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2021 Bariatric Symposium

An Online Event

A 3-day event to inspire, motivate and educate you after weight loss surgery without leaving the comfort of your own home.

""This symposium was BEYOND amazing to get input from so many different professionals that we don't have access to all the time.""

- Happy Attendee from 2020

Does this sound familiar?

  •  You had WLS surgery years ago and wonder how you can jump start your motivation again?

  • You're looking for a community to connect with that understands what you're going through?

  • You lost a lot of weight but still struggling with self acceptance?


What if I told you, you didn't need to do this all on your own?

What's better than the advice from one expert about weight loss surgery?

How about the advice from fifteen?

On September 10th-12th you’ll have access to over fifteen professionals  to provide you with the tools you need to navigate your life after weight loss surgery. 

And let's be clear. These are not just any health professionals. Many are top online professionals in the field of bariatrics coming together to put on one of the best events of the year.

They're here to discuss everything weight loss surgery related including supplements, exercise, weight regain, hormone changes, gut health, cannabis, plant based nutrition and more. 

Anyone that has or is considering bariatric surgery will find this event valuable. I'm excited to be your host, Kristin Willard, Registered Dietitian from Bariatric Meal Prep. 

""All I have to say is WOW. I am just speechless and in awe of these speakers!"

- Happy Attendee from 2020

Is this you?

  • You felt your progress was going well and then COVID hit and now you're not sure how to get back on track

  • You see lots of people talking about plant based diets and wondering if you should try it?

  • You lost a lot of weight at first but now it's slowed down and you're wondering if you are doing the right things.

  • You know support is important but not sure where to find it

  • You feel hungry all the time and want to know if this is normal.

  • You want to know if plastic surgery is something you should consider

  • You have pain and want to know if cannabis is helpful after surgery

  • You want to develop a consistent home workout routine but you're not sure where to start.

If any of this sounds familiar you're going to love this event!

By the end of this event you'll be motivated and empowered with the tools you need to continue your progress after weight loss surgery.

2021 Bariatric Symposium Lineup

September 10th

Why Your Lowest Weight May Not Be the Healthiest 

Presented by Jamie Mills, RDN

You'll Learn:

  • The math behind your weight loss
  • What to focus on when you reach your lowest weight
  • How to find your goal weight

Medical Tourism and Weight Loss Surgery

Presented by Dr. Elizabeth Dovec, Bariatric Surgeon

You'll Learn:

  • Cost considerations and how to understand what you're getting

  • How to choose which procedure is best 

  • National vs International Programs 

Building Support After Bariatric Surgery

Presented by Stephanie Wagner, MS, RDN

You'll Learn: 

  • How to get your family on board 
  • Facebook Group best practices
  • How to build a community right for you 

The Pouch Reset Diet After Weight Loss Surgery

Presented by Megan Moore, CSOWM, RDN

You'll Learn:

  • The science behind pouch reset diet
  • The relationship between pouch size relates to weight loss
  • How to support long term weight loss efforts

How to Manage Weight Regain After Bariatric Surgery

Presented by Dr Maher El Chaar, Bariatric Surgeon

You'll Learn:

  • Why weight regain occurs after surgery
  • How doctors decide if a revision is needed
  • How robotics are used for revisions

September 11th

Live HIIT Workout

Presented by Carla Parson, Group Fitness Instructor


  • Get the opportunity to workout virtually with Carla 
  • Be offered beginner and advanced techniques 
  • Be inspired to have movement in your routine

Cannabis After Weight Loss Surgery

Presented by Janice Bissex, MS, RDN, FAND

You'll Learn:

  • Which cannabinoid suppresses appetite
  • About the "bliss molecule" 
  • How cannabis can decrease pain

Plant Based Diets After Weight Loss Surgery

Presented by Samuel Tambeaux, RDN, LDN

You'll Learn:

  • Possible benefits of a plant based diet after surgery
  • How to become plant based at each stage after surgery
  • Nutrients you need to make sure you include

After the Honeymoon Phase

Presented by Helen Kimmel, MS, RDN

You'll Learn:

  • How to keep your momentum going after the honeymoon phase
  • What to do to maximize your success while in the honeymoon phase
  • Tips for incorporating delicious and satisfying foods

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and Bariatric Surgery

Presented by Katie Chapmon, MS, RDN

You'll Learn:

  • Signs you may have PCOS
  • Changes you can expect to see after WLS
  • Nutrition recommendations to manage PCOS after surgery

