Making This Labor Day a Happy and Healthy One

September 1, 2014

Summer holidays such as Labor Day give us a very welcome break from a busy summer. These are the times that we can spend with our families and friends, celebrating the last few weeks of decidedly warm weather. Holidays can also be a very stressful time for those that have undergone bariatric surgery, since there is a tendency to overeat, drink a little too much and generally peel away from the strict diet that we may have been adhering to for a long time. Holidays do not have to cause us angst, especially if we prepare for them a couple days in advance. So, starting this weekend, go ahead and look forward to Labor Day by mapping out a plan for how you will indulge (just a bit), yet largely stick to your post-bariatric surgery plan.

Remember that skipping breakfast or lunch to make up for an expected splurge is not a good idea. It may not only slow your progress toward your ultimate weight-loss goals but it can also make you physically sick. You certainly don’t want to be feeling the effects of an overindulgence when you should be enjoying the company around you. To that point, you should eat normal sized meals during the day. Within about an hour or two of going to your Labor Day event, make a point of drinking a tall glass of water. This will not only hydrate you for the hours you’ll be spending outside, but it will also allow you to fill up your stomach just a little bit before the temptation of a large meal.

Next, if you feel comfortable, you may even wish to ask the host about the menu. Doing so will allow you to properly plan your meal and ensure that you can not only enjoy the spread, but also limit yourself to just a few items that you can truly enjoy without feeling guilty. Even if you don’t feel comfortable asking about the menu in advance, you can always make assumptions about what will be available. Doing so will allow you to mentally portion your meal beforehand and be ready – you can always modify the plan based on what’s laid out in front of you.

If you happen to be attending your holiday meal with someone else who has undergone bariatric surgery or with someone who understands your dietary limitations, even better. Make sure you speak to them beforehand and, if possible, you can watch out for each other and you will not feel alone

The bottom line is that holidays such as Labor Day should not be a source of frustration or hopelessness. Rather, they should be times where we understand that we can indulge – just a bit. They are also times where we test ourselves can strengthen our willpower to be prepared for true and unexpected temptation down the road. We hope you have a very safe and enjoyable Labor Day weekend and as always feel free to lean on us for any advice that we may be able to offer about your diet plan.

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Advanced Surgical Associates is one of the first exclusively surgical groups practicing in Union County New Jersey. And that is just the first of many firsts for ASA. For over 40 years, we have pioneered breakthrough surgical patient care in North Jersey in both general and weight loss surgery. ASA also offers gastric bypass, gastric sleeve and gastric banding to those suffering from obesity in New Jersey.
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