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

I’m Going Into My 40th Year Feeling Healthier Than Ever!

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!

real life stories stories 1 2“Affliction comes to us, not to make us sad but sober; not to make us sorry but wise.”

H. G. Wells

Since it was the Friday Success Stories that truly inspired me to go Primal, I thought I’d share my own. My journey to the Primal lifestyle started about a year after I gave birth to triplets (around January of 2012). At that point I had made multiple trips to the doctors with health complaints. I’m guessing my doctor thought I was a hypochondriac, but my body had started falling apart, and it was affecting my ability to care for my trio. I was reminded by my doctor how pregnancy (and breastfeeding) takes a toll on your body, and even more so with triplets. I just wanted to cry at the prospect that this was the new normal. I felt so blessed to have these three healthy babies, but hated feeling like I couldn’t be the mom I had imagined.

Growing up I had periods of sickness; I remember having to repeat 4th grade because I had too many sick days. Even as I child I recognized that certain foods made my stomach hurt. I remember loving the taste of fast food, but hating the way it made me feel afterwards. Around 6th grade I started participating in sports, started feeling a little better, and continued to feel relatively healthy through college. After college, I noticed some of the same feelings of sickness after eating; grumbling stomach and frequent trips to the bathroom. I knew it was probably something in my diet, but wasn’t willing to make the commitment to any type of elimination diet to figure out what was causing the issues. It wasn’t until after giving birth that I felt like I’d hit rock bottom, and wanted to get to the root of the problem.

One of the things I hated most is that people didn’t seem to take me seriously because I didn’t really look sick. On the inside I felt like I was dying. Some of the things I had been experiencing were: night sweats, racing heart, trouble sleeping, anxiety, rashes around my mouth and face, hip and chest pains, tingling feeling in my extremities, recurring symptoms of endometriosis (I had had laparoscopic surgery to remove endo and cysts in 2009), and intestinal issues that seemed to be getting worse. When I told my doctor about my symptoms, he decided to do some blood tests. The results showed that I was severely vitamin D deficient and slightly anemic, but other than that everything seemed “normal”.

I was given high dose vitamin D supplements to take for a month, and told to come back and repeat the blood test. He also did a mammogram and tested for peri menopause, and both were normal. I was told to take NSAIDs for the pain, and that I should cut back on caffeine. I didn’t notice much of a difference with the supplements, but followed the doctor’s advice. I decided to start doing my own research. I noticed some of my symptoms were similar to these with gluten intolerance. I gave my sister Laura a call because I knew she had gone gluten free along with her fiancé who is gluten intolerant. She suggested I try going gluten free (GF) for a few weeks and see if it helped with my symptoms. The idea of giving up bread, pasta, and beer was almost more than I could fathom. Sourdough bread slathered with butter had long been my go-to comfort food, especially when I was sick (which was a lot). Where would I find my comfort now?

I must have had the low carb flu because the first week gluten free was tough (headaches, constant hunger, extreme irritability). Then something amazing happened about a week in, I noticed some of my symptoms clearing up. I started sleeping better at night, and experiencing a little more energy. But it didn’t take long to find gluten-free replacement foods (read: high carb & processed); I was happy to have my bread (GF) and pasta (rice) back again. I found some gluten free websites to get ideas about how to go gluten free. It was great to find a place to commiserate with others who were stuck with GF beer, and finding replacement flours for their favorite cookie recipes. Around this time I noticed I was gaining a little weight (and feeling bloated), and feeling a little depressed at the prospect of never having gluten again (the GF beer *is* lacking in the taste department).

It was right around the time of my 20th high school reunion (June 2012) that I mentioned to my sister Clare that I had gone gluten free. She recommended that I check out Mark’s Daily Apple, and told me specifically about the success stories. What struck me most was how upbeat the success stories were; these people didn’t seem like they were losing out on anything by changing their lifestyles. So many of the GF (and celiac) websites I had visited focused on what you couldn’t have, so this was a breath of fresh air.

