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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...

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November 11 2011

Finding the Person Within: A Mother and Daughter Journey

By Guest
171 Comments

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!

Once upon what seems like a lifetime ago I was the brightest thing that walked into any room. No, I was not the thinnest, prettiest, best-dressed thing in the room – but I had an aura of pure confidence wherever my feet took me. I had a brilliant mind and unstoppable will. I had overcome so many challenges in my life – growing up with addictive parents, homeless, then eventually parentless and shipped to boarding school. I was an overcomer! The key – I LOVED myself and I feared no challenge. That is until I had my first child. I feared her. She was a challenge. No more me time, lots of her time. Lots of crying and sleepless nights as I tried to figure out this girl. She was out of control and would later be diagnosed with a form of autism. Add child 2 and 3 to the mix and this momma was DONE. Always weak, always tired, 80 lbs heavier – the girl who LOVED herself now hated every inch of her being. Parenthood felt like a failure. I started anti-depressants. Got worse. Started birth control (the Depo-shot) to even out hormones. Got drastically worse. With failing energy and a soldier as a husband who was never home I cooked from boxes and drive-thrus. I continued to get worse – and so did my little girl whose struggles caused her to not be able to be in a classroom. I was done. I felt hopeless. Was this a forever thing? Would I forever be huge and tired? Would my daughter forever be the outcast? Would I be forced to put her on some horrible mind altering meds? Something had to change.

The only thing I knew that I had control to change was our diet. So I researched. From that day on, 2 years ago this November, we have not eaten fast food. We stopped eating conventional meat and vegetables and starting buying only what we could get from local farms, meat and LOTS of vegetables and fruits. Minimally processed food and nothing with artificial dyes/preservatives/sweeteners. Within 1 month my child was COMPLETELY different! Her whole life we were poisoning her without even realizing it! As time passed and we continued to refine our diet she got even better.

Mommy got better too. As weight started to drop and I felt the hazy cloud that had covered my mind begin to lift I started to see glimpses of my vibrant past! I started exercising at a local track – my first sprint I made it about 100 meters and then proceeded to use my daughters inhaler! If I were living in primal times I would be the one that died first :)! I stuck it out though and now there is nothing athletic that I will not attempt. People thought we were crazy. We were those people with the “crazy” diet that no one had ever heard about. We were mocked. I didn’t care – the proof is in the pudding (which of course we didn’t eat!). For the first time since she was school age my little girl completed an entire year in a classroom, second grade, and the thought of having to medicate her was shoved far from our minds! [*disclaimer* I have STRONG opinions that if you have a child struggling with autism/ADD/ADHD or any other behavioral problem that it could only benefit the child to re-evaluate diet. I feel like this should always be a precursor to any decision about medication. This worked for us and allowed us to forego medication. However, at varying degrees of intensity within the spectrum I understand that this may not be a “fix-all” for every child. But I will say that I fully believe that a primal, clean, diet will definitely produce results! We are not calling our grokling “cured” but instead “managed”!]

Within a year I dropped the first 50 lbs and discovered your book and MDA! I was ECSTATIC!! First, I realized that somewhere, rooted deep inside, we all have a little Grok left. What else could explain how so many things in your book I had naturally discovered on my own. My body, all our bodies, WANT to be Grok again; NEED to be Grok again! You gave me something I needed more than anything – validation! Validation that what I was doing was right. (Even recently validating why I have an instinctive need to wrestle when I am feeling overwhelmed – I knew there was something to it!) You also provide a foundation to come to when I need some tweaks and advice and a place to put most of my curiosities to rest – because 9 times out of 10, when I have a question pop into my mind, you have answered it already somewhere on MDA. My family as a whole limit grains by the 80% rule. I strive for the 100%. Lots of good fats and great meat! My husband, who we all thought was healthy other than a borderline cholesterol level, is in the best shape of his life at 32 with a current cholesterol level that is excellent and playing on an Ultimate Frisbee team! Our entire family of 5 all participate in CrossFit. We love our box and we love the community. We make lots of time for fun – from camping to canoeing to 5k mud races – we do it all! And this Mommy is more alive than ever before! Sometimes I see myself in the mirror now and I am shocked at who I am. I ask my husband if he is shocked at the change and he always says no – that this is who I always was – hidden deep within that other person. From 201, with several health issues, to 126 with 0 health concerns – I feel GREAT! I feel whole again and my little grokling feels whole for the first time! Here’s to LOVING life and Groking on!!


