It’s Monday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Monday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

My primal story all started while hiking one day back in 2009. Hiking has always been more than exercise for me. It has always been a place to clear my thoughts and think of new ideas. On a late summer day when hiking one of my favorite trails, I asked myself the question. “What would I eat if I lived out here?” I took a mental inventory: pine nuts, rabbits, chipmunks, some berries, and a deer if I was lucky. I started thinking that nothing out in the wild really represented anything I would find at my local store. I would have a hard time finding rabbit and chipmunks at the Mega-Mart, if you know what I mean.

This idea sparked my interest so much I went home and started searching everything online I could find on wild human diets etc. and eventually landed on Mark’s Daily Apple. I was hooked from the first words I read. (I eventually read all of Mark’s books too). I was all in from that day forward. I told my wife I finally figured it out, she said “what” I said “everything” and I told everyone. It all became so clear to me. Not just the diet but the lifestyle in general. It seemed the Primal Blueprint answered all of the problems of modern living.

I started cleaning out the pantry, went grocery shopping, and the next day and started my new life. It was really that easy to be honest. I had a bit of a headache and a few cravings here and there, but after that it was smooth sailing.

At the time I weighed 210 lbs on a large 6’1” frame and thought I was in good health. I hit 185 lbs after the first six months of my life altering experience, and maintained 175 to 185 it for 3 years. I was down 25 lbs, and never felt better. I was hiking about 40 miles a week things were great. All my blood markers were good, my blood pressure was low, and resting heart rate was under 50 bpm. I felt on top of the world, I was invincible.

I maintained the Grok lifestyle until 2012, and then things took a turn. I changed jobs, and moved to Hawaii. Don’t get me wrong—Hawaii was great, but the stress of being so far from family, and the hustle and bustle of a million people on one little island started taking its toll. All the great new foods didn’t help either. Who can’t resist a piece of Haupia Pie now and then? I still followed the primal eating principles for the most part probably 75/25. However things were changing for sure. I started drinking more beer and eating less than ideal (this is not the best way to handle stress). I gained most of the weight back and then some over the next three years.

While living in Hawaii we had a few deaths in the family (this was the breaking point really). So my wife and I decided to move back to the Mainland. The job search was on and I ended up taking a position for a company in the same town we lived before. Sounded great, ended up the worst decision I ever made. The job was a terrible fit, high stress, and I never took so many trips to the HR office in my entire life. To compensate for the stress, I started drinking more (if that was even possible), and eating polar opposite of the Primal Diet—SAD. I also quit hiking. Life was going downhill fast.

I finally hit rock bottom (so I thought). It was late 2015. I had fell off the Primal Wagon and bounced three times. I started having issue with heart palpitations to the point where I would almost pass out. I went to the doctor to get things checked out. The diagnosis was not good. I was up to 233 lbs, had too much bad cholesterol, triglycerides sitting at 180, borderline hypertensive, and well on my way to being a type II diabetic. The good thing through all of this, I was never prescribed any medications, and my echocardiogram looked good.

In the spring of 2016 after a year and a half of pure hell, I quit that horrifying job without notice. The good news, the heart palpitations went away almost the next day, and I slept better than I have for a few years. I started hiking again off and on but I would get a lot of pain in my legs and hips. The bad news, I was drinking even more beer.

Unemployment was not treating me well and I was in a really dark place. Death was not out of the question and an option for me. After 6 months of beer drinking and unemployment I blimped out to 245 POUNDS. I was fat, had leg and joint pain and just wasn’t there mentally. I was afraid to go to the doctor and get things checked out. I really thought the end was near. Then the end of 2016 I interviewed for a great job at a good company and got it. The position started in January 2017. I’m just grateful a good company took a chance on a fat unemployed alcoholic.

I have to admit from 2015 through 2016 had a tremendous negative effect on my family. I don’t wish it on anyone. My wife and kids stood by my side however and supported me, I love them. If not for their support, understanding, and love the difficult times would have been unsurmountable.

