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Radically Improved Health And Changed Lives From Low-Carb Living Are Indeed Still Happening In 2010

Posted Jan 14 2010 5:57pm

You may not hear it anywhere else, but low-carb is positively changing lives

It’s the beginning of a brand new year again and virtually impossible to miss all the subliminal and blatant messages being thrown at you right now about healthy living on television commercials, online marketing, magazine ads, and when you go into your local retail bookstore. You can’t avoid it and what’s most disappointing of all is how much of it is just plain wrong. You’re hearing stuff like cut your fat, reduce your calories, exercise for hours a day, eat more “healthy” whole grains, eat your “good” carbs and “good” fats, everything in moderation and balance. These kind of messages are nauseating at best and some of them are actually potentially dangerous to your health.

At the same time, we’re still getting constantly bombarded by negative messages about high-fat, low-carb diets from numbskulls like this duh-duh-duh dietitian from Georgia claiming such outrageous and unfounded beliefs like “triglycerides can be high due to…eating excess amounts of fat.” Say what? Uh…no. With all due respect, triglycerides get abnormally high from eating too much sugars and grains, not fat. It’s this kind of misinformation that people are exposed to and take at face value as the truth from all the so-called health “experts” out there who absolutely know better and still spout off this garbage. We still have a long way to go to convince people of the truth.

The good news is there are examples galore of people who have attained success, radically improved their health, and changed their lives forever as a result of livin’ la vida low-carb. Yes, even in 2010 when the post-Atkins era is supposed to be in full swing, I receive e-mail after e-mail from readers on a daily basis who are excited to report their amazing progress from following a healthy low-carbohydrate nutritional plan that is working for them to shed the pounds and give them their health back. Today I wanted to share just a small sampling of the encouragement I receive from the people who are kind enough to visit my blog, listen to my podcast show, watch my YouTube videos, and read my books.

These are real people who have experience amazing turnarounds in their health:

Last year I developed a debilitating form of IBS and gluten intolerance (not Celiac’s, but I just can’t eat the stuff.) Ever since, I’ve not been right, my gut is just not happy and this diet is supposed to help treat leaky gut. Now, the other interesting part is my grandmother suffered from depression, obesity, and bad doctors putting her on low-fat, extreme low-calorie (700 calories…that’s like a meal for me) diets. She just got sicker and sicker and died in her early 60s. As far as I can tell, it’s all interconnected.

A while back you did a great video on troubleshooting a low-carb diet. I thought it was really helpful. For me the click was to stop thinking high-protein and to think high-fat. I think what you are doing is incredibly important. I’m not yet a finished success story, I still have 51 pounds to go. But, when I get there, I will send in some pictures and a link to my blog. My success has not been primarily the weight loss. I was able to effectively treat my insulin resistance, my PCOS symptoms (to a greater extent), improve my cholesterol (not worried about it, but whatever) and I got my blood pressure so low I have to add salt just to keep my blood volume up. And one more thing, my bones are supple now, they don’t break anymore. I believe all of that is due to my high-fat diet.

Fantastic! Keep up the beautiful job with your weight loss and never forget about how much your health has improved as a result of your new low-carb lifestyle. Even if you never lost another pound, you’ve got your health in a better position than ever before!

Just so you know I really got into your web site toward the end of October last year. My max weight was 213 (I’m 5′9″) or so and my blood work was awful. When I was growing up (42 now) I was the skinny kid. I think I felt as bad about being skinny as you probably did being the “fat” kid. Well when I hit my mid-20’s my stomach ballooned. My dad and uncle are the same way, larger guts and pretty much skinny everywhere else. I am a fairly recent Type II diabetic and when I switched doctors at the end of 2008 my A1c was in the 11 range (didn’t even test myself daily), gorging on all the high-carb goodies like fast food, etc. My current doctor changed some of my diabetes meds and then my A1c went down to mid 7s. I know this is still bad. But I went livin’ la vida low-carb at the end of October 2009 and just did the $9 at-home A1c test from Walmart, it came back last week 5.7. And that was with one of the 3 months that the test covers with the bad diet. I still haven’t been able to get off any diabetes meds but your way is definitely working for me!

WOO HOO! Awesome job and I encourage you to keep at this. What you are doing proves there is validity to low-carb living, especially for the health and well-being of diabetics. I’m proud of you and wish you well in your continued journey.

I had a doctor’s appointment last week and I just got back my blood test results and wanted to share them with you. I have been following the Protein Power Life Plan for nearly two years, but I haven’t had a blood test since May ‘06. Here are the results:

Total Cholesterol: 272
HDL: 48
LDL: 217

Drum roll please…
Trig: 38!!!!

Of course, my doctor was concerned (but I’m NOT). And this is after she took into account that I was following a low-carb/Paleo-type diet. She told me to exercise to get my HDL to rise – I AM. She also told me to take more Omega 3 oil (I AM). At least she didn’t try to get me on a statin! Anyway, I thought you would get a kick out of my numbers. As you can see, I am at a VERY LOW RISK for cardiovascular disease!

Very low risk indeed! Your triglycerides show me that you are indeed keeping your carbohydrates restricted and that HDL will continue to rise as you replace the carbs with fat, including healthy saturated fat from butter, cream, coconut oil, and fatty cuts of meat. Keep working with your doctor and let your health results speak for themselves. You might be surprised when she begins recommending what you are doing to her other patients in the near future.