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171 thoughts on “Finding the Person Within: A Mother and Daughter Journey”

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  1. First.

    And wow! This is exactly the inspiration I needed. My son eats pizza and ice cream almost exclusively. He is fifteen and I’ve given up. The fights we’ve had! I wish I had your commitment!

    1. It’s not easy with teens who seem to do the exact opposite of what they’re told/suggested.

    2. i’m sorry, i don’t mean to be harsh, but who’s buying the pizza and ice cream?

    3. And who exactly is enabling pizza and ice cream? And for how long?

  2. Wow — it’s difficult to believe that’s the same person. Way to go!

  3. I have never commented on a success story before, but you truly look amazing! Even better, you sound SO happy! Great work. We are currently working on my daughter’s diet and are really inspired by stories like this. Grok on 🙂

  4. Great job! Congratulations on saving your children and yourself.

  5. Wow!!! What an amazing success story. I love hearing stories about how going primal is such a benefit to the children and of course the parents too;). It’s official. My day has been made. Congratulations!

  6. Fantastic! I wish I could raise my kiddos over again… why did I ever think apple juice was suitable or necessary?

    You look great…wow! More importantly, as you said, is that you recognize yourself again (the real you) and you must feel so proud to have done this for your daughter.

    Well done.

  7. What a transformation! You are an inspiration to families and to women. It is amazing how much the American diet can screw us up and how going Primal can fix everything.

  8. What an amazing story! As a clinical psychologist, I try to tell all my clients to look at their diet first. Food is our #1 exposure in life – how could we not think it plays a MAJOR role in everything. Thanks for sharing and keep up the great work!!

    1. I LOVE this comment. People only see what they want to see. We are all limited by out fast held beliefs and perspectives. I am so happy for you and for your family. Proof, yet again that we are what we choose to be, and that when we use excuses, it is because we have the potential to become more, but are not allowing ourselves to do so. Thank you for sharing your story.

  9. Wow, completely awesome! I’m very happy for you. I’m getting my daughter to read this. Thank you!

  10. Well done, you and grokling look so amazing!
    It’s just great that you have given you sweet daughter the chances and opportunities that she would have never had otherwise, as well as the benefits that your whole family feel.

  11. What a great post! My friend also has an autistic child. I am going to forward this post to him pronto. So happy for you and your family! Happy Veterans day as well!

  12. SO well done! That’s what I call taking control of your present and future.

  13. Inspirational! Keep on Grokking! I just wish that my sister would do the same thing with her daughter (and family) who has behavioral issues. My wife and I cannot wait to raise a child 100% Paleo. It just makes sense!

    As a parent, I believe the only thing you can do is give your child the absolute best possible chances to succeed and let them take it from there. You’re a terrific mother for saying “I don’t think so” to conventional wisdom and working on your own accord to find a way to give your daughter the best health you could. I speak to too many people who have medical concerns, or children with behavioral/medical concerns, and once I propose that they look into a Primal lifestyle, they typically tell me their PCP advised them it’s not dietary, or they’ll ask a doctor and then decide that I’m wrong because doctors have x years of schooling and xx years of experience.

    At the end of the day, they’re excuses, and I believe that if you want anything badly enough, you’ll find a way. You did it. You gave your family a positive future and the tools for happiness and longevity! Bravo!

  14. I find it amazing how you now look both younger and more mature at the same time! What a blessing to be able to manage your family’s health so well!

    Congratulations!

  15. Well done, Mom and Daughter both!! (LOVE these multi-generational success stories!)

    Cheering you on for your continued success–the both of you!

  16. WOWIE ZOWIE!!!
    so proud of you. Even more proud of you to stickin to your beliefs & helping your daughter down a happy, healthy path withOUT medications.

  17. Great story — and so wonderful that you figured most of this out on your own. Of course, now you have a whole community of support here, as well.

  18. Amazing and inspiring! Congratulations to you and your family! You look great. Thanks for sharing your story. It is so encouraging!

