No More Styrofoam Rice Crackers for Us!

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 was always super skinny as a teenager, and I ate rubbish everyday with no thought to my health or weight. I hated exercise and avoided it like the plague. I would do anything to get out of PE each week. My poor PE teacher, Mr. Jackson – I was on my period every week for two years! Anything to get out of cricket or touch footy! Will someone puh-lease make school PE fun??? At 15 years old I weighed 42kg/92lbs and stood 173cm/5’9” tall.

My mum was always overweight, and had Lupus and took a lot of steroid medication which she always said made her fat. That woman ate nothing bad according to CW. She was on every diet bandwagon that came to town. I admired her determination. She did Jenny Craig when I was about 15 and she was thin while she ate that tinned “food” but it never lasted. In the 80s both my parents went mad for aerobics and the Pritikin diet, but we all hated the food so much that it didn’t last in our house. My dad loved his ice-cream too much! We ate really basic old fashioned food. Porridge/oatmeal for breakfast in winter, cold cereal in summer, bacon and eggs on the weekends. Lunch was cold meat and salad with no dressing. Tea was meat and three veg with no gravy sauces or anything fancy. Mashed potato was for special occasions and everything was bland and boring. Salt was gonna kill you, and so was butter. I was known to get the butter and milk out of the fridge during dinner and mash my own potato on my plate. Mum baked scones, and biscuits, but we ate this homemade stuff in moderation.

My mum was a Weight Watchers lecturer in her 40s and I distinctly recall her stating in one of her classes, “sugar does not make you fat, FAT makes you FAT”. OMG Mum ? Her students may well have asked her – so why are you still fat? I mean she wasn’t obese but she was still big, and how she was allowed to lecture astounds me. My mum died a few years ago at 54 from skin cancer (not melanoma though), and there is not a day goes by that I don’t want to call her up to tell her that I’ve found the answer for her weight and possibly her health. I found the secret way to lose weight without starvation or 7 classes of aerobics a week. We could have a burning of the Styrofoam rice crackers, now in caramel flavor good lord!

So mum, this story is for you…

At school once I had pocket money I was allowed to buy my lunch from the tuck-shop, and I would eat lollies, caramel tart, plain milk, frozen yoghurt, cinnamon donuts and pies or sausage rolls. At home though it was back to basics and there were never any biscuits or anything in the house that wasn’t homemade. I was 16 before I ate a muesli bar/granola bar. By the time I was married and left home I had eaten Maccas/McDonalds twice in my life. Takeaway food was not a part of my family’s lifestyle or anyone else I knew for that matter. I guess that was a good thing. I got married young and had three babies about 5 years apart. During this time I got bigger and bigger. I tried everything. Gloria Marshall, Jenny Craig, shakes, Weight Watchers, the gym 6 days a week, swimming 80x100m laps of the town pool 5 days a week. I bought Susan Powter DVDs and I even dug out Richard Simmons “Reach”, another relic from my mother’s past. I walked everywhere until I was 25 yrs old and got my car license. I did try the Atkins diet way back when, and I lost a good 7kg in two weeks on it and kept it off for a year, but my vegetarian husband was dead against it and he made it hard for me to eat that way. I never got fatter than about 80kg/180lbs and my normal weight on any given year was 75kg/165lbs.

Several years ago my marriage ended. I got traded in for the younger and bloodier skinnier model, ha ha! I initially lost a lot of weight – stress and living on $3 a week for food will do that for you! One night for dinner I ate PEPPER that I got from Maccas. Funny now, but not very funny at the time! The stress got less and the weight gradually came back. I decided to go to university and get an education so I could have money – that helps, huh? I was doing a Bachelor of Dietetics and Nutrition. I chose this program simply because even as an uneducated single mother of three kids, I could tell that Australia was becoming fatter and that if I wanted a good secure government job then I should probably get on this food/diabetic bandwagon and get myself into an ever growing industry, pun intended. One of my first year subjects really blew me away…

Picture this. Biochemistry 2011:

So there I am in a class of a few hundred “kids” sitting next to another old girl (in her 40s like me). My lecturer (buff, shaved head, awesome biceps, probably in his late 40s early 50s) shows us up on the screen the metabolic pathway of proteins, carbs and fats. At the point where he describes the metabolic pathway of CHO I turn to my overweight neighbor and grab her on her fleshy arm and threw gritted teeth utter these words…

”are you f-ing kidding me woman? Did you hear what HE just said?”

She looks at me dazed and confused.


She looks panicked like I might just jump and in the theatre and scream like a madwoman, raises her eyebrows and shhhs me!

I wanted to jump up in that theatre and scream like a madwoman. It was like someone flicked a switch.

At the end of the lecture I raised my hand and asked Dr. Hotstuff (name change due to privacy or something), “Excuse me, can you tell me WHY Im eating lots of “healthy” carbs like on the food pyramid, please?”… and my lecturer, god bless him, answered me with this – “that’s a very good question Jane, perhaps you should look into that.” Or at least that’s how I recall it going. I was a bit mesmerized by his amazing guns, six pack stomach, smooth skin and general buff looking self. ? I wonder to this day if he’s Primal. He sure looked like he might have been. That hot and in your 50s, cmon???

