“Now I’ve got the rest of my fantastic new sugar-free life to live!”

Before and after.

Before and after

My Westerdahl, also known as the LCHF engineer (link in Swedish), has been fighting her sugar addiction since childhood. LCHF is an essential ingredient in the recipe for her success, but My says it’s not enough.

Here’s how she succeeded and lost 208 lbs (94 kilos).

The email

Hi!

I started eating LCHF in the winter of 2010.

From 2010 to 2014 I lost 176 lbs (80 kg). But it was a bumpy road, I frequently got caught in the sugar trap. At the end of 2014 I hit rock bottom and gained 44 lbs (20 kg) back. Once again, I’d lost control over the sugar, I couldn’t resist it.

I felt completely worthless. How can you be so small and weak-willed when it comes to something as absurd as sugar? Especially when you’ve got LCHF – so simple, delicious and filling.

In May 2015, I finally got it: I’m addicted to sugar, insanely addicted to sugar. LCHF is an essential tool for someone with an addiction – but it is not a complete solution. We need help and mental tools to save us from eating ourselves to death.

The addiction is life threatening – we can’t find our way back to health on our own.

In May 2015, I finally received help from addiction specialist Kicki Käller and her sister Ingela at Arteget AB (link in Swedish). They helped to detoxify me, hopefully for the last time, and gave me tools to lead a healthy life, and since then I’ve been free from sugar.

Last Sunday, I’d been sugar free for a whole year without falling off the wagon. It’s the first time since I started eating LCHF in 2010 that I’ve managed to stay out of the sugar trap for such a long time. The result? From 242 lbs (110 kg) to 166 lbs (75.4 kg), minus 76 lbs (34.6 kg) in just a year, despite thyroid issues and despite having been a yo-yo dieter since the age of 9.

Today, I’ve lost 208 lbs (94.6 kg) without surgery. I owe it all to LCHF, weight training and addiction treatment. My best advice for staying sugar free are:

  • I remove all my triggers: alcohol, sweeteners, dairy (except for butter) and substitute products. All these things are allowed on LCHF but they’re bad from the aspect of addiction, they increase the risk of falling into the sugar trap.
  • I don’t eat foods resembling the ones I couldn’t stop eating before. Are you a bread junkie? Don’t eat LCHF bread, even if it’s healthy. Do you prefer candy? Don’t eat LCHF candy – it triggers your destructive eating behavior and increases the risk of a relapse.
  • I do an intermittent fat fast 16:8 with bulletproof coffee for breakfast: butter, coffee and MCT oil. By doing this, I don’t have to face my drug more than twice a day – lunch and dinner – plus it curbs my sweet tooth. Because that’s how it is. Sugar addicts like me have to relate to our drug, whereas other addicts – like alcoholics – can let go of it completely. I choose to minimize the management of my drug to make sure I’m abstinent.
  • I seek others who are addicted. You can find OA and FAA groups through Google. Your journey will be so much easier when you’re part of a group and find others who have the same problem.
  • Plan. I know what I’m going to eat today and tomorrow. Food is my medicine and medicines are not to be neglected. It’s OK to weigh and measure food if you’re unsure of the quantity, but that’s sacrilege in the church of LCHF. Most importantly, don’t worry about eating too much/too little/too seldom/too often. Food is fuel, not a topic to spend hours ruminating on.
  • I eat a maximum of 20 g carbohydrates a day and lots of butter with every meal. It makes my body calm and satisfied and I never need to worry about gaining weight. I lift weights 3-5 days a week. I do my workouts at the end of my fasting windows and refuel with extra protein and fat.
  • It is possible to do a strict, dairy-free and sweetener-free LCHF. Many people find this food boring. I’m allergic to eggs, fish, poultry, nuts, soy and seafood – and I manage to eat a strict, dairy free and sweetener free LCHF. Honestly, it’s better than a standard LCHF for me as it doesn’t trigger my addiction. Food should only be fuel for us addicts, not a treat or a consolation. It’s about habits and about learning to eat new things. Today, I fully enjoy my dairy-free food and I don’t miss heavy whipping cream or Diet Coke at all.
  • I measure other things, not just weight. I take other parameters into account – so I can celebrate as much as possible. My weight is important, but how many days I’ve been sugar free is more important. Just for today, I’m going to be sugar free, and today has finally become a whole year of sugar-free days. I only think short term. One day at a time, I’ve stopped promising myself everlasting success – but every day when I wake up I promise myself to be sugar free – tomorrow, however, I can have sugar. FYI – tomorrow never comes.
Today, when everything revolves around sugar – birthdays, Christmases, holidays – it’s difficult living with a sugar addiction. Sugar addiction is a relapsing condition – sometimes it’s super easy and sometimes you have to wrestle with the sugar troll for weeks.