  19. What a gift you have given your family… health and happiness and fun!

  20. I have to ditto someone elses comment. I so wish I could re-raise my children. My daughter suffers from health issues I know are diet based. I cringe when I think about the soy formula I fed her because I couldn’t breast feed and she had a “sensitive” tummy. Oh my Lord! These stories make me so happy. I cannot not imagine how fabulous it must be to see your children thrive like that. Kudos to all of you!

  21. “I ask my husband if he is shocked at the change and he always says no – that this is who I always was – hidden deep within that other person.”

    Beautiful!

    You look amazing. Isn’t life sweet when you actually enjoy it? Isn’t it sweet to be a primal folk?

    Congrats! Keep going! Keep inspiring!

  22. What a fabulous story and what an inspiration. Way to stick it out and fight for your family and yourself.

  23. Congrats! What a sweet little girl!

    This is definitely inspirational… especially to us parents out there!

  24. What a change in the pictures of your daughter! Way to go mom! As a speech therapist with a caseload of children with autism, I wish all my families could learn what you have!

  25. I have a friend who has had great results with her son’s autism by putting him on a gleutin-free diet. I belive that so many behaviors we see in children can be attributed to diet (as opposed to blaming and fearing vaccinations). The next step is to overhaul our school lunch programs.

  26. Wow, congratulations. Your story totally resonated with me. (Made a similar switch for a similar reason 6 years ago.)

    “I have STRONG opinions that if you have a child struggling with autism/ADD/ADHD or any other behavioral problem that it could only benefit the child to re-evaluate diet.” Amen to that!

  27. Giving up is never an option!! Thank you for validating this….

  28. This is an extremely emotionally inspiring and moving story!

  29. Great story! I’ve got two ADD kids and have been trying to push the house into a Primal/Paleo eating pattern. My results since starting down this path 3 months ago are amazing. I’m glad to see examples like yours where the solution was food rather than amphetamines.

  30. Awesome! So happy for you and your family. Thanks for sharing your story.

  31. After six weeks on the PB I’m getting to be as muscled and hardy a primal dude as many, but I’ve got to say–some of these stories bring me nearly to tears. What a beautifully written account of an extraordinary journey.

  32. I have tears in my eyes as I type this. What a beautiful story. “I ask my husband if he is shocked at the change and he always says no – that this is who I always was – hidden deep within that other person.”
    Beautiful!!

    Also, thank you to your husband for serving and thank you for your support as he does. Blessings on you and your family.

  33. Way to go! Isn’t it great to know that you and your family will be healthy for life now? Amazing transformation. I’m sure it took hard work and dedication so congratulations!!!

  34. Ditto on the wish to have a second chance to raise my kids with the right diet this time.
    The more success stories I read that credit primal/paleo with amazing health results the more I wish for some definitive studies to challenge CW so that doctors and nutritionists would start giving out sound advice. These are the people we turn to for advice on diet, and they’re telling us to eat grains!
    Although no one is advocating fast food and energy drinks and the general population doesn’t have the sense to pass them up.

  35. SOOOOOO Cool!!! I love stories where I see kids getting the benefits. Thank you so much for being courageous in fighting the conventional wisdom for your kids. That’s one of the biggest issues facing our country, is this rush to medicine. Never mind that we’re feeding everyone the very crap that we’re medicating against!

    It’s really inspiring to hear your story – thanks so much for sharing!!!

  36. What a beautiful story, Mama Grok! Difficult circumstances are excuses for some. For others like you they are a challenge that brings out the very best.

    You are a true credit to the species. I hope you inspire countless others to find their own strength!

  37. Did you hear that? I just let out at big ol “WOO HOO” after I read your post. Very cool.

    What strikes me here is how we don’t know the fox is in the henhouse until we go primal, quit poisoning ourselves and become empowered.

  38. You are Awesome! Congratulations for your hard work and healing your family!

  39. Amazing amazing amazing. Congratulations and thank you for sharing such an inspirational story. May many years of happiness be enjoyed by you all!! 🙂

  40. One of the most incredible before/after pictures I’ve seen – but more importantly, that your daughter is doing better.
    I was sad to read that you were mocked for what you ate 🙁 good for you for sticking WITH IT.