My sister loaned me her copy of The Primal Blueprint (I still need to give it back), and I started reading it at the babies’ nap time. I ended up getting the Kindle edition as well, so it traveled easily in my already cramped diaper bag. The principles of PB made a lot of sense to me. I had long been a chronic cardio junkie, but training for marathons usually left me sick and injured. As a Social Science major, the evolutionary viewpoint using the Grok analogy really struck a chord. I had been a victim of the Standard American Diet for a long time, and I think deep down I knew that my diet played a role in my symptoms.

I’m going into my 40th year feeling healthier than ever! I have the energy to keep up with my 2 1/2 year old toddlers. And who knew playing outdoors could be so fun!? I definitely underestimated the power of play. Although I do still run for fun, I don’t push it as hard as I used to; my kids love it when I run “super-fast” (sprint). I don’t have to go far to find heavy things to lift, considering my guys still love to be carried. I’m trying to teach them to live Primal by setting a good example. We’ve started growing some of our own vegetables, and they love to help harvest.

Best of all, ALL of my health issues have improved, and then some. I had been a skeptic that diet changes would cure my deteriorating health. Those rashes around my mouth that were irritating and made me self-conscious have cleared up. No more racing heart, night sweats, or bone pain! I am no longer vitamin D deficient. I am still amazed by how many of my symptoms improved. There were so many “little” health issues that I just attributed to getting older or bad genes that improved as well. I no longer have issues with: sinus headaches, insomnia, teeth grinding, cracking joints (only after a tough workout), dry eyes, balance, mood swings, anxiety, brain fog, bloating, swollen feet, and I no longer have to take any “sick days” during my monthly cycle due to pain and cramping.

And then there’s all the things I gained: energy (oh the energy!!), clearer eyes, muscle definition, healthier hair and nails, softer skin, more vivid dreams, the best sleep I’ve had in years. Most importantly, I’m able to be the kind of mom I’d hoped to be to my energetic trio. My husband recently asked, “but don’t you miss pizza?”; I didn’t respond, instead I showed him the long list of symptoms that had improved since going Primal. I’d much rather have my health than an Ultimate Slice.

I’m definitely a work-in-progress, but it feels great to be going in the right direction. I occasionally eat a little more dark chocolate than I probably should, and I’m still warming up to sweet potatoes in lieu of white potatoes. I also need to work on getting more sleep, but I can say when I sleep now it’s a much sounder sleep than before. I actually even nap from time to time, whereas in the past it was near impossible to ever just relax enough to nap.

I’m guessing I’m not the only one who loves the before and after photos. I don’t have any that are too dramatic (I did throw in a “scary” pregnancy photo for fun though), but I used to have a constant bloated look, and never had much muscle definition (skinny fat). I recently took one of my kids into the pediatrician (it had been about 6 months), and he asked how much weight I had lost. I honestly couldn’t tell him because I didn’t keep track, but it has been a nice side effect. The comments have gone from, “you look good for having triplets” to just “you look good!”; both are nice, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I prefer the latter.

I’m so grateful to have found this site and The Primal Blueprint. Thank you, Mark, and to all who have helped me along the way. And to all the naysayers, I dare you to try it for 21 days. What have you got to lose!

Grok on!!

Barbara

Pre-triplet belly icon wink

Pre-primal

Post-primal

Post-primal work-out

Post-primal play

Post-primal happy family icon smile

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. Congratulations!! I love your story, keep up the great work! and what a beautiful family!

    Charlotte wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you Charlotte!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
      • Barb,

        Inspiring story! And now you can truly be super-mom!

        I had similar gut issues all my life and benefitted from eliminating gluten, then going paleo/primal. However I had a huge, nearly year-and-a-half backslide induced by (ill-advisedly) taking antibiotics from a mainstream doctor. This led me to question what it was that could allow such a huge improvement, but then be undone by antibiotics — even when continuing to eat paleo.

        What I discovered was that the gut injury (aka “leaky gut syndrome”) can be deep-seated, and survive THROUGH paleo, or at least, be easily re-induced by external stressors such as antibiotics.

        With further investigation (and lots of $$ testing), I discovered I was sulfation -deficient, and methylation-deficient (which leads to sulfation deficiency). This cases a variety of the body’s detox/healing processes to break down, and notably, makes the gut lining cells (GAGs) weak.

