll serve the standard potatoes, corn, and bread. But I feel confident I can bypass the bread and take only a couple of tablespoons of potatoes or corn--but no corn pudding, no stuffing, no gravy, no broccoli casserole, no sweet potatoes.

  • I still plan to fix some favorites--like crème Brule. But I'm swearing to only have a bite. I'm not fixing stuffing. There are several specialties I'm leaving off the menu. I don't need them. And really, my guests don't either. If the foods that I should avoid aren't there, I can't eat them.

  • Here's to a Thanksgiving for giving thanks for the opportunity I'm going to have to regain my health and a more energetic lifestyle.

  • Thanks, Jerry Ann, for sharing your great plan! We wish you the best as you begin your new life!!

    Tired of the Diet Cycle and Considering WLS?
    Visit Weight Loss Surgery Options to Learn More

    Weight Loss Surgery Options

    Diet and exercise have long been considered the only effective way to lose weight. But in recent years, a third way—surgery—has emerged for certain men and women who are severely obese. This option, known as bariatric surgery, can result in dramatic weight loss. Weight Loss Surgery Options is an online health resource administered by a professional staff of surgeons, dieticians and counselors. It is a comprehensive resource for those seeking more information about weight loss surgery. The site features both article and video formats to answer questions the pre-operative patient may be asking.

    For answers to these questions read the article, "When Dieting is a Bust: Surgical Options for Weight Loss"

  • When is surgery an appropriate option for weight loss?
  • How does obesity surgery work?
  • What are the different types of bariatric surgery available?
  • If the surgery goes well what can patients expect?
  • What are the risks associated with this type of surgery?
  • Does weight loss tend to be permanent with bariatric surgery?
  • Sunday, November 13, 2005

    Nov. 14: Monday Message From Kaye

    Greetings everyone! We have six LivingAfterWLS community members undergoing surgery this week. Please send big warm vibes to Linda, Debbie, John, Sue, Carolyn and Cathy. This week they join the 1000+ members of our community who are living after WLS!

    Pumpkin Soup

    A quick footnote to the Pumpkin Soup recipes. The basic pumpkin soup recipe should be 2-14 ounce cans broth, not one. Sorry for the error.

    2 for 1 Vitamin Sale:

    Our vitamin affiliate, Puritan’s Pride, is offering a 2-for-1 sale now through Thanksgiving to our loyal community. Take an inventory of your vitamin supply and see what’s missing, now is a great opportunity to stock-up. Remember that the LivingAfterWLS site is funded exclusively by our affiliates – any purchase you make from them keeps us online and providing new content for your LivingAfterWLS lifestyle.

    Not sure what vitamins you need to be taking? Visit the LivingAfterWLS Vitamins Page.

    Gobble Up Your Vitamins this Thanksgiving

    Eggs – It’s What’s for Dinner!

    Have you tried any of the “Eggcellent” recipes I posted last month?

    Today I cooked the Oven Scrambled Eggs altering the recipe for 6-whole eggs and 6-egg whites. This reduced the overall fat while maintaining the flavor and 70% protein content. Now I have ready-made breakfasts for the upcoming workweek.

    Holiday Recipes & Strategies

    Over at the LivingAfterWLS website we are furiously working to provide great recipes and strategies for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. Stop by often as we are adding new content as fast as we can get it together.

    Have a great week and live well in your new life!


    What’s on Your Thanksgiving Plate?

    I just worked up the nutritional data on a WLS Thanksgiving plate vs. a traditional plate and what I found is shocking! The WLS plate is roughly 10% of the calories of a traditional Thanksgiving plate. How does your plate measure up? For more WLS Holiday Recipes and ideas visit LivingAfterWLS Holiday Recipes.

