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WLS Center

September 16, 2003 Issue


WLS E-Newsletter
A FREE publication by
Issue # 32, Sept. 16th 2003
Circulation: 8,902


From the Desk of Barbara Thompson
Author of "Weight Loss Surgery, Finding the Thin Person Hiding Inside You"

** In this Issue **

* Adhesions: Request for Information
* Research Article: The Skinny on Metabolism
* It’s the Little Things
* Recipe: Protein Pudding
* How Do You Maintain Your Weight Loss?
* Success Story: Deanna McCall
* Spreading the Word Reno, Durham and Waterloo


Dear Subscriber,

I can’t believe it. I bought yet another piece of exercise equipment. I am such a sucker for that stuff!!! I have had more pieces of equipment than Gold’s Gym!! But this time I am going to use it. I promise. I am still going to Curves, but I do like to have equipment in my house. After all, what if I get the urge to exercise in the middle of the night? What would I do? It would be a missed opportunity to shed some pounds, heaven forbid! With all of this exercise, metabolism has been on my mind lately. I hope you enjoy the article on metabolism that follows.

** Adhesions: Request for Information **

If you are 2 or more years post-op and have had problems from adhesions from your surgery, please email me the details at I have had a reader request that I do an article on this so I would like to hear from any of you who might have had problems with this.

** Research Article: The Skinny on Metabolism **

Why oh why oh why do I have to exercise? That was always my lament. But I knew it was important, I just didn’t understand how important it is. Here is how my thinking went, and just see if this sounds like your thinking?

I would get on an exercise machine, exercise for 20 minutes and see that I had used up maybe 180 calories. Why was I going through all that effort for 180 calories? Then I would look at what I would typically eat and figure out what equals 180 calories. A bowel of cereal with milk equals about 180 calories. “I know,” I thought, “I’ll just skip breakfast and it will be the same.” This way I could skip the effort. Ehhhhh (This is the sound of the huge game show buzzer in the sky indicating that’s a wrong answer).

The reason you exercise is not for the calories that you burn while you are doing it. It is to rev up your metabolism so that you will burn calories at a higher rate while you are resting. If you exercise at a rate that really raises your heart rate, you will boost your metabolism during the exercise period by as much as 20% to 30%. But your metabolism does not immediately go down when you stop exercising. It takes several hours for your metabolism to go down so you continuing burning calories at a higher metabolic rate.

The important thing is to exercise hard enough to get your heart rate up to a fat burning level. I hear from many of you who tell me that you are exercising, and your form of exercise is walking. Walking is wonderful to start with. But as soon as your doctor advises you that you can do something more strenuous, then do it!! You need a form of exercise that will get your heart rate up to a "fat burning" level and keep it there for a minimum of twenty minutes.

There are many of you who have stopped losing weight and are not happy with your total weight loss from your weight loss surgery. Your window of opportunity has closed, but you still have several pounds to lose. If you are stalled, this is truly the best technique to use:

1) Determine how many calories you may eat daily to maintain your current weight. You can do this in a number of ways. Ideally you can have your metabolism gauged and your calorie level determined through a simple 10-minute breathing test. Some dieticians and bariatric practices have this device. One company that makes the device is Korr. Check with your surgeon, a dietician or sometimes a local gym will have them

2) Compute your own metabolism. This is not terribly accurate, but will give you a ball park figure. Multiply your bodyweight by 13. This resulting number is the number of calories that you can eat and not gain weight. If you want to lose weight, reduce your calories by 250 calories per day and burn an extra 250 calories per day with a "fat burning" exercise. You will lose 1 pound per week.


To find out more about exercise and how it impacts your success during your weight loss surgery journey, read the 4 Rules of Success section in my book “Weight Loss Surgery; Finding the Thin Person Hiding Inside You.” If you do not have your copy of my book what are you waiting for? Many surgeons all across the country will not allow their patients to have the surgery unless they have read my book. Order your copy at You will love it!!

** It’s the Little Things **

The following account reminded me that it is the little things about this surgery that make it worthwhile. These little things sneak up on you without your realizing them, and suddenly your life is so much better. Thank you, Martha, for sharing your account with us:


I love getting the newsletter from you. It keeps me grounded as to where I was before my surgery. I currently weigh 185 pounds; whereas before my surgery my weight was 325 pounds. I wish I could lose the extra 10 pounds, but as you know, it is probably loose skin. I am in a size 14 now and I haven’t been that size since I was in the 6th grade.