So from the very week I took my biochem exam I gave up carbs. Carb flu and headaches were no match for my determination. I ate eggs and bacon with abandon. I ate tuna and veggies for lunch. I had steak and salad for tea, and in between I ate cheese cubes, olives, salami sticks, macadamia nuts. I still drank a load of Pepsi Max though (seriously, is there crack in that—is that stuff legal?)

I had no book or anything to follow but I typed “carb counter” into Google and basically avoided carbs like the plague…  I did happen upon Mark’s Daily Apple and I don’t think I slept for a month. Ironic when you’re reading about turning the laptop off to ensure good sleep at 2am because you’re too excited to sleep! I was about 80kg at first. Here is a picture of me in all my awful glory.

I have no clue what possessed me to think I could pull that bikini off. Truly it’s a shocker. Shudder. The kicker is I paid $200 bucks to look that ugly. AND it’s a “slimming bikini”, as in it’s about a ¼ of that size when off your body, and takes two muscle bound men and a shoe horn to get me into it. When wet, getting it off is a workout in itself. I used to cut myself getting it off wet…. I’m not kidding!

After my last child was born I found I was suffering from back pain so bad I was taking anti-epileptic drugs to quiet the nervous noise down. It didn’t help. I was going to chiropractor several times a month. I was taking pills for the pain and doing a lot of self medicating with prescription drugs that had belonged to my dying mother. I had bakers cysts behind my knees and my feet were killing me. I was in a fair amount of pain on a daily basis and very frightened about the bleak looking future. Any exercise that made my hip move, made my back worse. Anything that made my back worse made me depressed, and depressed made me fatter.

The second I cut sugar and grain out of my diet many of my aches and pains left. I lost weight effortlessly and immediately. I had energy. I woke up one day and thought, “what the hell, let’s go for a run.” It was winter and I had to dig to find summer shorts to run in. Here’s me in them…

I didn’t go running, as I couldn’t find a thing to wear! I was actually disappointed that I couldn’t go running! What would Mr. Jackson make of THAT!

I lost about 15kg/33lbs in the first month. People noticed. They asked me if I “meant to do that”. I was whispered about at work. People thought I was sick or had cancer! I was shocked. When I told them what I was doing I got “the look” and now 9 months later I’m still getting “the look”. It’s very frustrating! I am adding some exercise in soon. I really want some definition and some muscle.

I’m now 173cm tall, and weigh about 58kg/127lbs. I took this picture in January 2012. I’m wearing  size 8 (size 4 USA)  jeans whereas I was a size 16 (USA 12). I’ve gone back to the bra size I wore in high school – good old 12B! OH my god, my shoes are too big! My 15 year old daughter said I have Victoria Beckham knees (wrinkly from losing so much fat around the knee cap area). GOD BLESS HER COTTON SOCKS!!! Sometimes, when I’m driving my car I don’t recognize my own wrists. Mate, it’s crazy!

This pic was taken January 2012.

So that’s my story. I am currently going through an anger stage. I want to grab random people in the supermarket and scream, “STOP buying diet poison”, and “here, eat some bacon you poor hungry fat thing.”

I am no longer studying to become a dietitian, as I fear that it will kill me to regurgitate lies in exams. So I’m going to teach high school maths and biology. I might even be able to slip a few metabolic words of wisdom in there. I want to start a Primal school group. I wonder how that might work – get ‘em young and get ‘em buff? Woohoo!

Finally, I wish to say a big thank you to Mark, you’re fantabulous mate, and please come visit Australia asap. Our bacon is superior to anything anywhere in the world and that fact alone should make you want to visit…. In the words of Bill Bryson (my favourite author), “Australian bacon…. looks as if it was taken off the pig while it was trying to escape. You can almost hear the squeal in every bite.” Is that Primal or what?

I would also like to say to my mum, you were always an inspiration to me mum. I wish you could be here to share this journey with me, but wherever you are please sit down, put your feet up and EAT. No more Styrofoam rice crackers for us! Woo hoo!!!!!


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159 thoughts on “No More Styrofoam Rice Crackers for Us!”

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  1. Great story, Jane! I love your attitude, so Aussie. Fun read. Oh, and congratulations on the weight loss/health gain too. Awesome! 🙂

  2. Congrats! I greatly enjoyed reading this. You are one funny, attractive Aussie.

  3. Fantastic story Jane, congrats on coming out the other side of diet hell.

    Your recovery is such a wonderful tribute to your Mum, I’m sure she’d be beaming with pride 🙂

    P.S I hear ya about PE in school – there’s probably a whole generation out there who were put off exercise for life because of that.

    1. Hey! I was a P.E. teacher back in the 1960’s. I always tried my best to make it fun and emphasized to my students that they needed to find a sport or exercise that they could do for life.

      I certainly hope I didn’t put them off exercise for life. However, I do know what you are talking about. Some P.E. classes are run like it is a punishment.

      Jane, your bikini description had me laughing big time. Loved your story.

