Our first success story of the new year comes to us from the ever-adorable Laurie Rosen. A resident of Ontario, Canada, Laurie loves to ski and is now a proud member of the Canadian Ski Patrol. She has been involved with the organization for about 12 years and helps with the instruction of first aid and toboggan. She also recently became a part of LOCO, a recreational league Roller Derby. She enjoys competing against other leagues on a low-contact level.
That First Step
Laurie’s journey begins when she was having major health problems such as IBS, heartburn and hypoglycemia. A co-worker mentioned Atkins, and it was such a radical concept that she wondered if there actually might be something to it. “I’m glad I took the chance!” says Laurie. She had tried Atkins a couple of years before, but the Induction Flu got the better of her and she caved in. She now realizes that if she’d just stuck to it a while longer she would have felt amazing. “All that matters now is that I’ve found low carb again and now consider it a lifestyle, not just another diet.”
“The consequences of today are determined by the actions of the past. To change your future, alter your decisions today.” ~ Anonymous
At around 300 pounds, Laurie was ready for change. Since making the decision to go low carb, she’s not only lost an amazing 100 pounds, but she’s also improved her health dramatically. She’s been able to ditch many prescription, including Diflucan for IBS and Pantaloc for heartburn. She loves that her hypoglycemia issues are gone as well and she has improved energy, cholesterol, vitality and sleep. She’s now enjoying activities, like Roller Derby, which she says she would never have attempted at her heavier weight. She also credits low carb for helping her make some amazing friends and is looking forward to even more friendships in the years to come.
Been There, Bought the T-Shirt
Laurie shares that she’s tried about every diet imaginable, including low fat and Slim Fast. “I’ve lost a lot of weight a few times, but have always regained it. This is the first thing I’ve done which has resulted in maintained weight loss, improved health and something I can stick to without being hungry all the time. Many times I have to remind myself to eat!”
Her plan now is very similar to what it was from the beginning, although she’s even less afraid of fat than she was back then. Her epiphany came when she was on the low carb cruise last year and heard experts extolling the virtues of fat in the diet. “…they confirmed I wasn’t crazy for loving good fats in everything.” Like most of us, she’s had to deal with the well-meaning comments from others that disparage the low carb lifestyle, despite stellar blood tests, improved appearance and overall health. “I needed the cruisers to confirm that I am eating properly. From now on that will be my strength for the coming year.” She has educated herself on the differences in fats and says her first couple of years she used vegetable oils, not knowing there were healthier choices. She still eats low carb breads and wraps occasionally, but plans to find wheat-free alternatives to these as well.
Are You Gonna Eat That?
Being a cashier at a grocery store, Laurie is witness to the plethora of misinformation out there. “Since starting this lifestyle, I’ve become curious about what people put in their carts. I try to educate people to a certain extent, without coming off as a zealot.” Sounds like Laurie has the makings of an effective low carb evangelist!
I asked Laurie what she’d say if she could address a group of dieters. Here’s her reply:
“I’d say they have been lied to about low fat keeping them healthy and helping them lose weight. Wheat, sugar and empty carbs contribute to weight problems. Your body converts a piece of bread into sugar almost instantly and causes high insulin levels. Not only does high insulin contribute to weight issues, it also contributes to health issues like diabetes and heart disease.”
She wants to stress to others that fat is your friend and will actually help you reach your weight goals. Laurie encourages others to educate themselves about fats and sugars, especially ingredients like high fructose corn syrup. “The biggest thing I have learned on my journey is that it’s not just about losing weight and looking good. It’ about health.”
Laurie recommends always have staples on hand. Her favorites include butter and spices. “Spices make all the difference in cooking. I love spicy food so I love having hot sauce on my food now without suffering from heartburn, which I always did before low carb.”
Inspiration Comes in Many Forms
Since returning from the low carb cruise, Laurie has been inspired to start her own blog on the subject. She’s helped friends succeed on a low carb plan and says it encourages her to do more. Other sources of inspiration come from people like Jimmy Moore, Andreas Eenfeldt and Jackie Eberstein. She enjoys searching the internet for recipes and discussion on the low carb lifestyle as well.
Her future plans include improving her performance in roller derby and skiing, and spreading the low carb message through her blog titled High Fat, High Fun! She wants to be an ambassador for the healthy low carb lifestyle and help people make the improvements they need. “I think all of us in the low carb community have an obligation to not only ‘be the change you want to see in the world’, but also pay it forward.” How very right she is.
© 2012 by Amy Dungan. Article and photograph used by kind permission of the author. Send Amy your comments to Amy Dungan.