Tuesday, December 04, 2007

The E-mails Just Keep Coming As Lives Keep On Changing For The Better

My favorite part about what I do is seeing the impact of a life that has been changed as a result of someone who took the courageous first step to start livin' la vida low-carb. Once you get past all the needless fears and trepidations about this much-maligned way of eating, implementing the low-carb lifestyle is just about the healthiest thing you could possibly do for yourself. It was for me and still is nearly four years later!

The testimonials I receive from people about how the "Livin' La Vida Low-Carb" blog has positively impacted their lives never ceases to amaze me. I especially enjoy highlighting these e-mails at my blog as I have here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

I've got some more to share with you today, so here goes!

I have to admit, I first found your site a good while back when I was searching for low-carb recipes. I'm pretty sure I even bookmarked it on another PC for inspiration and then forgot about it. Tonight I was searching for packaged low-carb foods and their reviews; disappointingly, there are not many and seem to be lessening all of the time; however, I rediscovered your site. I had to write.

I’ll try to be brief. I met my husband in 2000, he wore a size 42, I think I was a size 8 (5’11 & 5’9). His ex-wife was apparently not a cook so everything he ate came out of a bag, box, drive-thru etc. (his job also consists of a lot of air travel and a lot of late night indulgent dinners with customers). He began to lose weight just because I cooked even though bacon grease is usually the first ingredient in most of my recipes. I, however, began to gain because I would not usually cook often for myself as my teenage daughter was rarely home, and when she was she would not eat beef or pork (you can see where a body might lose interest). All of a sudden I have leftovers to eat when he is not get the picture.

I love to eat but I needed to shed the 12 pounds that I had now gained, and my husband sweated profusely all of the I needed to help him lose more weight and I began to read. I found Atkins. I had gained 60 pounds with my 2nd child and lost it in a matter of weeks by just giving up Cokes; and because I had never been a big bread or sweets eater, Atkins' book made sense. I convinced my husband (who mixed his alcohol with Cokes) to switch to ½ Coke & ½ Diet Coke. After several weeks of slowly increasing the Diet Coke, he could now taste the sugar in a Coke and has never turned back.

We planned for this diet; cleaned out the cabinets, bought low-carb substitutes for some items, I began gathering ideas and recipes. Now to the reason for my letter--when I say I “read” the book, what I actually meant was I skimmed the book (I'm not a big reader); in trying to develop recipes that we would actually eat, I turned to the book. Upon further reading I discovered the parts I had missed (recalling from a poor memory now) “no alcohol or caffeine for the fist 2 weeks” (Yeah right! No coffee for me in the mornings) “only 2 cups of green vegetables" a day for the first 2 weeks (that's hardly a decent salad). So we decided that I would make it up as we went along (he was home for 2 weeks) but we did aim for less than 10 carbs a day...I did say aim.

Sundays are always lunch at my mom's, 2 or 3 main courses and no less than a half a dozen side dishes and anywhere from 1 to 3 desserts so we knew that would be tough (the desserts didn’t bother me but OMG, the dumplings, dressing, and the macaroni and cheese were killers for both of us). After our first “weigh in” Mike had lost 14 lbs. in 7 days...I had lost 4. I told him that he had to pick up carbs because he was losing too fast--I however stayed the course.

Seven days later he had lost another 8 or 10 pounds and I had lost another 7; time for me to pick up my carbs. After the 3rd straight week of losing weight, I was now below my target and my husband was still losing...we made the decision that we were doing so well that Sunday lunch was a “freebie”...don’t go crazy, but take a little of the stuff that you are drooling over...we both continued to lose weight for a while (he lost about 45–50 pounds...he was in a size 36, I had lost about 17, a little too much).

We then decided that once in a while, if we split a piece of garlic bread when we ordered out that it wouldn’t kill us. We quit losing but we maintained our way of eating and our weight loss. I made some great low-carb meals that no one would even realize were low-carb--until Katrina. I ended up cooking for anywhere from 10 to 30 people daily for over a year...guys up on the roof in the heat, sweating out 5 pounds a day...they wanted spaghetti, not spaghetti squash, no whole grain bread for them...good old fashioned white bread please and sweet our lifestyle was blown.