  4. The end of your story gave me chills 🙂 Your enthusiasm is contagious – thanks so much for sharing your success!

  5. Great story, well told. Reminds me why I like Aussies so much! Congrats!

  6. I’ve never been to Australia, but after having read your description of the bacon, I may have to cash on some frequent flier miles to get there!

    Congratulations on your amazing transformation! As someone who has horrible lower back pain, you are definitely an inspiration to me.

  7. Nice story! I’m in the Nutrition and Dietetics program now and yea – it’s a load of bull! Good job on your transformation 😀

  8. Congrats Jane! Your transformation is another testament to the Primal lifestyle. Not only did you get a much sexier body by cutting out grains and sugars, but you also improved your overall health. Great work!

  9. great inspiration here! I love the Bill Bryson quote about bacon.

    It’s definitely frustrating when people judge your diet as unhealthy, but I think the results speak for themselves; point that out to them and watch their mouths snap shut!

    1. This fellow Aussie enjoyed her bacon with coconut cream scrambled eggs for breakfast this morning 🙂 You go girl!

      1. I second both the breackfast menu, and fellow Aussie bit!! 🙂

  10. I have a new slogan “here, eat some bacon you poor hungry fat thing.” I fell out of my chair after reading that.

    Fantastic story! Thank you for sharing.

  11. I, too, lament that both my own parents and hubby’s parents would all be here with us today if it weren’t for the completely careless eating and smoking that led to their deaths.

    Too bad it took their deaths for us to become interested to learn how to prevent them for ourselves.

    Since then, both science and I have learned a lot–science learned how to create pills, techniques, and devices to profit from their various chronic ills, while I learned how to eat better, what really causes sickness in the first place, avoid all these health problems for myself–and most importantly, learn how to care for and feed a husband who is the (needless) genetic recipient of much of his parent’s health woes.

    Hubby and I are the first generation of both our families that isn’t racked with numerous health complaints, isn’t saddled with expensive med bills, and doesn’t have to have a mental Rolodex of specialists and what floor of the hospital they’re located on.

    We are free thanks to Paleo eating, Mark’s daily apple, and the croaking of Primal Toad. I crushed up my own rice cake “packing material” and fed it to the birds when I started Paleo–isn’t that who should be eating grains?

  12. Great story! I am only 2 months into my primal journey and it’s stories like this that make it so much easier. What an inspiration. Keep up the good work.

  13. fantabulous story Jane. Thank you SO much for sharing it! Rock on.

  14. I so enjoyed reading this story! What an inspiration you are! I’m so glad you chose to change career paths, as I’m sure you can be much more effective teaching math instead of spreading lies and bad information about diet and nutrition to young minds. Thanks for sharing your story with us!

  15. that was the best post i have read. you are great!! you need a you tube channel to talk about the diet. you are so clear and funny, so many people would releate. i loved your story. I look forward to fridays, yours is the funniest hands down.

  16. Thanks for your great story, Jane. So glad you didn’t go the dietetics and nutrition route–especially when so many nutritional recommendations are influenced by lobbyists that have their company’s interests in mind as opposed to our health.
    What a great personal journey, as well–my little nugget of inspiration for today.
    Wishing you all the best:)

  17. Jane, Jane, Jane — you are WONDERFUL! I am re-inspired to really commit to this Primal thing…Thank you!

    1. that my dear was the queen’s english with a touch of convict thrown in…

      1. Woehahahahaaaa!
        ”The English and Americans have everything in common…
        Except their language” (Oscar Wilde)

        This is the funniest success story I have read, and you look spiffing!

    1. No kidding!… I had fun looking up the meaning of some of those words and phrases we don’t use around here… like “tea” (A meal?…).

      Amazing story Jane!

      1. breaky is breakfast,
        lunch is dinner
        dinner is tea
        so we have breaky, dinner and tea
        although lunch is becoming more common nowadays.
        also dessert we call pudding, but that too is becoming unheard of, we are becoming more and more Americanised here in oz. shame really as I love that we are different.

        1. Acutally, lunch, dinner, tea also very much depends on which state you live in 🙂

        2. I think it must depend on the state too. I’ve grown up in Sydney with parents on both sides going back 7+ generations on each side and I have never heard of lunch referred to as dinner & the only people I’ve heard call dessert pudding are from the UK or 1st gen kids from UK parents. Tea and breaky are Australia wide I think.

          Great Story. I also wonder what on earth PE teachers must have done to us to make us hate PE so much – my sister and I both LOVE to exercise now (since our early 20s) but we both despised PE/ school sport.

        3. While I like Australia you guys have ENTIRELY TO MANY SPIDERS!! Seriously your house spiders are big as a tarantula, you have Orb Weavers everyhere and they are huge. Ive see pictures of houses in Australia that have 100s of spiders just hanging around. LOL

  18. Congrats! Wonderful story! And I totally relate to the “anger phase”. I see chubby/fat people in the grocery store with a cart full of “low fat, whole grain” processed crap and want to steal their cart and fill it full of steak.

    1. I just want to shake my daughter when she tells me my husband is going to have a heart attack from all the fat we eat, when she can’t conceive but insists on staying on “healthy” low fat, whole grain diet.

