Sick and Tired of Feeling Sick and Tired

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 want to begin by thanking you so much for what you are doing to help people, and for such an impeccable website and thorough information. I enjoy being a part of the community and gleaning so much good information every day!

I have always been conscious of what I put into my body. Conscious, not strict. I have never smoked a cigarette, and I haven’t eaten fast food in probably 10 years. I also managed to stop drinking soda a while back. But, like everyone, I made plenty of mistakes (I also still make them – but, ya know, slightly fewer now). Unfortunately, the majority of those were from being mis- or un-informed. Though some of them were just from being human and hungry!

As long as I can remember, I had allergies: to cats, dust, plants, changes in weather, stupid people. I also, even though I have never been obese, had very high cholesterol. And, of course, I was prescribed medication. The military was adamant about those wonder-drugs we all know as statins. Bouts with depression, upset stomach and heartburn, frequent illnesses, etc., were all met with medication. But I was sick and tired of feeling sick and tired all the time, and was determined to find out why that was. I tried to be healthy and improve myself as much as I could. I exercised when I could and ate well when I could, eventually going organic to minimize chemicals in my body. I felt a bit better but was still unsatisfied; something wasn’t altogether right. At one point I finally decided to get rid of medications and really clean myself out. At the same time I had gotten into “juicing” (vegetables, not circa 1980s steroids). This cleanse changed my life. And cleanse is the right word.

Such a big change to your body and lifestyle can be potentially dangerous, so I was careful to ingest as much information as I could to make sound decisions. I was also looking into the vast amount of information on the Paleo diet and “living primally.” I immediately cut out grains, sugar, and dairy. I weaned myself off medications slowly. I began by adding freshly squeezed juices to my diet rather than fasting. This made it easier to slowly reduce the “bad stuff” rather than going “cold turkey.” But even then, the change to my body was noticeable. To be honest, I felt fairly terrible for a little while. But then… then it all changed. Suddenly, I felt better. A lot better. I was reading similar stories all over the Internet about people experiencing the exact same thing (hello, Mark’s Daily Apple). Eventually, my workouts showed vast improvement and I felt like doing more (hello, CrossFit). I was energized and strangely, not getting sick… at all. I wasn’t terribly strict with the diet, but the few times I ate “badly” I paid for it. That realization really cemented the idea that my food was such a major factor in my health and that my ideas about food were terribly misled. My life improved drastically in many ways. I became sharper mentally, and as my body became stronger and more to my liking aesthetically, I became happier emotionally.

Vince After Primal

At this point I started ribbing the hell out of my friends and family. Like an evangelist, I spread my “gospel.” And guess what happened? Well, actually, I was met with a lot of resistance! But it didn’t stop me and, lo and behold, others around me began enjoying the same benefits. Friends and family eventually came around. I found it helped not to push people, but rather give them the information and/or the means to get it (hello again, Mark’s Daily Apple) and let them figure it out on their own. My mother, who had struggled with high blood pressure for three decades, felt a little faint. She went to the doctor to find her blood pressure was too low. Because of her medication. Her doctor was astounded (yes, her doctor, of many years, was astounded that changing her diet lowered her blood pressure… nobody’s perfect). I, several family members, and many friends have now come completely off of all, or most, medications. We are much more fit, much more energetic and productive, and will probably enjoy many more years of life than we would have previously. It has been almost two years for me and – I know this seems improbable, but – I have not been sick, or had any allergic reactions… at all. Not even a sniffle. Well, maybe a couple of sniffles… but then, nothing. My immune system is no longer suppressed by the intake of toxins! I fight off any hint of illness before it starts. And this is someone who got sinusitis and/or bronchitis a couple of times every year. (Disclaimer – please do not adjust your medication without a doctor’s approval. Also, I am not claiming these results are possible for everyone. We are all different.)

Primal VinceSince then, I have continued to research health, fitness, and nutrition. I have really tweaked my diet and exercise to a place that is very near optimal for me. I even suffered a pretty serious injury and recovered faster and better than anyone – myself – thought. People come out of the woodwork and ask me about food and exercise because it is obviously such a prevalent part of my life. I converse with members of MDA in the forums and comments and with others elsewhere. I see information like this all over the world making changes in people’s lives. And those things continue to change my life.