I haven’t spent any money in two years on doctors, drugs or lab tests. My New Year’s resolution two years ago was to take control of my health and stop taking prescription drugs for good because they were killing me. Part of my health plan is that I do my own lab work. I get the stuff I need to do this from WalMart of all places.

I did recently develop this terrible pain in my foot and broke down to visit my doctor for an an x-ray because I thought I may have bone spurs (I don’t have my own x-ray machine yet). My so called doctor said you have to get some lab work, you need an A1c. I said I do that myself and my A1c is fine. He was like what?!? How? I said WalMart. He said you can’t be serious! I told him about other tests I was conducting on myself and I could tell he was shocked that I had taken control of my health and didn’t need him to do it for me anymore.

He was even more shocked that I no longer supported him and the pharmaceutical industry by taking the crap he prescribed for my diabetes. This is the doctor that told me diabetes is a progressive disease and it’s only going to get worse. He told me that I would need to start taking insulin and I would surely get heart disease and probably die from the disease. But I will never visit this doctor’s office again because on the wall in the waiting room there was a big flat screen TV. Guess what was running on this television set — it was nonstop drug ads!!! Guess who is paying who to have this running in the waiting room?

GOOD FOR YOU! I tell people they are the ones who need to take back control of their own health and stop thinking that’s the role of your family physician. His job is to provide you with information from tests he runs on your health so that you can make an informed decision about what’s right for you. Unfortunately, most people abdicate their role as the “boss” of their own health to their doctor who very rarely offering a non-pharmaceutical answer to your health ailments. You are among a growing breed of patients who is bucking this trend and I see this movement growing more and more over the next decade or two.

I found your blog while doing some research online after being told I was pre-diabetic. I used to eat what I thought was a healthy diet (I wasn’t overweight but I was always tired and had diabetes symptoms). I immediately switched to a high-protein, low-carb diet. In just two weeks I had to have new blood tests done and my cholesterol had dropped from 5.4 to 4.8 (I live in Australia and I don’t know what the conversion is – but the normal range is 3.9-5.5). My cholesterol had NEVER dropped before and I’ve had high cholesterol since I was a child.

My bilirubin has also always been very high (supposed to be between 3 and 15, mine was 31) and after just two weeks on my low-carb diet it came down to 23 (again, that had never happened to me before). My triglycerides have also dropped and I feel great. And of course my blood glucose levels are within the normal range now and the diabetes symptoms I have haddisappeared, I have lots of energy and I feel really happy, I mean, happy, always in high spirits. Now I’ve been on the diet for a month and I have no problems/cravings etc.

WOW! After just a mere two weeks of livin’ la vida low-carb, you were already seeing tremendous benefits to your health that can only continue to get better and better as time progresses. I always tell people that if you give low-carb a chance to work, then it can and will produce some of the most sensational results you’ll ever see without ever having to take a single drug. That’s a powerful message that I hope nobody ever forgets in this conversation about health.

Sheesh. I don’t really know what to say except in the five minutes of skimming your blog today, I decided to subscribe, which would make yours the first blog I’ve ever subscribed to! So here’s my story: I’m a 40 year old, African-American, Goth / Techno / Indie music listening, club hopping, DJ’ing, sci-fi / fantasy / game nerd, high life living (translation: dinkin’, smokin’, livin’, lovin’) “urban hippie chick” who is beginning to enjoy success with an all natural body care business (in which, also being a chemistry geek, I make everything by hand). creating and vending at farmers markets all over town, you meet some really cool people and begin to discover there’s more out there than the 9 to 5 office drudge mentality or being a big box retail drone (which I was for over half my life). So I decided to finally pursue my dream of leaving my (rather hip) retail job and focusing on growing my business full time.

This cut my activity back a bit, and coincided with my doctor refusing to refill my script for Metformin. I’m obese and weigh in at 215. That’s a far cry from the 280-300 pounds I was when I moved from my hometown to my current residence in 2001, so I figured things were progressing well. I think you can see where this is going. Last month my sugar peaked at 393 – and this was before eating. Remember, I have no health insurance or lots of money, so any money I paid later for an emergency visit would impact my business. Ss crappy as I felt, and seeing the numbers climb in my glucose monitor, I seriously thought I was going to die. I can’t die. There’s soap to make, and new deodorant to test market, and I have friends I love, and this concert I want to fly to Norway to see…I want to live. Goth music notwithstanding, I love life.

So, here’s the deal — I cut my carbs cold turkey and switched to a very Mediterranean-styled low-carb diet. Started snacking on a handful of peanuts instead of a 9 ounce bag of sweet BBQ chips. Introduced more teas and weaned back on sodas. Got an exercise bike and use it daily. I also seek solace in the misfit band of friends I’m proud to call my tribe, as well as my beautiful significant other of 4 years.

My sugar now hovers between 165-175 when i wake up, I’m headachey half the time, irritable as Hell most of the time, have more energy, have lost what appears to feel like a dress size (although according to the scale, I’ve only lost 1 pound), can think more clearly, move more fluidly (my knees stopped hurting going up and down stairs about a week ago), and I still haven’t refilled that script for Metformin (I supplement with vitamins and herbs — screw those guys).

This is going to be a long road, and although I can imagine the outcome, right now it’s tough as all get out to walk: the worst is this is totally like withdrawal, only how do you actually explain withdrawal symptoms from the food you eat? Nearly 95% of most doctors give you empty words of encouragement and lip service and frankly, I don’t have the damn time or patience for it. So stumbling across your blog (while looking up nutrition data for spaghetti squash) was exactly what the Universe wanted me to see — hope…success…honesty…and someone who’s been there and done it, and who chooses to be a voice for others walking this road in a world where lots of folks don’t necessarily want that voice to be heard.

