Good Habits/Bad Habits
I was meeting with a new patient recently when she said something that initially struck me as odd but made a lot of sense as I thought about it some more. She said, "Doc, I am really sad I am here…and I am really glad I am here…."
Maybe you can appreciate why it struck me as odd, but as we carried on the discussion it made a whole lot more sense. She was sad that she had gained the weight she had, and (like many of you, I suppose) quite frustrated by her inability to lose the weight and keep it off (despite many, many attempts!). But she was also quite happy that she had finally taken concrete steps (making an appointment and coming to the office) to take back control of a situation that she thought she could never get control of.
The other thing she was happy about was how effective bariatric surgery is. Is it 100% successful? Of course not! I suspect there are no medical treatments that are 100% successful, 100% of the time…but I can say without any doubt that bariatric surgery is the MOST successful treatment for obesity that we have! Now what does this have to do with habits (good or bad).
I told her that in the years I have been doing bariatric surgery the thing that most consistently separates the patients who are successful from the ones who aren't is that the successful patients development new (and better) habits after the surgery, this is what will keep the weight off. As many of you have probably heard me say: "The surgery gets the weight off, it is up to you to keep it off"
As I continued the discussion with my patient from several weeks ago we discovered that there were certain habits of hers that had contributed to her weight gain and also made it very difficult to lose the weight and keep it off. Some examples of the types of habits I am talking about: drinking fruit juice instead of eating the fruit, fried food instead of baked, white bread instead of whole grain, snacking even though you really aren't hungry, unconscious mindless eating, driving when she could have walked….the list goes on and on. I would encourage you to make your own list, the first step in establishing new and more successful habits is to identify the ones that aren't working.
In my opinion one of the things the surgery does most effectively is allow patients to break old routines that have contributed to their weight gain and poor health. If you have ever hit "Control-Alt-Delete" on your computer you know what I mean…the surgery is literally a chance to "re-boot" the system and start fresh! To permanently keep the weight off you need to replace the habits the contributed to the weight gain with habits that you will keep the weight off. It is simply human nature; if we don't replace the old routines with new one's the old one's will simply creep back in.
The good news is that it is easier to do this than you think, several weeks of consistent application is what it takes for new behaviors to become routine. Start by making a list of habits you think have contributed to your weight gain (even though it can be uncomfortable you may want to ask people around you, friends and family, because they can often see us in a way we can't see ourselves) and then for each one of those habits list a habit you can replace it with that will help you keep the weight off. This is absolutely one of the most important things any bariatric patient can do to assure they not only lose the weight but keep it off as well!
From the Gut... by Glynn Fluitt
Mr. Fluitt is a patient that has graciously offered to contribute to the newsletter – his column is a welcomed addition to the GSBWC newsletter and its readers!
Are You on the Ride… or Not…
"I'm sorry sir, you're going to have to get off the ride." That's what I was told in August of 2008 at Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey. That, after 2 teenage kids tried unsuccessfully to close the safety bar around me on one of the roller coasters. I smiled bravely as I de-coastered and told my 12 year old son to enjoy the ride. "I'll meet you at the exit gate Taylor". He was distracted by the loud music and festive crowd. I was crushed as my son sailed off with some strange woman sitting in the seat next to him. Fast forward to February 2009 where I am giddy with excitement and nervous with anticipation as I take the final steps to prepare for my gastric bypass. "The FIRST thing I'm going to do is ride EVERY roller coaster with Taylor at Six Flags!" I told myself. It's amazing how many "firsts" I had prior to that, and since. But it was THAT first that made me the most excited for learning how to become a "post-morbid" (a term that a WLS friend and I have coined for no longer being morbidly obese). When my cardiologist put a 30-day hold on my surgery in order to observe a suspicious heartbeat, I cried! I tear up now, just recalling the discussion. But the coasters were calling! And I answered. Every one of them!!!! August 2009, Four months post-op — 70 pounds smaller. Not one person sneered at me as Taylor and I snaked through the lines to board the Batman — or any of the other coasters in the park.
Over and over and over.
Follow me @BariatrciDude
p.s. that was August 2009 – Glynn is proud member of the Century Club at GSBWC and a role model for roller coaster enthusiasts everywhere!
Happy Memorial Day! I hope everyone enjoyed the holiday. Now that barbecue season is in full swing and outdoor dining will be on the rise, proper food temperature is important. Be sure to keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold to avoid any food-borne illness. The last thing anyone wants is to get sick after a great barbecue.
Everyone loves a great burger but no one wants all the extra calories. Here is a healthy version of a hearty burger that I am sure will be a hit at your next barbecue. This recipe is courtesy of Ellie Krieger's cook book: :Comfort Food Fix". For those of you who don't know, Ellie Krieger is a Registered Dietitian who had a cooking show on the Food Network.
Horseradish, Cheddar and Caramelized Onion-Stuffed Burgers
Serves 4 people
2 tsp olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced into half-moons
1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean or higher)
4 tsp prepared white horseradish, drained of excess liquid
1/2 cup lightly packed shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
Nonstick cooking spray
4 whole-wheat hamburger buns (optional)
4 medium leaves romaine lettuce, ribs removed
1 large tomato, sliced
Ketchup (optional) No sugar added to your ketchup/catsup
Heat the oil in a medium-size nonstick skillet over medium heat.
Add the onion, reduce the heat to medium low and cook, stirring, until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes.
Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is a deep golden brown, about 20 minutes more.
In the meantime, shape the beef into 8 small patties, each about 4 inches in diameter.
To make a stuffed burger, spread 1 tsp horseradish on one of the patties.
Top that with 2 tbsp cheddar cheese and 1 tbsp of caramelized onions.
Top with another meat patty and pinch around the edges of the patties to seal the burger closed.
Repeat with the remaining patties.
Season the stuffed burgers on both sides with salt and black pepper.
Spray a nonstick grill pan with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat or prepare a grill.
Cook the burgers until the cheese is melted inside and the meat is at the desired doneness, about 4 minutes per side for medium doneness.
Serve on the buns with lettuce, tomato and ketchup (optional)
… or get rid of the bun & serve with a mixed salad.
Upcoming Free Seminars
The next Free Informational seminar is at our Millburn office on June 6th 2012 at 6:30pm. Dr. Yurcisin leads the discussion on weight loss, your surgical options and if 'Bariatric Surgery is Right for Me?'. To Find out more, simply click here for Dates and Locations of Seminars! We welcome your guests and anyone that wants to know more about the benefits of bariatric surgery.
In This Issue Good Habits/Bad HabitsFrom the GutMarisol's Nutritional Corner
This Designation is the 1st line of Defense for All Patients when looking for a Certified Center of Excellence Bariatric Surgeon. GSBWC has proudly been Certified since we began our practice.
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June News for the Team!
Summer Solstice 2012 doesn't officially begin until June 20th 2012 at 7:09pm EDT— and if you love Summer – May brought in the 90s hot weather just for you!
June at GSBWC celebrates 3 birthdays for the team – and we wish them the happiest always:
Marisol – June 17th
Laurie – June 20th
Dominga June 27th
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."
Thanks For Trusting Us with Your Health!
Yours in Good Health,
Michael Bilof, MD
Basil Yurcisin, MD