2017 was a big year of change, I turned 50, and started getting my head back on straight. I fell off the top of the mountain and needed to start climbing back up. I knew that I needed to make some big lifestyle changes to make the summit. I wanted to be there for my wife, kids, myself, and future grandkids well into my 80s. The first thing I did was quit drinking, cold turkey August 1st 2017. After 25 years of drinking this was one of the most difficult things I have ever undertaken. After I went through that, I figure I can make it through anything!!

After I beating the drinking problem, wanted to start back down the Primal Path. It was difficult at first. I attempted and failed a few times through 2018. Slowly but surely I got back on track. January 7th 2019 I was full on following the Primal Blueprint again. I started with The Keto Reset for the first month and it worked great. I now practice intermittent fasting a few times per week as well. I keep my carb intake around 50 grams per day now. I started at 244 lbs and now I’m down to 220 as of February 18th 2019. My target weight is probably 175 to 180 (this is where I feel best). I’m back on track to hardcore hiking too.

My first grandchild will be born this year and I can’t wait to teach him or her how to live like a Grok Child (payback for my daughter’s teen years). I have also enrolled in the Primal Health Coach Institute, I’m just over 30% complete. I plan on coaching, and helping people for the next 25 years or more. I first need to pass the comprehensive and challenging course however. The Primal Blueprint was great for me the first time. The second time is personal, and I never plan on looking back. I am looking forward to living a happy healthy life well into the future.

The readers featured in our success stories share their experiences in their own words. The Primal Blueprint and Keto Reset diets are not intended as medical intervention or diagnosis. Nor are they replacements for working with a qualified healthcare practitioner. It’s important to speak with your doctor before beginning any new dietary or lifestyle program, and please consult your physician before making any changes to medication or treatment protocols. Each individual’s results may vary.


The post Falling Off the Mountain and Climbing Back Up appeared first on Mark’s Daily Apple.

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It’s Monday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Monday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

Here’s an update to my December 2013 success story.

I have been Primal—Low-carb—Keto for over seven years. I am 49-years-old and my health continues to improve. I am confident I am enhancing my prospects for longevity.
I eat delicious food, rarely feel hungry, enjoy fasting and truly enjoy the many interesting and challenging facets of powerlifting training.

I have been carnivore keto the past 6 months and I completely love the simplicity and feel slightly better from an intestinal standpoint compared to Keto. I lost most of my weight while enjoying Mark’s Big Ass Salads. I keep the Primal philosophy in the front of my mind when I comes to avoiding unhealthy fat, cheat meals, overtraining, rest, sunlight, outdoors and recommendations to someone new to a low-carb lifestyle.

I may not always be in ketosis, but I’m always Primal.

2017 was a fantastic year for my health.

2018 was better:

I have been 95% carnivore keto the past 6 months:

— Lost 17 pounds / decreased body fat

— increased powerlifting personal best lifts

— zero vegetables eaten

— less than 5% calories from occasional nuts, berries, dark chocolate and wine

— Intermittent fast ~18h five days a week and I train fasted

— supplement heavily with Himalayan sea salt (~10 grams sodium per day)

— eat mostly beef, bacon and eggs

— add butter and cheese to lean cuts of meat

— eat fish 2-3 times per week; fish/krill oil daily — eat liver once a week; supplement with desiccated liver daily

The past 2 years of Low-carb Primal Keto diet and powerlifting training:

— including the 6 months of carnivore above — lost 27 pounds

— increased squat and deadlift PR in 4 consecutive competitions (bench in training)

I have been Low-carb Primal Keto for over 7 years.

— lost over 100 pounds in 2012 with minimal exercise — ‘cured’ insulin resistance/metabolic syndrome: prediabetes, hyperlipidemia, fatty liver. Joint pain, GERD, irritable bowel, migraines, insomnia, acne/skin problems.

— continue to decrease body fat with powerlifting training

— my taste preferences have changed: I love what I eat

— fat adaptation enhances long term fasting, which facilitates continued diet adherence — I have learned a great amount of valuable information about serving sizes and counting macros during weeks of micromanaging / weighing foods, but now I easily hit protein and carb targets without detailed macro tracking; I eat fat to hunger/satiety.

