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Performance Up! Inflammation Down!: Professional Baseball Pitcher Goes Primal and Sees Immediate Results

Published on February 27, 2014,

Over at his Mark’s Daily Apple site, Mark Sisson has recently published a fascinating case study of a professional baseball pitcher who switched to a low carb, primal diet with impressive results – the latest in a regular stream of stories of pro athletes who are dropping the carbs…

Performance Up! Inflammation Down!: Professional Baseball Pitcher Goes Primal and Sees Immediate ResultsIt’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! Dear Mark, My name is Greg and I am a 25 year old professional pitcher in the Marlins Organization. People don’t often associate professional athletes with poor health, but I was constantly considered a “bad-bodied left-handed pitcher.” The tag was placed on me and I accepted it. Just never wanted to change since it hadn’t affected my performance on the mound (or so I thought). This story really starts more in my high school years. I was a mindless eater constantly shoving down granola bars, rice, pasta, etc..

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Success Story: Healthier at Age 44 Than 24: How Joe Lost 115 Pounds and Turned His Life Around

Published on December 12, 2013,

Mark Sisson has a success story on his Mark’s Daily Apple blog from Joe who has lost a whole load of weight and feels much better since first hearing Gary Taubes give a talk in 2011 and then embarking on a low carb ketogenic diet. Here’s an extract of some of the benefits Joe has been experiencing…

Joe before

Joe before

My energy, sleep quality, every aspect of my health and day to day feeling, is as good or better now at age 44 as it was when I was 24. Everything…yes, EVERYTHING – and now I am spending 80% less time “exercising”.

When others ask me, these are my highlights of why I will continue a Primal, nutritional ketosis lifestyle, and why I recommend others try it:

  • Incredible, deep, restful sleep – my sleep improved early on before I lost much weight; now I usually get up without an alarm and I feel great.
  • Constant stream of energy throughout the day, regardless of the timing of my last meal…I usually fast 12 – 20 hours several times a week, usually before exercise – I recently did three hours of powerlifting and bicycling after a 20 hour fast…just to see if I could – I felt great.
  • Mental focus consistent through entire day regardless of meal timing.
  • I lost 115 pounds on the scale in about a year, but more importantly, I have lost over 12 inches off my waist size; I am back to the same college and high school clothing size.
  • My headaches/migraines are gone! I’m off medicines for them. The relief of living without headaches makes everything better and this alone would be enough for me to recommend Primal.

    Joe after

    Joe after

  • I can still enjoy wine with friends – I stopped drinking beer and mixed drinks with carbs, but continued red wine with meals and whisky or wine on social occasions.
  • Neck, ankle, hip, and knee joint pains have disappeared – they went away rapidly, before most of the weight loss – makes me think that the inflammation was due to diet more than wear and tear from carrying extra weight.
  • Acne and oily skin has decreased 95% – never this close to normal ever in my life.
  • Years of scaly, cracked feet have completely resolved spontaneously; a massage therapist accused me of having a pedicure and exfoliation and having the best feet she has seen on a 40 year old man – I had not done anything other than shower.
  • My shoe size has decreased – I was size 11eee or 12 all my adult life. Now I’m 11 regular.
  • Two golf ball size sebaceous cysts on my back spontaneously dissolved in a few weeks.
  • Triglycerides lowered from very high levels down to 50 now.
  • LDL and small LDL particle size falling from very high to normal.
  • HDL from 30s to the 60s with low amount of exercise.
  • Fasting glucose from high 90s (pre-diabetes) down to low 80s (normal).
  • I had elevated ALT and AST most of my adult life – now liver function tests are normal.
  • For over 15 years I had episodic gastric reflux, stomach distention and constipation – this has completely resolved.

The majority of my 100 pound weight loss occurred while I was not exercising at all. I started exercising recently in the fall of 2012 (AFTER most of my weight loss). Despite plateaus of staying at the same weight for many weeks at a time, I have continually decreased my clothing size each month – I continue to gain strength, vascularity and muscular definition.

More at:  Healthier at Age 44 Than 24: How I Lost 115 Pounds and Turned My Life Around

Success Story: Really!? Who Loses Weight and Gets Healthier by Eating Fat and Getting Rid of Whole Grain!?

Published on September 19, 2013,

Tucker’s early story is one many will relate to: he was fit and active in school but then moved into an office job, married his sweetheart and started to pile on the pounds. He tried to manage this through the normal recommended advice (low fat diet, going to the gym) and had temporary periods of marginal success but his health was not good. Eventually he discovered the low carb paleo diet and the Crossfit exercise program. You can see the details below but just checkout the before and after photos to see the impact! This is from Ancestral Weight Loss Registry…

Old Tucker

Old Tucker

…One night on my way home from work I started to feel light headed, but passed it off as having “low blood sugar.” After getting home and nearly fainting, I decided that I was going to go to the doctor the next day to have him take a look at me. Doc recommended for me to have a lipid profile completed, which I did. The results aren’t all that shocking now, but to a 22 year old who had relatively good health before, this was quite depressing. My cholesterol was sky high (320) and my triglycerides were just as bad (390). HDL was 36 and LDL was out of this world. He immediately put me on a statin, which I begrudgingly took over a 5 month period of time.

