WLS Center E-Newsletter
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Weight Loss Surgery:
Finding the Thin Person Hiding Inside You.
I hope you are enjoying your summer and are taking some time for
yourself. Summer is a wonderful time of the year. It is a time to have
fun and relax. If you had surgery, then it is a time to do all of those
things that you either haven’t been able to do for a long time or
perhaps have never been able to do. Let this be the time to try a new
activity. Add something special to your life. You will find your life
enriched and that’s definitely a good thing!
In This Issue
* Osteoporosis: Don’t Gamble with Your Bones
* Summertime When the Livin’ Is Easy
* Research Article: Cut to Fit
* See You in Cincinnati
* Wanted: Hospital Stories
* Recipe: Salsa Soup
Success Story: Hazel Shadduck
Don’t Gamble with
I want to thank Edie Payleitner for
allowing me to answer her email in this newsletter. This is a
very important matter that we all can benefit from.
In 1998 I weighed 245 pounds and had my first bone density test
which was normal. This week I went in and had another one done.
My gastric bypass surgery was in May of 2002 and I've lost over
100 pounds. My test showed that I had definite bone loss, not
osteoporosis but osteopenia. I'm 53 years old and osteoporosis
does not run in my family. Do you think this is related to the
drastic weight loss and bypass surgery? I take 3 Viactiv for my
calcium and multi-vitamins daily and am moderately physically
active. I also drink 1 cup of milk per day.
Bone loss should be of great concern to any of us who have had
gastric bypass surgery, so it is good that you are asking. You
need to be ensuring that you are getting in between 1200 and
1500 mg of calcium daily to avoid bone loss.
Food is one source of calcium. Milk will
provide you with about 285 mg of calcium, which is about 1/7th
of the calcium you need. A better source is yogurt. It gives
you 450 mg in a cup. But it is difficult to consume enough
calcium through food considering that we cannot eat huge amounts
and we do not want to gain weight. The best bet is to take a
It is excellent that you had a bone scan.
That is the only measure of how healthy your bones are. I have
had people comment to me that they know they are getting enough
calcium because they have had their blood checked. That test
only tells you how much calcium you are leaching from your
bones, not the thickness or health of your bones.
Your last bone density was when you were
100 pounds heavier. Nature is a wonderful provider. It
provides us with denser bones so that when we are morbidly
obese, our bones are able to hold our weight; therefore we tend
to have thicker bones. As we lose weight, our bones naturally
become thinner and osteoporosis becomes more of a concern and we
need to work at keeping our bone density. One of the best ways
to help preserve bone density is to take a calcium supplement,
but all calcium supplements are not created equal.
You have been taking a calcium carbonate
supplement which requires acid in order to be absorbed. Since
we have such a small pouch with very little gastric acid, the
calcium carbonate which you have been taking in all likelihood
has not been getting absorbed like it should.
The best forms of calcium to take are
calcium citrate and calcium microcrystalline hydroxyapatite
concentrate (MCHC). These forms are optimally absorbed on an
empty stomach and do not require gastric acid. You also need
calcium that will be absorbed easily. A big hard pill, even if
it is the right kind of calcium may pass into your large
intestines without your getting any calcium at all.
The Calcium that I market is perfect for
anyone, but especially good for those of us who have had gastric
bypass surgery. It is powdered and you mix it with water and
drink it. It is in a citrus base so it is ready to be absorbed
before you even drink it. Because it’s powdered, there is no
hard pill to break down.
We tend to think that our bones are inert
or dead material, but they are not. Bone tissue is living and
growing material that reacts to what we eat and how well we
absorb what we eat. It is wonderful that you are concerned about
the health of your bones. You do not want to end up later in
life thin, but with very brittle bones.
As a special
through Aug. 14th, SHIPPING on all of our
popular powdered vitamins,
including our calcium, will be FREE.
Please click the banner
below for more information and to order.
Summertime When the Livin’ Is
With the weather so nice, take advantage of
getting outdoors and doing some activity that you aren’t able to
do once it turns cold. Be creative. Try a brisk walk, or
bicycling. How about renting a canoe? Go to a local nature
center and take a hike. Doesn’t that sound great? Did you play
badminton when you were young? How about trying it again? Try
fishing or get down in the dirt and try gardening.
Challenge yourself to try one new activity
this month and let me know about it. Email me and share it
so I can include it in the newsletter. It might inspire
others to do something they never thought of!
Reach me at
Cut to Fit
Cook, Glenn. “Cut to Fit,” American School
Board Journal, Aug. 2005, Vol 192, Issue 8, p. 16.