September 12th

Live Interview with a Plastic Surgeon

Interview with Nicholas Isaac Jones, MD, FACS

You'll Learn:

  • If plastic surgery is something you should consider after WLS
  •  Who plastic surgery is for and not for
  • What outcomes you can expect with WLS 

Carbs After Weight Loss Surgery

Presented by Faith Flaherty, MS, RDN

You'll Learn:

  • Why carbs are more than just an energy source
  • The types of carbs to be looking for 
  • Signs you’re having too little carbs

Small Intestinal Bacteria Overgrowth (SIBO) After Weight Loss Surgery

Presented by Dawn Boxell, RDN 

You'll Learn:

  • How the bacteria change in your gut after surgery 
  • Why SIBO may be inhibiting your weight loss efforts 
  • What to do if you suspect you have SIBO

The Impact of Trauma on Your Eating Behaviors

Presented by Kristin Lloyd, PhD

You'll Learn:

  • How past trauma experiences (yes, COVID counts) can affect your relationship with food 
  • Techniques to control your response when you’re triggered 
  • The role of psychoeducation 

Finding Your Food Joy After Weight Loss Surgery

Presented by April Williams & Jason Smith

You'll Learn:

  • Why April and Jason broke up with food after undergoing WLS
  • What food joy is and why you want it
  •  Suggestions on how to find your food joy so you feel like you can enjoy food again 

""This whole series is PHENOMENAL!" "

- Happy Attendee from 2020

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How will an online symposium work?

September 10-12th each of the presentations will be aired "live" over Zoom. You'll get the opportunity to make comments throughout the presentation and connect with others who have undergone weight loss surgery.  At the end of each presentation there will be a designated 15 minute question and answer period with the speaker.

You'll get to communicate in real time with these health professionals. 

You'll also have access to a private Facebook Group with like minded individuals to connect and share your experiences with.

Once the symposium is over you'll be given access to watch them anytime you want, as many times as you want, for an entire year.

Pretty awesome, right?

Register today to claim your spot. 

Frequently Asked Questions

No worries! All of the presentations will be recorded and you will have access to watch them at your own leisure for one year. 

Nope. You'll be able to watch the presentations live via Zoom. The Facebook Group provides an extra layer of support for the community but it's not necessary. You will continue to have access to the recordings for an entire year. 

Absolutely! With all the knowledge in this symposium you will be confident and prepared for surgery. 

Yes, here is the full line up with times listed. Please look for your time zone. If you don't see your time zone then please use this time converter. Add California as the time zone you want with starting time 9 am.

The 2021 Bariatric Symposium is PERFECT for you if…

  1. You had surgery years ago and struggling with jump starting your motivation
  2. You're unsure if you should eat more plant based foods
  3. You're looking for specific steps to take to help maximize your success after surgery
  4. You want to start eating more foods but not sure how to do it
  5. You're preparing for surgery and want to know as much as possible about life after surgery
  6. You lost a lot of weight but feel like you are still struggling
  7. You want to workout more but looking for a routine that's right for you.

If you said yes to three or more of these, I can't wait to see you at the symposium. 

Meet the Speakers

Jamie Mills, RDN

Jamie is a Registered Bariatric Dietitian and Coach. Jamie helps women after weight loss surgery overcome their doubts and limiting beliefs in order to truly make the mindset shifts that are necessary to change their relationship with food and their body after having weight loss surgery. Jamie had weight loss surgery in 2017 and since then has maintained over a 100 lb loss. She knows what it's like firsthand to struggle to find balance on this journey, which is why it is her mission to be able to provide women with the support and resources they need to be successful long term on their journeys. She is the creator and founder of the T.R.I.B.E. Membership Program (The Real Insights of Bariatric Eating) which provides nutrition materials and resources, work outs, recipes, and more than 15+ live support groups every month. Jamie never wants anyone to feel alone in their struggles, which is exactly why she created the T.R.I.B.E. community.

Elizabeth A. Dovec, MD, FACS, FASMB

Elizabeth A. Dovec, MD, FACS, FASMBS is the CEO, co-founder, and co-creator of NewTri Health, a trusted, standardized, state of the art, virtual pre-operative education system to prepare patients for bariatric surgery.  She is a bariatric surgeon with AdventHealth in Central Florida. She completed her fellowship training with Vanderbilt University’s Advanced Laparoscopic and Bariatric Surgery Program.  Through novel approaches, focusing on the patient experience and sustainable results, she leads one of the busiest programs in the nation.  A Board-Certified General Surgeon and Fellow of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) and a Diplomate in the American Board of Surgery, she is passionate about diminishing the staggering obesity epidemic.   

