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Healthy Eating During Football Season

Healthy Eating During Football Season

For the sports lovers out there, September is a really exciting time of year! This is when the NFL season begins and Sunday’s become “Funday’s” with friends and family. Sometimes these days are filled with snacks, finger foods, and alcohol.

However, after having bariatric surgery, these days will look a little different. The friends, family and game will all be there, but the food and drink choices are going to make all the difference when keeping your health in mind.

Here are a few suggestions for keeping this day full of fun, but without the food coma. 


The first game on Sunday’s begins at 10:00AM. If you’re planning on watching this game, sneak in a workout that morning. You’ll feel a lot more energized, and less guilty about relaxing in front of the TV. Try going for a 30 minute walk, head to the gym, or whip out those resistance bands for a 30 minute strength workout.

It’s very easy to sit in front of the TV for the entire game, but anytime there is a commercial break, use this as an opportunity to get up and move about the room. For halftime, get the group outside to throw the football around. 

Practice Mindfulness

The real challenge for game day’s typically comes down to the food and drink options. When we’re distracted watching TV, we typically don’t eat out of hunger but out of convenience and influence.

Practice mindfulness and listen to your body in regards to if you are hungry or not. Do your best to eat your 3 meals, snack on vegetables if you’re hungry and focus on hydrating on sugar-free drinks between meals. 

Bring your Own Dish

When going to a friend or family member’s home, ask if you can bring an appetizer or dish to share. This way, you are guaranteed to have a healthier option available to eat along with the protein they will likely be serving.

A few suggestions include shrimp cocktail, vegetable trays, charcuterie boards with cheese, lean cold cuts, and nuts, fruit bowl, chicken wings, or sliced chicken sausage. I personally love Aidelle’s Spicy Mango with Jalapeno Smoked Chicken Sausage or their Chicken and Apple flavor.

Avoid Showing Up Hungry

Anytime you go to an event that is right around meal time, try to avoid showing up really hungry. This is always a recipe for grazing and eating foods that you may have otherwise avoided.

We are easily influenced by the food choices of others, and being hungry is not helpful. Before you go to an event, have your breakfast or lunch. That way, you’re just focusing on hydration throughout the event.

Avoid High Sugar Drinks and Alcohol

Remember, all carbonated drinks should be avoided lifelong after surgery. This includes sparkling water, regular or diet soda, beer, champagne, etc. Alcohol should also be avoided for that first year after your surgery.

Crystal light and True Lemon water flavoring powders are convenient and a discrete way to flavor your water without bringing a whole case to a party. If you would like to bring options to share at an event, Vitamin Water Zero, Gatorade Zero, Hint Water, Powerade Zero and Bai Water are just a few options! 

Recipes and Ideas

Check out this recipe from the blog, Butter Your Biscuit! This recipe would be a great addition to any sporting event. Also, if you're interested in viewing other recipes, check out the Central California Surgery Pinterest account as well! We have a variety of low carb and low sugar food and drink ideas and recipes to explore. 

Source Credit: Butter Your Biscuit

Katie Ott, MS, RD

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