Amazingly though my husband still maintained his weight loss pretty well, but he had his thyroid removed about a year ago (Graves disease, explains the profuse sweating mentioned earlier). He has now gained 40 pounds back and I had slowly gained back to my previous weight, but I quit smoking a couple of months ago and put on 10 pounds in 6 we are headed back to our low-carb diets shortly!

The whole point is I have been reading (skimming) about carb-cycling...what do you think of this idea? Was the experience that my husband and I had of “cheating” once a week and still losing weight a fluke? (I realize our “cheats” were not comparable to the carb-cycling plan) Is it possible that someone who maintains such a strict low carb regime makes their body more susceptible to the bad effects (i.e. rapid weight gain) when they do take a break? I guess that your site is the first I’ve seen on a truly low-carb site to advocate a “splurge” once and a while. And I don’t really expect a reply..I guess I’m mostly thinking out loud.

WHEW! Some people like to share every little detail of their story and that's okay. I think it's great to have all the context behind what people write because it helps me understand a lot more about them than otherwise. While I do advocate the "planned splurge" idea as recently outlined in this YouTube video, I don't think they should become a regular part of your low-carb lifestyle. I used them primarily to get me through the weight loss that first year.

Today, I don't NEED to splurge because I am COMPLETELY satisfied with my way of eating. And that's what needs to happen when you start livin' la vida low-carb--PERMANENT, HEALTHY CHANGES that you implement and NEVER come off of. That's where so many people fail in their "diet" because they see it as only a temporary thing for weight loss. DON'T DO THAT! Eat to live healthy FIRST and the weight management will happen naturally.

Here's an e-mail from someone who needs to lose triple digits:

Hi Jimmy,

I ordered your e-book on Wednesday and read it all in one day. I have restarted livin' la vida low-carb today. I want to lose 100 pounds. I was on Atkins 5 years ago with tremendous results (lost 80) but then life got stressful and I figured I needed to feed it with carbs. Stupid me. I didn't even want carbs at that point since I had been in ketosis for so long. It was a mental thing, not a physical one. But like any addiction, one bite and I was gone. I've gained all my weight back and am so disgusted with myself.

You have inspired me. The quote in your book about "Look at yourself right now and decide if this is what you want to look like for the rest of your life" really hit home. No, I don't want to have to struggle next Thanksgiving to figure out which outfit makes me look the least fat. I want to open my closet and know that everything looks good. I don't want to have to focus on what I look like because I know I will look good.

Atkins and low-carb worked wonders for me--I lost weight, stopped having headaches, stopped feeling depressed and anxious, stopped having the feeling of a continuous stomach ulcer. Why did I ever go off?

I am happy that your wife was your biggest supporter. My struggle is that my husband thinks low-carb is ridiculous. But he doesn't live in my body and I know what works for me. I do have some friends that do low-carb so they will be my support group.

I appreciate how much you talk about God and Jesus in your book. He is my best friend as well and next year when I have lost all the weight, the glory will go to Him. Thanks for listening and for writing your book.

THANKS so much for writing and encouraging me with your renewed commitment to the low-carb lifestyle. There will always be people who misunderstand this way of eating because of what they've "heard" about it. Sadly, most of these people don't take the time to read and research why the low-carb lifestyle is such a healthy nutritional approach for people, especially the obese and diabetics, to follow. I have no doubt in my mind that YOU CAN DO THIS, so DON'T GIVE UP!!! Please visit my low-carb support forum if you need people to be there for you in this new chapter in your life. GO FOR IT!!!

Ever since my wife Christine and I started our YouTube video series, it has opened the door of opportunity to reach a new audience of people with the message of livin' la vida low-carb. From all the amazing comments left for our videos to the personal e-mails about how uplifting and encouraging we are to people, it's been a fun ride that we look forward to continuing.

After watching Episode 11 of "The Livin' La Vida Low-Carb Show with Jimmy Moore," one viewer left the following comment for me in my message box at YouTube:

Because I can hardly condense my comments I just wanted to comment via message on your Episode 11, things you typically eat on your nutrition plan. I noticed a comment where someone had mentioned their doctor would flip if they knew what most of us eat on a low-carb plan.

Well, I do have a wonderful story about my former doctor who had me on 2 types of Type 2 diabetes medications for my insulin resistance. I had been taking the meds for a few months and discovered low-carb/Atkins and decided to give it a try when I was reading that I could possibly decrease my meds because taking all the refined and great quantities of sugar out of my diet would dramatically change my insulin levels. Well I did NOT tell my doctor that I was going to try an experiment with low-carb and I was fortunately not diabetic just hyperinsulinemic.

