My Doc has a Spiffy New Office!

I'll repeat this on, but I'm guessing my bariatric surgeon, Dr. Michael Baptista, is getting more and more successful. He's moved from his partnership with another doctor and into his own spiffy new office MUCH more conveniently located for me, in Arlington right off 9A and Monument in the Brooks Rehab Building.

Now, I'm not saying his former partner was a bad doctor-- not with that many awards-- but I didn't like the other doctor and that's the honest truth. I'm allowed my opinions, and my two experiences with the former partner were unpleasant.

Now I feel much freer to help Dr. Baptista with his newer patients! I'm pleased to say Dr. Baptista asked me to start attending the monthly support group so I can provide cheerfulness and inspiration to a group that has recently begun to focus on negativity in his opinion. One subject he mentioned specifically I could help with was the low carb diet. Many have difficulty in going beyond what's on the face of low-carb living and consider it bland and without joy.

Do you think I can change that? Yeah, I can. Especially since it's official-- I lost another 7 lbs, and I'm now within 10 lbs of One-der-land! I can do it!

Now the question to ponder is-- what issue with low carb life do people have the most trouble with? I found it easy, so I have no clue where to begin. I need opinions, here!


Band Groupie said…'ve always been inspiring others so it's great you'll get to do this directly! Now write that cookbook!

When I did Atkins I had a problem with eliminating some of the high sugar fruits like bananas and grapes. And probably even harder were the starches (I live with Mr. Potato Head).
Anonymous said…
I love your recipes they have keep me alive all these months. I cannot wait to make the Kale and rice dish when I get home. I agree with BG write a cook book and I will be one of you testers can't wait. Congratulations job well done!!! You know who I am. Love imaluckydog
Anonymous said…
I forgot about potatoes! How could I ever give up a giant, fully-loaded baked potato? Or cheesy potato soup? Mashed potatoes smothered in gravy with a heaping side of buttered corn?

I'm determined to lose at least 50lbs. this year, but I'm struggling. I really love the idea of you writing a cookbook--that would be awesome! I'd buy. :)
Lena Austin said…
Thanks, y'all. I think I may end up writing that cookbook. Something I never thought I'd do.

I'm a fiction writer! LOL!
Girl Bandit said…
Hi lena...I have done many low carb diets and once I get throught the first week I feel great. The thing I find hardest is giving up the good carbs like fruit or oats. I really believe that no one group should be ignored when trying to lose weight. I have been banded for 2 months and do try now to include some low Gi carbs occasionally like sweet potato or muesli. I am finding that it does not hinder my weight loss. But i do try to avoid useless carbs like ice cream, lollies, crackers and white bread. i think a low carb diet has a place. If you would like to ask me any more quaestions please feel free....I lost 30kg (66lbs) on a low carb high exercise program and also 26.4 lbs on another low card diet called 'Bodytrim'. good luck with your talk
Lena Austin said…
An excellent point. While I myself have found lovely substitutes for potatoes and rice, I do occasionally indulge in fruit. A few slices of banana, a handful of grapes, or half a peach won't harm anything. It's when you do it every day or go over carb counts consistently that you harm yourself. I'm trying to reserve my occasional naughtiness for holidays and birthdays.
Gen said…
Hi Lena - I found you over on BG's blog. I am definitely one of those "negative on low carb" people. So maybe my perspective will help.

I have done Atkins, Protein Power, South Beach, Carbohydrate Addicts, and probably a few other low carb diets I am not remembering right now - multiple times.

For me, dieting has been a very bad thing in general. Going on these restrictive food plans that have absolute Yes and No foods work initially, but I have always gained back the weight - and then some. I don't think these diets are sustainable for the long term, and are actually dangerous and counter-productive for yo-yo dieters like me. (And lets face it, the majority of bandsters were previously o-yo dieters).

I have lost 46 pounds in 5 months so far with the band, and the only time I gained weight with the band was when I put myself on a low carb diet for a short while - then proceeded to binge on carbs once I was "off" the diet! Otherwise, I have lost consistently eating pretty much whatever I want.

I have given up most breads and junky carbs. But I eat fruit, oatmeal, and a few crackers every day. I eat a small amount of pasta or potatoes every once in a while. I eat protein bars that have some sugar. But since I am eating less of everything, I lose no matter what I eat. The key for me has been NOT dieting, and NOT eliminating any one food group.

I also have a very negative view of low carb diets because I became very depressed while doing Atkins. There is no question that carbs produce serotonin, and a lack of carbs causes serotonin to drop - resulting in depression for many people. Just today I was reading in "Shape" magazine the following:

"According to a recent report in the Archives of Internal Medicine, people who have stuck to a lowfat diet for a year not only lost as much as those on a restricted carb plan, they also felt happier. Dieters who steered clear of carbs saw no such improvement. One explanation: 'Too much fat and protein may reduce your levels of the mood booster serotonin, leaving you feeling depressed.'"

Finally, the last time I did a low carb diet for several weeks I ended up in the ER with a kidney stone. Both the ER doc and the urologist told me the low carb diet contributed to, or directly caused, the kidney stone. I have not done a low carb diet for any significant amount of time since then (8 years), and I have never experienced another kidney stone.

For me, the band is all about leaving the dieting mentality behind. This is impossible to do when there is an entire universe of "bad" foods and eating these "bad" foods is by definition a failure to adhere to a low carb plan. I am done being a failure, feeling like a failure, and constantly dieting.

So I think it is great that some people can do low carb with little difficulty, with little change to their moods, and without new health problems (like kidney stones). But I would be very angry if my surgeon's office prescribed a low carb diet as the only or "right" way to work the band.

As it is, my surgeon's office says the opposite (thankfully) - do not eliminate entire groups of foods. Eat protein, then veggies/fruits, then carbs. Do not think of this as a diet.

Hope this explains some of the anti-carb sentiment. Good luck with your cookbook!

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