    A WLS Friendly Thanksgiving plate:

    (1.25 cup volume)
  • 3-ounces turkey (light & dark meat)
  • ¼ cup cooked squash or cooked carrots (no fat)
  • ¼ cup cooked green beans (no fat)
  • 1 tablespoon light gravy (homemade, little fat)
  • 1 tablespoon no-sugar cranberry sauce
  • 1 small serving sugar-free dessert (small serving is 2-3 bites)
    Nutritional data: 227 calories; 25.2 grams protein; 8.1 grams fat; 9.6 grams carbs

    The Traditional American Thanksgiving plate:

  • 12-ounces turkey (light & dark meat)
  • 1-cup mashed potatoes
  • 1-cup bread stuffing
  • 1-6 ounce serving green bean casserole
  • ½ cup turkey gravy
  • 2 tablespoons sugar-added cranberry sauce
  • 2 Honey-wheat rolls w/1 pat butter each
  • 1 piece traditional pumpkin pie
    Nutritional data: 2,511 calories; 132.3 grams protein; 101.3 grams fat; 270.9 grams carbs
  • Wednesday, November 09, 2005

    The WLS Window of Opportunity:
    Fact or Fiction?

    by Kaye Bailey

    In the WLS world we’ve come to revere the “Window of Opportunity” as some kind of magical solve-all Emerald City where the Wizard replaces our obesity with a svelte healthy new being. Miss that window and we are DOOMED to be whisked away by the flying monkeys back to fat-land.

    But does the sacred secret “Window” really exist? Is this “Window” our only chance for fat-redemption? Is there a curtain behind which a wizard poses holding the magic keys of which we have always held possession? What if – Glory Be – we are actually in charge of our own “Window of Opportunity?”

    Sorry to inform you O’Great Wizard but today we are pulling back the curtain and revealing your tricks. Turns out the only one in control of the great mystical “Window of Opportunity” is the patient.

    Opportunity – Noun

    1 : a favorable juncture of circumstance

    2 : a good chance for advancement or progress

    What is the WLS Window of Opportunity?

    First – the WLS “Window of Opportunity” cannot be delineated by a specific time frame. Chat sites and doctors all tell us, “You better lose what you can in the “Window of Opportunity” because that is your only chance for weight loss after WLS.” So we ask them the scared whispered question, “Just how long is this Window of Opportunity?” “Four, six months at best" they tell us. Scary, right? Do they think because we are fat we are stupid? In four or six months following surgery the body does not suddenly repossess the gastric bypass and say “Sorry Charley” the window is now closed. Are you kidding? The Window of Opportunity exists for as long as we are COMPLIANT with the STRICT perimeters of weight loss surgery. Compliance with the WLS strict diet, exercise, nutrition and mental health guidelines keeps the window open. No one is in control of this except for the patient. See Ya, Wizard! Buh-bye!

    Second – Compliance with the WLS controls the Window, which means we have ultimate control. Listen to this, listen and live what I am about to tell you. Compliance with the guidelines your WLS center provides is the easiest way to keep the Window of Opportunity open. Every time a patient disregards his or her WLS guidelines the window pushes closed. Honest patients who regain weight admit failure to comply with the guidelines caused weight regain. Compliance keeps the window of opportunity open. Disregard the guidelines the window closes. It’s a simple as that. Learn your guidelines. Live them. Keep the Window open. Easy? Hell No! Best chance for success? Hell Yes!

    Third – Smart weight loss patients focus on the “Opportunity” of the open window. Now is the perfect time to use the “Window” to educate and retrain ourselves to embrace healthier “skinny” habits. The reward? Rapid weight loss! What better incentive to learn about nutrition, health, weight loss, exercise and mental wellness than when the body is rewarding the mind with weight loss. Learn it. Live it. Educate. Embrace. LIVE!!! The “Window of Opportunity” is about entering, celebrating and embracing a new life. Seize the OPPORTUINTY to reinvent yourself. This is the chance of a lifetime – do not surrender it.

