Early in my adulthood, I didn’t gain weight very quickly. However, every year I’d get just a little heavier. After a few years, it became more difficult to take off the extra pounds. Eventually I officially became “fat.” I didn’t like that at all.
I tried everything to lose weight – Low calorie regimens. Low fat programs. Exercising, eating everything in moderation, chewing slower, and drinking a full glass of water before each meal. Nothing worked. I’d lose a little and think, “Finally I’m going to lose some weight.” Then, wham, I would start gaining again. I was frustrated. I got into a funk, a mild depression really. I did not want to go anywhere. I did not want people to see me looking so large.
My doctor told me I had high triglycerides and needed medicine to bring them down. I told him I wanted to reduce them naturally. He recommended reducing my consumption of red meats, adding lots of cardio exercise, and to come back in 6 months to retest. For 6 months I restricted red meats and exercised like a maniac. I knew that the retest was going to show favorable results because I had worked so hard. WRONG! My numbers went up even higher and my doctor put me on Tricor. Ugh!
I have always strived to eat what conventional wisdom says is healthy, including “heart healthy whole grains.” For breakfast I ate Special K (for protein) with skim milk, orange juice because it’s “healthy” and a piece of fruit. Around 9:30 every morning, I would experience a sugar plunge; an issue I would later learn is common when one’s body releases a lot of insulin to deal with all the carbs (blood sugar) in one’s blood. I would get shaky, jittery, and weak. I felt starved. I believed that if I did not eat something right away, I might pass out.
In 2011 my husband and I visited a friend, who had lost a lot of weight. I asked him how he did it. He said “Low carb.” I told him I ate low carb and only good ones like whole grain breads, whole grain pasta, brown rice, and very few potatoes, but it hadn’t helped me at all. He told me that low carb doesn’t include any of that stuff. I immediately thought, “Forget that, I can’t live without my pasta or bread.” Does this sound familiar?
A few weeks later, I stepped on the scale before going to work and I was within one pound from a weight I swore I’d never allow myself to reach. Standing in front of the mirror looking at my fat self I had to work to not cry but the tears flowed anyway. I was so unhappy and now I had to go to work all red faced and swollen. This wasn’t the first time I cried over my predicament, just the worst time.
That afternoon, while surfing the Internet, I was about to eat some blue corn chips but instead I put them all back in the bag and cut up some vegetables to go with my dip. I became determined to cut out all my bad carbs. I lost 3 pounds in 3 days! Wow! I had never done that! Within 2 weeks, I’d lost 12 pounds. I learned that I needed to add fats to my diet. Yes, that’s right. Saturated fats, the most demonized fat of them all. I emptied my kitchen of everything labeled “low calorie,” “diet,” “fat free,” or “low fat” and replaced these with full fat versions. Things like mayonnaise, sour cream, salad dressings, heavy cream and cheese. I also stocked up on fresh vegetables, eggs and fattier cuts of meat. Out with the “heart healthy” margarines and in with real butter. Oh goodness, this stuff even tasted better. What a bonus.
My husband started eating this way also. He told me he didn’t mind because the food tasted so good. He liked these foods because they did not taste like cardboard and he didn’t have to count calories. That is what is so wonderful about this way of eating. Its eating meats, fatty foods (like yummy bacon), and healthy vegetables. Only eating until full or satisfied but not stuffed.
Since eating Low-Carb, my sugar-plunges have disappeared. My blood sugar levels have stabilized. Together my husband and I have lost over 75 pounds. We feel great. We eat wonderful, tasty, satisfying foods and are never hungry. The fats keep us feeling full and we have more energy than I can remember.
Even though I still weigh more than I think I should, I look much better than I did years ago at the same weight. My muscle tone is more developed, my skin is smoother, and wrinkles that I had started to get are gone. My dad, who does not give compliments easily said, “My goodness, look at you compared to these other women your age. Their faces are all wrinkly and you don’t have any wrinkles.” He would shudder if I told him it’s because of the tasty saturated fats I’m consuming.
What about my blood work, especially since I am eating fatty foods? Six months into my new eating habit, I had my blood work re-done. My triglycerides came down so much that my doctor took me off Tricor, he said that triglycerides can drop very quickly on a low carb diet. I looked at him incredulously. This is the same doctor who told me the only way to bring them down was to reduce red meat consumption, exercise rigorously and take medication. He applauded my low carb diet and encouraged me to keep doing it! HELLO? Why didn’t you tell me about this when you first gave me a diagnosis of high triglycerides? I suppose it’s easier to prescribe a medication then to suggest people alter their diet.
This is not a diet for us. It is a way of life. One that we will continue for the rest of our lives. My husband and I believe in the benefits of this lifestyle so much that when we were introduced to HEAL Clinics and learned that they follow the same protocol that helped us improve our health, we decided to become investors. We are excited to be a part of something that has the potential to help many, many people suffering with Diabetes and struggling with weight loss.