        With this knowledge in hand, I figured out how to “supplement” to remediate the methylation/sulfation deficiencies that were making me vulnerable to leaky gut. Surprisingly, chief among these therapies is soaking/applying Epsom salt dermally, daily (seems so simple!). Also super important is taking magnesium… and I’m also taking glycine to support these processes.

        The transformation has been start: within about a week I pulled out of my year-long funk and was back to the height of my symptom-free, primal/paleo status.

        Since you hinted that you still might have lingering issues, this info might help you. I would love to correspond and hear more details of your lab tests (did you test on anything that touched on sulfation or methylation?), and share more remedy notes.

        Tony Carangi wrote on August 31st, 2013
        • Thanks Tony! That’s interesting; I’ve never heard of Epsom salt treatments or of that type of deficiency. In talking with my doctor all that was mentioned was Vitamin D deficiency and Anemia. I should probably look to see all that was tested at that time because I’m not sure. My sister (in the medical field) told me that Vit. D deficiencies often occur with Vit. K defifiencies, so I need to find that out as well.

          Barb wrote on August 31st, 2013
        • Hi, I realize your comment is from a while ago but I am curious as to where you soak or apply the Epsom salts… soak the feet? On your abdomen? Hope you see this comment, thanks in advance for any help.

          Tanya wrote on March 5th, 2014
    • I have to agree! Good job. You’re definitely an inspiration to women out there that might feel stuck in the rut!

      Matt wrote on August 30th, 2013
      • Thanks Matt!

        Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  2. As a mom of an almost-5 year old, I am so stunned to see your awesome bikini shot… I can’t believe that stomach is the same one in the “scary” pic! Gives me hope!

    Can you share any of your childrens’ favorite snacks? I struggle with getting my son to find primal-friendly snacks “fun” enough and am always looking for ideas!

    Thanks for sharing your encouraging story, it definitely speaks to me and spurs me forward! Oh- and beautiful family! :-)

    Beck W wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • I am not Barbara but here are ours: Olives, Cheese, Berries of some sort, Nuts, a nut butter, dark chocolate, really anything I would eat. I think part of making it fun for my 4yo daughter is having the food in fun little containers (she does not really snack unless we are away from home and spending the day at the zoo or beach or something).

      Colleen wrote on August 30th, 2013
      • Mine love nut butters too, and also Sunbutter. I agree about the containers. Lately I’ve been using the ziploc ones that look like bento boxes, and the love it. Not sure what it is, but the fun presentation seems to make a difference.

        Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Stop. Just stop…you run pushing three toddlers????? Hats off!! I can’t even run pushing the air in front of me lol. You are an inspiration! First…for finding the time to work out with three 2 1/2 year olds. I have one and can’t even get out of the house to get in a workout. It’s a problem. Second…because you run with three of them at once! You are a beast! Love!!!!

      Beck W: Have you tried thepaleomom.com or paleoparents.com? I use both websites extensively for cooking for my little monster. She can be a hard sell sometimes but both sites have really creative recipes for making paleo food more like “traditional” kid fare. Paleoparents have a cook book called eat like a dinosaur that is full of kid friendly recipes and steps that your little one can help you cook! Good luck!!

      Tiffany wrote on August 30th, 2013
      • Thanks Tiffany! They’re definitely getting more difficult to push. As long as they’re happy, and still fit, I’ll keep jogging, albeit a bit slower ;)
        Thanks to the cook book & website recommendations too! I’m always looking of new ideas.

        Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks Beck! My kids love avocados, bananas, and a lot of other fruits and vegetables. Not sure how old your kids are, but mine love when I give a variety (I’ve used an ice cube to serve, so they have a lot of choices) for snacks. I’d say they are probably 70/30 primal, still eating cheese (and other dairy) and the occasional crackers (usually gluten free) and treats.
      PS – I have an public Instagram account (Primaldish), if interested, where I’ve started posted recipe ideas. Many of them are kid friendly.

