Pre-Op Gastric Sleeve Diet

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Medically reviewed by Prof Rishi Singhal MBBS, MRCS, FRCS, MD.
All content on this page is reviewed by a multi-disciplinary team lead by Prof Rishi Singhal.

What is the gastric sleeve pre-op diet?

The pre-op diet before gastric sleeve surgery is vital for reducing liver fat, minimizing surgery risks, and instilling lifelong weight control habits. It’s mandatory; failure to follow it may lead to surgery cancellation. The duration varies based on BMI: 1-4 weeks depending on your BMI category.

The pre-op diet is an important step to ensure the success of gastric sleeve surgery. It helps reduce fatty deposits around the liver so that access to the stomach during surgery is easier and less risky. It also reduces the risk of medical complications associated with obesity, while giving patients an opportunity to develop habits for lifelong weight control and build confidence in their ability to set and achieve goals.

Generally speaking, the pre-op diet should start three weeks prior to a gastric sleeve procedure. This gives people time to adjust their eating habits, lower their body fat percentage, and get used to eating smaller meals more frequently throughout the day. Eating nutritious foods like fruits and vegetables is highly recommended as it provides essential vitamins and minerals needed by our bodies for healthy functioning. High protein options are also beneficial for keeping appetite under control as well as helping with muscle health. Drinking plenty of water keeps people hydrated and can help reduce feelings of hunger, making it easier to stick to a lower-calorie diet that works best for weight loss prior to surgery.

Is The Diet Optional?

The diet is compulsory. This means it is extremely important you follow it. If the diet is not followed the surgeon may refuse to operate on you. A large liver may cause the surgeon to abandon the operation. Do not be tempted to have a large meal the day before surgery as this will reduce the liver-reducing effects of the diet.

How long should you follow the diet for?

  1. It can vary depending on your BMI. If this applies to you we will normally apply the following scale.

    • If your BMI is 32-40 follow the pre-op diet for 1 week
    • If your BMI is 40-50 follow the diet for 2 weeks
    • If your BMI is 50-60 follow the diet for 3 weeks
    • If your BMI>60 follow the diet for 4 weeks

Read More About the Gastric Sleeve

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