Huffington Post: Why Can't I Stick to a Diet?
Eat What You Love Blog: Mmmm...Hummus Three Ways
Podcast: Interview with Dr. May on Life Mastery
Podcast: Interview with Dr. May on Strategies for Living
Jeff's Story: At 643 pounds, Jeff was running out of options
Diabetes and Mindful Eating: How Can I Eat What I Love When I Have Diabetes?
Bariatric Surgery is Only a Tool
While bariatric surgery may be controversial, even bariatric surgeons agree that bariatric surgery is a tool, not a quick fix. This is a critical point because a tool can do nothing on its own; it requires skillful management by a knowledgeable user to work effectively. Therefore results following bariatric surgery depend on learning to use that tool effectively and consistently to develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Bariatric Surgery: No Quick Fix
When people ask my opinion about bariatric surgery, I have to admit that it's a tough question because many of those who decide to try surgery believe that they've tried everything else. Most have never even heard of intuitive or mindful eating.
Some believe or hope that having bariatric surgery will solve all of their problems—but nothing could be further from the truth. For example, if you’re an “emotional eater,” the situations and emotions that triggered eating in the past are unlikely to disappear simply because you’ve chosen to have bariatric surgery. As one patient said, “They didn’t operate on my brain!”
Some discover that they “miss” their friend—food—leaving them with a feeling of loss. As one person told me, "I've cut out my coping skill!"
Others believe that after surgery they won’t need to think about their eating anymore. In fact, it is just the opposite. You need to become very thoughtful about eating in order to use this tool optimally. If you’re not mindful about your eating, this “tool” can cause you to experience uncomfortable, even serious consequences—and you’ll be far less likely to get the results you hoped for.
Bottom line: It breaks my heart to see people invest so much yet continue to struggle in their relationship with food.
Adjusting to a New Normal
Since 1999, tens of thousands of people have used the Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program and/or read Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat, to resolve their difficult eating issues. There are often people in our workshops who have had also bariatric surgery. They explain that surgery did not fix their real problem and/or that they need additional skills to cope with their "new normal."
Bariatric Surgery and Mindful Eating
Mindfulness is beneficial because it teaches us to focus our attention and awareness on what is happening right now, which in turn, helps us disengage from habitual, unsatisfying, and unskillful habits and behaviors.
Specifically, mindful eating skills help resolve the mindless habits and emotional eating issues that lead to problems after bariatric surgery:
- Eating too quickly
- Taking large bites
- Not chewing thoroughly
- Eating while distracted leading to overconsumption
- Not savoring food and therefore having difficulty feeling satisfied with small volumes of food
- Eating too much leading to vomiting and/or distention of the pouch
- Grazing throughout the day
- Eating "slider" foods and high-calorie soft foods and liquids, often in response to emotional triggers
- Not consuming enough protein or nutrient-rich foods
- Feeling deprived or left-out in social situations
- Struggling to establish consistent physical activity
- Transfer addictions
- And many other issues...
Further, most people who make the difficult decision to have bariatric surgery want to improve their health and energy so they can live the vibrant life they crave. Yet without the additional tool of mindful eating, bariatric surgery can feel like a permanent diet that continues to consume your life.
One of the most meaningful changes that happens when you learn to eat mindfully (whether you've had surgery or not!) is that it allows you to think about eating when you need to and free up your energy and attention to focus on living in between.
Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program for Bariatric Surgery
For all these reasons we felt that it was time to create a mindful eating program especially for people who have had (or who are considering) bariatric surgery. We have a brand new Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program for Bariatric Surgery Workbook and Awareness Journal and supplemental Faciltiator Training. (Read more below.)
The new workbook is going to print this week. Pre-order now to get yours hot off the press and save $5.00 off the set - we'll ship them as soon as they hit our door! For a sneak peek, download a pdf of the Table of Contents and an excerpt from Workshop 8 reviewing the key concepts covered in Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program for Bariatric Surgery.
