Never, never, never give up.” ~Rebecca Lynn Dunn, Age 47, Larue, Texas
At my heaviest weight, I was 240 pounds with a fasting blood sugar of 110. My husband’s weight and blood sugar were high as well, though he had high blood pressure on top of it. His doctor just kept prescribing pharmaceutical drugs, and I was honestly afraid of what could happen to his health. In the past, we both tried everything to lose weight including diets, pills, and starving ourselves. I’m not afraid to admit that we failed a few times. In April of 2018, we finally said, “Enough!” With our weight and blood sugar sneaking up on us, we knew it was time to find something that really could help us. That’s when we started the ketogenic (keto) diet, and I eventually transitioned to the Carnivore lifestyle.
I’d like to provide a little background to my story, as I suffered some major health issues throughout the last two decades. However, I don’t want you to feel sorry for me as I share. I actually want my story to inspire you and give you hope. Even through my hardships, I stayed strong and kept going. That’s what I want you to do. NEVER GIVE UP!
Suffering from Autoimmune Disease
Starting 26 years ago, I suffered from Graves Disease (“Graves”) which is a multisystem autoimmune condition that is characterized by hyperthyroidism or overactive thyroid. This made me skinny with a palpitating heart.
When I was diagnosed with a thyroid running rampant, I was also pregnant and had a toddler at home. Therefore, my doctor and I agreed on a quick fix – radioactive iodine. This is a common treatment for Graves, and it slowly destroyed the cells of my thyroid gland that produced the thyroid hormone. After giving birth to my youngest child, my thyroid was put to eternal rest. With the removal of my thyroid gland, I became hypothyroid as my body failed to produce the hormones needed for many bodily functions.
One of the symptoms of hypothyroidism is weight gain, and that did affect me greatly. Not having control over my weight seemed hopeless, even with exercise, which I understand is common in those with the disease. The more I worked out, the sicker I got. I also suffered from numerous other conditions such as genetic migraines, mononucleosis, pneumonia (3 times), bronchitis (every year), high cholesterol, pre-diabetes, and depression.
Starting the Keto Plan
The first steps I took in starting the keto lifestyle included buying three keto cookbooks and joining a few Facebook keto groups. But, one of the smartest moves I made was removing every single offending food from my kitchen. This was an eye opener! I took one look at the basket of foods I removed, and I finally understood why I was so unhealthy. It was full of starchy carbohydrates (carbs) that included grains, pastas, and potatoes.
I was excited about trying new recipes that included healthier keto food options. Some of my newfound dishes were great, but some were real flops. Though my husband and I were both overjoyed in losing weight the first week on the keto plan, I made the mistake of cooking lots of keto treats. Those eventually became a problem for me because it was difficult eating just the recommended serving size. Though my husband can eat 50 carbs per day and still lose weight easily, I needed to stick to the recommended 20 carbs per day to see weight loss results. It was a lesson learned.
Moving on to the Carnivore Lifestyle
As time passed, I became a Carnivore (Hubby stayed with Keto). There's nothing I like more than steak and brisket, and this lifestyle works for me. I don't have to count carbs or calories. I just eat until I am full and satisfied. Though intermittent fasting is a big thing for both my husband and me. We both drink bulletproof coffee when we wake up. Then we don’t eat until brunch. Our last meal is around 5 o’clock.
I truly believe the Keto and Carnivore lifestyles that my hubby and I have chosen saved our lives. Not only have they helped us financially, but they rescued us from being unhealthy and delivered us from an early death.
I have been a nurse for 10 years, and I thought I knew everything about nutrition and health. Turns out, I learned something new along the way. I hope that my story encourages you to investigate the Carnivore or Keto lifestyles for yourself, as I truly believe that it saved my husband and me.
Another thing I realized is that support is very important. My hubby has been very supportive of me, as I have been for him. We also belong so some support forums for our newfound lifestyles. If you’re contemplating this lifestyle, it’s important for you to be around people with like minds that can educate, motivate. and inspire you.
If you've been on the Carnivore Diet and are interested in sharing your transformation story, whether it be weight loss or health, please message Dr. Abby Campbell. Also, be sure to follow our channel, as well as like, share, and comment. You may also download our interactive and useful app to stay in tune with the Carnivore Wellness channel.