“It just feels like common sense now”

Before and after

Before and after

At the start of this year Mark came across the free low-carb challenge at Diet Doctor. This is what happened when he and his wife decided to take it together:

The E-mail

LCHF in a HC World
I’ve flirted with low-carb diets before. Typically I would start on it and have some initial success. The next thing I knew I would be off it. Sometimes all it took was someone telling me the so-called “dangers” of my diet. Other times it was watching my family and colleagues eating around me and giving into temptation. However you want to look at it, my failures were basically due to the challenges of trying to eat low carb in a high carb world.

Last year, around this time (mid-July), I came across this web site. I signed up for a free month. I lost 10 lbs (5 kg) within a month without the strictest adherence to the diet suggestions. We were gearing up for my daughter’s wedding and it was good to lose a few pounds. Life returned to normal, I started back in my old eating and drinking habits. I decided to not continue with my Diet Doctor subscription. Soon I was back up to my weight of 322 lbs (146 kg).

In January of this year I revisited the site. Diet Doctor had reached out to me and suggested I give it another try on another free month. This time I shared some info and videos with my wife. She offered to do it with me and so we started the two-week challenge. We were so impressed with the recipes and were excited with the initial successes. It was easy to follow and offered us a chance to sort of kick start ourselves into action. My wife only wanted to lose about 18 lbs (8 kg) and, even though she felt great on the diet, her weight loss was a lot slower than mine. Nonetheless, there were other benefits we were noticing other than weight loss.

At first we were feeling guilty. We were eating so much meat, it seemed, going along with the guidelines to eat until satisfied. We felt we were playing a part in increasing the slaughter rate of livestock. However, toward the end of the first two weeks we noticed our appetites changing. Eating the fat on our steaks and all the skin on our chicken was so satisfying, never mind adding dollops of butter to our sides of vegetables. Where in the first week I once ate 5 chicken thighs in a sitting I now would be satisfied with 2. We both started losing our cravings to eat in the evening in front of our shows. Sometimes I would still indulge in some Chicharrones (pork rinds) but our cravings were nothing like when we were eating carbs.

I have been on Omeprazole (Losec) for chronic acid reflux since my late 20’s (for about 25 years). I have a hiatal hernia that makes me dependent on the medicine daily to the tune of 20 mg per day. Well, I started noticing within the first 2 weeks that my indigestion was not as severe. I started messing with my dosage and am now down to about 1 pill per week instead of 1 per day and am hopeful that I will be off it completely, as I’ve learned of some potentially dangerous side effects of such meds.

Related to this I noticed early in I was no longer gassy or bloated after meals. I was bad for developing gas back when I was eating lots of carbs. Now it is unheard of (joke intended). I also seldom feel uncomfortable after a meal. We recently dined out with others at a fine steak house. When my wife and I were done eating our steak, along with the requested extra veggies, garlic butter, and salad, we were satisfied. Even though we felt we had gorged on pretty healthy sized meals we were comfortable. Many others at the table were mentioning how uncomfortably stuffed they were. We very seldom feel that way any more unless we cheat and have a carb meal.

Yes, we do cheat sometimes. When we’re invited to a meal we try to eat what is offered. I usually pay for cheat meals, experiencing bloat, gas, and discomfort. I should point out, I realize there was a lot of water weight loss at first. My legs use to be swollen at the end of a day and socks would leave big lines in my calves. Now my legs look skinny again and I seldom have problems with swollen calves anymore. It’s a good reinforcement to how I now want to eat. My wife and I have no problem agreeing that this is the way we intend to eat for the rest of our lives.

My wife lost her 18 lbs (8 kg) in the first 5 months. I should also point out that she use to suffer from Restless Leg Syndrome, which completely disappeared shortly after starting this diet. She looks and feels fantastic. I have almost lost 50 lbs (23 kg) at the time of this writing and have about another 70 (32 kg) to go. I am going for hip replacement surgery in a couple of months so the weight loss couldn’t have come at a better time. When you do the math you see that I have lost at a very healthy rate of about 1 1/2 lbs (0.7 kg) per week. It’s been effortless in most ways. Sure, I’ve had to use some restraint when all the carb treats are offered at work but other than that it has been easy. No carb or calorie counting, no dependence on heavy exercise, although we do aquasize or swimming a few times per week.

I’ve had a difficult time losing weight in the past. I have hated being in my body. The discomfort that comes with being heavy at my age has been depressing. Not being able to participate fully in my own life has been challenging. I’m 57 years old and am now gaining back energy I thought was long gone. I know I will continue to lose and that things will only get better from here. My blood work is improving and my blood pressure is improving. I’m giving away all my size 4XL shirts and most of my 3XL’s. I’m wearing shirts that I haven’t fit for years and some of them are already a little baggy! I’m looking forward to treating myself to a new wardrobe as I move on from here.

I want to add a note to this about drinking. There are a lot of empty calories in alcohol. I had periods of rapid weight loss and times when I seemed to stall. The stalls seem to correlate to times when I was having too many drinks. Just be aware that the stricter you are on this plan the faster your results will be.

Other than the chronic pain in my life due to deteriorated hips and some compressed disks, I feel great. I am certain that continued weight loss is going to really help these conditions in conjunction with the surgeries I will be undergoing shortly.

I never thought I would be the guy who often only eats twice a day, experimenting with intermittent fasting because I’m just not hungry. I never thought I’d be the guy who actually can steadily lose weight without strict adherence to some kind of restrictive diet and intense workout.

I’m very thankful for finding this way of eating. I’m enjoying the videos with my membership, and am reading many materials that support this lifestyle. Several friends are interested in what we have to say about our new lifestyle and we are sharing. It just feels like common sense now; this is the way we were meant to eat. It’s so easy, delicious, and motivating. I look forward to sharing my “after pictures” in another year.

Thanks Dr. Andreas and thanks to your team.

Sincerely,

Mark Jefkins

Comments

Getting family and friends on board is a great way to get support and be successful. Congratulations to both of you for your new lifestyle!

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