I wanted to share something funny with you. When I was in high school, I was in all types of sports. At the peak of my physical ability, I wore a size 18, was the captain of my basketball team and ran all the time. I am even thinner now.

One day recently when it was raining, I took my girls to a store. We jumped out of the car, and I shouted, “I’ll race ya.” We started running to the door of the shop, and I won! The girls just looked at me like I had won the Boston Marathon. I looked at them and said, “What?” They said, “Mom, we have never seen you run before. That is sooo cool that you can run now.” It totally floored me.

I just thank God every day that I had this surgery.

Have a great day,

** Recipe: Protein Pudding **

If you are trying to get in protein and are newly post op, I know what a challenge that is. You may want to try the following:

Protein Pudding

Mix 1 cup of Cool Whip Free, and 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder (I like the Atkins vanilla protein shake)

Add a little Crystal Light until the “pudding” is the consistency that you like.


If you have a recipe that you would like to share in future issues of this newsletter, please send it to me at

** How Do You Maintain Your Weight Loss? **

Are you 2 or more years post-op? If so, I need to know what your secret is for maintaining your weight. I will be using your story to include in a mini e-book on the secrets of success of weight loss surgery patients. You must write at least 1 full page. Anything less than 1 page will not be useable. I need to know how you eat, what you do for exercise, and any tips that you have to offer. This will be a tremendous help to people who are having the common problem of weight gain following surgery, or are struggling to maintain their weight loss.

Send your stories to

** Success Story: Deanna McCall **

I want to offer a special thanks to Deanna McCall of Delaware for sharing her story. Deanna is just at the beginning of her journey, but has some important insights to share. Here is her story:


I would like to thank you for your newsletter.  It helps keep me focused and it helps me keep my family educated.  I had open Roux En-Y surgery on April 4, 2003 and I have lost 60 pounds in 3 months.  The weight loss is very important to me but the way I have been able to change my life is even more important. 

I was always athletic growing up and I still like to play slow pitch softball.  The problem with my weight was that it stopped me from being active.  Yes, I played softball but I could only run one base at a time, I could only play first or second base and I could barely get my glove down to the ground.  After the game, getting out of my car was a struggle because my knees hurt so badly. 

My frustration increased as our children got older and became more active.  I was having trouble walking to the football games or climbing the bleachers or getting into our small boat.  Swimming was fun but it was always followed by a snack.

In January of 2003, I went to my family doctor and told him that I had had enough and that I was willing to do anything that he told me to do to lose 100 pounds before I turned 40 years old.  He put me on Xenical and I lost 10 pounds. in a week.  I thought maybe this would work but he told me that to lose 100 pounds would take a drastic measure. We began talking about weight loss surgery. 

I found out that my insurance would cover it as long as I had other medical issues and clearance from a cardiologist, psychologist and pulmonologist.  I was suffering from irritable bowel syndrome, acid reflux, pain in both feet and knees, and sleep apnea.

After seeing a cardiologist and pulmonologist, I met with a local surgeon.  She is wonderful and her staff treats me like family.  She knew how determined I was and she met with my husband and myself 3 times before deciding to do the surgery. At that time by BMI was 41 and my body fat percentage was 49.  I was morbidly obese and had been for the last 5 years since the birth of our third child.  Serious medical problems were right around the corner.

Having the RNY surgery has changed my life for the better so quickly and to such a degree that I can't image where I would be if I hadn't done it.  I exercise 3 times a week and I now walk 2.5 miles 4 times per week without any knee pain!!!!

One of the funniest experiences with this metamorphosis is that people actually thought I would not be as happy as I used to be.  They actually believed the myth of the JOLLY OLD FAT PERSON.

One of the hardest experiences is when I am faced with someone who feels that I took the easy way out and that I have no will power.  Those words really hurt when you know how unhappy you were as an obese person.  I did try a lot of diets and I did lose weight but then I gained it back with baggage.

Sorry to have run so long but I just wanted to share some things that I have been thinking because I enjoy reading others' stories as well.

Thanks again for this service!!! 

Deanna McCall


I love good news.  If you have good news, a success story to share, or inspiration, please send it to me at so that I can include it in future issues.

** Permission to Reprint **

You may reprint any items from this newsletter in your own print or electronic newsletter. But please include the following paragraph:

Reprinted from Barbara Thompson’s free e-newsletter featuring helpful information and research material to help patients succeed following weight loss surgery. Subscribe at



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