The Liver Shrinking Diet For Gastric Bypass

The Liver Shrinking Diet For Gastric Bypass

Last year I announced I was going to have Gastric Bypass Surgery on the 19th January 2016. I wrote a post about my decision to have the operation and why I felt this is the best way to improve my health. I shared the Liver Shrinking Diet plan I was following and today I’m resharing this post.

The Liver Reduction Diet

I’m going to have a Gastric Bypass to give me a better quality of life and to help me reduce my weight which will in turn reduce the steroid dose I require for my Adrenal Insufficiency as reduce the cost of steroid medication if and when I go on the Adrenal Pump. It will also benefit me in many other ways and so my official bariatric preparations have begun.

Liver Shrinking Diet

Before any bariatric surgery, a patient is required to undergo a Liver Shrinking Diet which makes it easier for the surgeon to operate on the stomach. I had to start my diet two weeks before my operation which for me was the 5th of January. I decided I might as well eat healthier from the first and so I started eating healthier right away after all 2016 is my year for major weight loss and I had a bit of a chocolate overload during Christmas so I was ready to start on the 1st.

The Pre Op Diet is different depending where you live and which hospital or team your under. Here is my Liver Shrinking Diet which I have to follow and will follow until I have my Gastric Bypass which is ten days time.

Liver Shrinking Diet and Food Options

Breads, Cereals, Potatoes and Rice. 

Choose 2 of the following per day:

  • One Weetabix/ shredded wheat
  • One slice toast/ bread
  • 1/2 Pitta bread or bread roll
  • Three crackers
  • Too small egg size boiled potatoes
  • 1/2 mediu m baked potato
  • Two tablespoons of boiled rice/pasta

Milk and Dairy

Choose 2-3 of any of the following per day:

  • 200mls Semi skimmed milk
  • Small part of love that yoghurt or fromage frais
  • 1oz Low fat hard cheese
  • 4oz Cottage cheese
  • 2oz Low fat soft cheese

Fruit and Vegetables

Choose 3 of the following per day (a maximum of two portions should be fruit)

  • One large fruit, e.g apple, banana, orange
  • Two small fruits, e.g plumbs, kiwifruit, tangerines
  • 10omls unsweetened fruit juice (once per day only)
  • 2 tablespoons of stewed/ tinned fruit and natural juice
  • One small bowl of salad
  • Two to Three tablespoons of cooked vegetables

Meat, Fish and Alternatives

Choose 2-3 of the following per day

  • 2-3oz lean beef, pork, lamb, mince, chicken, turkey or oily fish
  • 5oz white fish or Tuna in brine
  • Two eggs
  • Three thin slices of lean cold meat
  • 40z Soya, tofu, quorn

Liver Shrinking Diet

The aim of the Liver Shrinking Diet is to have low carbs. Successfully shrinking the liver increases the chances of laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery. If the liver is too large and someone cheats this could cause serious post operative complications such as bleeding and leakage.

Other general points I have to follow are:

  • Having 3 Meals a day
  • Taking a multivitamin and mineral supplement
  • Choosing foods low in fat and sugar
  • Practice eating slowly and chewing food carefully.
  • Practice separating fluids and meals by not drinking 10 minutes before or 30 minutes after eating.
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Do not smoke.

I was told at the hospital Pre-op that all gastric bypass patients are required to stop smoking before and after the operation.

So this is the I am following for the next ten days. It has not been easy and I felt quite hungry the first few days but I’ll stick to it and do my best to make my operation as risk free as possible.

I’m also trying hard to eat 20 pence size pieces of food, to chew slowly and drink more regular but not with meals.

This is my Liver Shrinking Diet and so far so good.

Angela x

Read more about my Gastric Bypass Journey in my Gastric Bypass Category

My Health Journey


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  1. January 6, 2016 / 11:28 am

    Wishing you the best of luck with the diet and surgery!

    • January 6, 2016 / 11:34 am

      Thanks Kim. I’m hoping it all goes well.

  2. Gemma @ A Gem's Life
    January 6, 2016 / 1:00 pm

    Best of luck with it Angela, it sounds like you are positive about it all 🙂

    Gemma xxx

    • January 6, 2016 / 2:12 pm

      I can do it! lol Today i had a slice of chicken and it tasted so so good! Lol

  3. Aimee Foster
    January 6, 2016 / 10:49 pm

    Wishing you the very best of luck with everything x

    • January 6, 2016 / 11:27 pm

      thanks Amiee. small steps lead to big things.

  4. January 7, 2016 / 2:26 pm

    Keep up the good work with this diet Ang. And, best of luck to you for the surgery! I hope it all goes smoothly & you get the results you are hoping for x

    • January 7, 2016 / 2:31 pm

      Thanks. I am looking forward to writing about it and vlogging each day. I enjoy vlogging although I’m not fab at editing or anything and i’ve found something i enjoy much better than photography. 🙂

  5. Random Musings
    January 7, 2016 / 2:38 pm

    This sounds like a good, healthy diet. I think if it was long term, you would need a lot more fruit and vegetables, but short term it looks quite good. Good luck with your surgery Angela, I hope all goes well. Looking forward to reading about your progress!