The basic rule for recovery is to actually eat LCHF. Everything that turns into sugar in your body must be avoided. Accept help from those who have come before you, find support and stop hiding, stop feeling ashamed, stop lying. You can have a fantastic life without sugar and carbohydrates. On less than 20 g of carbs a day and on 3–4.5 lbs (1.5–2 kg) butter a week I have:

  • Lost 208 lbs (94.6 kg), 76 lbs (34.6 kg) only this past year
  • Gotten my engineering degree without a single re-exam
  • Received a scholarship
  • Done heavy weight lifting 3–5 days a week
  • Achieved amazing health markers when it comes to blood pressure, blood lipids and blood sugar

Well. That talk about getting sick, slow-witted and being unable to work out is not quite true. Now I’ve only got a measly 22 lbs (10 kg) left until I reach my goal weight. But even more importantly: now I’ve got the rest of my fantastic new sugar free life to live!

Comment

Congratulations on your success, My! Your journey has been amazing to follow. Fighting a powerful addiction is hard work. Well done!

More on sugar addiction

Part 1 – Bitten Jonsson

Try it yourself

Do you want to try a low-carb diet yourself? Use these resources:

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Weight loss

  • How to maximize fat burning
  • The 5 common mistakes on LCHF
  • My success story with Kenneth Russell
  • Isn't weight loss all about counting calories?

More success stories

Your story

Do you have a story to share? Do you want to help others get inspired? Here’s how to do it.

21 comments

  1. karen
    OMGOSH, Im so happy for you!! Plus Im going to copy your email and look at it when I need a pick me up. You have gained so much knowledge on yourself and your foods. YOU REALLY ROCK! thank you a ton for your great story and all the wonderful, great, awesome advice. WOW!
  2. Jane
    This is a fantastic story - thank you for sharing and well done. I love the tips relating to LCHF and sugar addiction, they really resonate with me that if I eat something that looks like carbs I crave it more and more. I recently thought about adding Inulin to my diet but I realised (just in time) that it is sweet and will cause more damage in terms of mindset than the health benefits it might help with. Well done again
  3. Sarah
    Wow,
    you are an inspiration and absolutely stunning, also your story was the kick in the bum I need to stop with my sweetners.
    When I first started LCHF i was strict no substitutes but have like you fallen into the carbs sugar trap and your story has given me the push to go back to basics so thank you!! I have lost 27kg since November 2015 I want to lose another 20kg and love LCHF but needed your story to remind me of why I am Here.... Oh and congrats :)
  4. Alan
    Wow, congratulations on your truly amazing achievement!
  5. Barbara
    Congratulations My, you look fantastic and most importantly you have gotten a handle on your sugar addiction. You look soooo different. Well done :)
  6. Majoren
    A truly amazing story of a really stubborn girl!
  7. Reena Mehta
    Lot of willpower ... hats off.