    Ahhhh, but you say you have “Head Hunger.” Get over it! Prior to WLS you had “Head Hunger” too – Head Hunger to lose weight, to be healthier, to be more attractive. The “Head Hunger” was so bad nights were spent lying awake plotting the next argument to the insurance company, defending your obesity crisis and fighting for this miracle of modern medicine. Head hungry? THAT was Head Hunger. You fought so hard for this and now you want to say “Oh, I’m so hungry for chocolate cake or Alfredo sauce or XYZ, just this once it’s ok – I deserve one little treat!” This thinking is exactly what got us to morbid obesity in the first place! Forget about Head Hunger – don’t you dare indulge it for one minute. Instead focus your Head Hunger on the lighter, more attractive more confident person you fought to become – to HELL with the chocolate cake. It just doesn’t matter anymore.

    Fourth – Psychologists have proven repeatedly that positive reinforcement is the best motivator for behavior modification. Patients who actively engage in behavior modification during the “Window of Opportunity” have the greatest chance of long-term weight loss and successful weight maintenance. Yes, this is hard work and frankly some days it sucks. But what sucks worse is loss of mobility due to morbid obesity, sleepless nights due to morbid obesity or worst of all, early death due to morbid obesity. It is hard work to engage in and embrace a healthy lifestyle. But face it, it is much harder work to be morbidly obese. Actively engage in a healthy lifestyle – WLS is your second chance – don’t take it for granted.

    Finally – The wise WLS Owner knows that the WLS tool is for life. It may seem the window closes and weight loss becomes more difficult but the truth is the WLS tool is always there. Like a garden trowel we may abuse it, dent it and leave it in the rain to rust. But bring it back to shelter, nurture it and pamper it – it will always be there. We never lose the tool. When times are rough and we’ve abused the tiny pouch, step back, apologize, pamper it like the newborn tiny tummy. The WLS tool is forgiving. You may be surprised how willingly it opens that Window of Opportunity again. The WLS tools is for life.

    How about you? Is your “Window of Opportunity” open?

    Tuesday, November 08, 2005

    Stiff from Sitting?
    Try These Standing Leg Stretches

    Are you like me this time of year, spending too much time at your desk or computer? I have found my legs becoming tight and stiff lately. Experts in applied physiology report many of us do not stretch the large muscles in our legs often enough to counteract the daily stresses of prolonged sitting or standing. I happen to be one of those people.

    Today I turned to Joan Pagano's book "Strength Training for Women" and found four stretches that can improve our leg tone and enhance wellness. She instructs to take the stretch until feeling a gentle pull, but not pain, in the muscle. Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds without bouncing which allows the muscle to lengthen. Breathe into the stretch, using the exhale to move deeper into the position.

    Calf Stretch
    Stand with feet together and place left hand on a chair back for support. Take a giant step back with the right leg and press the heel into the floor. Bend your left knee over your ankle. Feel the stretch in the back of the calf.

    Hip-Flexor Stretch
    From the previous position, come up on the toes of your back foot, bend the back knee toward the floor and press the bottom of the pelvis forward. Keep the left knee directly over the ankle. Feel the stretch in the front of the right hip.

    Quad Stretch
    Stand on your left leg with the knee soft. Bend the right leg and, holding the foot or ankle, bring the heel toward the buttocks. Feel the stretch along the front of the thigh. To intensify the stretch, press the bottom of the pelvis forward.

    Hamstring Stretch
    Stand on your left leg, with the knee bent. Extend your right leg to the front, and rest your heel on the floor; with the toe pointing to the ceiling. Bend forward from the hip, keeping your upper body in proper alignment. Feel the stretch in your hamstrings. Turn around to perform the sequence of stretches on the left leg.

    Take some time to do these stretches - they really do take the "desk fatigue" out of your legs. For more fitness tips for women visit Joan Pagano's Website - there are lots of great tips for making the best of our new bodies post WLS.

    Sunday, November 06, 2005

    Nov 7: Monday Message From Kaye

    Hello Everyone!

    Please send your warm wishes to seven of the LivingAfterWLS community members who will undergo surgery this week: Sherita, Ava, Darcy, Karen, Sharon, Bob and Marlene. We wish them each good health and a speedy recovery as they begin their new lives. Congratulations!