    • January 7, 2016 / 2:40 pm

      Thanks Debbie. So excited about my journey starting.

  6. January 7, 2016 / 8:55 pm

    Best of luck!! How brave of you going for the surgery xx

    • January 7, 2016 / 9:01 pm

      Thanks. i hope it all goes well.

  7. January 7, 2016 / 9:32 pm

    Wow, I didn’t know about your surgery, I hope it all goes well for you! The diet doesn’t sound too bad, good luck with it x

    • January 7, 2016 / 10:25 pm

      Thanks Lauren. I have only just announced it but yes it should be a great thing. Thanks for wishing me luck. Angela

  8. January 7, 2016 / 9:56 pm

    Gosh I had no idea that you had to prepare for surgery in this way! Wishing you all the best for the surgery and I completely admire your desire to make this year a healthier one!

    • January 7, 2016 / 10:22 pm

      Thanks so much. It is an interesting method isn’t it. I’m sticking to it and hopefully this info will be useful for others who may need to look into this option.

  9. Fi Ni Neachtain
    January 8, 2016 / 8:06 am

    Good luck with your surgery. You’re very brave and it’s commendable that you’re doing this to improve your heath. I never knew you could shrink your liver!

    • January 8, 2016 / 9:17 am

      Thanks Fi. Fingers crossed!

  10. January 8, 2016 / 10:59 am

    Best of luck with everything Angela. The decision to get any surgery can never be taken lightly so I know this is probably a tough time of you. I hope all is and all goes well xx

    • January 8, 2016 / 2:30 pm

      Thanks Zoe. I am on day four and its getting hard and i’m getting ratty.

  11. January 8, 2016 / 11:10 am

    Good luck with it. I think I’d find the not drinking with meals hard, but I presume this bloats which is why it shouldn’t be done with this?

    • January 8, 2016 / 2:30 pm

      It is hard and something I will have to get used to!

  12. Joanne prout
    January 8, 2016 / 2:32 pm

    I don’t know you Angela but I just want to wish you the very best of luck with your operation xx

    • January 8, 2016 / 2:35 pm

      THANKS Joanne. 🙂

  13. January 8, 2016 / 5:57 pm

    Best of luck Angela, well done on the diet and I hope all goes well. I also think it’s interesting to find out what is involved in the surgery too. I didn’t know you had to do a liver shrinking diet beforehand for instance.

    • January 8, 2016 / 7:01 pm

      Thanks Laura. Yes, it is really hard too and I’m finding it difficult but I only ave 10 days to go. 🙂

  14. January 9, 2016 / 12:00 am

    I never knew there was so much prep you have to do before such an operation. Wishing you all the best with it 🙂

    • January 9, 2016 / 12:27 am

      Thanks Ellen. I knew about it after watching a tv series but did not know how hard it would be. Angela

  15. Debbie boone
    July 8, 2016 / 10:51 pm

    I am currently on the 2 wk liver shrink diet but they have me on protein shakes 2 times a day and super small dinner at night, with no sugar and starch. How much have u lost since surgery and how hard is this life change?

    • July 8, 2016 / 10:59 pm

      Oh I found the Liver Shrinking diet tough especially as my op was cancelled three times and so it ended up taking 8 weeks. The truth is it is really hard and the most difficult thing i’ve done in my life. It is life changing, painful and mentally and emotionally draining. I guess the benefits outweigh the risks and difficulties. I have lost since my operation 3 stone in 3 months. It is tough especially when you can no longer eat as you once did and some lose more some lose less but I’m on steroids and unwell to exercise so its different for everyone regarding weight loss.

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  17. November 4, 2016 / 8:39 am

    Hello and wow. My surgery will be Nov. 21st. I am already on the preop diet, which has been protein packets of drinks, omelettes, soups, pudding and dessert type stuff and I get those every two hours. Its only been a week and I am so wanting to bite into some meat! lol I can have veggies though which help with the whole biting into thing. I am also on the low FODMAP diet so it has been very difficult to get the food packets without the lactose, gluten and fructose. Doesnt leave me with a lot of choice. Good luck with your diets and surgery!

  18. June Blackburn
    December 8, 2016 / 4:07 pm

    I had a gastric sleeve on June 24th 2016 and obviously did the liver diet, I started carb cutting and knocked anything with added sugar or that I knew had sugars from April I lost a stone before my op and have lost 6 stone since and I feel amazing…I measure my food and take my vitamin supplements religiously and walk plenty. I am waiting until after New Year to order down my uniform for work so I look a bit of a sight lol…I bought 2 new pairs of jeans 5 sizes smaller than when I started… I wish you love luck health and happiness with the new trimmer you…. best of luck

    • Angela
      December 8, 2016 / 5:47 pm

      WELL DONE. 🙂

  19. Karen
    March 1, 2017 / 8:58 pm

    I m having the Gastric Sleve done in 6 days. For my liver shrinking diet I am allowed 800-900 calories a day. Required to use there food which is specially formulated. It actually tastes good. The eggs suck, but if that’s my only complaint. Not bad. I like st 5 pounds the first week. Some days are harder than others as I have to cook for my husband. But we eat dinner at the same time so we don’t go off schedule too much. Hope the last year for you has gone well. I am looking forward to losing up to 100 pounds.

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