WLS Center E-Newsletter

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Hosted by Barbara Thompson
Author of:
Weight Loss Surgery:
Finding the Thin Person Hiding Inside You.

Issue #97

July 15, 2006

Barbara Thompson
The Voice of Obesity

Hello Everyone,
I love my mother dearly, but I well remember how she would chastise me about my eating.  At meal times, she made me clean my plate, yet when I ate outside of meals, she yelled.  I was getting mixed signals that I never understood.  The distinction is clear to me now, but as a kid I was confused, hurt and embarrassed.

What messages do we send to those that we love about eating, now that we are on the road to success?  The article that follows may surprise you.

In This Issue


* Are You a Food and Diet Nag?
* Blood Donation
* Recipe: Salmon Croquettes
* Success Story: Jill Frondorf
* Are you where you want to be?

Research Article:  
  Are You a Food and Diet Nag?

One look at most of our holiday family photos will convince us what many scientific studies have shown. Obesity is hereditary. It has a definite genetic component. We see the tendency toward obesity in our parents, aunts and uncles and often in our children.

We may see that same obesity component in our spouses. After all, we have shared a lifestyle for many years.  And that lifestyle did not take its toll only on us.

We know how good we feel having lost weight and we want that same advantage for those that we love.  But how do we help our family members take steps toward a healthy lifestyle?  Sometimes, we resort to nagging.  We may not realize what we are doing, but the object of our “wisdom” perceives it as nagging. 

Here is an article from WebMD that may help you to more constructively express yourself:

Blood Donation

Hi, Barbara,
I am writing because I recently learned something that I don't remember hearing before, or reading anywhere. I am 2 1/2 years post-surgery and have lost 100 pounds..

I was a blood donor before surgery, although I had stopped because they had a hard time finding a vein. About a year ago, I started donating again. I even gave "double red" cells once, a process that allows them to "harvest" twice the amount of red blood cells while giving you back your own plasma plus some saline solution.

This year, when I arrived to donate blood in April, my iron level was too low to donate either double-reds or whole blood. I went back in two weeks, and it was just high enough to donate whole blood, but not high enough to donate double-reds.

About a week later, I went to my general physician for my annual check-up for my diabetes and high-blood pressure. After the exam and lab tests, the lab tech brought the results of some of the blood tests, and told the nurse that I was anemic. I told her that I had just given blood the week before, and then about being turned down at the blood bank in April because my iron levels were too low. She gave me this wide-eyed look, and said that I should only be giving blood twice a year at the most (not 4 times like they say you can) since my gastric bypass surgery. Because your system cannot absorb nutrients as before, post-surgery patients have a tendency to be anemic. The doctor came out about then, and said that it was not a good idea to donate blood.  

By the way, I still take my daily multi-vitamin that includes 18 mg iron as recommended by my surgeon.

Maybe I missed the speech from my surgeon about blood donation, but I have done some research now, and can't find anything about this issue for post-bariatric surgery patients. I just wanted to pass this along to save anyone else from having a problem.

Thanks for all your great information! Keep those newsletters coming.

Raejean Furne

Hi Raejean,
I didn’t get a blood donation lecture either, but I was told that those having gastric bypass surgery are at risk of anemia following surgery. This is because; one of the places that iron is absorbed in the body is the first part of the small intestines which is bypassed in roux en-Y patients.  Also the food that you eat that contains iron comes in contact with far less gastric acid, so the iron that is converted to the more absorbable ferric iron is also reduced. Anemia is a very real problem. Lap band patients don’t have these problems.

I take a prescription iron and my blood level is at the minimum which is 12.Were I not taking iron medication, I could give blood.  But since I am, the blood bank will not accept my donation.  They explained that to take blood from me would be undoing what the medication is accomplishing. 

When you have your check-up appointments, you always need to have your iron levels checked (as well as your B-12 levels).  Your regular PCP might not know to look for low iron, so alert him or her that it might be a problem. Usually adding an iron supplement or prescription iron will solve the problem.