At that point in time, I was 5’6”, 208 lbs, but my cholesterol #’s were coming down…life was good. Well, it actually wasn’t good. Around this time, I never had any energy, we continued to eat incredibly bad, and we then found out that my wife was pregnant (not exactly planned). Immediately, I was determined to lose weight and get fit. My mindset was: there is no way that I want my child to see me this fat.

To get in shape and lose weight, I got a membership to the YMCA and went to the gym 4-5 times per week; all the while, not paying much attention to my diet. After 2-3 months and a small amount of success (losing 5-7 lbs), I started researching ways to eat “healthy”. I started eating “healthy” cereal (whole grains are great for you, right?), cut almost all of the fat out of my diet (turkey bacon, turkey burgers, etc), and loaded up on protein. 2 months into this eating style and I was feeling just as bad as I did before, but I was starting lose pounds, which was all that mattered to me. Before our son was born, I stepped on the scale and felt pretty good about myself, I was 20 pounds lighter and looking good.

To me, losing 20 pounds was awesome, but I still weighed 185 pounds and my triglycerides & LDL were way too high. Shortly after my son’s birth I decided to go back to school and finish my degree. My weight over the next few years yo-yo’d up and down. I had a very basic mentality about fitness…your total health = total weight. So, losing 15 pounds meant getting that much more healthy! Or at least I thought. At a point during my last semester of school, I was again weighing 170-175 and thought I was on top of the world. For some reason, though, I couldn’t maintain very well and it was very easy to shoot back up to 185. And that’s exactly what happened.

I was fortunate enough to have a job lined up immediately following school. Again, this was an office job, but I convinced myself that if I watched my calories and went to the gym then there wouldn’t be any problems. A year and a half into my job (July 2011) and I was hovering around 195 pounds. Once again we received the good news that my wife was expecting. And again, I told myself that I’m going to lose weight so my soon to arrive daughter would never see her father look so bad.

To cut weight, I setup an elaborate workout and meal plan (standard American diet low in fat and high in carbs) to keep me on track and provide structure. Most mornings I would get to the gym around 5a, run for 15-30 minutes, and lift weights for 30 – 45 minutes. This seemed to be working for me (remember, I believed weight loss was paramount). From July 2011 – November 2011, I shed 20-25 pounds and improved my lipid profile.

Something strange happened around November, however. I came down with a sinus infection that started just after Halloween. As is typical for me, I didn’t go to the doctor for it because I thought it would go away. During this time, I continued to exercise and eat normal. Mid-December rolled around and I continued on with the sinus infection. Thinking that there could be more to my illness than originally thought, I broke down and went to the doctor. He prescribed azithromycin (z-pack), which I took until gone, but the pesky cold wouldn’t stay away. Basically, from November 2011 until mid-January 2012, I had some form of cold and/or sinus infection. Even though I had been overweight for much of the past 8 years, I rarely got sick, and if I did it would clear up fairly quickly.

New Tucker

New Tucker

In mid-January 2012, I decided I’d had enough of the job that I was in and went to a different company. My 3 month long cold now gone, I felt rejuvenated, and ready for a fresh start. During this time, I stumbled across some “crazy” people doing Crossfit and eating this weird (and dumb) “Paleo” diet. Really!? Who loses weight and gets healthier by eating fat and getting rid of whole grain!?

After researching the eating habit for a month or so and stumbling across MDA (ask my wife, Mark and I are on a first name basis ;) ), I dove right into the paleo diet and haven’t looked back. Unlike my previous bout with getting health (aka – losing weight), I actually felt good this time around. And, FINALLY, I figured out that there is much more to being healthy than that number that pops up on the scale.

Recently, I had my blood work done and I am happy with the results:

TC: 249

HDL: 60

LDL: 148

Triglycerides: 123

Of course there is room for improvement in those results, but I have never previously had HDL above 40 and triglycerides under 200. In 5 months, I’ve made great strides and feel tremendous doing it!

Now for a few numbers:

July 2011

Height: 66 inches

Weight: 195 lbs

BF%: +20%

Waist: 35.25 inches

July 2012

Height: 66 inches (damn, I still haven’t grown!)

Weight: 145 lbs

BF%: 10-11%

Waist: 29.5 inches

Although my wife is absolutely sick and tired of me talking about my diet (she’s still holding on to bread), she is proud of me for changes I’ve made. And, yes, I still have people look at me like I have 7 eyes whenever they ask me how I lost weight, “…you eat bacon!?…are you now a caveman!?…I could never give up pastas,etc!….”

While I understand that we’re facing an uphill battle in our fight against a terrible American diet, littered with disease, progress is being made.

More at:  Really!? Who loses weight and gets healthier by eating fat and getting rid of whole grain!?

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