Well, thank you very much! I have to say this was one of the most unique and entertaining e-mail messages I’ve received in a long time. It is both gratifying and humbling to know what an impact the work I am doing is having on the lives of people like this incredible woman and I have nothing but respect and admiration for her tenacity to get the job done. Welcome to livin’ la vida low-carb and may you see many more years of improvements in your weight and health!

I’ve been a follower of yours for years upon reading your first book and most recently your second book. I only wish I could say I’ve been an active low-carber since then. Anyway, I’m shouting out to the world and You, which makes it official, that 2010 is my year to battle this weight (287 lbs at 5′6″) by living and breathing the low-carb lifestyle. I’ve convinced my DH (because he cooks my low carb meals) and myself, more importantly, that I’m doing it this time for the last time and forever. Now I must leave work and go buy a measuring tape so I’m sure to capture all of my successes along the way. Thanks for all you do to end the obesity madness.

It hasn’t been that long ago when I was in the exact same position as you. Morbidly obese and looking at a new year with a fresh set of eyes realizing that the time for me to make a change was right here, right now. You have the right mindset to make this a permanent lifestyle change for yourself and I encourage you to get active at my low-carb support forum to lock arms with people on this same journey to experience the best health of their entire lives. YOU CAN DO IT!!!

It was about six months ago that I discovered your web site and adopted the low-carb philosophy. That is the good news. I have never lost any weight. I am 5’8“ and weigh 205 pounds and would like to get it to 180. I have stuck to low-carb because of health benefits like lowering my blood pressure down to 110/70, decreasing my triglycerides from 300 to 113, raising my HDL cholesterol from 44 to 56, and so much more!

Here are some thoughts I’d like for you and your readers to ponder:

1) It did not take me the 2 weeks to get over the LC flu. After 6 months I am only getting accustomed to the lower carb regimen. 6 MONTHS. For at least the first 3-4 months I felt horrible at times with absolutely ZERO energy. My point in making an issue of this is that I think that more than a handful of people have the same problem and that is a big barrier to entry. The reality I suspect is that the LC flu and the no energy syndrome can last months and not just a few days. As I said I stuck with it for a number of very important reasons that would take another 10 pages to explain. Understand I see the value of LC and my tangential feedback is not critical. I just want to point out that it took me fully 6 months to get used to it and sometimes I do get a bout of LC flu but they are few and far between now. It seems from reading your blog and forum that people who complain about the adjustment to LC must be doing something wrong. I can tell you that I am proof that it takes much longer than two weeks.

2) For some reason lower carb is something that my metabolism has had quite a challenge getting accustomed to. It is like an extreme addiction although I can say that I have not had an extreme weight problems. I can say that I loved sugar, cookies, chocolate, ice cream etc. Since I have been doing LC I do occasionally try these things very moderately to show myself I have changed. If I eat these things now my taste for them is not what it used to be. I can see that my taste for sugar has substantially changed meaning that I have lost my appreciation for sugar.

3) My conclusion is that I have a metabolism that naturally has a lot of trouble weaning itself away from carbs and I suspect there are a lot of people in the same boat. Maybe we have eaten sugars for so long that we have an addiction to it. The final thought I want to leave you with is that it has taken me over 6 months to acclimate to LC and that is a fact and during that time the LC flu, no energy has been a major stumbling block.

4) Out of all this the no energy syndrome of LC has been the hardest thing to overcome. At times it felt as if I had been drugged and could not keep my eyes open and would fall asleep for several hours. This was quite dysfunctional having to take time out during the day to simply sleep because I would hit these sugar lows. It was amazing. Anyway the absolutely worst of the LC experience was these extreme bouts of fatigue which are few and far between now. They did take 6 months to get through and I cannot stress enough that I think a lot of people have the same problem although it would appear that over time if you have the grit it gets much better. How many though abandon LC because they feel so bad for so long like I did? I would guess a lot.

Thanks for the constructive feedback about your experience on low-carb. And good for you sticking with this way of eating even though the scale has been refusing to cooperate. Too many people allow that scale to be the final decider about whether they continue on a low-carb nutritional approach or not. But all of those amazing improvements in your health you listed are reason enough to keep eating this way for life. Keep plugging away at it and I’m confident you’ll see the results you are longing for that will keep you happy and healthy for many more years to come! I sincerely appreciate your comments and cheer you on to great success on your healthy low-carb lifestyle.

I just wanted to send you a note to tell you that I love your podcast and I thank you for all the work you are doing! I also especially wanted to say thank you for your podcast with Dr. Gil Wilshire regarding PCOS and fertility. I myself have PCOS, and it was so comforting to hear him speak about how women with PCOS do not have a disease and that I may not have a hard time getting pregnant later in life if I want to (I’m 23 now). I have been doing low-carb since early November and have lost 12 pounds so far! I do feel much better and I’m glad to hear that I am doing the best thing for my PCOS. I do hope the low-fat dogma hasn’t convinced the majority of women with PCOS.

Dr. Wilshire is a dear friend of mine (as is his famous low-carb blogging wife Regina Wilshire) who helped my wife Christine and I as we struggled with fertility issues several years back. He was the one who discovered Christine’s endometriosis which is a much more severe problem than most women even realize. I do share in Dr. Wilshire’s hopeful response to women with PCOS that they can beat this and keep their hopes and dreams of motherhood alive and well. At the tender age of 23, you have many more years of fertility left in you and I believe when it is God’s timing for you to get pregnant it will happen. Keep on keeping on with your low-carb lifestyle and when you’re ready to have a baby you’ll be in prime position to make that possible!