Salmon Croquettes

Salmon Croquettes

15 ounces of salmon from a pouch
2 eggs, beaten (or egg beaters)
1/2 cup flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup buttermilk
Pepper to taste

Drain salmon. Add eggs, flour and pepper. Add soda to buttermilk, and then add the mixture to salmon. Divide into 4 patties and cook in a skillet sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

Makes 4 servings.  Each serving:
229 calories, 13 grams of carbohydrates, 27 grams of protein

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

Success Story:
  Jill Frondorf

I want to offer a special thanks to Jill Frondorf. Here is her story:

Hi Barbara:
My name is Jill. I'm 49 years old and I had Lap-Band surgery on January 3, 2003. I have reached my goal and wanted to share my story with you and your readers.

When I went for my first seminar to learn about the surgery I weighed 338 pounds.  I sat there with my mother and we listened as the doctor explained about the gastric bypass surgery and the Lap-Band surgery. I liked the sound of the Band surgery, and left the seminar with hope in my heart that I would finally find something to help me lose this weight.  My hopes were dashed when I got my first rejection letter from my insurance company. I was determined not to let it go so I wrote the CEO of Human Resources for our company. I was humble, honest and very forthright about my life as an obese person.  My persistence paid off and I got my acceptance letter during the Thanksgiving Holiday in 2002. Talk about giving thanks - I did!  I called the doctor and we scheduled surgery. I weighed 341 pounds

I had my surgery, followed the directions from the doctors and two years later was scheduling my tummy tuck and a few months after that I scheduled my breast reduction. All in all I have lost 146 pounds. I went from a size 26/28 in pants to a size 14 and from an almost 4x top to a size Large.

Prior to surgery I had problems attending my son's school events. I quit night school because I could no longer fit in the desk and they had to get a larger table for me to sit. I also suffered the embarrassment of having to order a new office chair about twice a year because of my weight. Not to mention the physical ailments associated with obesity.  I had joint pain, incontinence, and sleep issues, to name a few.

Now I get up every morning with a bounce in my step and a big smile on my face because I feel so much better and look so much better. This surgery has truly been a blessing in my life.

Just last night I returned to the very same seminar that I had attended a little over 3 years earlier but I was not there as part of the audience. I was there to discuss my surgery with prospective weight loss surgery candidates.  I was introduced by my surgeon as one of his most successful Band patients and that I was there to answer any questions they might have. I told my story and answered questions. It was a good feeling to know that I am helping people achieve what I was fortunate enough to achieve. Last night I came full circle and I am happy.

Jill Frondorf


Congratulations Jill

You achieved your goal. Be proud and tell the world.

If you have a story to share, are at least 1 year post-op and have before and after  pictures, please send them to me at Barbara@wlscenter.com so that I can include them in a future issue.

Are You Where You Want to Be?

If you’re not happy with your weight loss, then join the
Back on Track with Barbara Internet Mentoring Program.

Would you like results like this?
“I am loving this Back on Track With Barbara Program. It really does keep me on track.  I like having a new lesson each week, and practicing each of the new steps in the lessons. I know I need constant encouragement to keep the grazing under control. The low glycemic foods are a wonderful help. Let's hear it for Barbara! I'm so glad she is doing this work for us. This is a real need she is filling.”

New Jersey

For more information or to join the Program,
go to http://www.BackOnTrackWithBarbara.com

Attention Nurses

If you are a nurse and would like for me to speak on positive patient outcomes, patient satisfaction, or obesity sensitivity for your State Nurses Association, please have the conference planner for your State Association contact me. I have a corporate sponsor who will pay my fee and expenses so it is free for your Association. I also speak for many hospitals on the same topics. 

Contact me at Barbara@WLScenter.com or 412-851-4195.

Permission to Reprint

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

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