— scroll my @joeketone Twitter and Instagram for my training log, food, wine and what’s on my mind

# 1 KEY FACTOR TO ALL OF THIS: I AM RARELY HUNGRY—I am in control of my intake and I eat delicious food.

Yes, I am in a five or ten day net calorie deficit, but it does not feel like I am—I achieve a net calorie deficit without ‘trying’ and I have immense energy.

I am burning stored fat and minimizing health problems associated with hyperinsulinemia and hyperglycemia: enhancing LONGEVITY.

I sleep deeply and when I’m awake I feel and function as if I am half my age.

Many thanks to Mark Sisson and The Primal Blueprint.

Grok on!

Joe Lovely

The readers featured in our success stories share their experiences in their own words. The Primal Blueprint and Keto Reset diets are not intended as medical intervention or diagnosis. Nor are they replacements for working with a qualified healthcare practitioner. It’s important to speak with your doctor before beginning any new dietary or lifestyle program, and please consult your physician before making any changes to medication or treatment protocols. Each individual’s results may vary.


The post I Feel and Function As If I’m Half My Age appeared first on Mark’s Daily Apple.

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It’s Monday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Monday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

I’m a Certified Executive Chef by the American Culinary Federation. I have about 20 years of experience in the field.

During my training as a Chef and years working in kitchens for all kinds of outlets (Restaurants, Hotels, Employee Cafeterias, Dining Services of Universities), I learned and then implemented the knowledge that a balanced nutritional plate is supposed to have 3 components: a protein, a vegetable and a starch, and how to control the amount of fat used to produce this plate.

I moved from Buenos Aires, Argentina, to Columbus, Ohio, USA, to finish my Chef training. The possibilities of success here were much better, so my wife and I decided to make it our place to grow our family.

After several years working in a great restaurant, I started to have episodes of headaches that would end with me throwing up and having to leave work. This would happen at least once a week. I ended up going to the doctor and found out that I had very high blood pressure (180/150 mm Hg), so the doctor started me on BP medicine. My BP was under control for several years until one of my yearly visits to the doctor. After my vital signs were taken and the blood work came back, the doctor told me that he needed to increase my BP medication and that I had become pre-diabetic. He said that in the next visit he would probably have to prescribe some diabetes medicine to me. I refused to believe that I was becoming a diabetic person and have never been very friendly to take drugs, so I asked the doctor if I had any other ways to turn this around. His answer was that all of this was hereditary and there was nothing else I could do about it.

I decided to look for a second opinion. I was lucky to find a functional doctor. Before the visit, there was a questionnaire. I remember that one of the questions was something like “write down what your goal is for when you retire.” That made me realize that I really wanted to be able to see my kids graduate from college, get married, have kids, and be around when my grandkids graduate from college. Considering that my kids were still in elementary school at this time, I had to stay healthy for a long time.

This new doctor presented me with an elimination diet that I started the same day I was inspired by the question from the questionnaire. At the end of my visits I was presented with the Paleo Lifestyle, which (without knowing) I always had a sense was the right thing to do. After about a year, I was almost out of the BP medicine and had lost 30 lbs. I also never had to talk about diabetes as my blood work was pretty good—until I left a job of 7 years and let myself go back on eating grains and sugars while looking for a new job. When I went back to the doctor for my yearly check up, my blood work results came back as the worst I ever had. It only took 6 months to reverse all the good this lifestyle has done on myself. I realized that I had done wrong, and started back with even a stronger belief that the right thing was to avoid all grains, legumes and sugars. After 3 months my blood work was back to almost perfect.

About this time I started listening to the Primal Blueprint Podcast (it was sometime before the launch of The Keto Reset Diet. I had read The Paleo Solution and Wired to Eat from Robb Wolf, but had never read anything from Mark Sisson. I really liked Mark’s approach and also liked the podcast. Something about it started making me think about wanting to help others to improve their health, so after doing some research on the different coaching programs that existed at that time, not too many, I decided that the Primal Health Coach Institute was the best option. Now I’m a certified PHC. So far I had only one client that requested a menu with easy recipes to be able to follow the program.