      1. I get angry too! And sad! And I REALLY have to avoid talking to any vegetarians about food.
        Great story! I remember a similar revelation when I read Gary Taubes’ artice in the NYT magazine back in 2002, I think–unfortunately it took me a LOT longer to shake off the conventional wisdom. I remember thinking that I loved bread so much… now I can hardly believe that I ever thought it was worth eating.

  19. Fabulous story and I LOVE your “voice”, Jane! Your writing feels like a friend is chatting with me.

  20. Jane- loved your funny and inspiring story. Thanks for sharing and keep up the excellent work! Crazy how the US sizing is SO different from that of other countries and how the actual material used here gets larger while the sizing number stays the same. Now when I mentioned to someone I wear a size six, I always add the caveat, “but its a Gap size 6 :(“. LOL

    1. success is the best revenge, and also a great motivator LOL
      wink wink

  21. Love, love, love this week’s story! Awesome, resounding success from a very likeable-sounding lady! Wishing you much joy in your new life, Jane.

  22. Funny lady. Did you ever read In A Sunburned Country, Bill Bryson’s book about Australia? That book had me laughing so hard I was crying in several spots.

    You look great! (FYI I’m sure that if I showed your bikini pic to my husband he would think you looked totally hot; he likes a bit of flesh on women.)

    1. Hi and yes I did read that book its my favourite one, it’s where the bacon quote comes from in fact. He’s a great author.

    2. I agree with your husband: women look great with curves, and Jane’s bikini picture is tantalizing.

  23. What a great read! And, what a wonderful example of a healed metabolism.

    You look and read like someone who nature intended to be tall and slender – and now you have reclaimed that natural heritage.

    Btw, I hope your husband takes a second look and has a few regrets about trading you in. Serve him right. Not that you aren’t better off without his dogmatic vegetarian a** in your life.

  24. Jane, Congrats on all you’ve accomplished. You are truly a hoot!

  25. Great story and so funny!! I about died when I read, “here, eat some bacon you poor hungry fat thing.”

  26. “I am currently going through an anger stage. I want to grab random people in the supermarket and scream, “STOP buying diet poison”, and “here, eat some bacon you poor hungry fat thing.””

    I can totally understand that feeling, although I haven’t yet experienced it myself. What I have experienced is a spooky time in the grocery store where somehow – in my imagination – all the “poison” has just disappeared from the shelves. First happened in the Costco (large warehouse type store).

    Can you imagine how little most stores would actually have to sell if the poison all vanished? Of course, they could then stock the shelves with the good stuff . I still think that there would be so much less overall to buy – given the long rows of variations on the crap theme. How many versions of soft drinks and snack foods do we really need…..????

  27. This is so incredibly inspiring. You are beautiful, and you deserve to celebrate what you’ve done. You’ve done it.

  28. Am I the only one who couldn’t quite follow the story between the ‘carb counter’ on Google and the birth of the last child, and, I assume, following Primal by Mark? I just wanted to see if it made the difference for Jane? Did she lose weight on just carb counting?

    1. Hi before I found Mark I just knew that carbs were making insulin release, and that was what was making me fat, so before I opened my mouth and stuck food in it, I googled “how many carbs in an apple” and if it was going to throw me over 50g a day, I didnt eat it. I knew enough from my Atkins diet try decades ago that 50g was not much. After a while this got boring, and so I started googling low carb web sites, and Mark’s Daily Apple quickly became my favourite. It was in fact the success stories tab that made me stay here. I LOVE these stories, but really at the time had NO clue that I would be writing my own EVER, flat out in a matter of months.

  29. Oh! It’s so good to read a story in “Aussie”. It was great to read of your success, I sometimes feel a bit isolated here in regional NSW, even though it is easy to source grass fed ruminants, people think I am quite mad. I wish I could loose more weight, but still love the lifestyle, and also so many positive improvements to my health. At 50, I feel that I may have found Primal in the nick of time. Only 5 months into this, I think I have a way to go, and only one med to go to give the flick. You look fabulous, and happy, well done you,

  30. Onya Jane – what a great real-life story! You look wonderful. Congratulations!!

  31. Great job! I agree, and I actually read Bryson myself. Currently re reading “walk in the woods”

  32. Fantastic job, Jane–and you are a hoot! Loved all the Aussie-slang and attitude! You look great, and you’re gonna feel even better when you start putting on muscle–re-post with an update for us!

  33. What an outstanding, inspiring, wonderful story! Thank you so much Jane for sharing it. Congratulations on the new life you have forged and on the amazing transformation. It is such a joy to hear of your success and to share it with others.

    I’m with you, sometimes I want to grab people in the grocery store and shake them when I see all the processed food piled up in their cart. 🙂

  34. Great story and progress. When you said carb flu, what do mean? Three weeks of giving up gluten I’ve had a flu, despite of taking good care of myself. Figured my body has to get rid of the garbage. Did you mean that? Did anyone else experienced that?

    1. Gil, Mark has written about carb flu on this site. Do a search on it and you should find lots of great information including people’s comments about their experiences with carb flu.