Stephanie Wagner, MS, RD/LD

Stephanie Wagner MS, RD/LD is a bariatric dietitian with experience working for seven bariatric surgeons in three bariatric clinics since 2009. Steph is the owner of an online bariatric nutrition resource owned and operated by Steph and her husband Kevin. The membership site offers nearly 600 WLS recipes, meal plans and meal planning tools, educational videos and a supportive online community for their members. Steph's primary aim is to empower patients in their journey after surgery and to help her followers find freedom from weight struggles and food addictions. She loves cooking and loves to show patients that healthy food can be easy, taste great and keep them on track with their goals.

Megan Moore, RD, CSOWM, CD

Megan Moore, RD, CSOWM, CD is a Registered Dietitian and a Certified Specialist in Obesity and Weight Management. She specializes in helping those who have undergone bariatric surgery lose weight, improve their health, and feel their best with delicious food and lifestyle tips. In 2019, she published her first book, The Complete Bariatric Cookbook and Meal Plan: Recipes and Guidance for Life Before and After Surgery. You can connect with her on Instagram @mybariatricdietitian or online at

Dr. Maher El Chaar, MD

Dr. Maher El Chaar is the Bariatric Surgery Fellowship Director for the weight management center at St. Lukes University Health Network. Dr. Maher El Chaar is an active member of the American College of Surgeons (ACS), Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES) and American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). In addition, Dr. EL Chaar is a member of the national Obesity Action Coalition (OAC). Dr Maher El Chaar is also an active member of the Clinical issues Committee (CIC) of the ASMBS, a committee responsible for the development of guidelines and recommendations for the practice of bariatric surgery. He is the author of two books, Dr E’s Guide to Weight Loss Surgery and Bariatric Surgery Made Easy.

Carla parson, Group Instructor 

Carla Parson is a Full-time Healthcare Worker, Bariathlete, Group Fitness Instructor, and Mental Health Awareness Advocate. She enjoys teaching WLS patients how exercise plays an important role post-surgery, not just physically, but mentally and emotionally, as well. As she continues to press toward her goals, Carla's desire is to assist others along the way. Her motto is: Be Resilient. Be Triumphant. Be Steadfast. Be Healthy.


Janice Bissex, MS, RDN, FAND


Janice Newell Bissex is a Holistic Cannabis Practitioner, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, and cookbook author. After her dad found relief from his pain using medical cannabis it became Janice’s mission to help others suffering from chronic pain, anxiety, insomnia, autoimmune disorders, IBD/IBS, and other debilitating conditions find relief using CBD and cannabis.


Janice completed training and certification through the Holistic Cannabis Academy and the Cannabis Fundamentals Certificate Program at GreenFlower. She teaches cannabis therapy and is Co-Program Director, Cannabinoid Medical Sciences at John Patrick University School of Integrative and Functional Medicine. She wrote Simple Guide to CBD: Fact, Fiction, and a Path Forward to educate consumers on the potential benefits of CBD and cannabis therapy. 

Samuel Tambeaux, RDN, LDN

Sam graduated (BS in Human Nutrition) and completed a Dietetic Internship at the University of Illinois at Chicago in December of 2018. He became a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist in March of 2019 and has over two years of experience as a dietitian within the field of Weight Loss Surgery/Bariatrics. You can find him on Instagram as @BariatricChefBoyRD. His passions including fitness, cooking, reading, and trying different cuisines/restaurants


Helen Kimmel, MS, RD, CDN

Helen Kimmel has been a Registered Dietitian for over 25 years. She had Bariatric surgery nine years ago and has maintained her 100-pound weight loss. Her exciting work has included being the first Nutritionist at a major NYC restaurant (The Rainbow Room) and collaborating as Nutritionist on several James Beard Award winning cookbooks. Helen has appeared on TODAY, Food Network, and CNN. She started a virtual Bariatric Nutrition practice to support and guide  pre-ops and post-ops on their WLS Journeys. Helen provides a concierge level one-on-one service for her clients.  