As I’m a Chef who has been training young students in University environments as new kitchen employees—and being aware that most people in the States don’t know how to cook and are afraid to be in their kitchens—I decided that my best option is to help people to be re-introduced to their kitchens, creating simple recipes and teaching them how to cook.

As we believe that 80% of our health is what we eat I strongly believe that everyone needs to learn the kitchen basics to be able to cook and better understand how to make special requests in restaurants when eating out, eventually making an educated decision when picking a restaurant.

My motto is:
Food for Health
Because you are worth it

I still love cooking and I have a project that is on the final stages of a loan application to build a Primal Food Truck in Columbus Ohio. I’m hoping to have it ready for Spring 2019 to start the Food Truck season here in Columbus. The name will be PH Chef, PH has to do with Primal Health and also to ph balance as I relate that to the balance food gives you when you eat right.

I’m sharing with you the menu that I’m planning to start with, probably with some changes as I have time to keep playing with food.


Baked Egg on Avocado
Pork Belly and Avocado Dressing


Romaine Heart
Big Ass Salad
Jicama Slaw

Proteins (all grass-fed, pasture-raised or wild-caught)

Kombucha Smoked Pulled Pork
Pulled Braised Beef
Pulled Roasted Chicken
Baked Sockeye Salmon


Braised Red Cabbage
Sweet Potato Hash
Smashed Cauliflower
Buttered Green Asparagus


Mate and Hibiscus Kombucha
Mate Cocido
Bone Broth
Fresh Water

My website is

Joel Linik


The post Primal Health Chef: Using Food For Health appeared first on Mark’s Daily Apple.

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Abel James, antibiotic use, Autoimmune Disease, Brain Health, broccoli, broken brain, calories, carrageenan, cattle, chemical additives, chemicals in food, cleveland clinic, climate change, coconut oil, condo-meat, cool whip, Diabetes, diet diversity, dietary guidelines, doctor, dr mark hyman, Episodes, fad, family physician, Featured, fed up, food and mood, food farmacy, food is information, food label, food pharmacy, food system, food what the heck should i eat, Functional Medicine, functional medicine practitioner, genetically modified foods, gluten, gmo, healthy fats, how to read ingredient labels, Hunter-Gatherer, immune system, industrial oils, inflammatory issues, Interviews, junk food, keto, keto vegan, ketosis, kidney failure, Leaky Gut, long latency deficiency disease, Low Carb Diet, low-fat diet, mark hyman, medicare, mental effects of food, mood, mood and food connection, national academy of sciences, new york times bestselling author, nutrient deficiencies, nutrients, nutritional physical exam, nutritional testing, olive oil, omega-3, osteoporosis, Paleo, paleo vs vegan, pegan, pegan approach, podcast, Podcasts, pre-diabetic, prevent cancer, prisoners, processed foods, processed meats, Psychology, quality of food, reduced violence, Saturated Fat, science, scurvy, selenium, sleep, supplement, sustainability, the blood sugar solution, the doctor’s farmacy, The Wild Diet, trix, twinkie, ultramind, vegan diet, vegetable vouchers, videos, vitamin b, vitamin c, vitamin d, zinc
Did you know that up to 90% of Americans are not getting enough of the nutrients that are critical for healthy functioning? To help us sort it all out, we’re here with Dr. Mark Hyman, a functional medicine practitioner.

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It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

I’ve been athletic and thin my whole life, 5’9″ 145 pounds. Nine years ago when I was 22-years-old I started noticing that I was running out of steam when road biking. The problem was solved with eating more, things like granola bars and gels. Over the next 8 years I kept having to eat more and more to feel satiated. I stopped road biking and going to the gym, I had no energy to be active even though I was eating tons of tons of food (carbs). We’re talking about eating four bagels at work, in addition to 3 large meals a day. Going on trips I would have loaves of bread on the ready.

I had seen an endocrinologist, had many things tested, I appeared to be completely normal. No medical explanation. My A1C was 5.7 and when occasionally checking my blood sugar it would always be between 70-130. I eventually hit the point when I was having hypoglycemic-like incidents every 2 hours while being completely sedentary. Eating would solve the issue for 2 hours. I was a slave to food and was scared of what was happening to me. I was struggling to live a normal life.