  41. Great job and great story! I notice that you aren’t wearing glasses any more. Did you change to contacts? I’ve heard that some people’s eyes change shape and improve when they lose a lot of weight.

    1. I did change to contacts! My glasses eventually were all too big for my face. So, while I was going to get another pair I just thought – What the heck, why not try something new! Contacts definitely help during all our “primal adventures” as well :)!

  42. “The proof is in the pudding.”

    Yes indeed. I still read too many stories about how good whole grains are. But how long is that diet going to hold out against a diet that seems to work far better than any other? Not just for weight loss, but for countless stories about people getting OFF the durg merry-go-round?

  43. Do you have any tips for switching up a child’s diet? I have a 6 year old son on the spectrum and he is such a picky eater it’s really hard to introduce new foods. I would love to get him eating better, he’s in carb hell. I’ve been doing a primal diet for a few weeks now but I can’t get the rest of the family to follow.

    1. Lisa – It was very hard on us when we switched our little girl. She was in “carb-hell” as well and she revolted. I had to be really firm and after a month her body had a chance to dispose of all the chemicals that were forcing her to crave the bad. It really was hell in our home that first 30 days though. I would say – start small with him. Eliminate anything with high fructose corn syrup on the package first (you’d be surprise how many things that is) and then go onto anything with Dyes. At this point you will have eliminated most packaged foods – just because it is hard to find them without that junk. Then keep adding additional steps … I would suggest to plan this “attack” wisely. A month with no b-days, holidays … other moments where you may want to let him cave would be ideal. Then find your resolve and go for it! It will be worth it in the long run!

      1. Thank you! I’m already Dye free and avoid HFCS. I try to go Organic where I can. I just can’t get him to eat Meat and Veg. I know I just need to toughen up and let him get hungry enough to try it. You have inspired me, I’m going do this.

        1. Sounds like somebody out there should develop a Primal cookbook for kids (and their parents).

          Awesome story! I love seeing this success stories going into the weekend. What a way to provide inspiration on the days when routines change.

        2. Everyday Paleo cookbook. It’s got lots of tips and recipes for kids

  44. Absolutely awesome story!
    What a transformation…congrats on getting off the ‘zombie foods’.

  45. Brilliant. You should be so proud of yourself and your lovely daughter. I especilly relate to the “we were poisoning her without realising”. My husband and I have only recently gone Primal and, as I was clearing out the kitchen cupboards of all the unhealthy items I felt guilty about throwing away all that food. I had to tell myself that they were poisoning us and that the bin was the best place for them. There is another bonus,I have so much more room in my cupboards now. Until now I never realised just how much junk food I had in store. I wish you and your family all the best.

  46. What an awesome story. I have a 4 yr old stepdaughter who we think is starting to show signs of ADD (her dad/my DH struggled with ADD while he was growing up), and just recently (this past Monday) we started converting our family to live primaly. My challenge is that there is no way her mother will support our lifestyle at her house – whether she is seeing results or not. I figure 50% primal is still better than no primal at all.

    Congrats. Your story gives me hope.

  47. Great story, thank you for sharing!

    Commentors–don’t forget that AD/HD (ADD) usually doesn’t go away in adulthood. I still struggle with it, but eating primal definitely helps my focus and productivity. I’m not anti-drug (I use caffeine as part of my regimen), but I’m trying to get my diet and lifestyle as primal and dialed in as possible before I go the prescription drug route again. I’d say that living primally, including diet, sleep, supplements, and exercise, along with using the aminos recommended in the Mood Cure, has my brain working at 80% of its potential. For me that’s quite a success.

    1. It is a lifetime issue. I refuse to look at it as a disability it has enabled my daughter to do things outside of the norm in a positive direction. I would encourage you to try yoga or meditation if you are tempted to “go the prescription drug route again” my daughters half brother was medicated for adhd and I will never forget the first time I saw him after his Mom put him on meds….the light had gone out in his eyes.

    2. Ditto on the process for addressing ADHD in adulthood! I am following the same regiment and once I added the Mood Cure Aminos to primal living I am 100% confident I can cancel my ADD Rx after 8 straight years of meds. What a great feeling!

