The Great Fiber Experiment

I needed to pull myself out of a funk before I could focus on something specific for July.  It took a couple of days for me to decide I would do just one thing: focus on fiber.

Starting 4 July, I set a goal to get 20-25 grams of fiber each day.  It’s the only thing I was doing in the beginning that I’m was not doing well now.

I dunno what happened exactly…I do know when I ran out of my fiber gummies I did not rush out to buy more.  I do not have a good explanation other than I was solidly on solid food and much prefer to eat fiber.

When I was on liquids and purees, it was fully obvious fiber supplements were necessary so I’d pop a gummie or two with every ‘meal’ to help avoid constipation.  After I stopped taking pain meds, I was…NEVER…constipated.  But, somewhere in the transition to whole food I also stopped really looking on how many grams of fiber I was getting daily and supplementing when necessary.  Especially in June, I felt like I did little more than battle constipation.

*Shrugs*

There is a universal truth about the human body: It is only going to go along for so long without adequate fiber before becoming constipated.  It’s not a weight loss surgery thing.  It’s a body mechanics thing.

Why is fiber even important?

Aside from the colon and heart health aspect, fiber also helps post weight loss surgery bodies manage all the toxins which are released as our fat stores dwindle (Read more about body fat and toxin storage and elimination here).

If the toxins are not excreted as waste, they can actually build back up in the remaining fat and slow weight loss.  (Read more about that process here.)

However, now that we’ve had weight loss surgery fiber and the process of elimination becomes even more important.  The rate at which we lose fat means our bodies are processing a heavy toxic load.  If we’re not getting enough fiber, if we’re not having a good bowel movement at least daily; we’re frustrating the whole process of having weight loss surgery in the first place.

So how did The Great Fiber Experiment go?

I may have started the month unfunkifying myself and unfortuantely the need to do so followed me around like the proverbial black cloud of doom.

In July I…

  • Found out my surgeon is being investigated for insurance fraud
  • Which lead me to question my own bills where I easily found what had better be fraud
  • Because if he actually removed part of my colon then he’s also going be investigated for malpractice but even if he didn’t there’s a good chance I have a malpractice case anyway
  • Disputed all possible charges and started a fraud case with my insurance company
  • Searched for a malpractice attorney (still looking if you know a good one in Las Vegas)
  • Had an incident with not being able to swallow and spent a week of testing and not eating solids.  Results are inconclusive thus far
  • Found out my multivitamins were trying to kill me.  Nope, I’m not kidding.  Apparently the copper has been pooling in my blood and had we not caught it, it might have lead to liver failure or death.
  • And…sadly…that’s only the medical issues.

Was I able to stay to my July fiber goal of 20-25 grams daily?

Most days, yes.

The others, well I had great reason.  If I can’t swallow I’m not consuming much of anything so who cares if it has fiber.  I can forgive myself for that!!!

I also wanted to do this without adding gummies back to my shopping list.

However, in my extensive searching the internet and my food journal time and actually finding lots of ways to increase my fiber I stumbled on some really critical information.

Those little fiber gummies I stopped taking has the precise type of fiber recommended for gut health.

No, not all fiber is created equal.  There are three basic types and several sub-types each with their own function.

The inulin in my Fiber Advance gummies is the prebiotic, gut-healing type and since I have autoimmune disease this is the type I need to be consuming more than anything.

ALL–yes, I do mean ALL–weight loss happens in the gut.

Sick or struggling guts = Struggling weight loss

Here’s why I say that for MY body it totally matters:

March 8-30 (surgery date to the end of the month) 24.6 pounds!!!  Whoop, whoop
April: 8.3 pounds
May 6.2 pounds
June 6.9 pounds
July 8.2 pounds, 2.1 pounds in the last 7 days

I bet even you can tell when I stopped the gummies, started eating solid food, not getting enough of the right fiber, figured it out, and made a U-turn.

As you can see, I only figured out the inulin connection a week ago.

Nothing else has changed.

Well, okay, fiber-wise nothing has changed.

By pouring over my food journal, I discovered at some point I decided to shave a couple hundred calories off my day too.  No good reason.  I honestly hadn’t realized it.  That means that 2.1 pounds has come off with the help of adding those calories back while making sure I was eating the right type of fiber.

Could the fewer calories be the real reason my weight loss was struggling?  Nope.  Of course, I checked.

In checking, something fascinating appeared.

I can make a direct correlation between me consuming fiber gummies and/or at least 25g of fiber daily and the scale moving.  I found zero acceptations to the ‘rule’.

Here are several morals to my July story:

  1. If something feels off, it probably is.
  2. Food journals are essential tools.
  3. Gut health is critical.
  4. Fiber is a strong piece of the weight loss puzzle.
  5. Even the most well-vetted surgeon can still end up being an ass.
  6. THIS IS WORK PEOPLE!!!  Do not let someone tell you that because you’re doing okay or better than before surgery that you should just be happy.
  7. Take the damn gummies woman!!!!!

If I can throw down another ‘dismal’ 8.5 pound month for August I’ll hit Onederland ahead of what I targeted and fiber gummies are at the top of my shopping list.

Yes, I know 8.5 pounds in one month is nearly 5 times better than my pre-op body could muster but everyone, especially me, needs to let go of qualifying it like that or at all.  Losing 8.5 pounds or less per month as a ‘normal’ in the first year post weight loss surgery indicates an issue or three.  Period.

 

 

 

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