Last year I turned to Dr. Google and I found the ketogenic diet. It seemed to make sense, your body will run off of ketones and your blood sugar will not be all over the place. Within a week I had my life back. Boundless energy and endurance.

Doing more research I found your site and The Primal Blueprint. The Primal Blueprint and fitness clicks with me, much more than just limiting carbs. I’ve been primal for a year and I am feeling better than ever. My yearly physical showed my A1C at 5.2 and I’m no longer anxious about not having food available. I am now 31-years-old and I can look forward to living life.

Something interesting that I can’t explain is that I never was able to gain weight, before primal and even now. Maybe I have a very fast metabolism, I don’t know.

If I don’t have time to make breakfast in the morning I am able to skip breakfast and have also experimented with fasting for 24 hours to see if I could do it. I’ve found that a small amount of healthy carbs gives me that extra gear for when I need to be very active. My current activities are chasing after my three children and cutting up firewood, no easy tasks. I can tackle these with ease, thanks to primal. I’m certain going primal can cure just about anything!

The post I’m No Longer Anxious About Not Having Food Available appeared first on Mark’s Daily Apple.

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Abel James, alters your genetic expression, alzheimer's, alzheimer’s disease, apoptosis, bdnf, blood glucose, blood glucose management, brain cells, brain fuel, Brain Health, brain maker, brain science, brain-boosting fats, brain-building effects, burning fat, caspase enzymes, Cholesterol, dha, Diabetes, diabetic, dna, dna shift, doctor, doctor yourself, doctor’s advice, doctors, dr. perlmutter, eat fat, eat more fat, eat your veggies, eating more cholesterol, eating veggies, epigenetic, epigenetics, Episodes, fat adapted, fat burning, fat burning man, fda, Featured, fuel with fat, genetic control, genetic engineering, genetic sequences, glucose, glucose in the brain, good science, grain, grain brain, green vegetables, heart attack, heart attacks, heart disease, hippocampus, how much fruits and vegetables, how to become fat adapted, how to reduce inflammation, how to regrow brain cells, how to supplement, improve brain health, increase brain function, inflammation, inflammatory, inflammatory biomarkers, interview, Interviews, keto diet and ketosis, ketones, ketosis, Longevity, losing brain cells, mitochondria, mitochondrial biogenesis, music and the brain, musical training, neurochemical, neurologist, neurology, Nutrition, nutrition and health, nutritional ketosis, nutritional science, omega-3, omegas, Paleo, pharmaceutical industry, physiology, podcast, Podcasts, power of music, pre-diabetic, real science, reduce inflammation, regrow brain cells, regrow your hippocampus, regrown your brain, reprogram your brain for success, reprogram your genetic expression, rewire brain, science, stroke, supplementation, the brain, the fat burning man show, the hungry brain, the musical brain, The Wild Diet, type 2 diabetes, type 2 diabetic, understand cholesterol, upgrade your brain, Vegetables, videos, vitamin d, vitamin d deficiency, vitamin d dosage, what sugar really does to your brain, wheat, Wheat Belly, whole food supplements, wild superfoods
Dr. Perlmutter is a board-certified neurologist and author of #1 New York Times bestseller, Grain Brain. In this interview, he’s going to tell you 2 things you can do right now to actually regrow your own brain cells.

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It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

Hi, my name is Mike. I haven’t always been overweight or obese. In fact, when I was a child and teen I was skinny. To the point of being teased frequently because of how skinny I was. No matter what I ate or how much of it I ate, I couldn’t gain weight. Fast forward to January 2017 and I was at my largest: 350 pounds, barely able to fit into 4xl shirts and was about to have to purchase 48 waist pants because the 46 I was in I couldn’t button. I had to put them close, fasten my belt, and hope the pants didn’t slip through and unzip.

