One of the biggest struggles I have had after weight loss surgery is with meal prepping. After you have your surgery, life is so different and you are only able to eat a small amount of food. I feel like I have always had a difficult time with meal prepping, but after weight loss surgery, things just get a lot harder. The hardest part for me is that I feel like I make way too much food. Most of the time I am just making meals for my partner and myself, so I do not need a ton of food. It is hard because I do not want to make too much where he feels like he has to finish it all. That has been one of the most challenging parts of this journey. I feel like my partner never wants my food to go to waste, so he always wants to finish my meal. We have to be careful with that because we obviously do not want him to start getting unhealthy either. Through time, you will learn ways to avoid this, but it can definitely be a transition at first.
I have found a lot of success with cooking in the crockpot and then freezing what I do not need. At first, I was not measuring our food and I just let us eat what we wanted every night. However, I found that he started eating way too much because he knew I would not eat it. By setting up portions, it has helped us tremendously with making sure we do not overeat or waste any food. I used to hate leftovers, but I have found that it helps so much when you prepare a larger portion and then just freeze what you do not need that specific night. Since we eat so little as bariatric patients, I feel like there will always be some sort of leftovers. So much of it goes back to repurposing it. One thing I have really enjoyed doing is using the food I make in a different way when I eat it a second time. For example, say I make fajitas for dinner one night. Instead of eating the same exact meal again, I will use the fajita meat and make a soup for the next meal. I have learned to get creative and it has helped me with staying on track.
Sometimes I have found that the best thing to do is to plan to eat for one since portions are so huge these days. Whenever my partner and I go out to eat, we tend to share a meal. Sometimes we add an appetizer and split that as well, but it is usually too much for me so I have to be careful. One time we went to a Japanese Hibachi restaurant and made the mistake of both getting our own meals. I cannot explain to you how much food we had leftover after that night. We learned our lesson just how useless it is for me to get my own meal sometimes.
If you are a bariatric patient cooking for two, I highly encourage you to make sure you are measuring your food. You do not want it to be where you are only eating a little and then your partner is eating too much. This can easily happen for couples after bariatric surgery and it can create a lot of issues. You might think you can eat a full-size meal, but I promise you that your head is larger than your stomach. You will save so much money after bariatric surgery because you will not have to spend as much money on food, which is a huge bonus. I found that meal delivery services work well for our lifestyle, so if you are having trouble with coming up with smaller portion meals, give Hello Fresh or another brand a shot and see what you think. Just remember, even though you cook a larger meal, does not mean you have to eat all that in one night. Make it last and take advantage of freezer meals. This new lifestyle will take time for you to adjust to, but you will start being able to eye your portions better and you will not feel like you are wasting food as often. Just remember to be patient with the process and learn new tips and tricks on the way.