    2. headaches mainly and feeling like death warmed up, hard to concentrate and really sluggish mentally. Still got a great mark on my exams tho! LOL
      It lasted a week or so, and everytime I felt really bad I took headache pills and ate something fatty and salty like macadamia nuts, seemed to help.

      1. That smile on your after pic is worth allvthe headaches on the world! Rock on, you’re an inspiration 🙂

  35. What a great story! I’m just starting my primal life and I’ve also experienced the incredible energy boost and disappearance of aches and pains and brain fog, what a revelation it has been! And I too, was eating the SAD (Standard Australian Diet 😉 Good on you Jane, thanks for sharing.

  36. What a great story. The bit I related to was your comment at the end about giving up training as a dietician. I tutor physiology, and I cannot bring myself to ‘teach’ the guff – so I teach the real stuff, and point out what they have to regurgitate to pass the exams. And explain why!

  37. “STOP buying diet poison”, and “here, eat some bacon you poor hungry fat thing.”

    YES…love that comment!!!!

  38. Way to go Jane!!! What an awesome story. You give this 42 yr. old mama a reason to eat my bacon!! I totally get the “look” part. When I try to talk to people about this lifestyle they think I nuts!

  39. It’s stories like this that keep me motivated and inspired! Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing!!

  40. This is an absolutely amazaing story. It made me feel very odd while I was reading it. I was overwhelmed with the feeling of holding tears back reading about your mother and painful divorse, and trying not to laugh too loud reading all the other parts.

    May I just say, you are a wonderful writer? I love your sense of humor and I’m so happy for your recent accomplishments.

    Lastly, you look absolutely fabulous! Congratulations.

  41. Love this story! And no joke about the supermarket. I want to stage an intervention sometimes in the checkout line…When I can, I do tell people, bacon doesn’t make you fat, bread and pasta make you fat. Perfect example–I ate out this weekend for breakfast, and the overweight waitress who handed me my plate of a veggie 3-egg omelette and side of thick sliced bacon (mmmmmmm) said she couldn’t believe I could eat like that and look the way I do. I told her it wasn’t the eggs and bacon that makes you gain weight, it was the stuff I asked her to leave off; the biscuits, the hashbrowns and, or me at least, the cheese and sour cream. Once I stopped eating that stuff I lost 40 lbs. We talked a bit, and I mentioned MDA, Robb Wolf and Gary Taubes, telling her reading any and all of their books would change her life. Not sure what she’ll do, but if she’s half as frustrated as I was eating a healthy SAD, my guess is she’ll at least hit the library or the web and start learning. Whenever people make those kinds of “How can you eat XYZ?!” I always follow up with a little public service announcement about how it’s the sugar and processed carbs that make you fat, not bacon, eggs, and steak. Hopefully, it will get people thinking.

    1. I take my opportunities too, last week I got a flat battery and I had literally 10 mins to talk to the road side assist guy as he recharged it, he asked me what I do (for a living) I said I was a student.. he asked, what are you studying, It’s a great opener for me as I can say, well I WAS studying to be a dietition BUT I gave it up as I felt like I was being lied to. Then I tell people, I lost 15kg in 6 weeks with no exercise, and have lost another 5kg. At the end of the ten mins, he goes, OK so what don’t I eat… bread rice pasta and sugar right??? I thought, thank you, my work here is done…..

      1. Well done, Jane. You may be the world’s first roadside dietitian.

    2. I actually carry with me a set of “business” cards that list URLS for Mark’s Daily Apple and Tom Naughton and Dr. Mike Eades and Richard Nikoley and Dr Doug McGuff and Robb Wolf and Jimmie Moore and and and…. When I get yakking with someone, instead of trying to scrawl what I remember — or telling someone — as I had to at the Y this morning: “Dyah remember the saying an apple a day keeps the doctor away? Okay — it’s Mark’s *Daily* *Apple* — try to remember!

      1. LOL!!! I’ve got postcards that I hand out with a paleo pyramid and list of websites!

  42. Goodonya Jane, I’m an Aussie living in Canada and I can tell you Australia does have the best tasting bacon:)

  43. I love all the Australian talk. It made your story even more fun. You guys eat ‘tea’ instead of dinner? Anyway, really neat story. It made me laugh. You look great. I want to scream at people sometimes too.

  44. This is my favorite success story to date. Keep up the great work! I’ve got a high school friend in Perth that I want to visit some day, I’ll be sure to load up on Aussie bacon while I’m there 😀 😀

  45. Best success story ever! Hilarious and inspirational 🙂 great to hear about other Aussies living the primal life.

  46. I love your story! Thank you for making me laugh. You look awesome.

  47. jane, did you study at Usyd? if so, i think i know the lecturer you’re talking about ;p

    1. hehe No Im at the Sunshine Coast Uni, and he’s rather hot Im afraid… argh!
      I am going to corner him next semester and thank him for changing my life….

  48. Awesome story Jane! Lovely to hear a fellow Aussie paleo voice, and such a unique voice. Your story had me in tears of laughter (especially when you read it with a broad aussie accent). I can absolutely relate to your journey. I too am considering studying dietetics and like you, have reservations about having to regurg the CW BS. Love your bacon description.
    Get some pork, on your fork!