The Primal Lifestyle is not a fad, nor a “diet” that “really works.” It is simply one of the best possible ways to be healthy: the way we were intended to sustain ourselves. People like Mark are doing what they can to help people feel better, look better, BE better! I am not selling anything. I don’t know Mark personally. I stand literally nothing to gain from sharing this with you. But I have done a LOT – and I mean literally hundreds of hours – of research on this, from seemingly endless sources. But I kept coming back, or ending up, on this site. Mark really covers his bases, provides links, and is very open about everything he does. Can’t ask for more than that. In addition, I have gotten a Certification in Personal Training and a Fitness Nutrition Specialization (from NASM, not a fly-by-night virtual diploma mill). And, finally, I have lived it and experienced it for myself. My only goal here is to, hopefully, help you achieve what most of us here have or will soon enough. To be as healthy – and ultimately happy – as we can be.

Good luck to you and here’s to your HEALTH!


Vince G

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82 thoughts on “Sick and Tired of Feeling Sick and Tired”

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  1. 1. “Though some of them were just from being human and hungry!”
    2. “As long as I can remember, I had allergies: to cats, dust, plants, changes in weather, stupid people.”

    LOL! I agree with everything you said, Vince, and i’m thinking i need to say hello to CrossFit soon too 🙂 Congrats on your personal training and nutrition certifications!! You look fantastic!

    1. Thank you so much! If you decide to do CrossFit, find a good “box” and take it SLOWLY! It’s a wonderful lifestyle! 😉

  2. Way to go, Vince! You look happier as well as healthier. Having your allergies disappear from your life must be SO amazing!

    I hear you about the resistance from friends and family. My “favorite” (not really) was the family member who told me he would rather die than give up bread. (Really!) I thought I’d managed to persuade one person — but then she turned around and went vegan. My husband won’t even eat an avocado — ever — because he thinks they’re too high in fat. Sometimes I wonder if I am just talking to myself… because no one seems to want to listen.

    Anyway, good for you for spreading the word! You are looking awesome!

    1. Thank you! Yes, sometimes we are our own worst enemy. I have to repeat myself quite a bit, because those ideas are so inGRAINed in their heads, especially the “fat” dilemma. Just keep at it, they will come around.

    2. It’s really sad to us when people have information that will make their life better isn’t it. Of course it doesn’t stop us from yammering about it. ????
      I had a couple of older (80’s ish?) at the pool ask about how I ate because I looked great for 60. So sometimes, like this writer, people will see the results and listen to that. And then there are those who don’t like having their head out of the sand long enough to get hooked like us. ????

      1. So very true! I have never been one to sit idly by and let the status quo reign.

        I don’t photograph very well. But I very often get dropped jaws when I tell people I am in my 40s. And then I get to start my spiel on the health benefits of FOOD!!

  3. You look so much more “alive” in your final photo 🙂 Well done! and keep up the good work!

    1. You look amazing! So true how much younger your ‘after’ picture is! Amazing how everyone looks younger when they show the ‘after’ picture!

  4. It looks like your tattoos have shrunk right along with the rest of you! 🙂

    1. Ha, need some more! 😉 I will finish my right arm soon and then the chest!

  5. Hey guys there’s an internet troll that has copied my name and picture so I apologize in advance for any rude comments I am sure he will make. It’s not me.

  6. Great story, it’s hard to believe how hard it can be to get others to change even after they see the amazing results that you experience staring them in the face. I’ve found it’s harder to get the older generation on board especially when it comes to having them give up staples like bread…I think you have the right idea about providing information and not pushing to hard, keep up the great work.

    1. Definitely, I have had the worst time undoing the decades of misinformation since Louise Light’s work was ruined.

    2. Great job ,Vince!

      From an evangelical standpoint, you would think it would be easier to convince folks that 80 percent of the receipe to live long and drop dead is: meat, veggies, nuts, seeds, a little fruit and No Labels, and not an endless list of do’s and do not’s.

      Keep spreading the gospel, brother!!!

      1. Agreed, the KISS principle is still around because it is TRUE! As are most proverbs that point to balance, moderation, etc.

