If you missed our Coffee Chat this week, go check it out as Christina and I chat a lot about alcohol and weight loss surgery.
We hear a lot about addiction transference in the Bariatric world. Where you once may have turned to food in times of sadness, anger or stress, your tiny tummy has other plans. So instead of eating, that addiction moves to something else. Shopping and alcohol are the two most common in the WLS world.
From an article from https://www.obesityaction.org/
“Process addictions,” such as gambling, shopping and sex addiction can occur, as well as addictions to alcohol and other drug abuse. In some cases, after a period of initial remission, food addiction can reoccur.”
Support groups and counselling play an important part in this journey and reaching out to help groups if needed.
Addiction does not discriminate and can happen to anyone. The following are some signs and symptoms of addictive behaviour:
- A need for more and more of the behaviour/substance to achieve the desired effect
- Using the substance or engaging in the behaviour for longer than intended, or in higher amounts than desired
- A strong desire to cut back on the behaviour/substance, or unsuccessful efforts in doing so
- Any social, professional, personal, financial or legal problems related to the addictive behaviour
- Other people have made comments or complained about the behaviour, or others have suggested that the person cut back
- The person affected is sneaking around, or lying, to cover up the behaviour and the consequences of it
- The person affected is spending more and more time/money to get the substance or engage in the behaviour
- There are feelings of guilt or shame about the behaviour
- There is defensiveness or denial when others confront the person about their behaviour
- The behaviour or the substance becomes one of the main things the person looks forward to.
If you think you have a problem with transfer addiction, admitting you are struggling with it is an important first step. Talk to someone you trust and break the secrecy surrounding your behaviour.
Moderation – Not everyone is addicted!
We are true believers in everything in MODERATION unless that is not possible. IF you can have a glass of wine or two with dinner or a few too many on a night out with the girls, you probably are just like millions of others who enjoy a drink every once in a while.
A few things to keep in mind when you are drinking after WLS:
1) Get to KNOW your body. If hard alcohol makes you slopping drunk after one drink, maybe save that for at home.
2) Eat WELL before you go out to drink. You may not always make the best food choices once a few drinks are in.
3) Drink lots of water. Ideally having a glass of water in between each drink.
4) Get your sweat on. Do some exercise before you start drinking. Even though muscles can’t use alcohol for energy, working out won’t help process alcohol or help you recover, it will get the workout done first.
If you have not yet tried alcohol after your surgery, I highly recommend having your first try at home. With your tiny tummy and fast metabolism, you just never know how the alcohol will affect you. Best to be in a safe place rather than at your company party, right? 😊
If you are struggling to fit your adult beverages into your macros but are still interested in having a few drinks, you can learn from the Macros Master: Christina who supports and works with you in our Fundamentals Challenge.