I am sure you get many emails, but I wanted to let you know that I have gone from 274 pounds to 249 since the end of October! I am not hungry and loving this way of eating! This is changing my life for the better. Thanks for all you are doing!

AWESOME! Never stop the momentum you’ve got going for yourself!

Hi, I was on low-carb for three weeks and had to have lab drawn for insurance. My triglycerides were 58, total cholesterol 173, and my A1c was 5.3! Woo Hoo! I can’t remember about the HDL and LDL, but both were really good! I am a cardiac nurse, and had some of the better scores on my floor!

INCREDIBLE! And I’m sure your doctor friends wanted to know what drug you were on, right? That’s when you can look back at them confidently and say that you’ve been livin’ la vida low-carb, baby. Good for you showing that this way of eating is the natural way to get heart healthy!

I can’t believe I have been livin’ la vida low carb for almost six months now! It’s only the beginning to my healthy life! I’ve lost 25 lbs so far and have about 20 more pounds to lose until I reach my goal weight. I’m so happy to share with you that my husband also started eating low-carb after about four months of me continuously eating low carb and having success. He has lost 27 lbs so far and only has eight more pounds to lose until he reaches the weight he was at when he was in high school. We are living low-carb and loving it!

YAY! People don’t believe me when I tell them how quickly this low-carb diet works to get your weight reduced in some people. If you work the plan as prescribed by any of the many respectable authors of various low-carb regimens, then more times than not it will produce stunning weight loss results that will help make you slim and healthy. Keep pressing on!

My dad recently lost 45 pounds. In fact, we are in a family weight loss contest, and he is beating the crap out of all the rest of us (there are 21 people in the contest). It’s not even close despite the fact that he’s 63 years and never really does organized “exercise” (though his job does require him to be on his feet). When people ask him how he did it, all he says is “I gave up sugar and white stuff” and that’s really the extent of it. He doesn’t measure, weigh, or count anything (even carbs). He just stopped eating “the white stuff.”

This morning he told me it was Tom Naughton’s FAT HEAD movie (actually, I think he called it “that Big Head movie”…or something like that) that made everything “click” for him. He’s not scientifically or nutritionally minded at ALL (in fact, just this weekend I had to tell him that apple cider was not a good choice for a beverage even though it says “All Natural” on the front), but for some reason Tom’s movie made the entire carbs lead to Insulin leads to fat connection “click” with him.

From that day forward, the man who basically lived his life going from sugar-fix to sugar-fix decided to cut it all out cold turkey and it has completely changed his life. This morning he dropped below 200 pounds for the first time in 25 years and says he feels like a whole new man. A couple of days ago he told me he had no idea how much sugar was destroying his life and that he’s really glad I showed him “that big head movie.” LOL!

Too cute and I’m sure my buddy Tom Naughton will enjoy hearing this too. Your dad’s diet sounds like an EXCELLENT plan to me! If more people would just “give up sugar and white stuff,” then we’d be a whole heckuva lot healthier as a culture wouldn’t we? Tell your dad to keep “beating the crap” out of the family in the weight loss contest. HA!

I am now listening to Part 2 of your interview with Dr. Steven Gundry, for which I want to share MANY THANKS for sharing. He talks about skin tags and ten weeks ago I had a lot of skin tags around my neck, and two lines of them under my breasts, so bad that I could not wear a bra because it rubbed on them making them red and painful. I also had one big fat ugly skin tag under my right eye. I was waiting for my doctor to make me an appt with the clinic where I have been before to have them removed.

Within 7 days of giving up wheat, sugar, fruit, juice, etc. the whole lot disappeared. Like Dr. Gundry said, the word is “miracle” — each day I saw the one under my eye shrink more and more until it fell off onto my flannel as I washed, leaving no mark at all. Now I wish I had taken a photo of it when it was at its biggest. Darn it. In the same seven days I obtained complete freedom from sleep apnea, knee arthritis (that my doc attributed to my weight), carpal tunnel syndrome and edema in my feet.

When in Sweden last week my hotel set breakfast was zero-fat and high-carb. By day two I was forced to eat pumpernickel bread and crispbreads with the measly portion of lean ham and bland, low-fat cheese as I was absolutely starving to the point of almost fainting. By day four the sleep apnea had returned, having been absent for nine weeks. When I got back home and on my computer on day six I could feel the carpal tunnel pain in my wrist starting up again. Once home I went straight back onto my proper diet and now three days later the wrist pain has gone and last night for the first night I think I was apnea-free. I want to tell the world about these amazing changes, can you think of any place I can post this news?

You just did! Thank you for once again showing the stark difference that eating a healthy low-carb lifestyle produces and how quickly those improvements will go away once you stray from eating this way. That’s why once you start livin’ low-carb, you stay livin’ low-carb for life!

I’ve never been real good at taking care of my teeth like I should, and I have a molar in the back of my mouth that has the top cracked out. I haven’t had the money to fix it yet. I noticed one thing, though, when I was eating high carb foods — every night it would be filled with food and I would have to brush the heck out of it and use a lot of mouthwash to clean it out. I never ate a lot of sweets, but plenty of bread and potatoes and breaded onion rings. Now at bedtime when I go to brush my teeth, there is none of that sticky food in there. I bet if I had been eating this way since I was a kid my teeth would not be in the condition they are in now.