  49. Great story Jane! Your before and after photos are so inspirational 🙂

    I’m from Australia too and I love our bacon, but I’m doing my first Whole30 at the moment and I’m really missing bacon because I haven’t been able to find any that’s nitrate and sugar free (although to be honest I’ve only looked in the supermarket, which is a crap place to look!)

    Keep up the good work and thanks for sharing your story.

  50. That was an awesome and super funny read.

    I can’t help but to recall the numerous times I have been at the grocery store check-out line and hear the customer saying about this ache or that and seeing nothing but crap in their cart! You do want to shake some sense into them!

  51. Mark, if you read this – I wish that you had put my after shot in the story in the same bikini – I really think that shows the massive difference. Im sure you’ve had a tough week tho with the hackers etc.
    Thanks for choosing my story, and thanks to all who’ve commented, it does one good to receive such lovely messages from strangers!

  52. I found that story a bit hard to follow, but finally got it 🙂 I love how you changed your diet first and saw HUGE results and now are adding in some exercise. You go girl!

  53. Love it. I am also Aussie. I am 24 and currently weigh around 110kg. I am in the UK at the moment, having a second chance at a European trip and have started eating low carb. Not sure if it will last when we hit France though! (Croissant anyone?) This is such an inspiring story, I love your sense of humour.

  54. Well done Jane, funny and inspiring story. As a fellow Aussie, gotta disagree with you about the superiority of our bacon – it’s more like a thin pork steak than the real bacon they serve in Europe. Barossa Fine Foods do awesome bacon, more in the German/Austrian tradition. Grab that or some good thin prosciutto, wrap it around asparagus and oven bake for a perfect paleo entree (‘Starter’ for you Yanks).
    You’re lucky you prefer the squelling-pig variety from Woolies, though. Enjoy!

    1. Hmmm that does sound yummy. I do prefer basic foods to anything fancy. I must get some asparagus, Id forgotten about this vege. licks lips.

  55. Recently read Gary Taubes Good Calories Bad Calories book. It’s the saga of how we went wrong with the low-fat high-carb group think and abandoned previously effective advice to cut the sweets and flours. The highly-refined carbs, especially sugar, breads and high-fructose corn syrup, and the interaction of fat cells with insulin leads to fat cells retaining triclycerides instead of releasing those fatty acids to cells needing them. Those unsatisfied cells scream to the organism (us) that they’re hungry again and we respond by eating more carbs. Early treatment of diabetes before insulin was to eat only protein and fat until no sugars had overflowed into the urine. Then, carbohydrates were slowly added to the diet until the sugar showed up again. That would establish the upper limit to carb intake. Also, when the fat-retention hormone insulin is present, the other 8 or 10 fat-burning hormones are rendered powerless! Cancer, degenerative diseases also are evaluated. I recommend the book and he has a newer version Why We Get Fat that is less comprehensive. There’s also a breakdown of eating a porterhouse steak that is fascinating, especially I would imagine to a primal enthusiast! Yum!

  56. Jane thanks so much for you post and your great facebook page I am loving this new lifestyle

  57. The moment I saw references to PE, cricket and touch footy, I knew this was an Aussie… I hesitate to say ‘fellow’ Aussie, because although I was Australianated in 1988 and come across as Ocker as Arfa Dunga, I’m actually a Kiwi by birth and I don’t want to have to barrack for the Wallabies.

    One brilliant characteristic of Strayans – that we are sadly losing as urban Strayans try to be reality-show Americans – is the offhand self-deprecation, and the delightful wit. Reading this piece, I could picture at least a half-dozen people I know who speak EXACTLY the same way.

    As a (frequently lapsing) vegetarian I have to ‘work around’ the animal-slaughter aspects in building a veggo version of a low-starchy-carb, high-protein, high (good) SatFat diet… but the internet and the proliferation of well-structured vegan and vegetarian sports supplements helps immensely. Plus, eggs (free range ‘happy chook’ eggs).

    No bacon for me, sadly (I love the stuff… my monthly lapses always involve bacon).

    Anyhow – back to Jane’s terrific piece: it was an absolute cracker.

    The more people who get it through their skulls that government dietary regulations were thought up in haste by self-interested zealots (Ancel Keys chief among them), the better.

    There are several terrific youTube vids featuring Gary Taubes and Tom Naughton – a REALLY good one is – and they will help novices get past the hogwash that governments force down people’s throats.

    And for the record – as with fluoride, I do NOT think that the TERRIBLE government-driven loFat campaign was a case where government started with good intentions. I think that fluoride plus high-carb/lo-fat are two parts of a SYSTEMATIC attempt to keep everyone manageable. Nothing is more easily managed than a perenially-tired obese population with disrupted endocrine systems.

    1. Interesting that you can hear my voice in this piece, I always write this way, and have wanted to write for a long time… However in “real life” I do not often speak this way….except when passionate!
      I believe this “stray-an” is the real me, and the other me – the well spoken “lady” is a more palatable front that I present to the world. That said when I can “hide behind the written word” that little barefoot Aussie girl from North Queensland comes out! She also comes out with the addition of a few bourbons. Strange but true. Oh and of your bacon story, they do say it’s the “gateway meat” for vegos. Good luck and thanks for your encouragement and comments! – Jane-oh.

