Tortoise and the Hare

Hope everyone has been having a great (and active) summer!  I realize the title of today's newsletter might seem a little strange, but bear with me a moment.

So…the tortoise and the hare…you remember that story from your childhood (I think it was one of Aesop's fables…those Greek guys were pretty smart weren't they??) about the race between the turtle and the rabbit.  Just in case you don't remember (spoiler alert!)…the turtle wins.  At this point, you are asking, "Who cares?" and "What does this have to do with bariatric surgery, weight loss and my health?"….glad  you asked…..

Alright, so the turtle wins the race.  At first blush, seems a little odd, particularly since everyone knows a rabbit is fast and a turtle is slow.  So, how exactly does the turtle win…very simple…..he doesn't stop!!  Even though he is moving slowly he does not stop, he keeps moving. He keeps going

The rabbit on the other hand is very fast…and initially darts ahead, but then, guess what?..he gets distracted, stops, plays with other rabbits.  Kind of like life…lots of things to side track and distract us.

Meanwhile the turtle keeps going, moving ahead, never stopping…slow but very steady, and eventually wins the race!  Ok, so now you know Aesop's fable (or at least the Garden State Bariatrics version of it…I must confess I didn't really research it, just going on memory here!)…what does it have to do with weight loss and health…a great deal actually.

Who loses more weight (and more importantly keeps off the weight they lose!)?  The person who goes on a drastic diet and loses 10 lbs in a week (completely unsustainable, by the way) or the the person who actually makes real, structural (and permanent) changes to the way they eat, and as a result loses 1 or 2 lbs each and every week. As an aside I would mention that patients are oftentimes disappointed by losing 1 lb in a week, but remember 1 lb a week for a year is 50 lbs and 2 lbs/week is 100 lbs in a year!  Of course it is the person who makes the permanent changes who will lose the weight and KEEP the weight off.

As I have said to many patients, many times, the surgery GETS the weight off but it is up to you (the patient) to KEEP it off.  How do you do that?  By making real and structural changes to your nutritional habits.  This idea of changing habits is an area of actual research (if you can believe it) and will be the topic of an upcoming newsletter.  Good and successful habits are like the turtle…..slow, steady and unstoppable and ultimately that is what has you win the race!

Let me give you two habits that every bariatric patient should incorporate into their daily lives.  Habit number 1: Always, and I mean always (as in NO EXCEPTIONS), always know the nutritional content of what you are putting into your body.  How do you do that?  Habit number 2:  Always look at (and more importantly know how to read) a nutritional label.  If you don't please ask Marisol or Anna (our nutritionist's) to walk you through it next time you meet with them.

If it is something that doesn't have a nutritional label there are smart phone apps that will tell you the nutritional content of virtually anything.  If you (like me) don't have a smart phone you can buy a book (remember when you bought actual books you could hold in  your hand…Ah!..the good old days!) and the book will give you the nutritional content of virtually any food.  The point is always know the nutritional content of what you put into your body…Knowledge is power.  It is probably one of the most important habits to develop and one that virtually all successful patients have adopted to one degree or another.

In case you weren't aware our very own Marisol Vazquez is continuing her TV career…in Spanish, no less!…the you tube link is here:





From the Gut... by Glynn Fluitt
Mr. Fluitt is a patient, member of the Century Club and graciously contributes his thoughts and insights as a patient, a champion and an advocate for us all!



Virtuous and Vicious.. Day by Day  


I was bad last night. 🙁


I met a vendor after work for fun conversation and some business chat. I had met her and her coworkers at a convention that I was speaking at last summer.


When we got together, she had been in client meetings all day. She was not "famished" or "hungry" … she was STARVING!!!! When she walked in, she asked the hostess that sat her to order some french fries. She hadn't even ordered her drink yet!


I arrived and we ordered our drinks. When the fries came, she instructed me to look away — as she was about to bury her face into the plate and consume the fries in a single gulp.


Of course she didn't, but that's the mood she was in. And I shared the fries.


We ordered a platter of hummus with pita bread and some veggies. Then we ordered a grilled thin crust pizza. All the while we continued to order drinks — mine glasses of champagne interrupted by the occasional diet coke. Hers, champagne interrupted by the occasional white wine or glass of water.


A little bit about my friend. She's a runner. She stands about five foot spit and maybe weighs a buck plus change. She is from the west coast and had been in NYC just since the day before. She got out of her hotel for a 6 am run that morning. I am an ex-morbid that had walked to the train at 7 in the morning and primarily been sitting at a desk all day.


When I got home, my wife had made some popcorn for snacking as we wound down the night. It was not a banner "calorie intake" day!!


I will admit that knowing I was going out that evening, I started the day with an egg-white and turkey flatbread sandwich — the 3-incher at Su

I had a vial of protein mid-day and tried to get my fill of water. Still — the evening was not as appropriate for calorie or carb ingestion.