    I need some help here ....., being a vegan and palate for Indian cuisine . I find it hard to follow lchf diet. Pls advise . I need to loose 70 pounds

  8. Scott
    This is very inspiring . Thank you. I feel I need to read success stories like this to keep me on track. Helps a lot.
  9. Carolyn
    Wow! you look amazing! Your story is very inspirational, thank you so much for sharing :)
  10. Seth
    Congratulations on your amazing journey and thank you so much for sharing -- very inspirational!
  11. Isabel
    Congrats!!!! ??? And thank you so much for the very useful tips!
  12. Barbee
    Awesome job on your weight loss and kicking the addiction! I needed to read this today as i struggle with food addiction also and i am starting lchf on Monday :)
  13. Susan R.
    Awesome...your story gives me hope of a new tomorrow for myself. Thanks for sharing!!!
  14. gbl
    Amazing blog (go to the link) and ambitious courageous young woman. So much good information there (what I could get) the rest I had to guess. Here's one of her recipes translated:

    Ingridienser:

    30g smör
    2 dl Alpro osötad mandelmjölk
    6 msk ICAs kokosflingor
    2 msk Kung Markatta mandelmjöl
    1 krm salt
    1 krm kardemumma
    Kanel

    Gör såhär:

    Smält smöret. Häll i mjölken och rör om. Häll i resterande ingridienser och koka tills det tjocknat. Servera med kanel och 0,5 dl mandelmjölk. 1 portion innehåller drygt 2g kolhydrater.

    30g butter
    2 cups unsweetened almond milk Alpro
    ICA 6 tablespoons coconut flakes
    2 tablespoons Monkey King almond flour
    1 pinch of salt
    1 pinch of cardamom
    Cinnamon

    Do this:

    Melt the butter. Add the milk and stir. Pour in remaining the ingredients and cook until thickened. Serve with cinnamon and 0.5 cups of almond milk. 1 serving contains more than 2g carbohydrates.

  15. gbl
    It is possible to translate the whole blog. I wonder if she would give Diet Doctor permission to do that? The right app, and someone relatively tech savvy can do it in a few clicks.
  16. sana
    Hello Iam another obes person my question is can I eat gram or chikpea flour flat bread as a replacement of wheat flat bread for low carb diet can I loos weight or not plz guide me soon Thanx
  17. gbl
    This is My's latest post from her blog. Hers is my favourite #1 story.

    January 20, 2017 06:27
    Are you a jojjobantare? Is a new diet your higher power? Then you are almost certainly sugar addiction. We can not keep us on track with the help of diets are often sugar addiction. It plays like no matter how much willpower we have or how good diciplinen is, we fall on the falls on the falls on the falls! Somewhere we then have a choice. Should I continue with GO ON diets or should I actually realize that this is a disease? It is enough here now? I need more than even a fucking diet?

    Should we beat ourselves or should we ask for help? Somewhere we have to land. I know I've written about this before, but patience really be repeated. I get so many emails every week from people who are desperate, who do not know how to go about it. That it does not work as well to stick to a diet, without falling over and over again.

    How the hell do you do?

    10% is the food. It is the foundation. Remove all sugar, flour and other carbohydrate-rich foods. The fuckar up the whole system and just makes you want to eat more and more and more.

    Search yourself to the community. You have to have like-minded in your environment. Thus the "norm ice" (ie those who can eat right) who live around you will think that there is even a diet and be sick darn tired. Some are perhaps envious and questioning. Then you must have help and support from us that are as quirky as you are. Quirky and totally freaking sweet. It is soo important to obtain a zone where dependency becomes chatter offense. That you can laugh and cry over all his oddities. I can not describe the feeling contractor talking to a sugar sister and bah: fuck the hell. Yesterday I ate until I vomited. On all just asgarvar on bah: BeenthereDonethat! Sow bloody liberation. Making the chatter offense really is the first step to recovery.
    PS! check FAA.se

    Working proactively. Find out what triggers cravings of you. It could be food, but also situations (eg. Movie on the couch), relationships (a best friend who always ate with), places (eg. Childhood home) and so on. Then you need to be prepared. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

    These things are the three things that are most important to me. Then there is another very important, but to start this is a great start to succeed in their journey.

    http://lchfingenjoren.se/

    Reply: #19
  18. Gentiann
    MY said: "I don’t eat foods resembling the ones I couldn’t stop eating before. Are you a bread junkie? Don’t eat LCHF bread, even if it’s healthy. Do you prefer candy? Don’t eat LCHF candy....."