  58. I grew up in a place where bread and pasta are what people eat, and everything else is meant basically to be a topping for those two staples. We ate also a lot vegetables, but wheat was (and still is) considered a gift from God, (not metaphorically speaking). Wheat is really part of the ancestral culture and eating it is almost ritualistic. It”s interesting, because when I was a kid I didn’t really care for it, but I was told I had to eat it and I developed a taste for it later. I have to say it cost me a lot to give it up.

  59. Just had to pick myself up off the floor, laughed so hard at the shared feeling we have about other shoppers at the market…..

    Here, have some bacon….so funny.

    Congrats to you Jane!! Now if only my mom would read your post. wish wish wish

  60. Wow, amazing journey! You and your mom’s struggles with weight-loss “fads” really hit home for me. I’m so glad you are happy now. I can hear it in your writing. You are smiling and healthy and want everyone to know how you did it and that they can do it too! You look fabulous!

  61. A brilliant story – so inspiring. You look incredible and so full of life.

    Your mother would be so proud of you.

  62. You are awesome … love the attitude and you look amazing!! I bet you could snag Professor Hot-Stuff any day you pleased. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing.

  63. OMG Jane, your story has made me laugh and made me cry. I’m so sorry for your loss – both your Mum and your marriage. So very unfair. But I’m so happy for you that you found the way back to health.
    Your story has inspired me big time!

    From one Aussie to another – cheers to you, babe!!!

  64. Did you get hacked again?
    Just an FYI: Today the HOME page shows 10 Feb as the latest posting. The postings from 11 Feb to 22 Feb are AWOL (missing).

  65. Congratulations on your success! This is actually I great motivator for me! I just started my no sugar/no carb diet this week- its going great but it is hard to not think about sweets sometimes! Very inspiring- Thanks!

  66. Jane, loved the story! I’m about your height, maybe I CAN get down to <60kgs!

    You're definitely right about the bacon, when I went to NZ on holiday the bacon there was an awful culture shock!

    And that bikini – what were you thinking, girl? But we all have some of those moments/clothes in our dim dark past/cupboard.

  67. Great job Jane
    So inspiring I keep telling my mom about this lifetyle she has a lot of aches and pains but worldwide nutrition, doctors, and Big Pharm and Big food want no part of us being healthy and fit naturally, and I agree thank you Mark, and Rob and Dr Eades for having voices in a paid off world.
    Good for you


  68. Thank you Jane for your encouraging story ,I have just begun my journey in the Primal lifestyle, I was skinny as a kid and ate trash,and over the years the kilos have crept up on me. Like you, I have been trying many different diets and made some improvement in healt and wellbeing, but no good results in weightloss. I got the Primal Blueprint book as a Christmas gift from my daughter and everything I read in it is so right and so logical.

  69. I enjoyed tremendously your story. One of the best written and truly inspirational.

  70. Thank you, thank you for the brilliant story. I have read it a few times, I’m finding it very motivating as I have just started with primal and am feeling like it might be too good to be true…
    Definitely going to stick with it now.

  71. @Paul

    Wow. Really inappropriate. This is the story of someone’s journey towards good health.

    Who are you to “read between the lines” and judge the character of a complete stranger?

  72. Sorry Jane but I don’t think you looked that bad in your bikini, seriously! Great story and congrats!

  73. Jane!
    My Sister-from-another-Aussie-Mister & my new imaginary BFF!!
    You’ve inspired me to go primal.
    My Mom was also on the endless quest to find the right “diet” until her death from lung cancer in 2001. I miss her (yet, seem to argue with her in my head), Daily!! I credit her for my aversion from anything processed & for my appreciation for fresh, natural, homemade foods.
    Cheers to our “Mum’s”,…. Girlfriend!!
    Thanx for your charming inspiration.
    Wish me luck!

  74. OMG that was so funny. I was laughing out loud. I love Bill Bryson as well. In his travel stories about Britain, he said that only Brits could get excited about a cup of tea and a rich tea biscuit, saying “Ooooh lovely!” as they tuck in. And he is right, I have witnessed it many times! ….They obviously need some of that Aussie bacon, with some eggs then they would have something to say “Oooh lovely” about!!!
    Brilliant story. Janx

  75. Hi Jane, I’m a vegan so i cant eat eggs, bacon those kinda stuff so i end up consuming tons of bread, oatmeal, rice at every meal, i can notice that its making me gain weight. help!

  76. Ah, Jane. You made me laugh! And you give me hope. I am just starting this whole primal thing. Having a few struggles, but I finally have the mindset to end my love affair with sugar END!

  77. What a cack!!!!! Another Aussie here Jane and what an inspiring story. I have just started Primal, into my 2nd week now and have lost about 1 1/2 kg. But what’s even better than that is I feel great and my mood has improved out of sight. I’ve also got my partner on board as well.

  78. you are so awesome and awesomely funny. I actually laughed out loud. Great story! Congratulations!