We realize that obesity is genetic. Just
take a look around at the family reunion picnic you’re attending
this summer. No doubt you can point to your Mother, Father, Aunt,
or Grandparent to see where your obesity challenges come from.
But the gene line doesn’t stop with us. We can pass the obesity
gene onto our children as well. And many of us have concerns that
our children are going down the same path that we are.
For those of us who have had surgery, we
understand the value of exercise. Yet with the start of the school
year approaching, how much exercise will your child be getting in
school? This article examines the hours of physical education our
children are getting. The National Association for Sports and
Physical Education recommends that elementary schools offer 150
minutes per week and that secondary schools provide 220 minutes of
weekly instruction, but only 7 to 8% of schools meet those
It would seem that physical education
programs would be expanding faster than students’ waistlines, but
the opposite is true. Instead of seeing physical education as a
starting point for lifelong wellness, some are questioning its
Those schools that are progressive are
emphasizing individual wellness activities rather than competitive
team sports. How does your school measure up?
Wanted: Hospital Stories
Would you be willing to share an example of
wonderful and compassionate care that you received from a nurse
while you were a patient in the hospital? This does not have to
be a hospital stay when you had gastric bypass surgery. It can
be any hospital stay, as long as you were morbidly obese at the
time. It needs to be a specific story and not just that you
received great care. What did someone do that made the care
memorable to you?
I will be speaking to State Nurses
Associations about the care of morbidly obese patients and I
have some stories of bad nursing. But I would love to say to
them, “Here are some stories of wonderful care.” A story about a
nurse who sat with you and held your hand, or the importance of
being touched and how someone did that, or that someone walked
with you or encouraged you, or looked you in the eye like a real
person and explained things to you would be great. Please
include your phone number so I can call and talk to you if I
need more information. And if you have before and after
pictures, that would be even better!
Please send your stories to me at
This is a great recipe for those first days when you are on
pureed food. After my surgery, I developed such a taste for spicy
food. Be sure to use mild salsa when you are newly post-op. Try
this carefully to be sure that you can tolerate the acidity. Later
in your journey, enjoy this as a low fat snack garnished with
chopped cucumber. This is a great summer soup.
1 1/3 cup broth
2/3 cup salsa
2/3 cup plain yogurt
Blend in a blender. Serve cold.
Makes 2 servings. Each serving:
If you have a recipe that you would like
to share in future issues of this
newsletter, please send it to me at
I want to offer a special thanks to Hazel
Shadduck of Elmira, NY. Here is her story:
I first wrote you in October 2003, which would have been some 3
months post-op, with complaints that my “get up and go had got up
and left” and you so wisely counseled that there might be several
reasons for this - one being age (50 then) and you encouraged me
with “this too shall pass”…… and it certainly did.
I just completed my first 15 K (9.3 miles) race
– the Utica Boilermaker – in one hour, forty minutes!! Two years and
110 pounds ago, I never would have imagined this possible. After
all, my knees ached, I was out of breath climbing a set of stairs
and suffered with a myriad of other physical complaints. I started
running one year ago and ran my first 5 K in Atlanta, GA in May, the
Race for the Cure. My second and third 5 K races in my hometown of
Elmira, NY, I placed 1st in my age group. One of the
races was a very special race in memory of a dear friend and
colleague. In another local 5 K I placed 2nd in my age
group. I want to shout my story from the roof tops or at least wear
it on my running shirt! I just registered for the Disney
Half-Marathon in January – WOW!!!!!!
I have been so blessed! First and foremost I
thank God for His blessings. I thank my precious husband of 34 years
for his loving support; my dear, sweet Dr. Douglas McKane for giving
me my life back; and you, Barbara, for your many, many words of
wisdom, for sharing your journey, for your newsletter and for my
other bible, your book Weight Loss Surgery; Finding the Thin
Person Hiding inside You.
Barbara, when I’m asked to be a support person
for someone contemplating this surgery, I offer the following advice:
- Follow your physician’s orders to the letter
- Read your book as a guide
- I strongly remind the person that this
surgery is merely a tool in a very long journey
As for my food journey, for the first time in
my life I feel I’m in complete control. I still eat protein first,
vegetables next, and then fruit. l choose not to eat refined
sugars. I have not done so since surgery and have never dumped. I
choose not to eat pasta and most white flour products and still
choose not to drink caffeinated or carbonated beverages.
When speaking in local support groups I always
end with my personal mission statement, “There is nothing, nothing
that tastes as good as thin feels.”
Have a great day!
Hazel C. Shadduck
I love good news. If you have good news, a
success story to share, or inspiration,
please send it to me at
Barbara@WLScenter.com so that I can
include it in future issues.
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from Barbara Thompson’s free e-newsletter featuring helpful
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weight loss surgery.
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