What a superb point! Most people think of sugar and sugary foods when it comes to dental health, but it stands to reason what we know about all carbohydrates is that they turn to sugar when digested. So any starchy foods that get stuck in your teeth and begin to metabolize in your saliva would ostensibly turn to sugar in your mouth and lead to tooth decay. This is yet another compelling reason for consuming a sugar-free, starch-free diet.

One year ago I weighed 292 lbs, had a 45 inch waistline, was on medications for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and early stage Type II diabetes. My family physician just said take these medications and try to lose some weight. After doing a lot of online research I bought a copy of Protein Power and started the program. Today I weigh 178 lbs with a 33 inch waistline and have been off all medications for 9 months. All of my blood chemistry is normal and I have a (somewhat) low-carb friendly physician.

YES! This is the kind of positive results I have seen over and over again for people who choose to make low-carb their diet of choice and I’m so happy this has worked well for you. Drs. Mike and Mary Dan Eades have seen countless people like yourself achieve similar changes and avert health disaster by following the basic principles of carbohydrate-restriction. Never stop doing what it took to make yourself the health man you are today!

I’m 5 months in and down 6 inches and 60 lbs. I owe this all to you and you’re working knowledge of low-carbing and encouragement. I just want to say thank you man! I’m currently at 264.5 and I feel tremendous. I have more energy, can tie my shoes without wheezing and am getting my self confidence back…it’s a miracle. Eating this way is awesome for me since I can eat foods I love and eat portions that fill me up. THANKS MAN!

Miracle indeed and you should be so proud of yourself for what you’ve been able to accomplish. I’m honored to have played even a small role in motivating you to your success, but you deserve a big pat on the back for making it happen. Now go share your enthusiasm with someone else about how low-carb has changed your life and let that infectious passion inspire someone else to make the changes that you and I have already made in our lives.

I wanted to share my VAP results with you. I am living the low-carb life and
listen to your podcasts every week. My doctor was concerned because my LDL had been inching up. He mentioned a statin but I told him I was totally against that. I suggested a VAP test and I got the results today. My LDL was 130–but it was in Pattern A: The large buoyant type. My HDL is 53–and the sub classes are in the proper ranges. My triglycerides are 68. And my C-Reactive Protein was so low it was off the charts–less than 0.10!

I eat a high fat diet–including lots of “scary” foods like cream, red meat, bacon, sausage, eggs and butter. But, I avoid breads, potatoes, sugars and other high carb foods. Keep up the good work in telling people that the advice they have been given is WRONG and can kill them.

The proof of low-carb living really is in the pudding — the numbers you have shared are repeated over and over again by so many people I’ve come into contact with in the low-carb community. It’s overwhelming at times to see all of these health improvements happening as a result of an increase in fat consumption and a decrease in carbohydrates and yet people like us continue to be ignored by the mainstream medical establishment. They can’t keep up the facade that we don’t exist for long as more and more people begin reporting their successes for all the world to see!

Cool news for my mom — she is 82 years old and has been on diabetes medicine for years! The doctor is pulling her OFF her diabetes medicine! No more Humalog or Lantis, just Metformin, because she has been eating like I have — low-carb with lots of meats, veggies, berries, and eating every 3-4 hours. Quite frankly, she doesn’t need her medicine anymore. He said not to be too concerned about an elevated blood sugar once in a while. YEAH FOR LOW-CARB!!!! It wasn’t her urinary tract infection that was causing her low blood sugar. It was too much diabetes medicine. She still needs 24 hour care, but her blood pressure isn’t anything to worry about — it is within normal ranges for her. Anyways, I’m very thankful for LOW-CARB eating! Another success story of getting off diabetes meds because of diet!

This just proves you’re NEVER too old to go low-carb! How exciting!

I tried low-carb several times and couldn’t hack it, but I’ve changed my mind as a result of reading about Gary Taubes (his Good Calories, Bad Calories book is on order from the library), your websites, and other sources. I really have come to the conclusion that fat is entirely a matter of eating the wrong way and not lowering calories. In truth, both low-carb and cutting calories are hard for me, but I am opting for low-carb because it offers a possibility of getting down to my goal weight and calorie cutting does not. When I cut calories I get down to about 140 and stay there. I also go literally crazy.

Also, I am positive that the reason I was obese was because of my sugar addiction and not because of classic overeating. In fact, I’ve never really been an across the board hog. It’s always been the sweets. I find this regimen hard because I am such a carbohydrate addict. Yes, it is an addiction.

Addiction is right. Too many people think drugs are the worst possible addiction you can have, but I contend sugar is MUCH more addictive than heroin or cocaine will ever be. Try weaning yourself off of sugar and starchy carbohydrates by not eating any for thirty days and you’ll see just how incredibly addicted you are to them. This is why so many people feel like crud when they first begin livin’ la vida low-carb, but then they get the whoosh once those intense cravings cease. Fight the good fight, my friend, and keep this addiction at bay!

I’ve been doing low carb for just under four weeks and stumbled across your blog. I’m nearly 42 (just about a month older than your brother was), 5′ 8″ tall and four weeks ago I was 320 lbs. I haven’t had the health challenges your brother Kevin did, but like you and him I’ve fought obesity all my life. I’ve gone back and forth on diets and always keep coming back to low carb. The last time was in 2001 and I lost close to 50 pounds. Since then, I’ve gotten a lot heavier, and I’ve now accepted that low-carb works for me — so I returned to low-carb and have been very strict.