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  3. Your story is so similar to mine (minus the triplets!). It was only when I got rid of ALL grains, and not just the gluten, that my symptoms went away. Congratulations to you. Your children are beautiful and you look so happy!

    Lauryn wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • It’s an amazing thing, isn’t it? Thanks Lauryn!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  4. Great story! Congratulations!

    Regular sweet potatoes are too sweet for me (although I do eat some). I buy white Oriental ones that taste pretty much like white potatoes to me. (I do eat some white potatoes too, though. Maybe once a week.)

    Harry Mossman wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • I’ll have to look for those ones. Thanks Harry!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Found some Japanese ones today at the market, and they even look a bit like regular potatoes. Can’t wait to try them!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  5. Awesome. Looking great. Well done.

    BW wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  6. Nice work! I commend you for even having the determination to do the work while taking care of not one not two, but 3 infants. OMG – I can’t even imagine. You are supermom. By the way – nice tummy after have such a major expansion ;)

    Jennifer wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks Jennifer!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  7. Congratulations. I loved your story. You’re an inspiration to young moms. ‘Baby brain’ does not have to be the status quo.

    Judy G wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks Judy! I definitely had much worse “baby brain” before!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  8. Great story and fabulous pics of you and the babies! They are adorable and I agree that the bikini pic is just amazing! You rock!!

    Rhonda the Red wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you Rhonda!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  9. Despite reading all these stories every week, I never cease to be amazed at the awfulness gluten (or a SAD diet) causes for people’s health.

    Way to rock that bikini, Mama of Three. :)

    Thanks for the inspiration. Signed, a mama of four

    Anne wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks Anne! Never in a million years would I have thought gluten was at the root of my issues, I’m so thankful to have figured it out.
      Guessing you’re a busy woman with 4! :)

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  10. Wow. *slowclap* Just wow!!!

    A. Pike wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you!!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  11. Again, I love Fridays.

    rlarson wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Me too!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  12. way to go. the jack o lantern was awesome too.

    John Snyder wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you John!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  13. “Lift heavy things,” you can’t not do it with little kids around. “Uppy.” I remember it so well and yours is “uppy, uppy, uppy!” Wonderful post.

    Vanessa wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Yes! I get “Up!” and “Uppy!” a lot! Thank you!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  14. Wonderful post! I cannot imagine having triplets, you are a strong woman!

    Luis Correa wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks Luis!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  15. Fabulous – you looked great (but scary) pregnant and you now look like you’ve just borrowed someone else’s children for the photo!! Just amazing! That’s how I want to look!

    Grokesque wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Aww, thanks!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  16. Barbara, you are totally amazing, SuperMom for sure!! What beautiful children :) How lucky they are to have you start them out with the right kind of food. And a bikini after triplets??? –I am in awe. Congratulations and thanks for sharing your story!

    Sandy wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you Sandy!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  17. Great story. Now to get the hubby off the CW pizza (paleo pizza is awesome)…
    Barb, for sweet potatos/yams:cut them into fries and drizzle olive oil, salt, pepper. Bake until starting to carmelize and then make a sour cream or yoghurt dip with spices. It rocks! Grok on.

    Nocona wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Yeah, he loves his pan pizza, but he did agree to do a 21 day trial, so we’re making progress :) Funny how your taste buds change, paleo pizza sounds so much better now.
      I do love sweet potato fries! I’ll have to try your recipe – sounds great! Thank you!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  18. great story of better health. and you look fabulous! you look amazing in a bikini at age 40, after TRIPLETS! glad you feel SO much better. wow, you figured out how to feed 3 babies at once.

    Tenny wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you!! Yeah, it’s so much easier now that they’re feeding themselves! :)

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  19. Love the story. Keep it up and Grok On!!!

    James wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks James!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  20. That scary belly photo makes me glad I’m a man, I can’t imagine carrying that! But you got a complete family in one term, pretty economical. Seriously, you and the kids are awesome, congrats!

    Bayrider wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Yep! We got the 3 for 1 deal ;) Thank you!!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  21. Wow!! Great Story!! I can relate to the “Warming up to Sweet Potatoes” comment… I have a gag reflex towards them along with Butternut & Acorn Squash (Grok weeps) that I am having a HARD time getting past. Any ideas on how to make them palatable??