I am very excited about adding the life-changing concepts of intuitive and mindful eating to the toolbox for the many people who, despite having surgery, still find themselves stuck in an eat-repent-repeat cycle. After all, even after bariatric surgery, it still isn't really about the food.
Eat Mindfully, Live Vibrantly!
Michelle May, M.D.
P.S. If you have any questions, email us at Training@AmIHungry.com.
NEW Workbook: Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program for Bariatric Surgery
PRE-ORDER before August 1st and SAVE $5.00!
The Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program for Bariatric Surgery helps resolve the mindless habits and emotional eating issues that lead to problems after bariatric surgery. It includes TWO books (both paperback):
- Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program for Bariatric Surgery Companion Workbook and Awareness Journal*
- Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat: How to Break Your Eat-Repent-Repeat Cycle
Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program Bariatric Surgery Set $39.90 Pre-order before August 1st! $34.90
The award-winning book Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat is the foundation of this program; the Bariatric Surgery Companion Workbook and Awareness Journal shows you how to apply this life-changing approach after you've had bariatric surgery. (This set is appropriate for people who have had or are considering gastric bypass, the band, or the sleeve.)
Each of the eight workshops in the Bariatric Surgery Companion Workbook and Awareness Journal helps you apply what you’ve read in Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat to your daily life and explore issues that are unique to people who have had bariatric surgery. Each of the eight workshops also has a special section called "Adjust" to guide you through the necessary skills to adjust to your "new normal."
A special thank you to my collaborator, Margaret Furtado, R.D. Margaret has specialized in bariatric surgery at several bariatric surgery centers of excellence for over a decade including Tufts Medical Center, Massachusetts General Hospital, the Johns Hopkins Center for Bariatric Surgery and currently, the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Margaret and I are also extremely grateful to the Am I Hungry? Facilitators who carefully reviewed this workbook prior to publication and provided their invaluable feedback: Jeff Butts, Licensed Wellcoach, Erica Griffin, M.D., Kay Joyner, CPT, Licensed Wellcoach, Bonnie Lamb, BSN, Laurie Little, M.A., Psy.D., Barb Menia RD, and Melanie Schmitt, Certified Bariatric Life Coach.
*This program is only available as a set because the Bariatric Surgery Workbook and Awareness Journal is a companion to Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat: How to Break Your Eat-Repent-Repeat Cycle. It is not intended to be used alone. If you have already purchased Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat from us, you may email Orders@AmIHungry.com with your name so we can look it up (or you can email us a copy of your receipt). We are sorry for the inconvenience but it is very important that you use both books together!
Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program Bariatric Surgery Set $39.90 Pre-order now! $34.90
Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Workshops - Supplemental Facilitator Training
Beginning this fall on Oct. 16, 23, 30, 2012, we will offer additional Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating for Bariatric Surgery Workshop training for Am I Hungry? Facilitators who work with bariatric surgery patients. If you have not completed Am I Hungry? Facilitator Training yet, there's still plenty of time! You'll save $100 when you register for both trainings! Send an email to Training@AmIHungry.com to request the link.
If you have questions and are interested in this training or interested in offering Mindful Eating Workshops at your bariatric center, please contact us at 480 704-7811 or Training@AmIHungry.com.
LAST CHANCE! Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating, Vibrant Living Retreat
Join Michelle May and 30 other women July 22-27, 2012 at Red Mountain Resort in beautiful Utah to nourish your body, mind, heart, and spirit! This all-inclusive retreat includes:
- 6 days and 5 nights of deluxe lodging
- Three delicious healthy meals daily
- Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Workshops by Dr. May
- All resort activities, guided hikes, and fitness classes
Download the detailed retreat packet for all the details.
Do you or someone you care about have diabetes or prediabetes?
Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat with Diabetes: A Mindful Eating Program for Thriving with Diabetes or Prediabetes by Michelle May, M.D. with Megrette Fletcher, M.Ed., R.D., CDE
BONUS! After you purchase your copy, visit the registration page to download a private teleseminar with authors Michelle May and Megrette Fletcher!
Available now from your favorite local bookstore and Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble.com