I guess there are two points here. One, there is social life after weight loss surgery. Two, WLS patients need to be ever-mindful of nutrition and consumption. But guess what? So does everyone else!!


So this morning I woke up and took my vitamins and supplements. I washed it down with my morning diet coke — sorry Dr. Bilof. I'm not a coffee drinker. Full disclosure here 🙂


I thought about the coming day and realized that I wasn't hungry. One of my twitter buddies tweeted that if you eat appropriately during the day and then really wake up hungry, you probably are doing it right. The morning should be the time when your engine is looking for fuel. Of course, she said that in 140 characters or less.


So — I'm not hungry. I guess I won't stop for my egg white sandwich today. But I don't want to NOT have fuel for the day. That will lead to a vending machine frenzy later.


As a result, I've made the decision to stop at probably GNC in Penn Station and pick up a couple of vials of protein to drink through the morning.

There's my fuel for the day, and my body is still burning through last night's carbs.


I'm not a nutritionist, and the nutritionist at Garden State Bariatric and Wellness Center is probably cringing right now as she proofreads this article. However, I've kept my weight off for over 4 years. I'm still wearing 38 inch waist pants, down from a 54. This is what seems to be working for me.


And writing my stories down for you!


Follow me @BariatricDude


And thanks for reading.




Glynn Fluitt


(via Blackberry)






Did you know that adding beans to your diet can help keep your heart healthy?  A recent study found that 1 serving of beans per day can lower your risk of a heart attack.  Half a cup of cooked beans gives you about 8grams of dietary fiber and 6 to 8grams of protein.  Beans are versatile, so it can be added to your diet in various ways.  The recipe below comes from Dry Bean Quarterly, Smart Choice for a Healthy Life newsletter.
 For more information and recipes visit


Indian Spiced Black Bean Burgers

Yields 4 Burgers


    2 cups cooked/canned black beans
    1/2 cup cooked and mashed red skin potatoes
    1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
    1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
    1 teaspoon curry powder
    1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    1/2 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
    1/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs (for coating the burgers)
    2 tablespoons canola oil


    Pulse 2 cups of black beans in a food processor with Greek yogurt, bread crumbs, curry powder, cayenne, kosher salt and pepper until a coarse puree forms.
    Transfer to a bowl and stir in the cooked and mashed red potatoes, the cilantro and the remaining 2 cups of black beans.  
     Fold gently to combine, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to chill for 30 minutes.
     Form mixture into four patties and dredge each in the bread crumbs to coat.
    Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers.  
     Cook burgers in batches until outsides are crisp and lightly browned, turning once, about 5 minutes total.

Each burger is approximately 282 calories with 12g of protein!



Click Here for More Recipes to Enjoy!     

Upcoming Free Informational Seminars

The next Free Informational seminar  at our Millburn office is on Wednesday August 21st starting at 6:30pm.  Dr.Yurcisin leads the discussion on weight loss, your surgical options and "Is 'Bariatric Surgery is Right for Me?  Dr. Bilof leads the Toms River seminar on Thursday August 29th 2013 starting at 5:30pm. Please be sure to invite friends to attend – promise it makes a difference to Pay it Forward! If you cannot make the upcoming seminar, be sure to check out future dates on our website:

Click Here to see Upcoming Dates!


In This Issue From the GutMarisol's Nutritional CornerEnd Quotes

Florham Park Surgery Center COE facility

 GSBWC performs procedures at St. Barnabas Medical Center, an accredited Center.

August  2013 Team Happenings!

Help us Celebrate our August Birthday 'Baby' – Anna – your Registered Dietitian in Toms River Office – August 18th – HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANNA !!!!!

people in arms


1% club  

Help your friends, family and colleagues join the 1% club and permanently cancel their membership in the 99% club.


" Never believe that a few caring people can't change the world. For, indeed, that's all who ever have"   — Margaret Mead   


Pay It Forward 2013
We will adding a new section to our website:
BIZ BUZZ?? (Please Help Us with a Great Name for the New Section on our website dedicated JUST to Patient's business):
 allowing patient's to list their businesses on our site! We know so many up to good things, creating businesses and taking on their dreams and want to give you an opportunity to let others know what you are up to in life!
If you are interested in your business being featured on our website, please email Laurie at: to get started.


Upcoming Dates and Locations of Support Group in Your Area:

  Support Group attendance and participation is an important part of keeping and maintaining your health and weight goals!

Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch, NJ Support Groups on 4th Thursday of every Month. (August 22nd 2013) from 7pm-9pm. Registration required. Call 1.888.724.7123.

Thanks For Trusting Us with Your Health!

End Quotes:  


'Each year, one vicious habit rooted out, in time ought to make the worst man good.' — Benjamin Franklin


'We first make our habits, and then our habits make us.' — John Dryden


"Success is 1% Inspiration, 99% Perspiration" – Thomas Edison


 Yours in Good Health,  
  Michael Bilof, MD
 Basil Yurcisin, MD

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