    Community Member Updates:

    Remember Malu, our friend in the Philipines? She is doing well and reports she is down 59 pounds and wearing a size 22 ladies clothing. She works in retail and this is a busy time of year for her, but she is doing well.

    Our member Margo, the one who suffered the gastrogastric fistual shortly after her WLS, is seeing improvements. She writes, “I am doing better as far as the WLS aftermath. I am still struggling to get enough protein and fluids down, but I am eating more "real" food-tuna and chicken and egg salad, protein drinks souped-up with yogurt and frozen berries, even soy chips when I absolutely have to have a bit of crunch.

    I went to the nutritionist my surgeon recommends, and she was very helpful. I am still 'way too weak, but slowly, very slowly am adding activities. I'm back to the gym once a week, doing physical therapy, shopping for myself, everyday things that I've been unable to do for quite a while.”

    And do you remember Sara? She’s the one who started her walking program while still in the hospital after having WLS. She is down 69 pounds and doing great. She wrote to me, “Last weekend, I was a parent chaperone for my son’s school outdoor club. We went on an overnight trip to the school’s farm in Wisconsin where we cleared trails for hiking, snowshoeing and x-country skiing. I lead a team of 6 kids for a whole day of hard labor (sawing out trees, clearing prickly ash, pruning limbs) and hiked more than 6 miles that day, including a night hike in the woods. We played games that I never heard about growing up in Los Angeles (“Thicket,” “Ghost in the Graveyard” and “Kick the Can”) and I went at it with full gusto, even falling flat on my face a couple of times in the thick brush at night. The whole trip, I kept thinking, there is no way I could have done this trip 60 lbs ago. I used to teach Outward Bound in the summer (to delinquent boys of high IQ, but that’s another story), and I now see the real possibility of returning to the active, outdoorsy lifestyle. I think, however, I will leave the delinquent boys and rock climbing behind….”

    WLS Blogs

    Be sure to acquaint yourself with the WLS Blogs listed to the right. These are online journals being kept by real people who also happen to have weight loss surgery, or like Big Grandma and Sandi – about to have WLS. If you are a community member keeping a WLS blog drop me an Email– I love to hear from you!

    WLS Blogs

  • Sandi's RNY Journey

  • Who Moved My Cheese?

  • Shrinking Violet

  • Shrinking Chica

  • Postcards from the Wasteland

  • Big Grandma Not Big Anymore

  • Plow Hazard

  • Holly's Zoo

    - - Coming November 15 - - The newsletter issue you have been waiting for: Intimacy and Relationships After Massive Weight Loss. I’ve got lots of great stuff to share with this newsletter, watch for it next week.

    You Have Arrived is the exclusive subscriber only newsletter for the LivingAfterWLS Website. It’s free and it’s yours for completing this simple form:
    Subscription & Privacy

    The holiday season is upon us. We have lots of great hints and ideas planned to help you enjoy your celebrations AND respect your WLS. Check in often at the LivingAfterWLS website and here at the LivingAfterWLS Blog for information to help you enjoy this special time of year.

    Have a great week!

    Friday, November 04, 2005

    Pumpkin Soup: Delicious Variations

    A Living After Weight Loss surgery community member shared a recipe for a simple pumpkin soup that is low calorie, nutrient dense and soul comforting on crisp autumn days. Pumpkin is a nutritional powerhouse - a 1/2 cup serving of yields 300% of the RDI for Vitamin A - 80% as beta carotene. The basic recipe is quick and simple and lends itself to endless variation.

    Basic Pumpkin Soup
    1 15-Ounce Can Libby’s* Pure Pumpkin
    2 14-Ounce can low-sodium chicken broth
    Crushed red pepper flakes to taste
    Splenda sweetener to taste

    Over medium-heat in a 2-quart saucepot combine the pumpkin and broth. Heat to a simmer without boiling (about five minutes). Taste for flavor and add red pepper flakes and Splenda to taste. Serve warm.

    A 1-cup serving is 30 calories; 2.15 grams protein, 10 grams carbs, 1 gram fat.