    Bob wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks! I like sweet potatoes best in the French fry form because it helps with the texture for me. I usually just slice up the sweet potato and cook them on a skillet in coconut oil and add a little salt, but I’m going to try Nocona’s recipe above. I love butternut chopped up in cubes mixed with sausage (I like Mulay’s breakfast), and a little crushed sage on top (bake for about an hour at 375).

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Bob, I’m with you on the gag reflex…… Growing up my mom and dad LOVED squash, we grew it all over our yard much to my disappointment. She would serve it with butter, some with brown sugar and butter, gag every time. My dad was a firm believer that I could “develop” a taste for it by eating a little each time, gag….. so I was REALLY friendly to our dog, giving her some choice morsels every dinner so she’d sit by me. Apparently she loved squash as much as my parents, no more gagging!
      My husband now bakes his sweet potatoes (cuts them in half to make it go faster) and then slathers them with butter and salt and pepper. He seems to enjoy them. I keep thinking I’m going to make the ones Nocona mentions above as well as the white ones that we also mentioned in another post. Sorry this isn’t much help, just nice to see someone else who gags like me.
      OH, and I tasted some spaghetti squash cooked, rinsed and tossed with some sort of vinegar and oil into a salad of other veggies that sound good together. I didn’t like it hot for spaghetti but in the salad it wasn’t squash-y tasting.

      2Rae wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Bob, I was like you until I decided to do what all men do with vegetables they don’t care for – char them on the grill! Cut them up, slather with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, garlic and herb spices. Pair them with a NY Strip or a Ribeye and you will learn to love them, done right they are some of my favorite and heartiest vegetables. These aren’t your sissy steamed veggies.

      A grill wok is really great for grilling cut up vegetables:

      http://www.amazon.com/GrillPro-98121-Porcelain-Coated-Square/dp/B000FJLMQ2/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1377890346&sr=8-3&keywords=grill+wok

      Bayrider wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • A favorite way we eat sweet potatoes is dicing one sweet potato and one onion and “frying” both in coconut oil. It’s much like home fries. Cook until both sweet potatoes and onions are carmelized. Add a tbsp butter and enjoy.

      Cindy wrote on August 30th, 2013
      • Yes, and I think the key whether you do it in the skillet or baked as fries, the key word is CARMELIZED. They get chewy tasty, with a completely different taste. Not as mushy.

        Nocona wrote on August 30th, 2013
      • Yum! Those sound delicious! I’m definitely trying it that way. Thanks!

        Barb wrote on August 31st, 2013
    • Maybe check out white sweet potatoes? I dislike orange sweet potatoes for their pumpkin flavor but the white ones taste fine to me.

      Nika wrote on August 31st, 2013
      • I just got some white Japanese sweet potatoes yesterday. Can’t wait to try them!

        Barb wrote on August 31st, 2013
  22. “My husband recently asked, “but don’t you miss pizza?”; I didn’t respond, instead I showed him the long list of symptoms that had improved since going Primal. I’d much rather have my health than an Ultimate Slice.”

    Exactly. I have been paleo/primal for nearly fours years. My health and body composition has improved drastically as a result of this lifestyle. Who cares about pizza.

    David Rittel wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • “but don’t you miss pizza?”

      Meatza!

      ajb wrote on August 30th, 2013
      • Mmmm, meatza!

        Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Yep! It’s one of the things I missed most in the beginning (along with sourdough), but now I much rather have a meaty salad… or bacon. :)

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Exactly. Pizza is nothing. Health is everything. Grok on!

      Stella wrote on August 30th, 2013
  23. It has to feel great to look and feel so wonderful after having triplets! Nice to hear you found an answer to some of your previous health problems/symptoms. Enjoy those precious children of yours! They grow SO fast!! (Especially on a primal diet) ;)

    Goddess wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you! And thanks for the reminder, these first couple years have already flown by!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  24. Thank you, thank you, thank you for the inspiration! I’m a mother of 2 little ones and definitely need to clean up my diet so I can have the energy you have now.

