Liquid lunch

This is what I’m supposed to drink four times a day. It is not too tasty. It’s one scoop of chocolate protein powder and eight ounces of milk. I put in a little powdered peanut butter to improve the taste.

Consumption conundrum

Well, I’m one week into my pre-surgery diet, which, as I mentioned before, consists of mainly protein shakes and other liquids. As you can expect, I’m pretty darn hungry. But something weird is happening at the same time. I don’t much feel like eating.

For example, I’m supposed to drink four protein shakes a day. I’ve only been having three. It’s not because they taste bad, or because they’re hard to make. It’s just because I don’t feel like having one in the evening.

Same with my little snacks. I’m supposed to have six snacks a day — things like yogurt, sugar-free Jello, and applesauce. I’ve only been eating four of these a day.

I have no idea why I have no inclination to eat. I don’t even know if it’s a psychological or physical thing.

I should point out that I’m drinking plenty of fluids, and that might have something to do with it. I’m definitely getting more than 64 ounces of water a day. And none of it is caffeinated or carbonated.

My life now consists of (mostly) liquids

As my surgery is less than two weeks away, my doctor has put me on a special pre-op diet to shrink the size of my liver. Since the liver sits near the stomach, and this will be a laparoscopic procedure, making the liver as small as possible makes it easier for the surgeon to perform the operation. You don’t want an errant organ in the way when you’re chopping into someone’s innards.

The diet is very simple. I have to drink four protein shakes a day, using a special medical-grade protein from a company called Unjury (Footnote 1). Each scoop of protein is mixed into 8 ounces of 1 percent milk, which means I’m now drinking 32 ounces of milk each day. My stomach didn’t respond well to this at first.

In addition to this, I can have six items from the following list:

  • Dannon Light & Fit yogurt or a similar kind of yogurt
  • One serving of sugar-free Jell-o
  • One serving of sugar-free Jell-o Pudding
  • A half a cup of oatmeal, made without sugar
  • A serving of unsweetened applesauce
  • A cup of raw vegetables, such as carrots and celery

Fruit is not allowed on the diet, which is sad because I have recently gotten into the habit of eating an apple a day. I had slowly become accustomed to the texture of Greek yogurt, but that’s not on the diet. And my favorite kind of yogurt, Icelandic-style Skyr, is not allowed even though it’s incredibly healthy for you.

The dieting has been very challenging, and I’d be lying if I told you I’m not craving a hamburger. Still, this is what I need to make sure the operation goes smoothly, and it’s good practice for the kinds of foods I’ll be eating for several weeks after the surgery.

I’m happy to have raw vegetables on the list, as at least it’s something crunchy. Once the operation is complete, I won’t be having anything but soft foods for quite a long time.

1. I’m not sure it’s wise for a company in the medical field to have a name that is one letter off from “injury.”

Alas, poor daquiri … I hardly knew thee

After surgery, I’ll have to forgo alcohol for probably a year or more. Beer is out of the question in the future, as I won’t be allowed to drink carbonated beverages of any type. But wine should be OK, as long as I drink it before I start eating. And cocktails will be back on the menu.

I know cocktails aren’t manly, but I quite like them. The best ones have complex flavors that transform the taste of the liquor used. I’m very particular about what I drink — I always opt for rum or vodka, and avoid anything with tequila as if it were tainted with the bubonic plague. Bourbon and whiskey are OK, but not my favorites.

I don’t recall what this is called, but it’s a very old recipe and the rose-shaped lemon peel is quite cool

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I swear I’m eating healthy

Looking back at some of my last posts, it seems like my eating might be a little out of control. That’s not the case. I’ve been quite diligent with my new eating habits, typically staying under 1,500 calories a day.

For breakfast, I usually have a low fat yogurt. Lunch is half a sandwich, carrots, apple slices, and sometimes a second low fat yogurt. This is a typical lunch:

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San Francisco food crime

The beginning of July is a special time for me. Over the course of four days, the Complementary Spouse and I celebrate my birthday, our anniversary, and the Fourth of July. This year, we returned to San Francisco — where we were married all those years ago — to see friends, enjoy the town, and eat an embarrassing amount of incredibly good food.

There was only one must-do restaurant on my last meals list in San Francisco, and that was In-N-Out Burger, a fast-food chain that’s prevalent in California but nowhere to be found in Florida. I always order the same thing: a Double Double, animal style (Footnote 1), with no tomato, along with a serving of fries.

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Food, glorious food

It seems like 90 percent of the posts on this blog can be broken down into three categories:

1. I have been eating really well.
2. I fell off the wagon for a day or two, and I’m disappointed in myself.
3. The Complementary Spouse and I have been traveling, and I gorged myself on the most delicious food I have ever eaten.

This past weekend falls into category No. 3. Details soon.