As of yesterday morning, I had lost an even 20 pounds, but had plateaued for 10 days (mainly because of no exercise). Your blog and YouTube video tribute to your brother inspired me to go to the gym last night and this morning I had broken the through the 300 barrier. I’m planning to go back to the gym tonight, as an attempt to make it more of my daily routine. I just wanted to thank you for your blog and the inspiration to get my butt to the gym.

If there’s one thing that I have been grateful for about the untimely death of my brother Kevin at the age of 41 in October 2008, then it’s this — all the people who have been touched by his story watching that YouTube video or reading about him in the final chapter of my latest book. I am trying to reach the Kevins of this world and give them hope for a better tomorrow for themselves. It’s not an inevitable fate that death is coming for you just because you’re obese and battle health woes. That message didn’t penetrate Kevin’s heart and mind, but it is piercing the consciousness of so many others. Never lose the motivation to better yourself!

Thanks you so much for your blog! It continues to validate all the other information I have been reading on cholesterol levels, eating a low-carb diet, and the dangers of statins. My total cholesterol is 268 and my other numbers just about match yours, so I will not be worrying anymore about whether or not I am damaging my health by eating this way. So far I have only found benefits:

*less inflammation
*no more eczema
*no more cold sores
*A way of eating that I, AND my husband, are able to not only tolerate but enjoy!
*Oh yeah! And weight loss to boot!

I was on Liptor for a short time, and I took myself off of it because of muscular problems in my legs. I began self-medicating with red yeast rice. The red yeast rice did not effect my legs, but it took a terrible toll on my upper body! I thought that I was having severe carpal tunnel problems to the point that I started a work-related claim against my employer – examinations, physical therapy, the works. No one could tell me what was going on.

After about a year and a half on this supplement, I ran out and was not able to buy more for about two weeks, during which time my symtoms began to abate. Now I read that red yeast rice is a lovastain? I have learned not to trust supplements anymore without “current” research. By the way, red yeast rice did lower my total cholesterol about 100 points in just two months, but I sure would not recommend it to anyone!

Awesome job with your health improvements! And thank you for sharing your experience with red yeast rice. My doctor tried to put me on that crap too, but reading the work of people like Dr. Uffe Ravnskov (who I’ll be sharing a podcast interview with very soon) and others has fully convinced me that cholesterol and fat are not the great enemies to our health that we’ve been led to believe. The sooner we can abate the fat-phobia that far too many people feel, the quicker we will be able to turn the tide of obesity and disease around that has plagued us during the miserable low-fat years since the 1970s.

Your site has helped my life a lot, and you are an inspiration. Due to your site I’ve discovered coconut oil, and picked up so much knowledge that I feel like I know what I’m doing now. Most recently, when I listened to your podcast with Sally Fallon, I went to the web site and discovered that raw milk is legal in Japan where I live! There seems to be only one dairy with nationwide distribution, but I found it and bought their milk. After decades of propaganda of how dangerous raw milk was, I have to admit I was really nervous drinking this stuff! Stupid me. Now I’m hooked.

Two years ago, I was 230 lbs (I’m 6′1″), “felt” pre-diabetic, and had occasional gout episodes, some pretty serious allergies. To be honest, I didn’t know what a carb was. By accident, I started eliminating things like rice (and of course sugar) and noticed how I wasn’t hungry and kept losing weight. Discovered your site and it all started making sense. A year ago I hit 175 and have kept the range 165-175 (although I definitely look better at 165!) the last year. Needless to say, no more gout, most of the allergies have gone away (the others are still disappearing slowly). So thanks again, and keep up the great work.

Another satisfied low-carb customer! Way to go!

If there is such a thing, I think low-carb truths are slowly moving towards a kind of “critical mass” where real change becomes possible, and many lives are impacted. The reason I say this, is because of me and my family. I started out by stumbling onto Gary Taubes’ article “What If It’s All Been A Big Fat Lie?” and then I read his book Good Calories, Bad Calories (3 times now, actually) and many other books by people like the Drs. Eades, Sally Fallon, Nina Planck and Diana Schwarzbein, in addition to blogs such as yours and Mark Sisson. Then I got my sister interested, who was an unhealthy overweight vegetarian for over 20 years. She is now down almost 50 pounds, and looks and feels better than she has in years. And that got my mom interested — she’s now dropped about 13 pounds, and her doctor is shaking his head because her high triglycerides have plummetted. I’m thinking, that this is not unique, it must be happening to many people and many families as the truth slowly spreads. And how long can GCBC remain unnoticed by the world at large? Maybe it will take his new upcoming book to turn the tide, but he won’t be ignored forever. Be encouraged, because the truth is getting out and you are a part of it.

You may indeed be right. Like I said before, it will be increasingly difficult for doctors to turn a blind eye to the changes that are happening in their patient’s lives who choose to consume a high-fat, low-carb diet. Many may be resistant at first, but I believe in my heart of hearts that most doctors only want what is best for their patients. And if something natural like livin’ la vida low-carb is producing the kind of results we are seeing, then it’s only a matter of time before it becomes accepted by the mainstream. We’re already seeing this happen among bariatricians and I think it’s beginning to take root in family medicine as well. There may be a revolt that takes place first by the low-fatties, but low-carb acceptance is not that far away.

I’m someone who has also seen major improvements due to eating low-carb. I had always been overweight, from around 10 years old, to when I turned 20, and weighed 320 lbs. It was then that after failing so many diets, that I came across the Atkins diet, and lo and behold, this diet worked for me. I remained on this diet without hunger, and went from 320 lbs to 170. I then started exercising, and continued the low-carb way of eating, and increased my weight through muscle gain to 205 lbs, where I stayed for around 3 years, never going up farther than 212, and would drop as low as 190 when I was training for running races.