But anyways I documented all of my pre- and post-prandial blood levels and then in three months when he saw me and drew an A1c (an average of blood sugar of 3 months) it was as if I never had any problems my levels were all normal. I brought my documentation and what I was eating and he was just baffled, but acknowledged the proof and told me that I could officially decrease the Avandia (which is off the market now anyways!) and the glucophage.

So I was very happy to be a testament to what the truth was for low-carb nutrition. I am just sorry I had abandoned eating that way when I got pregnant with my first child late 2003. I have seriously now have chose to come back to the lc way of eating after my second child and realizing that I can't lose weight by willpower and low-fat. So here I am week 3 almost 4, I am feeling super great with energy and am truly remembering now why I chose to eat this way in the past. Anyways, I thought I'd share that with you and I am very happy that it was shown on your video that low-carb is NOT at all boring or restrictive!

WOW, another awesome low-carb success well underway! Hey ADA, are you hearing this as you prepare your new 2008 guidelines? There's plenty more examples where this came from and I'm sure they'd be happy to share their stories with you. :)

Here's a very kind gentleman who looked into his crystal ball and sees great things happening for me and "Livin' La Vida Low-Carb" in the coming years. Check this out:

Good Morning Jimmy and Christine,

I really enjoy and learn a lot from your blog. You put a huge amount of effort into it. I find it to be a tremendous aid in my own weight loss journey, where I've lost 55 pounds in the past 71 days. I gave up sugar and processed grains and, surprise, surprise, I feel great, have lost the cravings and have been able to make this my new lifestyle.

I haven't bought your book yet because I've been without a paycheck for the past 5 months. But, Jimmy, you are onto something so huge it boggles the mind. There are more than a million people desperate to find the answer to their obesity problem before it kills them. My wife died from obesity at age 55.

Did you see Dr. Phil recently? He made me so mad I wanted to beat him silly. He told people they had no willpower, that they were to blame for their kids and themselves being fat. His answer for all of them "Buy my book." He did mention that obesity was a genetic problem, but never dealt with carb addiction as the root issue.

I'm not a health expert. But I've tried diet after diet and spent a ton of money on plans that only made things worse because I didn't realize that all men are not created equal. Dr. Phil cannot understand food cravings because he never had them. So called experts cannot understand how bad bread and pasta are for me because they are not bad for them.

Fat people cannot understand that it's the bun and the sodas that are killing them because they see other people eat them all the time and they don't get fat from it. I have a disease, a syndrome, a condition, call it what you like, that causes me to gain weight from the typical American diet. The fatter I got, the more serious the condition became until I was in a spiral I couldn't stop. But it only took about a week of going cold turkey to "stop the madness" and get me on my journey back to the good life.

Jeez, what am I doing preaching to the choir?

My point is, there are many people who need to know what we now know. People who would pay to meet you and hear your story. Sponsors who would pay to have their quality, low-carb products sampled and sold to people who need to change from the typical American Diet to the "New American Diet."

Jimmy, I paid $35 to join, then paid it again for my wife to join because it has a good journal where I can track all that I eat. I find the forum community helpful because it keeps me involved, but frustrating because they can't even spell Atkins (they call him Adkins), eat bowls of cereal each morning and a potato each evening and can't understand why weight loss is so difficult. You need a membership site where people can pay you to learn from your experience and see the results in your disciples.

One last thought... Jimmy Moore's Livin' La Vida Low-Carb Coast to Coast Tour. This could be big Jimmy, really big!

Hey, I like dreamers--especially BIG dreamers like this one! And believe me I share in his passion to get the message out to the masses which is the desire of my heart. But I do what I do because I've been given a gift--this miracle of low-carb weight loss success--and the desire of my heart is nothing more than to share what I have learned with others so they can experience the same thing in their lives.

While it is tempting to set up a paid web site for people to read my writings and receive consultation in their low-carb efforts, I'm not a fan of that idea. A blog is exactly what I want to be doing because lots of people stand to benefit from it regardless of their income status. Whether you can afford to buy anything from my sponsors or not, you get the content of the blog at NO CHARGE...and that's the way I prefer it, too.

