“My Happiness and Meaning of Life Have Returned”

John suffered from an addiction and had lost his company, he was overweight, in debt and he did not even have contact with his children anymore.

Then the turning point came, and it started with food.

The E-Mail

Hello.

My story is not one of massive weight loss, miraculously healed disease or anything like that. My journey has been more of the inner, spiritual kind… In short, it has helped me improve as a person.

My weight journey:

Throughout my whole youth, until I turned 17-18, I was overweight. Not obese, but I’ve always carried around a few extra pounds, and I’ve always felt as though I were a fat person. Between the age of 18 and 25, I looked good, but that period passed… ;-)

During different periods in my life, I’ve successively gained weight, and the worst time was when I worked as a salesman and found myself weighing over 220 pounds (100 kilos). And I am 5’7 (175 cm)… I decided that that was enough and I starved myself until I weighed under 198 pounds (90 kilos). But I soon found myself yo-yoing back… When I switched jobs to one of a more physical kind, some of the fat just melted off, but during the last 15 years I’ve plateaued a little bit over 198 pounds (90 kilos). Yes, I can go on about all the yo-yo-dieting that I’ve gone through, but from my perspective that is irrelevant.

My alternative story:

You can say that anger drove me to a LCHF diet! I thought that LCHF was just another fad diet, until I read The Food Revolution. It made me extremely mad to say the least (and I still am to some extent, so I guess I have some issue that I haven’t completely addressed…)

Yes, I am naive and I am blue-eyed (a blonde even), but that doesn’t serve as an excuse for the fact that the food and pharmaceutical industries thrive on people’s gullibility. I get furious when I think about how governmental departments and other organizations serve as support to them. No one has wanted to see the truth, and all have spread false teachings. And what upsets me the most is the fact that somebody must have known, but kept their mouths shut (if you don’t understand what I talk about you should read The Food Revolution by Andreas Eenfeldt).

So I made I firm resolution: I would never support the wheat-, grain- and sugar firms again. This was the end of my consumption of pre-packaged food, soda and candy.

Said and done. I emptied my cupboards and the fridge of everything that contained more than 7% carbohydrates (I had one bag with some kind of nut that I kept though…) I bought butter, cream, crème fraiche and other such LCHF-staples. I became so inspired with my cooking and created one new dish after another. I filled up my fridge with loads of home cooked food. It took me three days to “clean out” the carbohydrates from my system. I ate a lot of food, but soon noticed that many anxious thoughts entered my mind whenever I was about to eat… Where did these feelings come from?

To put it simply, I felt guilty about the fact that I no longer had any potatoes on my plate, no bread to put under ham and cheese, no glass of milk that had to be emptied. With this new way of living I had to fight the norms that I was brought up with. For some of you, this may seem like nothing, but to me this was a source of anxiety that could have lead to devastation. I suffer from a special kind of food addiction. This means that I use feelings to trigger my addictive behavior instead of dealing with these feelings in a rational way. I can use any feeling, tiredness, anger, loneliness, boredom…

The trigger evokes the reward system in the brain and that is so to speak my drug. When the rush from the addiction then subsides, I become filled with feelings of guilt and shame, which is another strong trigger. And then the vicious cycle starts again… As a consequence of this, I’ve lost contact with my children, I no longer run a company and I am heavily indebted. In order to deal with my addiction I’ve since started caring much more about my life and have become very attentive to my triggers in order to prevent relapse. For more than 10 years I’ve fought to stay clean of drugs. As of today, I’ve stayed so during 327 days…

That’s why this was a very important discovery for me. The new food I ate created shame and guilt, because I enjoyed it (that’s how my special kind of addiction relates to generalized food addictions). And I had to check myself in order not to fall for overeating. However, the benefit of LCHF is that it is almost impossible to overeat due to the great satiety…

Thereafter I had to fight the boredom of not having anything to do that LCHF brought about: no chips for watching movies, no snack that needed to be cooked. Even buying groceries went fast from now on. By only buying clean food, I often did not have more than 8-10 items in my basket. I was very delighted to find that I suddenly had energy to take care of this discovery. I called my sponsor (who I hadn’t spoken to in half a year) and we talked for two hours.

After telling him about my new discovery, we decided to meet up every week and have my new diet as a starting point for our conversations. For two years now we’ve proceeded with this routine (he has even switched to a LCHF diet and has similar experiences…). Slowly but steadily I went back on track. My energy went through the roof, the pounds melted off. Things started going smoothly for me. All of a sudden the shelf was put on the wall, the one that had been in the hallway for half a year, the winter tires were switched on time, the car got washed, the house was clean and I even found myself walking the dog on days when I was tired… I got new customers, two of them worth 100 000 SEK (approximately $12 500). I started an education that I love.

And so it happened this January. My ex-wife sent me an invitation to my son’s birthday. At the time, I hadn’t seen him for 3 years… My happiness and meaning of life has returned.

Okay! So how does this relate to LCHF?