Through all of this, I never counted calories, but just kept an eye on my carbs. After a while, I became interested in diet and nutrition, and had started to forget the reasons why I was eating the way I was, and became convinced that to become a better runner, that carbohydrates were essential in my training. This started to make my weight increase, so in response, I ran more and more and more…and could not lose the weight. I reduced calories and still my weight increased. It started to get harder and harder to run, and my weight continued its steady incline. Finally, last March, I weighed in at 250 lbs — all of my old clothes were distant memories, I was looking at a 41″ waist and XL shirts were tight on me…and still I couldn’t figure out what was wrong with me. I had followed all of the recommendations that were laid out by the fitness professionals that had taught me.

So, I started doing some research again on diet and nutrition, trying to remember how I had lost the weight…and I came across a recommendation on a website about a Paleo diet. I cut out all sugar and flour out of the diet, and started eating vegetables and fruit, and cut all processed anything out of my diet. My weight started to decline, and I was so happy. That’s when I came across a recommendation about Gary Taubes book Good Calories, Bad Calories. After reading about half of this book, all of the old things I knew about eating came back, and as I read more, the ideas that had been put into my head by “health professionals” were disproved and removed from my diet.

I’m happy to say that since mid-April, I have dropped to 225 lbs, and dropped from a 41 waist to a 35. My old clothes are fitting again, and I’m back in to a size L shirt.

This is why I say that once you begin a healthy low-carb lifestyle change, you stay on it for life. There’s just too much heartache and pain when you don’t. Great job in turning your life around…AGAIN!

I never got to meet my paternal grandfather because he died (at age 59) before my father married because of a heart attack. My father had a heart attack in 1987 and suffered congestive heart failure on a low-fat diet the last 13 years of his life, and his sister had Type 2 diabetes so severe she had to take insulin. So, it was very scary for me to be told by my doctor three years ago that I was glucose intolerant and to be sent home with an invitation to contact Project Dulce. I couldn’t understand it. Despite exercising regularly and eating what I thought was a healthy diet, I was steadily gaining weight and had reached the point I could no longer bend over to tie my shoes and breathe at the same time.

It was my sister who told me she had made a remarkable dietary discovery that had allowed her to get to a weight she hadn’t seen since high school and to have a level of energy she hadn’t felt in years. She said she would send me a book: it turned out to be Dana Carpender’s How I Gave Up My Lowfat Diet and Lost 40 Pounds. When I received it, I thought, “Oh great, another fad diet book.” So, I let it sit by the side of my bed for four months. Thankfully, out of courtesy to my sister, I picked it up and started reading it last May and that still small voice told me: “This is something you could do.” So, I cut sugar and starch from my diet. The results were immediate and dramatic. I lost 15 pounds in the first week and about 2 pounds per week for the next 7 weeks until I had dropped 30 pounds. I was simply amazed.

During this time, my sister sent me a link to Gary’s NYT article. Since I’m a skeptic, I Googled Gary Taubes and found that he had recently published Good Calories, Bad Calories and immediately ordered it. It has been one of the best investments I have ever made. It helped me understand why what I was doing was healthy and, more importantly, allowed me to believe. That is the importance of the work you and Gary are doing: more and more people are starting to believe that the low-carb way of life is the healthiest. So, again, thank you!

Thanks to testimonies like yours, the swell of support for the low-carb way of life will continue to grow and grow. Never stop sharing your story!

First I want to congratulate you on the excellent work you and Christine are doing to promote healthy eating and for not being ashamed to use or trying to change the name of LOW-CARB eating. I’m 59 and was in very poor health up until about 5 years ago. I’m still overweight but the weight comes off me very slowly and not at all even when low-carbing. I am re-reading all of Dr. Atkins books at the moment and am now back into a strict induction. Even so I have dropped only 2 pounds in the last two weeks but its not really the pounds that matter anymore.

What matters is my latest lipid results for a 59 year old woman who weighs 222 pounds and still has about 100 pounds to lose:

Total Cholesterol 182.13
LDL 95.94
HDL 65.52
Trigs 104.13

Those should knock anyone’s socks off. The fat I use is considered saturated (lard and butter) and I eat at least 2 eggs a day or more. So even though I am having trouble losing weight, low-carbing has given me back my life and health and eliminated all migraines and headaches, my arthritic & joint pains, my phobias and depression, my addictive behaviours and terrible mood swings. It has not however eliminated my asthma although it has alleviated it a bit. The only meds I take now are asthma meds.

So keep up the good fight Jimmy. The more people that are exposed to your blog the bigger the chance for more people to get their lives back. Besides, Dr. Atkins is not around to defend his good name anymore.

I’m so happy to hear of your health success and I am proud of you for recognizing the importance of having good numbers and not relying exclusively on the scale to measure how successful your low-carb lifestyle is. I will continue to hammer away at this because it’s just too important to ever give up on.

Good news! My blood work came back the best ever. My total LDL-P went from 1611 to 973 and the small LDL-P decreased from 327 to ZERO. Triglycerides decreased from 81 to 65 and the HDL increased from 58 to 74. My doctor was shocked to learn I hadn’t started the statin. All of this because of what I’ve learned from listening to your podcasts and reading many of the books you’ve reviewed. I appreciate all you do very much.