  48. Wow. What an inspiration you are. I am currently caring for my nephews, one of which is 7 and has been diagnosed as being on the spectrum. I’ve been hounding his mother about starting him on a less processed diet and introducing some supplements, but she remains adamant that he NEEDS his meds and the school he attends is also very pro-meds. It makes me sad to know that he will probably never be fully functioning as long as things are the way they are.

    BUT…your story really gives me hope. Grok on, lady, grok on!

    1. Schools are pro med because they get government dollars for learning disability diagnosis. More dx = more $$

      1. That’s not entirely accurate. If that was the truth, the schools could afford to give assistance.

      2. I think it is more likely that schools are pro-med because zombies sitting in class are a lot easier to handle than an energetic child. When you have 30 to 1 in a class – the teacher can’t focus on that “out of control” child. Meds mean she does not have to. We, the parents at home, are the ones that are saddened when at the end of the day our child shows up at home with a blank stare and we know the meds have taken them elsewhere. We know that while on them they are never fully here … that is a sad way to spend your childhood.

    2. For all of you talking about children and spectrum disorders, I highly recommend Natasha Campbell-McBride’s Gut and Psychology Syndrome (the GAPS diet). She is a doctor in neurology and nutritional medicine who recovered her autistic son and has treated thousands through her clinic and book. The Gaps Diet is very similar to Primal, with a focus on treating spectrum and digestive disorders. Her book explains so incredibly clearly that you’ll be turning every page and saying, ‘incredible’. Every family with a child on the spectrum should at least look into it. We started our son six months ago and have seen great improvements!

  49. It cannot be the same person – surely?!!

    What an incredible transformation – and so much more so because of the young life involved.

    You should be so proud of yourself hun. You’re an absolute inspiration.

  50. I have recently had a trip to the ER with chest pains and high blood pressure. It took me about 5 seconds to know that if I didn’t change what I was doing I might not be there for my daughter. This story is great inspiration for me… I am going to record me journey starting today – I can’t wait to share the results… this totally touched my heart and soul.

    1. I look forward to reading your progress in a few months, and you Primal story a few months after that!

    2. Good luck Jackie! There’s a rich community here to support you on your journey.

    3. Best wishes with your journey. You can do this! Just think of all the benefits. 🙂

  51. Good for you and your whole family. I find myself feeling that validation that you spoke of. I was the weird one, the mean mother. My daughters adhd was managed with diet. unfortunately not primal ( I only wish I’d found it sooner) but kept her off sugar and processed food. It works

  52. Great story, amazing results. Very inspirational to parents of children with problems.

    My granddaughter is autistic and her paediatrician recommended a primal diet almost 2 years ago. The difference has made, and continues to make, a huge improvement. As you say, not ‘cured’ but ‘managed’ with much greater success.

  53. Thank you so much for sharing your story. What you’ve accomplished is wonderful and inspiring.

  54. Thank you for sharing, mothering can be so hard, especially when it isn’t what the movies lead you to expect.

    So glad Primal is working for you; it is the solution to every problem as far as I can see.

  55. Oh wow! This is the story I could have written but we started much later with our daughter. She has high functioning autism, hidradenitis suppurativa, bipolar and had a significant weight problem. She is 25 now. We have made changes slowly (before hearing about “primal”)and I agreed to do everything she did. About thirty pounds have slipped off. Her skin is clearing. She is bright-eyed, looks people in the eye more and talks more. She can focus and study. Her mood is pleasant. We constantly hear people remark on the change in her. (In me too!) The other day her naturopathic doctor cried with joy. She is far from “cured” but she is far from being as sick, unhappy and disconnected as she was. I expect more positive changes as she continues to heal. We are so grateful.

  56. When I was reading your story and came across the last picture, I could not figure out why you would end the story with a picture of two of your daughters. It took me a second to realize that you were in that last picture. You’ve done amazing work, and I will definitely be passing this story on to others!

  57. One of the most inspiring success stories I’ve read so far. Well done to you and your family.

  58. Holy sh*t is that you on the right? Friday success stories are my favourite on MDA, but i’ve never commented, but today i felt so compelled. Is that actually you on the right? If it is, you look insanely young! At first i thought it was your elder daughter with your younger daughter. Wow! Congratulations on your achievements.