    She is so right on this point.... I'm quite annoyed to see too many low-carb sites dedicating their time to recipes of low-carb version of cakes and candy, using artificial sweeteners without any guilt!
    I have quit sugar long time ago and am not tempted at all by sweets, but I love bread..... fortunately, i did not find any LCHF recipe for bread that tasted like my beloved baguette...... otherwise, I will probably be eating too much of it. I don't want to teach my brain that's it's OK to eat bread now, that's why I used only the low-carb bread recipes that are very different from what I used to eat: for example oopsie bread is perfect for me.

  19. Janice
    I really appreciate your input as so many of us have struggled with carbohydrate addiction, in its many forms...bread, sweets, pastries etc. However, could you please refrain from the obscenities as many of the readers, myself included, may not want to read those words. May you have continued success.

    This is My's latest post from her blog. Hers is my favourite #1 story.
    January 20, 2017 06:27
    Are you a jojjobantare? Is a new diet your higher power? Then you are almost certainly sugar addiction. We can not keep us on track with the help of diets are often sugar addiction. It plays like no matter how much willpower we have or how good diciplinen is, we fall on the falls on the falls on the falls! Somewhere we then have a choice. Should I continue with GO ON diets or should I actually realize that this is a disease? It is enough here now? I need more than even a fucking diet?
    Should we beat ourselves or should we ask for help? Somewhere we have to land. I know I've written about this before, but patience really be repeated. I get so many emails every week from people who are desperate, who do not know how to go about it. That it does not work as well to stick to a diet, without falling over and over again.
    How the hell do you do?
    10% is the food. It is the foundation. Remove all sugar, flour and other carbohydrate-rich foods. The fuckar up the whole system and just makes you want to eat more and more and more.
    Search yourself to the community. You have to have like-minded in your environment. Thus the "norm ice" (ie those who can eat right) who live around you will think that there is even a diet and be sick darn tired. Some are perhaps envious and questioning. Then you must have help and support from us that are as quirky as you are. Quirky and totally freaking sweet. It is soo important to obtain a zone where dependency becomes chatter offense. That you can laugh and cry over all his oddities. I can not describe the feeling contractor talking to a sugar sister and bah: fuck the hell. Yesterday I ate until I vomited. On all just asgarvar on bah: BeenthereDonethat! Sow bloody liberation. Making the chatter offense really is the first step to recovery.
    PS! check FAA.se
    Working proactively. Find out what triggers cravings of you. It could be food, but also situations (eg. Movie on the couch), relationships (a best friend who always ate with), places (eg. Childhood home) and so on. Then you need to be prepared. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
    These things are the three things that are most important to me. Then there is another very important, but to start this is a great start to succeed in their journey.
    http://lchfingenjoren.se/

  20. Janice
    This is such an inspirational personal testimony! There are so many take always from your story! I personally like your point that you don't concern yourself with the scale but make it your aim to be sugar free each day! I, too, sought counseling which takes personal responsibility to another level...getting outside help in the area that needs attention. Bravo!!! Great story and congratulations on what you've accomplished!???
  21. 1 comment removed
  22. Jean
    Janice..... January 27. "Getting outside help in the area that needs attention". For me, that was doing endless research on You Tube and Diet Doctor.com, UNTIL I completely understood the role of Insulin in my body. They told me 40 years ago that I was "hyper-insulinaemic", but I never understood what that meant in terms of fat-storage. Once I properly understood that Insulin not only transports fat to the cell, opens the door, stuffs the fat inside......... THEN it slams the door shut and THROWS AWAY THE KEY! If you realize that insulin in your blood-stream PREVENTS your body from burning the stored fat, YOU WON'T EAT SUGAR, HIGH G.I. FOODS, or any Carbohydrates that take your daily level above 20g total. You won't even be slightly tempted.
    I am now so aware of provoking an insulin output response, that I have completely lost my appetite for any avoidable Carbs. At age 73, for the first time in my life of yo-yo dieting, it's easy to lose weight. Nine kilos down, ten to go. Thank you Diet Doctor/LCHF. I am ecstatic!
    I understand of course that My and others like her have a problem of a different degree, but perhaps this will help someone.

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