Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
1 Aug

At 87 Years Old, for the First Time in My Life I Feel Beautiful, Both Inside and Out

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!

After reading last week’s success story post and all the comments from people who wanted to hear from someone my age, I thought I could be that inspiration telling my primal story. I am 87 years young and found the primal lifestyle about three and a half years ago. I went from 220 pounds to 130 pounds. Here’s my story.

I was raised on a cotton farm in California’s Central Valley. I was the youngest of eleven children. We all worked on the farm and during the Depression we ate what we raised. But even as a young teenager, when I asked my teacher if she thought I was fat she replied, “You are pleasingly plump.”

Young Faye

At seventeen I left home and moved to Santa Cruz to work at the Boardwalk, living on hot dogs and hamburgers. Four years later I met my husband of 64 years.

Faye and Earl

We had four children, two daughters right away and a son and daughter seven years later. Trying to make ends meet, we ate a lot of beans, oats and rice. My husband and I worked in the restaurant business, he as a chef and myself as a waitress. Needless to say, we both worked long hours and meals for us was whatever was quick to put on the table for the family.

When our two youngest became teenagers, I decided to be a stay at home mother. With this there began to be loneliness and boredom and food often filled the void. I never had a drivers license and my husband worked ten to twelve hours a day. I would eat when I was bored, lonely, mad or happy. And so, my emotional eating began increasing with the empty nest.


Oh, I would try to lose weight through the years; Atkins, Weight Watchers, Weigh Down, but they never worked.

In 1990, at the age of 63, I learned I was diabetic. How confused and scared I was to learn this. But even with this news and doing my best with SAD meals for diabetics, I could never lose the weight. Along with diabetes and still no weight control, of course, came the onset of heart disease. I suffered a heart attack in 1999 and stepped up my efforts with different fad diets, but was never able to keep the weight off.

My grandson became the editor of this blog (which I didn’t know what that was) and soon his parents were following this new lifestyle. They kept telling me how the Primal way wasn’t a diet but a simple way of life. They gave me a copy of The Primal Blueprint and as I began reading it something just clicked. I no longer wanted to be overweight. Each week I saw a difference as the weight came off with ease. I never felt like I was deprived and found I wasn’t hungry all the time. After a year of being Primal, I moved to be closer to my daughter. My new doctor checked my blood work and took me off of several medications, including insulin. I have been able to manage my diabetes through eating Primally and exercising three times a week.

Faye with Son-in-Law Steve

At 87 years old, for the first time in my life I feel beautiful, both inside and out. People look at me and tell me I’m so tiny. I still can’t get over that. I tell my Primal story to anyone I meet. Being overweight all those years has taken its toll on my heart, but I have never felt better. My advice to those thinking about the Primal way of living; do it. It is simple and it works! I eat better than I ever have and feel better than I ever have. Look at me!

Primal Faye!

Living life,


You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. I only hope I can be as beautiful as you are when I am in my 80s!!

    Susan wrote on August 7th, 2014
  2. You look amazing! I’m very happy for you.

    FattynSweaty wrote on August 19th, 2014
  3. Faye,

    Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful story – it brought tears to my eyes. You are so beautiful!! :) :)


    Tina wrote on August 21st, 2014
  4. Faye, I am in absolute awe, and have a question for you: do you limit your food intake at all in terms of quantity? I was overweight most of my life and did lose weight and maintain it for many years, but with difficulty. I find Paleo easy to stay on, BUT I still must watch the portions, and I never got really thin like you – my dream! Can you post something about what you actually eat on a daily basis? For those of us over a certain age, it seems we need less calories – Paleo or otherwise.

    Again – what an inspiration, and I am thrilled for you!

    Jane wrote on August 27th, 2014
    • Thank you for your complement. I live in an senior living facility where my lunch is served every day. This can be challenging since preparing for 200 people a lot of rice, potatoes, beans and bread are always on the menu, sometimes all of them in one meal. I always take what good choices I have and add to it. I really feel like I eat more than I did than when I was not primal. My breakfast usually consists of eggs with vegetables, bacon or sausage. Lunch they always have soup and salad with the meal, so that is what i will have and take main course home with me and I will add to it. I eat a lot of veggies and a small amount of meat and fish. I do not snack much because I don’t feel hungry, but when I do it’s usually nuts and dark chocolate. I never feel deprived or feel like I’m missing something when I give away that piece of bread or potato, those things don’t even taste good anymore. I feel so healthy and vibrant I only wish I had done this earlier. Again thank you for you kind words.

      Faye wrote on September 5th, 2014
  5. How did I miss this? Faye, you’re awesome!

    Julian wrote on August 29th, 2014
  6. Sorry I found this story so late – 3 1/2 months – but I just want to thank you for sharing your inspirational story Faye!

    And also, I must ask after searching through all the comments, no one else has, when you write “My grandson became the editor of this blog” do you mean that Mark is your grandson? I know Mark is the creator/writer of this blog. Is someone else the editor?

    I think it’s great that your grandson (whoever he is) influenced his parents who then influenced you! Yeah for family!

    Diane wrote on November 14th, 2014
  7. This has got to be just the most adorable and uplifting success story I’ve read on MDA. You are a huge inspiration, Faye! And you look completely radiant in your photos by the way 😀

    Sam wrote on January 29th, 2015
  8. I was a success story on MDA
    Doctors puts me into Hospice in March. Ha-Ha I’m still here. You can’t tell me Primal doesn’t work. I feel great!

    Faye wrote on August 24th, 2015
    • hospice? what happened?

      i’m so so so so glad you are still sticking around & enjoying your life. you give me hope about growing old.

      stay healthy,

      pam wrote on August 24th, 2015

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