Yes, I appreciate those of you who buy ChocoPerfection bars or NexGen Muffins from CarbSmart right now because it helps me pay the bills. But nobody is forced to purchase anything and the content of my blog will remain that way as long as I can continue to have the energy and passion to do what I do. And I think I will for a very long time.

That's not to say I'm not open to speaking to your group in person, writing more books, and expanding the reach of the "Livin' La Vida Low-Carb" message even more. Keep telling people about the work I am doing here and those opportunities will happen--with the end result being more and more people are educated, encouraged, and inspired as they pursue the low-carb lifestyle as a means for weight and health control.

Finally, I got a rather interesting e-mail from someone who came across my blog posts about "loose skin" and had some surprising information to share:

I am uncertain as to whether this blog is still something you check or anything, but I happened across it while looking up info on loose skin. I don't know if you've had surgery or even have an issue anymore...I have lost 130 pounds myself and have a bit of a problem with it. Through my research on the subject though, I have come up with my own hypothesis. I don't believe it is excess fat, or loose skin. I believe the answer is lymphatic fluid. Here's what I've drawn that conclusion on:

The sagging areas are definitely not empty. There is something in there. In my research on natural remedies, I found many references to dry skin brushing being effective on tightening the skin. Then by chance, I decided to do a colon cleanse and that lead to research on the lymphatic system...where I read that dry skin brushing helps the lymphatic system to flush. I also learned that a sluggish lymphatic system can lead to liquidy deposits of fat located around lymph nodes.

So where do I have a lot of this sagging squishy skin? Upper arms and inner thighs...where there happen to be quite a number of lymph nodes. The build up can also occur in the abdominal area. Do you know what really bogs down your lymphatic system? Excess protein in the lymphatic fluid make it thick and difficult for the nodes to drain.

And how did I lose my weight? High protein diet. Which also can cause gallstones to form in your liver and decrease its efficiency. By the way, the liver is the largest filter of lymphatic fluid in the body. I did a liver cleanse and flushed out hundreds of stones...some the size of peas and some the size of marbles. I felt so much better!

I have begun a very thorough colon/system cleanse (Colonix- fabulous product!) and started skin brushing. It is doing wonders! I have also researched other ways to get the lymph system clean and flowing again, and found that yoga is very beneficial for that. I am also massaging my skin with emu oil and it has greatly improved the quality of my skin tone.

The people who say it is still fat clean up their diet to lose the fat and excersize more- effectively cleaning and stimulating their lymphatic system. If you have a low body fat percentage and still have sag, there is something in those skin folds pulling it down. The lymphatic system is also responsible for skins elasticity as well as it's "adherence" to underlying muscle.

I read an article by a plastic surgeon that had done lyposuction as opposed to brachioplasty on his patient, and said the skin tightened right down without any cutting necessary after the fat and liquid were sucked out. Anyhow, just wanted to share what I've learned. If you still have the skin thing, you might want to do your own research on it.

As Spock would say on Star Trek, FASCINATING! I will certainly do my own research on this subject to see if this idea works. I do still have the hanging skin and STILL desire to have it go away. Maybe this is an option I can try. We shall see.

Wanna send me an e-mail and share YOUR low-carb story? Then please e-mail me directly at I'd LOVE to hear from you and celebrate your successes while answering your burning questions about livin' la vida low-carb. Don't be a stranger...I don't bite too hard! :P

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Blogger Tom Bunnell said...

Good stuff Jimmy, all of them -- the loose skin one has my interest too. I'm down only 70# from my high of 360# and I'm at 288# and slowly falling. My skin issues are growing with each 10# or so that I lose and with my goal of 180# I still have 108# to lose. I have deliberately 'not' exercised from the beginning in my effort to keep loose skin at a minimum, thinking it too may be a factor(exercising), even though conventional wisdom says the opposite.

When I do my 'pinch an inch' I get two huge handfuls of soft sagging skin with fat and fluid. It's very soft as is my other excess skin and fat around my body. I believe your reader is on to something here.

I also believe that what you are doing right here and at your discussion forum is where all of the answers are and also where all of the answers are going to be found. You and yours being front and center in all this.

Keep up the good work. Nothing else out there even comes close to being the center or gathering place for of all of this needed input like you have. Best to you and your endeavors, Tom

12/06/2007 8:54 AM  

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