Meals can be difficult to eat as a family if one person is watching their caloric and carbohydrate intake, as most bariatric weight loss patients do. But one meal that can satisfy the whole family is tacos. Because each person can add the protein and toppings to satisfy their personal preferences, it is a meal that is easy to please almost anyone. We offer some suggestions for tailoring a taco salad to better suit the meal to the needs of a bariatric patient. After a lap band, gastric sleeve, or gastric bypass surgery, meal portions should be smaller with more emphasis on protein, vegetables, and healthy fats, and less emphasis on carbohydrates. As each bariatric patient is different, we offer suggestions for healthier choices, but please adjust to your personal preferences and what your body can tolerate after lap band surgery.
- Chopped lettuce, such as romaine or field green, or mix in some chopped fresh spinach
- Prepared taco meat (use lean ground beef, turkey, or chicken)
- Shredded cheese
- Diced tomato
- Diced onion
- Diced avocado
- Black beans
- Plain greek yogurt (in place of sour cream)
- Crushed corn taco shell
Starting with a bed of lettuce, add the ingredients you prefer and your body can tolerate after weight loss surgery. By adding a small amount of crushed taco shell, you can get the authentic taco taste with less carbohydrates than traditional tacos. While the rest of the family may enjoy their meal as traditional tacos, offering the meal as a “build your own” taco salad allows everyone to add their favorite toppings and adds a new spin on taco night. As always after lap band surgery, chew your food well.
The above recipe suggestion is offered by Dr. Shillingford, M.D., P.A., a board certified general surgeon specializing in laparoscopic and bariatric surgery. Dr. Shillingford specializes in adjustable lap band, gastric sleeve, and gastric bypass surgeries. His bariatric weight loss patients come from all over south Florida, including Boca Raton, West Palm Beach, Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Naples, Tampa, and Orlando.