  79. You are an inspiration, I loved your story. I’ll be coming to Australia soon for bacon!

  80. You’ve done so well Jane! Thanks for the chat today and thanks for telling me you’d put your success story on the website – definitely inspiring stuff! I just worked it out…we’ve known each other for neigh on 30 years dear…and I must say – you look AMAZING! 🙂

    1. hugs Paulette, stick with it, I just know you can do it. Hang out on this website and I know we will solve your metabolic issues…

  81. Not only was this an inspiring story but I was laughing more than half the time. You have great writing skills. Hope to ready more about your story and success in the future. Today is my first day of my primal future and I am savoring every piece of information I am gathering and realize I have much, much to learn.

  82. I literally laughed out loud while reading your story. Thank you for providing alot of inspiration as I am just getting started on the primal diet!

  83. This is so what I needed to read, today is day one for me going primal and I just ordered Mark’s book on Amazon. Can’t wait till I’m a success story too!

  84. Jane, you’re a pisser!!! Love, love, love your story.
    You are a real (th)inspiration.

  85. OMG! Jane Thanks you SOOO much for sharing your amazing success story!! I thought my neighbor was coming to check on me as I was laughing/crying so hard at your bikini swimsuit drama! I totally heard you when you said ‘I am not kidding!’ Thanks for the so much for the laughs. I seriously had to stop reading cause I couldn’t see and now my side hurts!

    Isn’t it crazy how life’s turn take us to such unexpected places? You’re mom is proud of you as are we!


  86. So nice to come back here and see the new comments from time to time…

    Im still going strong, have lost a few more kg. I am now hovering around 55kg. It’s strange because 55kg was the “magic number” for me.

    I am actually 55.8kg and I am desperate to be 55kg. (can you tell? I’ve said the number 55 a zillion times in this short post.)

    I still have not undertaken massive exercise… but I have inspired a lot of good friends to lose weight. One in particular I think will soon be sending in her own success story… from morbidly obese to thin in under 12 months… watch this space!

    Jane xo

    ps would love to keep in touch with anyone who wants to… email me at [email protected]


  87. ‘So that’s my story. I am currently going through an anger stage. I want to grab random people in the supermarket and scream, “STOP buying diet poison”, and “here, eat some bacon you poor hungry fat thing.”’

    Haha!! Me too!

  88. LOVED your story! You should try writing. You have a very engaging (and funny) style.

  89. Great story! Hmm I do wonder if you had the same biochem lecturer as me… he was YUMMY (errm this was back in 93/93 though… he was pretty young at the time, looked to be in his 30s maybe).

    Haha it’d be funny if it was the same guy 🙂 I am wondering, though, why I didn’t pick this up from my biochem lectures all those years ago! Maybe could have gone primal years before it became popular and not spent so many years as a fatty :).

  90. Imagine my surprise at finding a testimonial by someone I know!! Well done Jane… love your story… love the results of your changed lifestyle. You are an inspiration. Here’s to that good old Aussie bacon!

  91. This story made me LOL – so inspiring, enthusiastic, and just plain AWESOME! You go, girl!

  92. <>
    LOL!!! That’s it! When I see people ALWAYS hungry, not beeing satisfied (for long) by all the “diet-like” carbs, “low sugar and low fat” (booooh, evil fat!)… it makes me wanna scream… XD

  93. Hi Jane,
    I’m an Aussie too! Your story made me cry. Probably because I am in the angry phase too! I wear a T-shirts with a picture of a BBQ on it that says “No Grains, No Dairy, No Legumes” (although I have been able to incorporate a bit of dairy since my poor coeliac gut has healed).I actually got kicked out of a vegan cafe in Melbourne last week (I was on holidays) when I asked for something without soy in it!!
    I teach high school (science and food tech, and I have taught maths in the past) and I encourage my students to compare the Australian Dietary Guidelines to other ways of eating including Paleo/Primal. I showed them Andreas Eenfeld’s AHS 2011 talk. At least we are allowed to encourage them to think!

  94. You are hilarious! I just came across Mark’s blog on Monday. It’s now Friday and I’ve bought Mark’s book online and also put myself on a 30 day challenge to cut out sugar. Thanks for your post! Cracked me up and makes me motivated to stick to my plan.

  95. Hi Jane,
    Thank you for your funny and inspiring writing! I am up and down with my commitment to a paleo/primal lifestyle but know I would be far better off by embracing it wholeheartedly. I’m also an Aussie and I love your distinctive writing style.

  96. I was raised exactly like you were. You tell it well. Good for you! You look amazing!

  97. I am sssoooo glad I ran into this website and your story!!! I have been desperately trying to lose this weight and I have been doing my research on Paleo diets after reading your story, I have made the decision to give this a try! Thank you!

  98. Hi Jane,

    I really appreciated your story very much. I’ve been hovering around MDA for years buts it can be difficult to make the commitment. I am at the point where I’m fed up with my habits and your story was a motivator! Not sure if you still read the comments on this story~

    BTW, can I ask what made you so upset in the biology class? I was a bit confused. Was it how carbs turn into sugar in the body?


    1. How excess carbs not stored as glycogen get stored as body fat.

  99. Your story is absolutely sensational !!!! Thank you so much for sharing 🙂