Bariatric Patients: Why You Shouldn’t Drink While Eating

This is a video I did not too long after my own bariatric surgery back in 2009 as a visual to help understand why there’s the rule about not drinking while eating or for awhile just after. It’s great to hear from folks time and again how this has helped them visualize just why they have been told this over and over, that how before seeing this, they just didn’t get why it was a big deal.

This video was from a time before the sleeve procedure was so prevalent, and while the sleeve doesn’t behave in quite the same way as the pouch from a RNY or band, some of the overall effects still apply.

If you find it useful, please, leave a comment and let me know… or head over to my Facebook page and let me know there.

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48 Responses

  1. judy says:

    Thanks very helpful u had gastric bypass 5 years ago

  2. Sherry says:

    Thanks for sharing …very educational.

  3. Jackie says:

    Great visual! Thanks for sharing! (3mos post-sleeve)

  4. Marcy says:

    I also heard it from my nutritionist it dilutes the digestive enzymes that are in the stomach if you drink while eating. Love the visual. Thanks 16 months post op sleeve, still don’t drink and eat and people ask me about it all the time. Below goal, work out and feel goo.

  5. Tracey Hayton says:

    Omg never looked at it this way before this should be shown at seminars to get this point across more

  6. Mynewme says:

    I can’t believe so many ppl view and don’t comment. Thanks for the video. I’m a sleever but I struggle with the 30 min drinking rule daily. Thanks for this reminder and visual aid!!

  7. Susan says:

    Thank you. This was extremely helpful. I’ve believe I’ve drinking to soon and after eating and this explains why I’ve been starting to feel hungry sooner!

  8. Vicki says:

    Thanks for the visual! I had the sleeve on 09.23.15 & now have a better understanding of this rule.
    Thanks!!

  9. Jill says:

    Thank you ever so much for sharing this explains why I have gained a lot of weight since I had my bypass in 2010! I will stop drinking straight after now and see how I get on I was wondering why I couldn’t lose the weight anymore

  10. Orlando says:

    Thank you for taking the time to prepare your presentation for all of us to view. It has been four months since I had my sleeve gastrectomy. For the last three months I have complied with the no drinking rule. But during my fourth month I found myself slowly straining from the directive. Your presentation clearly explains why I now feel bouts of hunger and thus reinforces my behavior to revert from drinking during eating. Thank you again.

  11. Bea says:

    Thanks so much I love the visual

  12. Nancy van den Boom says:

    thanks so much for showing! It is very helpful to see what is happening!

  13. Desiree says:

    Wow thank you. I have gained 70lbs back after 2011 surgery I never new what drinking could do to ya. Defy should be shown in the nutritional classes before surgery so we understand why not to drink. Thank you
    I will defy use this in my venture to getting back on track

  14. glitermom says:

    I’m 8 month post still don’t drink I wait 30 min to drink something

  15. lori says:

    i had the lsp band 4 years ago and when i eat then drink i throw up all the time anybody else have this problem

    • Deborah Anne says:

      oh yeah!!! If I drink too soon after I eat, absolutely — that’s probably one of the biggest reasons I’ve kept to this rule even 12 years post op (I had Roux-en-Y)

  16. Barb says:

    Thanks for the. Visual. Very helpful for me.

  17. Barbara says:

    This video was great! I wish it was shown to me years ago. Thank goodness I generally do not eat and drink at the same time!!!! Now I never will

  18. Nina says:

    Thank you so much. My surgeon & nutritionist gave me the post op rules but never answered my “why” questions. To everything they just said, “if you do this you won’t lose weight, it will stretch your pouch, you’ll gain all your weight back and you can’t have the surgery again. You must follow these rules for the rest of your life.” Scare tactics. But I always wondered how and why and your video explained excellently.

  19. Sue says:

    Thank you for the information. I am guilty of this but will go back to the correct way of eating.

  20. Kim says:

    Great visual thanks!

  21. Linda says:

    Thank you that really had helped me to see what is going on … I am a big culprit of this and have been trying to stop so this will definitely help me

  22. Lisa says:

    I had the Sleeve 6 weeks ago and this is a great visual on why you should not drink. They tell you that drinking empties your pouch, but this really demonstrated it where you understand it. Thanks so much for this

  23. Maureen says:

    Thank You for the visual, I guess I didn’t realize the importance of not drinking during a meal. I really need to watch this video.

  24. Kami says:

    Thank you so much for the great visual aid! I struggle with constant thirst, was a guzzler prior to my RNY 8/28/15. I struggle with drinking before, during and after each and every meal. This will help me to fight the urge to grab that bottle of water right after eating. Thanks again

  25. Andiamo75 says:

    Thank you!! The visual help put into perspective why I get so hungry just a short time after eating. Literally as I was watching this, I was drinking 20 minutes after eating. I hope this solves my problem. I had the band in 2009. Although I lost 100lbs I had a lot of problems and I was constantly in the ER. In 2013, after gaining 60 of it back after an accident, I had it removed and had the sleeve done. I lost the 60lbs. Thank you. And congrats on your weight loss!