  59. My mom has always taken care of everyone around but herself. She would sacrificed her life for her kids (me and my little sis) and practically she did. She suffers from breast cancer now and bad eating habits definitely do not contribute to her recovery. She is also depressed by her appearance after chemotherapy and strong hormonal treatments.

    I will definitely translate your story for her, because although she has always been a fighter, recently the “I cannot” approach is taking over her and she starts losing her optimism and will. Your story will definitely be a kick for her.

    Thank you for sharing your awesome story and keep on paleo-rocking, dear. You are beautiful and I really admire your strong will and persistance. You are truly inspirational.

  60. OMG when I saw the last photo I thought at first it was your two daughters!! I have made many changes to my families food intake over the last 2 years as both my kids suffered badly with eczema. I now know how to manage them both to have no signs of it at all.

    Now it’s time to focus on me……if I end up looking like you I will be the happiest girl in the world. I also train at Crossfit but am interested to know how often you train? I have been going for 2 years now with a 8 mth break in between due to a back injury. My box is pretty fitness focussed and fat loss isn’t an issue for most so I’m looking at scaling more to shorten the WOD’s for me but my trainer is not so convinced. Coming from a military PTI background it’s go HARD always. From my research here I instinctively know that at 125kgs that is not the best way for me.

    Again an awesome job – I imagine the best gift you could give yourself and your family. Well done to you 🙂

    1. I train on average about 3 days on 2 days off. Our box is really good at scaling down WOD’s to your ability level. And most only last 15-25 minutes. It is amazing what 15-25 minutes of hard work can accomplish. Sometimes I just take off a random day and sprint – then I add lots of “fun” days in as well. I recently started biking again. I have a seat attached for my youngest to ride along and it gives me motivation to keep going, hearing her singing behind me. Good luck with your crossfit journey.

  61. What an inspiration you are to those Mother’s with young children, showing them how it is done…to take control and see it through….this is who you really are! This is your journey that forms your most precious memories. This is what makes since in life. Thank you for sharing your story, and being a part of this unique & growing community.

  62. This is so wonderful for you and your family!! Thanks for sharing!

  63. Thanks so much for sharing your story. Hubby and I have been on the primal diet for over six months now and we are both loving the results. We are trying to get our kids to cut out grains as well, but they are a bit older and its very hard. My son has autism and he is gluten-free, which has helped control his behaviours noticeably. My goal is to have both kids grain free eventually but we need to take it slow b/c they both have sensory issues and eating is always a battle as it is. I couldn’t agree more with what you said about diet and congratulations on your wonderful and impressive results!!

  64. Thank you so much for sharing your story! I have been feeling quite cooked lately and look forward to finding some energy to make the most of every day with my family. I can’t wait to get my hands on your ever-popular books at the library.

  65. Wow! Just Wow! Congratulations! 🙂

    I am so inspired by your courage, tenacity and determination to find a better way for yourself and your family. What incredibly fortunate kids to have you as their Mom.

    I too had to take a second look at the last photo, thinking that must be an older daughter! Amazing!!!

  66. What a beautiful and inspiring story and thanks for sharing! I know that your experience will go on to touch many people’s lives who are looking for answers to their health issues. I’ve only been eating primally for the last four months, coming from a mostly birdseed diet, and I can concur on the brain fog being lifted for the first time…ever. Like so many others here, my life has been transformed. Can’t wait to read further updates and congratulations!

  67. It’s stories like yours that help us newbies going. Thank you so much for sharing. Also on this Veterans Day, thank your husband for his service.

  68. WOW!!!! You are such an amazing mom!!! You have given your daughter (and your entire family) such an amazing and life altering gift. Your strength and courage are so inspiring. I LOVE your story. Thank you for sharing.

  69. Wonderful story, so glad that you were able to turn your life and your families around so that now you’re in control.

  70. this is a great story; you look incredible – congrats on the changes with you and your daughter. inspiring!

