Thursday, September 21, 2006

Attack of the Chicken Taco

It's been two weeks since my last post, and I'm down a total of 31 pounds. You'll notice my weight loss has slowed a bit. That's because I went three days without losing anything. I had a minor infection of one of my incisions, and my body took its revenge by lowering my metabolism. I had kind of a reverse fever, with a body temp running around 95.3 at one point. Uck. Three days ago, that finally lifted, and I'm losing a pound a day.

My doctor tells me my energy level will continue to "drift" for another week or more as my body fights the weight loss. This means that I often feel like I've been run over by a tank.

The only way to avoid feeling like hell is protein, which has become my drug of choice. The post-op pain is basically gone, and I'm off all the interesting pain meds. Yay!

Trouble is, protein is a challenge, as I indicated last time. There's shakes, but I hate those suckers. Then Tuesday night, I decided to take a go at the baked chicken at the local grocery store. It was WONDERFUL. So I ate as much as I dared, knowing that I need the protein desperately.

The next day my strength level felt almost back to normal. I went to the doctor and got a couple of stitches out that were causing the incision problem, then decided to go to lunch with my husband. My nurse had suggested I might try Mexican food -- refried beans and a tiny amount of chicken. I know, sounds nuts, but hey, I was feeling cocky. I got a chicken taco and carefully picked little tiny bits of chicken out of it. No lettuce or sauce; I knew that would get me. And a couple of bites of refried beans.

Big mistake. Biiiiiiig mistake. I think that damned restaurant slipped me some sugar. I hadn't even finished eating before my chest started hurting. I expected the pain to decrease, but it only got worse.

I got home, and decided to go see my mother, taking her a copy of my new book. I ended up pacing the floor, fighting waves of chest pain. Before I knew what hit me, I was bent over her sink getting rid of the chicken. Disgusting as that was, it ended the pain.

Staggered home and passed out for four hours. During which, obviously, I didn't eat.

So as a result, I'm in a protein deficit. I've got to get my hands on some protein, but the thought of one of those shakes makes me feel faintly green. And obviously, not big on chicken right now.

This will get better. I know that. I have only another couple of weeks, maybe two months on the outside, to endure. Then my pouch will be healed and I'll start on the road to a better version of me, thinner and more healthy.

I just have to get through the next couple of months.


Kimberly Dean said...

Hey Angela,

Just drifted by your blog and saw what was going on in your life. That's a big step to take. Hopefully, the adjustment period will be over soon. Have you tried Atkins strawberry protein shakes? Not the chocolate ones. The grit in those is terrible. The strawberry ones are kinda tasty, though, although they're expensive. Good luck!

Jordan Summers said...

Why in the world would someone suggest Mexican food this early in the game? Seriously, what was she thinking? (shaking head) Glad you're on the mend.

romblogreader said...

Congrats on your progress!

If you're looking for more options re: drinkable protein type shakes, I've found the vanilla Body for Life brand shakes (15g of protein, 20g carb, 7g fat, 190cal, 11oz) are pretty tasty. They manage to avoid that chalky/gritty taste a lot of them have and actually have a somewhat creamy mouth feel, and I bought a couple of cases from Amazon because I haven't found another high protein shake that's as tasty.

Best of luck finding food that agrees with your new stomach, and you've got a whole lot of people out here rooting for you. :)

The Sidhe said...

I'm sorry I don't know much about diet requirements after this surgery, but some great sources for protein:

Fish of any type. Even fish sticks if you can have the batter.

Maybe peanut butter. I know it has sugar in it, but you can buy it without.

I hope you feel better and I'm so sorry you got sick.

Zinnia said...

I think the worst part of weight loss is the fact that your body fights it. It can be very frustrating.

Kris said...

I am glad that you are feeling better, you definitely have a challenge, Good Luck!!!!

Cora Zane said...

Congrats on your progress, Angela! Remember to take baby steps. Try not to let any of the weight loss plateus get to you--especially when you're not feeling well. Hopefully no more bad experiences with Mexican food. Warm, best wishes!

Mojo said...