    Jen wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Aww, thank you! It really has helped so much with the energy – you’ll see :)

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  25. Thank you for your Friday Success Story! You look fantastic and healthy now.

    2Rae wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks 2Rae!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  26. What a great story, Barb. You look fantastic and I’m glad you found Primal and a fix for all the health issues. So many people just continue to suffer with all those symptoms. I love Fridays!

    joey wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Sometimes I wonder how much longer I would have suffered if I didn’t find MDA; my drs didn’t seem to have the answers. So thankful! And thank you!!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  27. Awesome job, you look great!

    Have you tried any regular beer? I find a little doesn’t derail me, especially after a good workout.

    JoeBrewer wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you! I did have a regular beer after a 10K on SuperBowl Sunday, and didn’t seem to have a problem. Then I tried a couple again while we were camping a few months back, and it worked me. Maybe I can handle in small quantities; I’ll probably do another experiment for my 40th. If not, I’m always ok with a little wine instead. :)

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  28. Hi, and what an amazing journey! I also am a M.O.Multiples, carrying 15 lbs 7 oz of twin boy babies to term. I can see so many similarities with the feelings of wanting to be right for my children ( an older son also) after the births. You did have a great bikini recovery! Did you have any abdominal wall issues after your babies were born? Any suggestions on recovery of abs and skin? My twins are almost 3 and I have that Bassett hound look that I’m considering surgery for, as my abdominal muscles have also separated. Thank you for any pointers!

    Kati wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • I think if your abdominal wall muscles have separated then surgery is the only answer. No amount of exercise will put them back together.

      I too am impressed with Barb’s post triplets bikini photo. Also impressed with the photo of her feeding three babies at once. Awesome!

      Sandra from NZ wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks Kati! I’ve also heard that surgery is needed if your muscle has separated. I didn’t have any separation, but I do have some loose skin on my lower abs; it’s less noticeable when I do regular abdominal and core strengthening workouts (I need to get back on the wagon). Congratulations on carrying your boys to term! I carried mine to 36 weeks, but they were “only” about 15 lbs combined.

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
      • Thank you, Barb! I guess I’ll be checking out surgeons next summer. Congrats on carrying your sweet ones to 36 weeks! That is amazing for triplets! You look great and your story really struck a chord with me. Thank you for sharing :)

        Kati wrote on August 30th, 2013
        • Kati, you won’t necessarily need surgery. I had twins, gained nearly half again my weight ( I was pretty skinny at the time) & had quite a bit of separation. It took several years of ab exercises to knit them back together, but eventually it worked! Planks, reverse curls & double leg lifts seemed to help the most. Listen to your body & go gently at first, but don’t give up hope! If you have access to a Pilates class it would probably help. (I didn’t though.)

          Paleo-curious wrote on August 31st, 2013
  29. Wonderful story and very happy for you. Triplets … my mind won’t accept it LOL. Yeah, just think how much healthier everyone would be if they were on a GF diet … GRAIN free.

    George wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you George! I agree – grain free is best!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  30. Barbara, first of all, you look GREAT!! Secondly, there IS a really good gluten free beer out there – it’s called Omission. They’ve got a lager and an IPA. I would drink it even if I wasn’t gluten free. Here is the link to their website where you can find out where to buy it near you:
    http://omissionbeer.com/

    Beth wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks! I’ll check out the link, and hopefully they have it locally.

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  31. Thank you for the input, Sandra. :)

    I forgot about the feeding picture. It is pretty great!

    Kati wrote on August 30th, 2013
  32. Not primal – but try the beers at Brewery Rickoli in Wheat Ridge if you’re ever in town. They are brewed with actual beer ingredients, but use clarity firm to remove the gluten by breaking up the peptides down to 5ppm. It tastes like real beer because it is real beer.

    It’s been awesome to have beer that I can drink without it making me feel like hell (unless I drink too much…)

    Dev wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • That sounds great! Wish more brewers would do that; it’d be nice to have a real beer from time to time.

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  33. Your scary belly is hilarious! Thanks for posting that pic. And, of course it is great you have found a good path to health.