I didn’t get here overnight, although after finding and devouring Mark’s Daily Apple I realized that my overnight practices were definitely part of it. High stress lifestyle as a paramedic for 18 years, working nights, fast food almost every meal, then stress eating through Physician Assistant school. I was definitely the “Do as I say not as I do” healthcare provider. And done with it.

In February of 2017 I checked my Hemoglobin A1C and it was 6.4, just 0.1 short of official diabetes. I started to do some of what Mark said to do on MDA but wasn’t fully into it. I’ve always been the “why it works that way” person and, being the geek that I am, kept reading. Mark’s Daily Apple, Chris Kresser, and others increased my nutritional knowledge far beyond my education as a PA (a subject for a completely different article).

In May 2017 I had lost 10 pounds but my A1c was still 6.2 and my Triglycerides were 264. It was time to actually do something about my health instead of just talk about it and tell my patients what to do. Actually, several of my patients as well as my parents, who really listened to what I told them, read MDA and instituted the Primal Lifestyle and had lost lots of weight and were doing great, which inspired me to take my own advice.

Like many people who are obese and have tried to lose weight, I’ve done well for a little bit, screwed up, and beat myself up about it. “I don’t know why I even try” and, “Well I blew it again” were frequent thoughts. When patients would ask how much I’ve lost since I started trying I would say, “Thousands” because I had been trying and failing since my mid 20s. I’ve been telling patients recently that the flip in mentality came with the 80/20 concept that we read about on MDA. It’s true. Once I fully grasped that concept and instituted it in my life, things began to turn around.

In December 2017 I tested again. My A1c was 5.4, Triglycerides 146, and I was down 15 more pounds. 2018 has been even better. I’m only down another 10 pounds (40 total as of this morning) but that’s despite several trips for work and some vacations, and my body composition is definitely changing. In May my A1c was 5.0. I’m officially no longer pre-diabetic. I am down 6 belt loops (I keep making new loops and the tip of my belt is literally on my left hip). I actually fit into and button a pair of 40 waist jeans. 3xl shirts fit me somewhat loose. All of this without any workout program. My BMI has gone from 47.5 to 42.0, so still morbidly obese but getting close to, “just obese.” I increased my activity by moving more and working on projects around my property such as building a raised garden (pulling weeds, raking rocks, etc), but didn’t do any actual workout program until the first week of May when I started a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) program three days a week.

I still have a long way to go to get to my goal of 205. The 21-Day Reset that we are currently doing has helped me get back on track paying attention to what I am doing. I’m sleeping better. Energy is better. Clothes fit better. The area I work (mountains in Arizona) has a large population that lives where it’s warm in the winter and comes up to the mountains for the summer. My summer patients who haven’t seen me since the fall are making comments about how I look. My confidence is returning and I’m re-engaging in life.

I will be 50 next year and I’m confident that I will be healthier at 50 than I was at 25. I also would like to do the Primal Health Coach Institute as well as the Functional Medicine Program at the Kresser Institute (student loans currently keep those from being financially feasible), and I have started to figure out how to institute a primal based health program at my current practice. Grok on!


The post My Confidence Is Returning, and I’m Re-engaging in Life appeared first on Mark’s Daily Apple.

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It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

Cancer sucks! Not that I ever personally endured cancer. I did however watch my father die of lung cancer when I was nine. Why would I start there? Only because I think it was the biggest factor in my descent into both substance and food addiction, not to mention the interspersed bouts of chronic cardio and caloric restriction that defined the next four decades of my life.

So if my fathers demise fueled the need to bury my feelings, the Standard American Diet (SAD) provided the vehicle. Processed and fast food was a large part of my diet as a child. In hindsight processed carbohydrates became my drug of choice. I literally buried my emotions in overeating crap food. Eventually this led to unhealthy weight gain.

This transpired between my 7th and 8th grade years. Fat shaming is real. Between my 9th and 10th grade year I decided to do something about it. Enter chronic cardio and calorie restriction. Coupled with the fact I had entered puberty and the benefits of the hormones that come with that I was able to slim down. I was able to control my weight for the most part till my early twenties.