Just wanted to share with you how I get 20 grams of protein in without the protein shake. I hate protein shakes, they make me sick to my pouch, too. However, I purchased Unflavored Unjury powder and I mix it with a packet of Swiss Miss Fat Free Hot Chocolate. I then add a cup of hot/warm water (but it has to be less than 130degrees or the protein clumps). If you liked hot cocoa before surgery, this is an awesome way to get 20 grams in (plus liquid!). YOu can also use Swiss Miss Diet HOt CHocolate, but the Fat Free version tastes more like the 'real' thing.

Racy Li said...

Hi Angela,

I just wanted to send you a quick comment of support. Be very careful when eating out; everything, (even things that are not sweet) have sugar in them. My father was a chef, and sugar is used in almost all dishes and sauces for "balance."

Something I find yummy and very healthy with tons of protein is edamame, which are essentially boiled salted soybeans. You can usually find them in the frozen food section of the Asian grocery store. All you do is boil the beans in salted water (if you can have salt, just omit it) and drain. Serve room temp or cold (I usually leave them in the fridge when I want some). You take out the pods and eat the beans inside. I know, boiled soybeans doesn't sound like the most yummy thing but in Japan, it's considered a snack food served at bars (instead of peanuts like they do here). They're actually really good and it's all protein.

I have a number of vegan friends so I have tons of super-healthy all protein recipes. Let me know if you need any more!

Anonymous said...

Oh sugar! I feel for you. I went through this 20 years ago and it's a pain in the buttinsky! What a dumb bitch, telling you to try Mexican food so soon post-op! It took me six years before I could tolerate Mexican food! Sheesh!

And fish--well, I still can't tolerate tuna, and it's been 20 YEARS!

Of course, I had a lot of difficulty with my surgery (I was one of those poor patients that "fell" through the cracks," as my doctors put it. So I had more problems than the average person.

After years of trial (trying to eat meat) and error (ejecting anything I ate), I became a vegetarian.

I do dairy, along with legumes for my main sources of protein. Some peanut butter, but you have to watch that stuff. Especially in the beginning stages of post-op, as it balls up like a lump in your esophagus or in the pouch and can be painful.

Why, I have no clue--but take it from someone who has been there, and had to actually be scoped more than once for the peanut butter infractions! LOL Guess I'm lucky they didn't find an elephant stuck to the roof of my tubing! LOL

I can't tolerate the protein shakes, but that doesn't mean you won't be able to tolerate them. It's worth a try.:)

Have you been using your pillow? Even this late post-op, coughing fits can be a pain and holding your pillow against your stomach does help. Why? I dunno, but a really sweet nurse told me that trick and it saved my life.

And yes, I went through the reversal of fortune phase, too! LOL I recall freaking out that I'd actually gained 2 lbs. How could I gain weight, I asked the drs., when all I could keep down was water and baby food? They kept me on IV drip because I dehydrated. And they said that the non-fever combined with the fluids from the IV caused my weight gain. Oh yeah, I was seriously peeved. LOL

You know, if you ever need to ask a question, even an embarrassing one, email me and I'll do my best to answer it. I've done just about every stupid thing there is (none too bright, I guess--lol) and maybe I can help you avoid the pitfalls.

Oh, one more thing–DO NOT ACCIDENTLY SWALLOW YOUR GUM! In fact, gum--what's gum? Make it your motto...just in case. :D

Alyssa said...


I'm not crazy over protien shakes either, but I use vanilla, and blend it with milk, rather than water, and frozen strawberries, rather than ice. I add a spoonful of splenda and it'also s not too bad (given you can consume all those ingredients...I don't know!) I hope you feel better soon! Alyssa Brooks

ladyhawkmb said...

You are very brave to undergo something that dangerous. I am not MO but my doctor gave me the heads up that I was borderline diabetic and I have so far lost 25 pounds. I too have hit a plateau and I know if I don't lose some weight soon I will start back up. I hate protein shakes as well, so I mix lo fat yoghurt with frozen strawberries and lactose free milk for breakfast. Dinner is meat and salad. I leave the carbs for lunch. I hope you get back on your feet again and everything works out.

Angela Knight said...

Thank you, everyone, for your kind words and encouragement!

Angela Knight

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Angela Knight said...

Do NOT use my site to spam for pharmacy sites. That is not what it's for, and I deeply resent it. Bloody spammers are weasels. It's one thing to share something that's worked for you personally, but I am not a shill for your snake oil website. If you leave spam, I will delete it.

Angela Knight