    Sharon wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks Sharon! My husband had fun decorating my belly for Halloween (they’re Nov. babies).

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  34. There is a recipe for caulliflower pizza crust somewhere on the web (detoxinista, maybe?) that is great. We can definitely fit primal principles in with the type of food people are sure they would miss.

    I too started going downhill healthwise after having my kids. I only had 2 singletons. It was gradual too but I can identify with the rashes, the racing heart, the anxiety, the insomnia and the upset stomach. I have only been primal for a little over thirty days and I have noticed improvement in all areas though I am not optimal yet. I can’t wait to see where I am in 6 months or so. I hope I look half as good as you do and feel just as good!

    Jeanne wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks Jeanne! I’ll have to look for that recipe; I haven’t tried a cauliflower crust. I’ve been amazed at the versatility of vegetables when replacing them for processed (and gluten) foods. I’m finding I like the replacements even better.
      So glad you’ve had improvements as well! I’m betting you will continue to feel better over time. It’s been a little over a year for me, and I still continue to notice improvements (most recently I’ve noticed the spider veins on my legs are less noticeable).

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
      • Thanks for the link! That looks reeealy good!

        Barb wrote on August 31st, 2013
  35. Awesome Barb. Have to agree with so many of the previous comments, and particularly with Grokesque – you do look like you borrowed someone elses children on the beach!

    Thanks for sharing your story, and your wonderful family photos.

    PS: I know it is winter here in the southern hemisphere, but sweet potato is awesome in the slow cooker as a thickener. I add small cubes of sweet potato to the slow cook mix, and after 6 hours or so it just breaks down and thickens whatever juices you have in there! mmmmmm!

    HillyM wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you HillyM!
      I love using the crockpot (especially in winter); thanks for the tip! Sweet potatoes may just become a favorite after all. :)

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  36. Thanks so much for sharing this encouraging story. I have yet to give up beer even though I’ve gladly given up everything else wheat. And today I’ve noticed a definite bloat going on. Meaning a skinny girl with a basketball belly. I think this is what I needed to read.
    Also, is your husband GF? Didn’t sound like it from the pizza comment.
    How do you deal with a spouse who refuses to go GF because he misses it too much?
    My husband refuses to take care of his body in multiple ways…..
    Thoughts? Suggestions?

    Becca wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • My husband’s not gluten free, but does probably eat primally about 60% of the time because I do the majority of the shopping for the family. He still eats the occasional pizza and pasta when we go out to eat, and he really likes his beer (though he drinks less these days).
      He did agree to do a 21 day trial (detox) in Sept, so maybe that turn him into a believer :) Although I’d love it if he was, I don’t think it’s something you can force. Maybe you could suggest doing a 21 day challenge with him? And maybe share some of the success stories that he could relate to. I know those really helped me. Good luck!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  37. Wonderful story and beautiful family! Congratulations! All the best to you…Grok on!

    Dianne wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you Dianne!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  38. Thanks for sharing your story! It’s amazing what dietary changes can bring, and you’re yet another inspiration. If you feel as great as you look, you’ll be set for life :)

    Kathleen wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Aww, thank you Kathleen!

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  39. I really love the pictures of the kids!
    Never a boring day, I assume. Please keep on doing what you are doing, it works!

    Love,
    Petra

    Petra wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thank you Petra! Not enough time in the day to be bored. ;)

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013
  40. Congratulations, Barbara! I am wondering about your vitamin D deficiency. We’re the supplements a quick cure? Are your levels correct now with more sunshine? Thanks and grok on!

    Caliprimal wrote on August 30th, 2013
    • Thanks! Yes, the idea was to boost my Vit D levels. I really believe that I was having some absorption issues due to my diet and leaky gut. I live in California so I get plenty of sunshine year round which makes me think I just wasn’t absorbing some nutrients.
      My levels have gone back up, but I didn’t have them tested until a few months after taking the high dose supplements. I probably should get my levels tested again to make sure I’m still in the normal range.

      Barb wrote on August 30th, 2013

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

© 2014 Mark's Daily Apple