  26. Jane Bales says:

    Thank you for this visual it has been since 2006 since I had my surgery and I had forgot all about the drinking with meals and have put on some weight. I’m going to remember this from now on. Thank you again.

  27. Robyn says:

    Great video! Thank you! I’m 7 years post-op and try like hell to stick to this rule. I maintain a 120 pound weightloss. All WLS patients should watch this. Very helpful

  28. Fred says:

    This video is fantastic ! Surgeon, nurses, no one in support group ever explained this rule. I was just told not to drink 30 minutes before, after, and during the meal rule. I quickly got back into my old habit- it didn’t hurt me and I didn’t throw up so I’ve kept on drinking before, during, and after. 12 months out – down 130 lbs. Loss has slowed way down in last 3 or 4 months but slowly losing lbs.

  29. Raymond Dupont says:

    Your visual analogy is full of holes and not just the entry and exit. Can you cite ANY credible study that backs up your funnel magic? Why would enzymes in a bariatric patient be different than someone else? What is the volume of a male and female stomached?

    • Rob Portinga says:

      I’m not sure I ever said the enzymes are different, but where they meet up with the food in the case of a bypass (and to some extent) a band are different. And especially different in the case of a DS patient.

      What does gender have to do with anything? I am not a surgeon, but I’ve never heard any surgeon say they make the pouch or sleeve different sizes based on gender.

      and… “funnel magic”? Not sure why there is a need to be so… whatever.. but no.. I have no studies.. few if any have been done. This is based on what a good doctor friend of mine would call “tribal knowledge”.

      Though yes, I’ve heard of one small study done because a doctor wasn’t sure if there was really a problem with the drinking/eating… and they showed only slight differences… but this hasn’t been a topic anyone seems to have the desire to tackle as a full on study.

      But you mention holes… yet fail to say what they are. If you feel this theory doesn’t hold.. why not? And no.. sorry.. I’m more than willing to discuss this in the open, and unless it’s a personal matter I don’t generally take such discussions to email. If the questions are posed publicly, I’ll answer as such.

  30. Deborah Anne says:

    what a great visual – I’m about 12 years post-op and its still one of the things I have always done and continue to do since the surgery. I’m still within about 10 pounds of the 135 pounds I initially lost —- truly one of the best things I ever did for ME. Roux-en-y

  31. Michelle says:

    Thank you I have my surgery on Tuesday this helps a lot

  32. Susan says:

    Thanks for a very great demonstration! I’m 16 days RNY post-op, and have caught myself taking just a “small sip” while eating soft foods. The visual really helped me to “get it”!

  33. Ann says:

    Agreed with everyone else… Visuals would have been nice years ago before Bad habits set in… Thanks

  34. raye says:

    That was so helpful, thank you.

  35. Kristy Black says:

    Thank you. As a science teacher and recovering sleeve patient (4 days out), I found this very informative and easily understood.

  36. Karen White says:

    This rule is definitely helpful for those more than 3 weeks out after puréed foods are introduced. But the first 2 weeks it is strictly liquids and all that you can down to not get dehydrated. I would think one could have water AND a shake AND a SF Popsicle as long as the pouch isn’t overfull.

    • Rob Portinga says:

      yes, I suppose I could have been clearer on that.. but in general, the first few weeks is not about being a “bariatric diet”, it’s because you’re healing from a stomach based surgery and is likely similar to the recover for other procedures that involved the stomach or intestines…

  37. Kerstin Lopez says:

    Thank you This was an awesome way to make me understand the danger !

  38. trudy robertson says:

    Thanks!

  39. Susan says:

    There are times I have tried to drink after eating but it always makes want to throw up. I don’t really know how people can drink right afterwards. Great demonstration though.

  40. Sue says:

    Very helpful illustration of what happens. Thank you.

  41. Layla says:

    Great visual, thanks

  42. smith says:

    Thank you that is a very useful way to demonstrate that. My operation is soon so this is very timely.

  43. Lindsay says:

    So is drinking after you eat the equivalent to bulimia for a gastric bypass patient?? And as long as you dont eat again when you’re hungry again 20 mins later, is it safe to say you’ll lose weight doing this, even though it may not be the healthiest way??

  44. Babette Holly says:

    I loved the demonstration! I was five weeks out from gastric bypass yesterday and I struggle with this! I’ve always been a thirsty person and cannot stop myself from drinking! I do feel uncomfortable if I eat and drink but I have to have a few sips with my meal.

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