  71. Having read through your super story, and all the comments — esp. about the difficult switching over kids with ‘sensory’ things… it makes me think that I, at 56 yrs old, need to go investigate these methods. I have never (since I was an infant in a high chair) eaten veg — and yes, I spent many many many unhappy hours sitting alone at the table “until you finish your plate.” (And I couldn’t get the d@mned dog to eat ’em under the table!) I look wistfully at the veg aisle, cause they LOOK lovely — but they taste just horrible! (I’m what the Monel Labs in Philly calls a “supertaster.”)

    At age 30 I learned to eat small portions of green pepper, and at age 50 I learned to eat lettuce (but only lettuce) with only thous island (not good stuff, so I don’t buy it).

    I would LIKE to learn to eat veg — but … oh, gag … Perhaps reading how y’all deal with *children* who refuse veg can help lead me to it too. (And yes, of course, I have a massively deranged metabolism, 120 lbs above a healthy weight — but down 65 pounds using low carb… {sigh})

    1. Our veggies taste great, well seasoned with coconut oil or bacon drippings! My son rarely refuses veggies served up with a good dose of yummy fat.

  72. Wow – you are truly inspiring! Congratulations on your body transformation and the health you’ve won. Medicating children is something I will never understand…great you’ve decided to change the nutrition first.

  73. Definitely an awesome story. I, too, have strong opinions about ADHD. It is wonderful to see that conclusions were made in the right direction without the existence of MDA in your life. I’m glad folks are out there looking at good science outside of people like Mark who shout it from mountain tops. 🙂

  74. This makes me happy. As a school teacher, I see kids open up their snacks and it’s all processed crap–chips, pretzels, pop tarts, candy bars, cliff bars, juice, etc. I wish all parents would do what you have done for your child–give her the greatest gift there is: her health.

    1. Your story is so powerful. As a developmental specialist – I know how diet can truly make or break the ability to access the learning potential. There is so much research out there, but people get overwhelmed and follow-through is so hard. You appear to be such a strong, dynamic woman – and your family is so blessed to have in the lead. I only wish more parents could stand up to the pressure. be strong.

  75. I don’t know what to say that everyone else hasn’t already said, but WOW!!!

    I just want to give you a hug for being such a caring mom.

  76. This community is so overwhelmingly acceptable. I am so glad that I am able to be a part of such a dynamic group of loving individuals. You guys truly inspire me.

  77. Thank you for your story! I could have written it myself (I have only 2 kids tho), the “before kids” self confidence, the joy and self respect are all missing from my life as well. I have been dabbling in primal but seeing your pictures really gave me the kick I needed.
    THANK YOU and CONGRATULATIONS!

  78. Congratulations. I love that you just worked out what you needed to do and did it.

  79. We have a Papa Grok in Dave. Is this Mama Grok?

    Awesome example of taking responsibility of our own lives – awesome!

  80. A few years ago celebrity chef Jamie Oliver started his school dinners campaign in England and a TV series was spawned. One of the “experiments” that Jamie did was to cook for a family for a week. Their children had severe behavioural issues and within a couple of days of eating home-cooked meals (Jamie cleared all the junk food out of the house) the kids were much calmer. The mother decided to experiment after a couple of days, and gave her kids their usual diet of french fries and chicken nuggets for a day and they were back to their usual selves….it was very dramatic and reinforced the benefits not eating SAD.

  81. Thank you. Your story is an inspiration to me as a mom and as a woman trying to get back on track. Good changes can happen as long as I just “keep on, keepin’ on”.

  82. Amazing story! So inspiring!! I really believe that diet is at the root of our behavioural issues in western society – regardless of clinical determinations.

  83. What amazing face and jaw structure! Whatever you were going through growing up someone at some time must have been feeding you enough vitamins. Also, you knew instinctively what was wrong with your diet, before you found a community on the internet. I find this very interesting!

    I’m glad you are managing your daughter’s condition. Years ago there was the miserable, wootastic Feingold diet (which advocated cutting out a bunch of healthy foods!) and I know quite a few kids who were hurt academically by dropping meds and going on that stupid diet.

    Let’s hear it for scientifically validated diets (and keeping kids–especially kids with behavioral or allergy problems–away from artificial dyes that are found in “kids'” meals, cheap meats, frozen food, candy, etc.).

