Pam from Florida is 45. She had her first child at 17 and has struggled with her weight since she was about 20 years old. Pam has been following the Atkins Plan for a year and a half now, and has lost 62 pounds since she began low carbing in October of 1999!
Pam does takes some medicines that are believed to cause problems with weight loss. She takes Armour thyroid for hypothyroidism and has Type II diabetes. She has to take Xanax for anxiety, Wellbutrin for depression, and Minocin for Hidradenitis Suppurtiva. She used to have to take Rezulin and Glucotrol for her diabetes, but due to her successful low carbohydrate style of eating, they are no longer necessary.
Past Diet Experiences
When asked about past diet experiences, Pam said she had only lost weight successfully taking diet pills. She took the diet pills at least 5 times for a period of up to 7 months at a time. “The first time I took diet pills (biphetimine) was in the 1970s,” she told me. “They were very strong. My day would consist of about three Oreos and lots of diet sodas.” She had to quit taking the pills after 7 months because she became extremely nervousness, and developed uncomfortable itching and symptoms of paranoia, but she adds “Boy, was my house clean!” Pam managed to keep the weight she lost off for about a year, and then it slowly crept back on.
She has also taken Fastin, Inomamin, Redux, and Meridia, all with similar results.
Pam tried muscle building exercises for a period of 6 months. During that time, she worked out 7 days a week and followed a low-fat diet regime, but didn’t lose any weight.
She did the various 1200-calorie-a-day diets but still didn’t lose any weight.
“I even went to a shock therapy place in California in the early 1980s,” Pam said. “You brought in foods that you liked and they gave you a mild electric shock while you were eating the food.” She added, “Okay, I know it’s bizarre, but this actually worked for a short time and I lost 30 or 40 pounds, but of course I regained it, again.”
Pam tried Richard Simmons “halfheartedly,” but it required “too much thinking” to move cards around and follow the plan as it was supposed to be followed.
Pam says of low carbing that “I have always considered myself a carnivore, and what Dr. Atkins said made sense to me. I could eat the foods I craved, and that has made it easier to stick to this lifestyle. Most of the time I feel that this is an easy way of life. I also had a potentially life-threatening disease (diabetes), and low carbing sounded like the answer to that problem as well.”
A Lifetime of Eating Lots of Carbs
Pam told me that she didn’t feel she was actually addicted to carbs, was just “used to eating them and following the party line about low fat being the way to go, which often meant very high carb meals.” Pam had actually known about low carbing since the late 1970s, but this was her first attempt at actually trying it.
She said that the low carbohydrate way of life makes it very easy to order at restaurants (steak, chicken, fajitas, etc.). “Sometimes I get bored since I don’t do much in the cooking arena, although there appears to be a lot of great recipes.”
Low-Carb is a lifestyle she can stick with
Pam feels low carbing is a lifestyle she can stick with. “Like I said before, most of the time I feel that it is an easy way of life. I have stuck with it for over a year with just a few planned cheats, my diabetes is totally under control with the diet alone, and I feel like I will always eat this way.
After she had been low carbing for about four months, Pam had her doctor do a blood workup. All the blood work came back with better numbers than the previous blood work from six months before! She had lower total cholesterol and lower triglycerides. Everything, including her blood glucose levels, was in the normal range!
“My doctor never questions my choice of eating style now since he saw the results of those tests and subsequent tests.”
Pam feels her self esteem is much improved, which has helped in with her depression. Her husband is very supportive and is so pleased with the results. Her family is supportive also, but coworkers have had a few negative things to say. “But, Pam continues, “I am not swayed by this type of negativity. It has all stopped now since the weight loss, and they are now used to the way I eat.”
People in restaurants seem to recognize the diet by her order, even in fast-food restaurants. She asks for a hamburger or chicken sandwich without the bun. “I don’t want to lose any flavor or one bit of the cheese when I take the bun off!”
Pam concluded our talk by adding, “I am not embarrassed about what I have chosen to do. I read on some of the newsgroups that folks are too shy to ask for no bread, etc. I wish that the low carb market would take off like the low-fat one with prepackaged frozen foods, low carb breads, and products available at the local stores.”
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