By then I was doing a stint in the US Marines and that kept me fairly fit. Soon after I got out at the age of 24 I started to have weight creep. Enter my one and only attempt at a plant based diet. I was able to lose weight eating that way, but it came at the expense of muscle loss and in the end it really wasn’t sustainable for me long term. I was still fairly active and was able to rebuild the lost muscle and continue to maintain my weight.

Success Story BeforeAt 29 I changed careers and became an outside sales rep for a flooring distributor. Eating and exercise became less of a priority and I woke up one day in my early thirties at a hefty (for me ) 225 lbs. By the age of 33 I was going thru a divorce and doing what all single guys do, I decided I needed to get in shape. The only thing I knew that worked was chronic cardio and caloric restriction. That once again worked. I was able to drop the weight and get back in shape.

Back in a relationship (that I’m still in 23 years later and happily married) at the age of 36, I could no longer maintain the calorie in calorie out life style and once again my weight crept up, this time to 245 lbs. For some guys this doesn’t seem like a lot, but with my build, I was at least half body fat. Over the next decade I tried half hearted attempts at chronic cardio and caloric restriction with very limited success. In the end I would always default back to my set point in the 240s. At this point I was starting to show signs of metabolic disease. My fasted blood glucose was squarely in the pre-diabetic range and I was starting to show signs of sleep apnea. I had to have a hip replaced.

After another career change that involved less stress and travel I decided it was time to start dealing with it, but other than the calorie in and calorie out method I had no idea how. I had just turned 50 and was determined to make my 50s better then my 40s. About this time a friend convinced me to get a road bike. I did and fell in love with it. Coupled with a diet that consisted of weighing everything I was able to get under 200 lbs!

During this time I was reading a British cycling magazine called “Cycling Fitness” (no longer in publication) and it had an article about this crazy caveman diet. A few Google searches later and I landed on a website called “Mark’s Daily Apple.” That lead me to the Primal Blueprint. That was my aha moment. It all made sense! Being slightly (which may be a modest description) obsessive compulsive I devoured the Primal Blueprint and a myriad of books on the subject.

I wish I could report it was all smooth sailing from that point forward. Unfortunately I only took away part of the message. I continued to ride my bike way too hard, way to often and after a period of fantastic fitness I completely crashed and burned. Over training is for real. Along with it comes sleep issues, digestive issues and general fatigue. It’s not a simple hole to dig out of. I had managed to get my weight down to 160 lbs, but felt both weak and burnt out. I actually had friends do an intervention. They wanted to know if I was “all right.”

This all lead to a SAD food binge and before I knew it I was up to 195 lbs and climbing. I also was battling a really bad case of psoriasis. The medical industry was no help. About this time I had a bad alcohol moment. No legal trouble or abuse or anything, but I managed to totally freak my wife out and myself. That was July 1st of 2017. I decided then and there to retire from drinking and get my health back. Enter the New Revised Primal Blueprint. Once again I devoured it. This time I decided to really embrace the whole concept.

Shortly after I signed up for the Primal Health Coach certification program. Partly out of a desire to help other people to overcome their weight and health challenges and partly to keep myself on the right path. Since then I have completed the certification and have continued to embrace the lifestyle. I currently weigh 162 lbs but feel much stronger both physically and emotionally than I did when I had dropped to 160 lbs. My skin issues have resolved. Existing joint pain has diminished. My last A1c was at 5.2.

AfterSo what have I learned:
• Diets don’t work, lifestyle changes do.
• Food can be very addictive, treat it accordingly. If you crave it, it might be a problem.
• You can’t exercise your way out of a bad diet.
• Find a way to let go of old hurts, they can hold you back.
• Be willing to experiment and do your own N=1. You need to find the best way of eating for you (preferably within the Primal framework).
• Yes, sleep and recovery are important!

I still enjoy my time on the bike but with more of a focus on enjoying the ride. I also have had luck experimenting with the carnivore diet and although I recognize this is not the best approach for all it seems to work well for me and is a valid tool for some. I can also see a diet that leans more towards plant based working well for others. N=1 baby! A special thanks to Mark Sisson for his influence and resources.

Grok on Friends!
Jim Tipton
Certified Primal Health Coach


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