  84. You just gave me the kick I needed. Throwing all the crap out!!!

    Thank you!
    Liz

  85. This is awesome and I get to work out with you everyday!! Simply fantastic story.

  86. Wow!! To a mom of an autistic boy who went through much the same journey, you are such an inspiration! I know how hard it is when your children are struggling. We are not yet Paleo but trying to limit grains, but are GFCF and low sugar,free of his other allergens (many grains included). I am determined to start getting by boys more grain free and healthier.

    1. What do you know? I have an awesome best friend as well. One that was STILL my BF even when things were rough. I love her for it. She has always been a rock in my life!

  87. This story almost made me tear up. It also makes me realize the changes that I need to make for my son. He’s incredibly bright but cannot seem to focus at all. It’s gotten a little worse lately. He has TONS of energy but it is all misplaced. He hates vegetables, and it just starting to like meat. We limit sugar dramatically – but it’s the hidden sugars that are doing him in. I think I need to suck it up and endure the few weeks of resistance that I get from him and make this change. THANK YOU for your story!

    1. Pamela – take heart! You are exactly right – it is those hidden sugars. With patience and perseverance I am sure you can get your son turned in the right direction. Just think about the future you will be providing him! You are already an amazing mom by searching out truths to help him!

  88. I have been off the wagon for about 2months now…and this just inspired me to get right back on and don’t stop because anything is possible! Thank you so much for sharing your story with us all and congrats on your success! 🙂

  89. I love stories like this that not only show how diets make us lean and strong but also heal so many of our health issues.

    I am amazed at how you look younger and younger with each photo. I also love that you discovered much of this way of eating on your own.

  90. We also feed our children Primal, they love it and we see a huge difference, they also don’t bring home every sickness going around school anymore. We are all so much happier and reading your story was awesome. I am 26 with 4 Kids, I started eating this way last june and have lost 58lbs, I am now focused on getting more fit and toned, I go to school full time and and have slacked my workouts but am refocused. I have fought so many health issues as well and after going Primal I do not fight any of them anymore. It is a lifestyle worth living and I could never go back, thanks for sharing your story.

  91. Wow, truly amazing. I’ve been Primal 2 months and down 20 lbs from 170. This is the best inspiration since I’m trying to influence my grain eating family. It’s hard when I’ve been an unsuccessful yo-yo dieter and to earn their trust in what I’m suggesting we change now. Congrats on your family’s transformation!

  92. Ah .. the first time I have commented on a story. I am always looking for inspiration as I still find I am no where near where I need to be … but your story brought tears to my eyes. Total inspiration. I am soo happy for you and your family. You have given me a boost of encouragement as well 🙂

  93. Posted on LOLOL thanks for a wfuedronl story I can almost picture this unfolding, and I can see the look of dismay on your face when things start to go awry, LOL!

  94. wow you look amazing. the last picture looks like you and your younger sister.

  95. I have a son that is being assessed for Asperger’s, and I noticed his behavior only worsens when I have to leave him with my mom (while I’m at work) who gives him ice cream juice soda and processed foods. When I relocated and lived with her for a few months we actually had a blow out because she swore I was punishing the kids by not buying ravioli’s in a can or the kind of cereal they like. Because they are stickler’s for routine, the more adjusted he became to those kinds of foods the more he expects them, the more hell I go through when I withhold them. Not normal tantrums, but the kind that last for hours until you wanna pull your hair out. I myself have always for years tried to maintain a diet low in sugar and grains, but only recently started moving completely away from processed foods and buying organic. Now as a sub-teacher she has encountered other children with the same behavioral problems, and now understands what a negative effect some of her snack habits have had on his behavior. She still has these main stream ideas and doesnt understand apple juice and orange juice are high in sugar or serving grits and biscuits together isnt the best combination. I’ve had to start removing certain foods from his diet at home, but now sometimes he wont eat because its not what he wants to eat. I’m hoping over time he’ll become adjusted again to REAL FOOD and eat dinners I make instead of begging for cereal non stop. But I have forbidden anymore trips to McDonald’s for french fries and ice cream cones and he’s gotten better at not freaking out when I tell him no lol.

  96. What an inspiration you are. I have only just read your story and am very new to primal life. It resonates with me because I have a 4 year old daughter with autism and I worry for her. Thank you I will be reading this story again and again as I struggle to make these changes for her.