    *LIBBY'S uses only a special variety of pumpkin called the Dickinson. Through careful cultivation and research, we’ve ensured that all of our pumpkin has a delicious taste, creamy texture and pleasing orange color. Just check the label: no salt, no sugar, no flavorings or colorings, just 100% Pure Pumpkin. Available in 15oz and 29oz cans.

    Variations to Basic Pumpkin Soup:
    Here are some variations to the Basic Pumpkin Soup. As WLS patients we are told to focus on protein intake. To increase the protein value of this delicious soup we can add shredded chicken, chopped turkey, shrimp, fish (such as halibut), and even silken tofu to most of these variations. Experiment and find what satisfies your craving for a delicious soup on a cold autumn night.

    Apple-Pumpkin Soup
    To add sweetness add 1/3 to ½ cup apple juice to the soup mixture. Or add one small chopped apple to mixture for sweetness and extra fiber. Remove from heat and stir-in ½ cup low-fat cream cheese or Ricotta cheese. Delicious!

    Honey-Mustard Pumpkin Soup
    Using the Basic Pumpkin Soup recipe omit the Splenda and crushed red pepper. Add 2 tablespoons honey and 1 tablespoon of prepared mustard. Taste for flavor and adjust accordingly.

    Mushroom Pumpkin Soup
    In 1 2-quart saucepot sauté ½ cup of chopped yellow onion and 8 ounces sliced mushrooms. Salt & pepper to taste. When vegetables are tender add the Basic Pumpkin Soup ingredients. Bring mixture to a low simmer and heat five minutes. Taste and season with ground nutmeg and Splenda.

    Chicken Pumpkin Soup
    Shred one pre-cooked chicken breast with two forks. Heat chicken in microwave oven. Place ½ cup of chicken in each bowl. Ladle ½ cup Basic Pumpkin Soup in each bowl. Serve with a dollop of sour cream or low-fat plain yogurt. (The chicken adds 26 grams of protein and the soup makes the chicken easier to chew and digest. One tablespoon of regular sour cream adds 17 mg of calcium and 3.2 grams of fat.)

    Curried Pumpkin Soup:
    Place 2-Tablespoons olive oil In the 2-quart saucepot and heat over medium-high heat.

    2 cloves garlic, peeled
    1 med onion, peeled and quartered
    1 lg. jalapeno pepper, seeded and -coarsely chopped
    2 Stalks celery, cut into -2-inch lengths
    3 lg. Carrots, peeled and sliced -1/4 inch thick

    When vegetable are soft add:
    1 15-Ounce Can Libby’s* Pure Pumpkin
    1 14-Ounce can low-sodium chicken broth
    1 Bay leaf
    2 tsp. curry powder
    1 tsp. Turmeric
    pinch of cayenne pepper
    1 1/2 tsp. salt
    freshly ground pepper

    Heat to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes to allow flavors to blend. Serve warm with a garnished with a dollop of sour cream or plain low-fat yogurt and chopped flat leaf parsley.

    Thursday, November 03, 2005

    Super Model Tyra Banks Goes Undercover As Obese Woman

    Tyra Banks has gone undercover as a 350-pound woman.

    Banks wore the fat suit to experience what it's like to be obese.

    "It seemed like the last form of open discrimination that's OK, and I decided to put on a 350-pound suit myself and live that life for a day and see what happens," the 31-year-old former supermodel told AP Radio in a recent interview. "And it was one of the most heartbreaking days of my life."

    Banks said she was shocked at the reaction.

    "I started walking down the street and within 10 seconds, a trio of people looked at me, snickered, looked me right in my eye and started pointing and laughing in my face," the talk-show host said. "And I had no idea it was that blatant."

    The segment will air Monday on "The Tyra Banks Show."

    Banks, who had a sonogram on her show in September to prove that her breasts are real, is also planning a Nov. 18 segment on pursuing "a beautiful booty."

    She will reveal her own "dimpled butt" and receive endermologie treatment on the set.