Even better benefits than taking a statin drug and it was done with simple dietary changes that were easy to implement and execute in your life. Gee, imagine that! What you’ve done is revolutionary to conventional medicine…and ain’t that a shame that this isn’t the norm? Never stop learning and keep on livin’ la vida low-carb!

Hello! I just wanted to send you a quick email and say how incredible your podcasts are and what an incredible inspiration you are! I’ve been downloading them and I listened to a bunch at work today on my iPod. I just began Atkins 3 days ago (I’m on day 3 of Inducation) after a YEAR of being on Metformin and a year after I found out I was Insulin Resistant.

When my doctor told me that Insulin Resistance was the reason I wasn’t losing any weight — after having gained back 40 of 60 pounds I’d lost doing Weight Watchers 3 years ago and not being able to lose it — I’m finally listening to my doctor and doing Atkins (again, a year later). Of course I had to try other things that I thought I “knew” was right…but a year later and having lost 20 pounds but gaining it right back doing the low-fat/low-calorie thing. After listening to your podcasts as well as reading the Atkins book, WOW! My doctor WAS right! HA HA!

Low carb really DOES make sense, especially for my “condition.” Diabetes runs in my family and I have worked too hard in the past to lose weight just to gain it all back and end up diabetic. But I’ve started to realize it’s like I’ve “dieted myself fat.” And now I really feel like I’m on the right course to make sure that I DON’T end up diabetic and I WILL be thin again! Anyways, I just wanted to thank you for sharing your inspiring story and your web site and podcasts.

Low-carb: Live it. Love it. And make it a lifetime commitment! Go get ‘em!

I have been low-carbing for eight years now. Just had my yearly physical and my HDL is 120. Doc said it is so high it is almost immeasurable. Triglicerides are 77. Last year’s physical HDL was 100. When I told him it was my low-carb diet, he just ignored me. This is the same man who put me on statins years ago and why I started low carb in the first place to get off the meds. I remember when my first blood test came back better, he said it was the statins, but I knew it was the low carb as I stopped taking the statins.

You keep bucking that trend and proving that doctor of yours DEAD WRONG!

Although you would of course have no way of knowing this, I have been reading your blog for several years now and really appreciate the work you are doing to help spread the low-carb word. I lost about 35 pounds in 3 months five years ago following Atkins despite my father being suddenly diagnosed with and then dying of pancreatic cancer at the same time 5 years ago and have kept it off ever since. Not only that, it has inspired me to become fit from being basically a couch potato. I just turned 40 this year, and look and feel better than I have in years thanks to Atkins.

I’m sorry to hear about the loss of your father and wish you nothing but continued success in the many years to come. I know your daddy would be so proud of you for changing your life for the better. Keep working the low-carb plan and it will work for you!

Thank you again for all that you do. I’ve really enjoyed your blog and interviews with experts in the low-carb field. One of the things that came to my mind that I think may have been overlooked, is approaching this from a new perspective (Insurance). I work in Commercial Insurance, so I have a bit more of a conceptual view of of the healthcare woes that are about to blow up in America’s face. I recognize that Insurance companies at this point rely on medical dogma for their recommendations, making it more important to convince medical providers low-carb is healthy. But with so many influential lobbyists affecting those policies, it may never change. These organizations are concerned with doing what has been agreed upon, not what is right.

Insurance companies on the other hand are concerned with profit and loss. And for every person that has to be treated for a disease of civilization, their profits go down and costs go up. Is there a way that people like Gary Taubes, Dr. Jeff Volek, Dr. Stephen Phinney, etc. who have the research to back up supporting low-carb could get to the decision makers within those insurance companies to convince them the current guidelines are all half-truths? It seems like there would be a lot fewer people that would have to be convinced in order for these companies to fund studies to save themselves money or just acknowledge that the info Taubes presents has merit. The power of the almighty dollar is strong and could help the insurance companies push this down to the medical researchers. Kind of approaching the argument from the back door instead of the front.

It infuriates me when I answer questionnaires from the health insurance companies to determine my risk factors and it asks questions emphasizing red meat consumption, fiber intake, and other dogmatic inferences. I don’t know how to contact people like Taubes et al, but I do know that the business world listens to the almighty dollar if the right people ever heard the message. I don’t know if this is even possible, but know you have a much more public forum to air this idea out there. I am fighting the battle on the home front. We have a Biggest Loser contest at my company. I won it last year (Went from 34% BF to 20% BF in about 4 months) and am counseling several of this year’s participants on why low-carb is indeed a healthy option, if not the healthiest. If I can get several more people in the office to have the success I have had, it will help me when I present some of my ideas to the big wigs at my office. We’ll see.

I know that many of the low-carb researchers and authors like Gary Taubes are trying very hard to convince the powers that be to even look at the already-published data that’s out there. The truth is much of it is being ignored and some would say purposely so in order to protect the economic interests of the various industries that benefit from a low-fat, high-carb diet. If the health of large numbers of people consuming a high-fat, low-carb diet improved dramatically, then the pharmaceutical industry would take a hit in the tens of billions (probably much more!) of dollars annually. The domino effect would then hit the food industry where whole grains and sugar would take a major hit. It’s an interesting philosophical exercise, but one that warrants serious examination in the coming years if we’re gonna get a grip on obesity and health.

As you can see, there’s a LOT of good things happening as a result of healthy low-carb living. Do you have a story you’d like to share about how cutting carbs and increasing fat in your diet has changed your health for the better? I want to hear from you and share your results with the world. E-mail me anytime at Together we CAN make a difference in the lives of others by never being ashamed to share how livin’ la vida low-carb has given us our lives back!

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