Sleeve Gastrectomy Diet

Making dietary changes is important to the overall success of bariatric surgery. Our expert team at Upper GI West can help you manage your diet to prepare for surgery, during the recovery phase, during the weight loss phase and onwards for weight maintenance and good health
Your diet after weight loss surgery can be complicated. Our Perth practice helps you understand how and what you can eat after a weight loss procedure.
Mr Sanj Kariyawasam
Bariatric surgeon Perth

Diet after sleeve gastrectomy

Experience has shown that diets alone are not enough to overcome obesity. After a sleeve gastrectomy calorie awareness and your diet is essential both for your general health and wellbeing and for long-term weight loss.

The diet immediately after surgery is fundamental to allow safe healing. This time is needed to strengthen the healing scar tissue surrounding your stomach and to ensure minimal internal pressures are placed upon that scar. Think slow trickling stream no flash floods.

This recovery phase takes about 6 weeks. During the first two weeks you will be on a thin liquid diet, followed by two weeks of smooth pureed foods and then two weeks of soft textures.

Once your diet has returned to solid foods, it is important to make healthy choices with food types and portion sizes. You will be guided by your bariatric surgeon, bariatric physician and dietitian during this time and beyond.

The key during the acute weight loss phase (next six to nine months) is to ensure you remain safe. You are highly unlikely to come to any harm if you have about 40-50G of good quality protein, 1-1.5L of water and two recommended multivitamin tablets every day together with the minimal amount of calories that makes them palatable."
Mr Krishna Epari
Bariatric surgeon Perth

Sleeve Gastrectomy Diet

At Upper GI West our goal is to help you achieve and maintain a healthy weight. This will mean making permanent changes to your diet, including making health food choices, developing good eating habits and taking recommended supplements. We have in house dietitians to support and advise you throughout your journey

Why your diet after weight loss surgery matters

During the rapid weight loss phase over the next six - nine months, it is important you follow the recommendation of our specialist team to allow you to achieve your best possible results, and that you remain safe. We will provide you with dietary guidelines and recommend multivitamins during this time.

Bariatric Surgery is the most powerful instrument for weight loss. It is fundamentally different from dieting because of the sensory changes, taste changes, reward changes, hormone and receptor changes and energy expenditure changes.

However, the surgery alone will not guarantee long term weight loss without you modifying your diet with lifelong lifestyle changes. As a human you can overcome any effect of surgery and you must realise that these operations are not capable of preventing you consuming volume or calories nor to repair the gut damage and recover the body's automatic control of weight. Only you can do that by keeping to the basic principles outlined above.

"Sleeve gastrectomy is a powerful sensation changing, hormone changing and energy expenditure changing operation that allows massive weight loss to occur if an individual keeps to a sensible protein based diet and consumes the minimal calories that gets then through the day.

The principles are to eat when your body indicates it needs fuel and not by the clock; eat a protein based diet, chew well and stop eating when content and not when your full; and lastly to be as active as possible ie if you have the chance to stand, then stand, if you have the chance to walk, then walk.

Plan your protein intake and make it about you reaching your goal; other people can do what you do but you should not do what they do, at the end of the day it was doing that which caused a lot of the issue to begin with."

Mr Sanj Kariyawasam
Bariatric surgeon Perth

Maintaining weight loss results after bariatric surgery

One of the advantages of a sleeve gastrectomy is that it should allow you to eat the full array of foods. However this does not mean that you continue to eat what you ate before.

You will be a cheap date so make the food better quality. Make any meat, chicken or fish good locally produced or caught, non packaged and preserved, and simply cooked products.

Concentrate on meals being non mass produced and based on good quality protein rather than carbohydrates. On the whole if it comes in a cardboard box or pre packed plastic do not have it!

Avoid products with refined sugars and high fructose corn syrup.

Plan your protein intake day by day and in advance.

Adjust your eating pattern to what works for you. Do not waste calories by eating when you are not hungry.

Do not drink soft drinks high in sugar and try avoiding those with artificial sweeteners too if you can as they may affect your receptors that sense sugar and increase cravings. Some artificial sweeteners may also act as direct neurotransmitters (have a direct effect on signals to the brain).


To achieve your weight loss goals you should:

  • Eat when your body indicates it needs fuel
  • Plan your protein intake in advance with the minimal amount of additional calories required to reach that goal
  • Stop eating when content and before you feel full. If you wonder whether you can or should put another mouthful in it means you are really content or satisfied so do not put the extra mouthful in. Put the remainder of food that may be on your plate in the bin not in the fridge. Always make a habit of leaving something on your plate irrespective of how you feel.
  • Stand and move as much as practical
  • Take the recommended vitamin and mineral supplementation for life - BE SAFE!

Follow up after a sleeve gastrectomy

You deserve to feel good about your body and your overall health. If you have been struggling with obesity, you deserve the most advanced surgical care and expertise.

"At Upper GI West, we look at you as a person. We help you prepare for the surgery and important lifestyle changes, including diet. We aim to give you the best advice and treatment to reach your goals. We will work with you to formulate a sensible and logical plan for your battle with obesity and its related diseases throughout your life.

We also encourage long term follow up and re engagement. If you are concerned make contact with our team. If you think you are falling in a hole or going off track make contact, it is always better to head off an issue before it occurs or deal with an issue before it escalates. Please do not feel like you are “putting anybody out” by seeking further help or advice"

Assoc Prof Mo Ballal
Bariatric surgeon Perth