Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...Tell Me More
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 don’t have a dramatic story to tell but I have had fantastic results from changing to the paleo diet and I now for the first time in my life feel good all the time and I am not concerned that I’m headed for diabetes or a heart condition. Throughout my adult life I have had several health issues, while not as severe as many of the stories told on this website, were definitely keeping me from a high quality of life. It was very difficult for me to accept that the paleo way of eating was an appropriate and safe diet as I have been brainwashed like everyone else to believe eating certain foods cause health issues which is just not true.
For most of my entire adult life I have felt very lethargic. This has been a huge drain on my life as I never felt like doing anything and was always feeling tired. I tried everything I could including seeing doctors, having blood tests done, tried different supplements, etc. It was very discouraging. Then in my 30s I noticed that after I ate, almost all the time, I sneezed about 10 times! I eat out a lot and it’s pretty embarrassing and annoying to have that happen on a regular basis. I had no idea why it was happening and it continued for many years without me addressing it. I also developed HORRIBLE sleeping problems. I would wake up in the middle of the night and not be able to go back to sleep. Variations of my sleep issues have been occurring for about the last 10 years. About three years ago I went to see a homeopathic doctor who, in his own unique way, diagnosed me to be wheat and dairy sensitive. I agreed to remove foods from my diet that contained wheat and dairy which was extremely difficult for me to do. The sneezing stopped and only occurred when I wasn’t aware of ingredients that were in my food when I ate out (like tons of butter in a rice dish). I seemed to not be as lethargic either which made me very happy.
However, I became of the mindset “if it doesn’t contain wheat, then it’s ok to eat”. I had no problem eating greasy French fries, tons of sushi (surrounded by rice), gluten free crackers, breakfast cereals like “rice chex” that were gluten free, Thai food with rice noodles, etc. I thought I was doing great. Another problem I still had was always feeling hungry. I would wake up in the middle of the night starving and nothing seemed to fill me up. I was having bowls of cereal, crackers, fruit, etc. It was very discouraging. I thought it was due to the weightlifting I had been doing. The final blow was my yearly physical with my doctor in November 2012. My cholesterol was 249 and my glucose was 101. While these numbers aren’t terrible, they were WAY higher than the year before and that was very bothersome as I was concerned they would just keep going up every year. I was very discouraged and didn’t know what to do. I was talking about it with a guy at work who then started telling me about the paleo diet and directed me to Mark’s Daily Apple. Most people here at work don’t agree with his philosophies regarding food, but it all made sense to me. He also had me watch the movie Fathead which was an eye opener.
I started reading the Mark’s Daily Apple, reading other success stories, learning the Primal Blueprint and having all of my questions regarding the diet answered. The website has been a great tool to help me stick to this plan. The philosophy made sense to me so I decided to give it a shot for six months and see if there was any improvement. I was a little uncomfortable eating at least two eggs a day and bacon for snacks when I was hungry but I stuck with it. I cut out almost all grains except I started allowing myself one slice of Ezekiel bread when I feel like it. One thing I should mention is I don’t follow the diet COMPLETELY. I do eat corn and black beans occasionally, and a small amount of brown rice once in a while (and I definitely blatantly cheat sometimes). For the last six months I have eaten mostly eggs, limited amounts of fruit, almonds, sweet potatoes, many salads with tons of veggies, all proteins including fish, chicken and steak (mostly grass fed) and vegetables like Brussels sprouts and broccoli. I drink a big cup of coffee in the morning with cream and Truvia. The biggest change was cutting out the grains. It was really difficult at first but now it’s second nature and I’ve learned I still get to eat lots of food that taste REALLY good. I made my first batch of paleo brownies and they are delicious! I went for a six month check-up a week ago and was shocked at the results I got (see below for comparison charts). First of all, I lost 7 pounds (I am 5’0” and weighed 111). I was not trying AT ALL to lose weight but am thrilled that I lost all my “belly fat”. I do need to mention that at the same time I started eating paleo, we started a “walking program” with walking challenges here at work. So I am definitely walking more than I have in the past. This may be a part of the weight loss although the weight came off and I was NEVER feeling hungry or deprived. My cholesterol is now 203 which it has never been in my adult life (we have a family history of very high cholesterol). In June of this year I had the particle test done regarding my cholesterol and my LDL size is 21.6 which is considered light and fluffy so my bad cholesterol is not even that bad! My glucose level went from 101 to 88. I have more stamina and I am definitely sleeping better as I am not waking up starving in the middle of the night. Also, I have had a throbbing pain in my gums since I had an impacted molar removed as a child. The pain is pretty constant and my dentist had no idea how to help me. I just realized the other day that the pain is gone. It’s truly amazing. I have never felt healthier in my life and I’ve been around for a pretty long time!
December 13, 2012
June 10, 2013
I would like to give a big thanks to Mark and Mark’s Daily Apple for all of the free content he provides to help people live a healthier, productive and happy life by living the Primal way! I can go there to literally have any question I have answered – in a very thorough and understandable way.