Katie Chapmon, MS, RD

Katie Chapmon, MS, RD is an award winning Registered Dietitian specializing in the field of bariatric nutrition, digestive issues and hormone health since 2008. She is the proud recipient of the 2018 Excellence in Weight Management Practice Award and 2010 Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year Award through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Katie is currently updating the Bariatric Surgery and Pregnancy chapter in the 3rd Edition of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Pocket Guide to Bariatric Surgery and has presented educational webinars for various organizations. She has written numerous articles surrounding bariatric surgery and nutrition for both professional and consumer publications. Katie also served as education co-director, as well as presented at several American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Conference sessions. Katie is currently the Chair of the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Integrated Health Clinical Issues Committee. 


Nicholas Isaac Jones, MD, FACS

Dr. Nicholas Isaac Jones, MD, FACS (@drnipandtuck) is a double-boarded certified plastic surgeon specializing in both aesthetic and reconstructive surgery in Atlanta, Georgia. He is the owner of Nip & Tuck Plastic Surgery (@drnipandtuck)  in West Paces Ferry. Dr. Jones is a native of New Orleans and received his Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and his medical degree from Louisiana State University. While at XULA, he pledged as a member of Kappa Alpha Psi. He completed surgery residency at Albert Einstein Medical Center and his plastic surgery fellowship at Medical College of Georgia. Dr. Jones has advanced training in microsurgery from the University of Mississippi Medical Center. After completing his training, he did a clerkship with Dr. Marcelo Araujo, a world-renowned cosmetic surgeon in Sao Paulo, Brazil. He is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgery and a fellow of the American College of Surgeons.” His philosophy is to provide high quality aesthetic and functional results while maintaining the highest level of professionalism and uncompromising safety and comfort.

Faith Flaherty, MS, RD, LDN

Faith Flaherty is a registered bariatric dietitian in Chicago, IL. She has over 5 years of experience in nutrition therapy for bariatric surgery and non-surgical weight loss.  Her mission is to help individuals who have undergone bariatric surgery improve their quality of life by nourishing their body with food to meet their weight loss and health goals.   


In 2016, she was featured as a recipe contributor in the book Total Body Diet for Dummies.  Most recently, she has conducted research on barriers to vitamin and mineral supplementation after surgery set for publication in the medical journal Surgical Endoscopy. 

Connect with Faith: 

Instagram: @the.bariatric.nutritionist

Dawn Boxell, RDN, LDN

Dawn Boxell is a registered dietitian nutritionist who has been in the field of bariatrics for over 25 years.  She started her career in one of the very first bariatric centers in the Midwest and transitioned to a very large center in Indiana where she still enjoys counseling patients part-time. This has allowed her to counsel tens of thousands of weight loss surgery patients. 

She published her first food guide “Bariatric Innovations” in 2005, that sold more than 5,000 copies.  She has since founded her website WLS Gut Health, the Gastric Health Show Podcast & supplement line Gastric Health dedicated to restoring digestive health after weight loss surgery.  She is passionate about using a whole body approach to health using with whole real foods and quality supplements.

Dr. Kristin Lloyd, PhD, LPC

Dr. Kristin Lloyd, PhD, LPC, is a licensed psychotherapist and focuses on lifestyle change to equip bariatric patients with mindset practices and life skills/tools after weight loss surgery guiding them to cope better and maintain their weight loss. She is also a certified Reiki Master, an EFT/Energy Psychology Practitioner, Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, Certified Mindset Coach, speaker, and a prolific writer. Kristin had VSG surgery in 2013 and has lost 200lbs and has kept it off. She has authored several books including the Amazon Bestsellers, Bariatric Mindset Success: Live Your Best Life and Keep the Weight off after Weight Loss Surgery,Release Your RegainYou can connect with Kristin at her website  Bariatric Mindset, her popular Facebook Group, Instagram, Twitter, or Youtube profile. 


April Williams & Jason Smith

Jason Smith is a bariatric patient that had Gastric Sleeve Surgery on 3/11/20 and has gone on to lose 190lbs. He is passionate about helping the Bariatric Community because he saw a void in support before his own surgery. This led him to co-create East2west_wls with his friend April Williams. Together they offer support to the community from pre-op to many years post op, and all phases in between.
This support comes in the form of a weekly Podcast that features experts as well as members of the community for a well rounded support system.
April Williams had VSG in July 2019 and has lost and maintained 120 pounds! She teamed up with her friend Jason to create an online bariatric community during COVID and beyond! They strive to support the bariatric community with humor, humility, and honesty.


"What an amazing symposium this was. I have learned a lot which will help me once I get my surgery. I'm trying to prep and this is all so helpful for my journey."

- Happy Attendee from 2020

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