I believe in energies and a higher power, which is what we call it in my program (like AA, but for my type of addiction). It is a power which is greater than the sum of its parts. When I am free of drugs I can access this higher power, and through meditation I open the channel of receiving. Carbohydrates in general and sugar in particular trigger my addiction and make me lose myself, the channel closes. Without LCHF I don’t have enough energy to take care of my emotions or my life at all.

Through LCHF I’ve found a new platform of similar minded people, I’ve got new friends for life. With LCHF, I’ve found other, may I say outsiders. It creates a sense of community for all of us who feel lonely. Etc… So LCHF has even saved my life!

So thank you Andreas for an excellent book. Even if you’re not interested in LCHF it sows the seed of healthy skepticism towards much of what we otherwise perceive as truth.

John.

Comments

Congratulations to an enormously improved health – and I’m very happy that you’ve got the chance to meet your children again.

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LCHF for Beginners

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  • The 3 Stages of Sugar Addiction

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Note

The photo above is a stock photo and is not of John.

Your Story

Do you have a success story to share with us? It is an effective way of inspiring others to change their lives.

E-mail your story to me at andreas@dietdoctor.com. Before and after pictures are great for making your story convincing and extra inspiring for others. Tell us if it is okay that we share your name and picture or if you prefer to be anonymous. Please share with us if you have a blog or Instagram account that our readers can follow.

8 Comments

  1. Xtina
    John, thank you for sharing your story and so happy for you that you found a way of living that works for you and is bringing you so much of life's good things--especially a relationship with your son. You are very inspiring and it is good to be reminded that losing weight is not the only benefit of LCHF.
  2. ANTHONY
    Congratulations John, keep up the good fight !
  3. Barbara
    Well done John, very inspirational, it's not all just about weight loss is it?
  4. Nate
    John, thanks for sharing story. It shows that LCHF effects every part of your body, mind and emotions. I think that most new lchf people are pleasantly surprised by that.
  5. Laura
    John, thanks for your inspiring story. It is especially inspiring to me as I worked in the Chemical Dependency industry as a Clinical Psychologist treating addiction. Anecdotally speaking I truly believe there is a connection between diet and addiction. I saw many of my client's children seriously addicted to sugar, and many of my clients switched their Drug of Choice (DOC) to sugar once going through withdrawls and becoming sober.
    No one ever entered treatment as a plain-old drug addict or alcoholic. Something always triggered the addiction, often grief and loss. We did not only address the addiction, but also addressed the need to explore deeper levels to help heal the cause and build the necessary skills to remain sober.
    As a ray of hope I am noticing many Neuroscience articles discussing the link between mental health and gut health. The gut health being directly affected by diet. Check out "Gut feelings: the emerging biology of gut–brain communication" by Emeran A. Mayer in Nature Review Neuroscience (through Google Scholar) for more information. I can't help but believe we are on the cusp of some serious breakthroughs validating exactly what you are saying in your story.
    Reply: #6
  6. Cheeky
    Laura, your comment was SO interesting to me. I've struggled with quitting smoking before, and noticed that I tend to gravitate to high sugar garbage that I would normally rarely touch! My husband had the same experience. He quit smoking for a few months and ended up eating a GALLON of icecream/week. He is very trim, wiry, and muscular (smaller guy, but almost no body fat.) It was so odd to see him sporting a little paunch belly during that time! Now he does those gross dip pouches, so he hasn't really "quit". I myself smoke 1-2 every night, but I'm hoping to kick this bad habit (along with others) on my new LCHF journey. I am very interested in the book that you mentioned, as well. Thank you for the recommendation!
    Reply: #8
  7. Cheeky
    John, what a raw yet refreshing story! So inspiring for me as I struggle with my own demons. The weight loss aspects of LCHF really do appeal to me, but it was really the testimonials to "mental clarity", "lack of depression", and "increased focus and energy" that got me. My doctor was sending me in for ADHD testing in a few weeks, and I'm pretty sure they'll diagnose me with some of the spectrum stuff, but I want to fix my problems with food instead. I've been depressed and sluggish for the last 12 years, and I'm tired and done. Over the last 9 months, I've put on 30 lbs. I've never been so heavy or so mortified in my life! While I'm technically only on the cusp of "overweight", I can't believe what a difference 30 pounds makes. I was getting heartburn and reflux, unable to catch my breath, sleeping fitfully and feeling angry and irritable almost constantly (really terrible side affect because I am also a mother. I've been so snappy, and my son doesn't deserve it most of the time.) Friends and family have told me that its just a "natural part of aging". I just don't buy that. I'm so ready to make this change, and it's extremely encouraging for me to see stories that address more than than just physical health. Thank you so much for sharing!
  8. bill
    Best of luck quitting smoking. You're
    being played for a sucker by the cigarette
    companies who know that by doping their
    product with sugars it will increase their
    addictive nature. LCHF should help you
    stop craving all forms of sugar.

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