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!
Here follows a detailed timeline of how I came across MDA and your book The Primal Blueprint along with more details about my health history:
I was born in Houston, Texas and adopted by a family of Czech origin. I was diagnosed with hypoglycemia as a kid. I don’t so much buy into that diagnosis. I think I was just bored and constrained within the typical public school system. However, unbeknownst to me at the time, the breads, kolaches, pastries and potatoes that were so prevalent in my mother’s native food were spiking my blood pressure to the moon.
I was always involved in gymnastics, competitive swimming, baseball and basketball as a child, so I was never really overweight. Since I was adopted, my mother, who is very wise, took the time to cook differently for me and I ate a lot of seafood and vegetables growing up.
When I got to college I started eating out a lot and since I was physically active and involved in Jeet Kun Do and Brazilian Jiu-jitsu I was always in relatively good shape. However, a few pounds a year adds up after twenty years, and at the age of forty I found myself creeping up on the scale to 240 pounds. I am 6’2” so I was able to hide it fairly well with a big frame, but I felt sluggish. I was living a musician lifestyle and waking up every day at 11 AM.
I have a good friend who is authentic and real. I went to see him in Vegas, and the minute I walked in his door he told me I didn’t look good with three chins and I would never attract a decent woman fat. He has a way with words and I decided to take control of my life and my fitness. My friend and his wife had lost forty pounds a piece utilizing the Atkins diet. I understand enough about psychology to realize that I could simply model their behavior and achieve similar results.
I did and I lost a lot of weight and I felt a lot better. However, I found the shakes and the bars that had the fake sugar in them to taste very repulsive. I believe how you do anything is how you do everything. I have dedicated my life to music and consider it a fine art. I try to make all my relationships a masterpiece and consider friendship a fine art. I was happy with the results of the Atkins approach, but found many of the meals and supplementation boring, and far from fine art when it comes to cuisine.
I have a lot of friends who are foodies and gourmet chefs and I knew there had to be a better way. One night I Googled “no carb recipes” and MDA popped up in my search. I was hooked from the front page and once I started taking a look at the recipes my mouth began to water. Real food in its natural state, no strange ingredients, nothing in a box or can – I was hooked.
I was using Evernote at the time and I copied recipe after recipe from your site. I fell in love with eggs all over again. I had such misinformation about eggs. You mentioned on your site how every grandmother who lived to a ripe old age had that can of bacon fat on top of her stove that she cooked everything in. Mark, that was my grandmother Sophie Slansky. I loved all her food as a kid and she grew up on farm.
Your site elegantly and with fortitude debunked every foolish myth there was about food. Fat, including animal fat, is essential to our well-being, and you have the moxie and the courage to step out on the edge and challenge all of these myths.
The number one thing I learned from MDA and that I encourage everyone who wants to get lean and mean with a great low body-fat percentage is to understand this: 90% of all body composition begins with what you put in your mouth. You could join all the gyms in the world, buy every ab machine, personal trainer and run thirty miles a day and never have the body composition of someone who adheres to the aforementioned principle.
Since I started the Primal approach I have woken up every day for the last two years at 5:30 in the morning. I crave my fennel and dill omelet I learned from you. I crave poached eggs, I look forward to breakfast. I honestly in the deepest depths of my soul can not imagine how anyone could convince me that they honestly crave a bowl of oatmeal or Captain Crunch.
The differences I have seen are incredible. All my friends tell me I look fifteen years younger. It’s completely revived my music career as a performer. There aren’t that many fat rock stars. I can see my abs for the first time since I was fourteen years young. I can’t believe how much I enjoy what I eat. A typical day for me might be a vegetable omelet for breakfast, grilled chicken wings with scrumptious crispy skin for lunch along with a side of celery and real blue cheese, then at dinner a prime dry aged rib-eye with cauliflower mashed potatoes and grilled asparagus, a glass or three of Cabernet, and a piece of 85% cocoa chocolate.
I feel completely satiated and content after every meal.
Here is a video I made featuring me preparing my Primal Sushi Rolls, which are really not sushi at all. They are made with beef and asparagus. They are always a huge hit at parties!
Your post about drinking ten to twelve big glasses of water a day being ridiculous was spot on as well. I was drinking way too much water before I found your site.
This is the greatest thing that drew a rebel musician like myself to your site. Just about everything on MDA is counterintuitive. I found that to be where the truth lies these days you have to seek it out. That food pyramid they stuffed down our throats all those years is a complete joke.
I also want to note that Adelulf – my beloved, non neutered, all black male German Shepherd – eats Primal as well. Every morning I walk out into the yard and give him two fresh eggs in the shell. I set them down in the yard and it’s like Easter. Even as a puppy he knew what to do. He carefully picks up the egg, puts it in his mouth, takes it where he wants, pokes a hole in the shell with his canines and slurps up every last drop of both eggs. He eats raw chicken with the bones, turkey necks, liver, kidneys, and raw beef. His teeth are completely white, and his coat incredibly shiny. If I had a dollar for every so called animal lover, dog expert and veterinarian who told me my dog is going to die from salmonella poisoning from the raw eggs and choke on the raw bones I would be retired on a beach in Hawaii right now drinking margaritas. Here’s a picture of me and my dog where I landed at about twelve to thirteen percent body fat.
Thanks Mark. Pardon the long email, but I have a lot of deep appreciation for what you are doing.
Mark Sisson is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Keto Reset Diet. His latest book is Keto for Life, where he discusses how he combines the keto diet with a Primal lifestyle for optimal health and longevity. Mark is the author of numerous other books as well, including The Primal Blueprint, which was credited with turbocharging the growth of the primal/paleo movement back in 2009. After spending three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness, Mark launched Primal Kitchen, a real-food company that creates Primal/paleo, keto, and Whole30-friendly kitchen staples.