        Thank you for your comment!

  7. “Like an evangelist, I spread my gospel.”
    That made me smile, in recognition! Very hard to bite your tongue and not drill people around you in the head (literally!)… But like you say, make information about better nutrition available to people, and hopefully this will help a handful, at least.

    1. Ha, no doubt. And it is definitely growing. People are getting the word, however slowly.

  8. Great story! I love how you say you aren’t selling anything – I feel the same way when i talk about how this lifestyle changed my life for good in incredible ways – I won’t gain anything by telling you but it’s the truth and hopefully more people will hear this and start making the changes for themselves.

    1. Thank you, Michele, my friends and I have enjoyed your site as well!!

        1. Of course! You deserve it. It’s a lot of hard work and great info and recipes!

          I have a “canned” email that I send out to all my “newbies” that includes a tons of good websites with info and recipes. Yours is in there! 😉

  9. I had chronic sinus problems for decades! Have been Primal for 3 years and haven’t even had a cold in all that time. Also, used to take Advil 3 sometimes 4x per day — not a one in more than 2 years! Had forgotten about that until I read your story just now. Congrats on all your successes!

  10. Everything about you looks brighter … even your tattoos! Thanks for the inspo, Vince!

  11. Congrats Vince! As you pointed out, doing LOTS of research is a big help. Sort of helps you find as much “truth” in between all the “myths”.
    Many years ago, a neighbor of mine was a vegan and convinced me to “convert”. He explained some things and gave me a pro-vegan book or two to read. Made sense at the time, so I went full force with it. Well, I dropped a lot of weight (was not fat by any means to begin with) and people seemed concerned about the dramatic weight lose. I went from 170 to 135. Funny thing though; I didn’t see myself in the mirror as those around me did. I just said to myself “They’re jealous they don’t have the will power to do the same”. Well, started noticing other things, like my hair falling out! I was in my 30s and had a very full, thick head of hair. That was the signal that maybe something wasn’t so right about this vegan thing.
    I slowly converted back. I began to do my OWN research. Through it all, I think I found what I believe is the healthiest ways to eat, or at least close to it.
    I definitely realize that sugars and grains have taken over much of the food industry and is causing some serious health issues for people. Reducing those two things have made a huge difference.
    I also learned of two more things which I think are incredible (in my opinion): Body weight training (as opposed to traditional weight lifting) and sprinting (as opposed to long jogs). Everyone is different, but for me, these two things have really helped me transform my body even more so.
    Well, apologies for the rant. Just wanted to say you are right, LOTS of research is very, very important.
    Congrats again Vince!

    – Anthony

    1. No it was a great story, have you submitted yours to Mark?
      And thanks!!

  12. So motivating! I’ve been on/off paleo for over a year now and it’s stories like yours that inspire me to keep trying. It’s tough with a couple little ones and a husband who’s not “on board,” but I believe so strongly in the lifestyle that I can’t seem to give up on it. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Ya know what Nicole, just keep with it and they will see YOUR results and eventually it will sink in. That has been my experience anyway. Stick with it. The only thing we have real control over in this life is ourselves. Health and fitness is literally all we have! 😉

  13. Hey Vince, you look great (except for the tattoos!). Well done. Personally I find I get nowhere encouraging others to drop grains. I don’t even like to talk about it too much even though I’d really like to spread the word. I find that having a healthy body doesn’t even make people curious, they just think I lucked out. My husband, the endlessly skinny guy, has actually put on weight while I’ve been losing over the past couple of years. That part has me stymied.

    1. “Hey Vince, you look great (except for the tattoos!)”….you probably think you’re being supportive, but that is incredibly rude. It’s cool if you don’t like tattoos, a lot of people don’t, but was there really any need to say that? If he’d been completely clothed and we couldn’t see he had tats, would you think it would be okay to say something like “you look great, except for the facial hair”, or if it was a pic of a woman to say something like, “you look great, well except for that hair/outfit”. Some opinions are irrelevant to the situation and don’t need to be shared, especially in this context where we are celebrating successes.

      BTW Vince, great story, keep being awesome

    2. You did not “luck out” on charity or courtesy. There was no need to make a comment about the gentleman’s tattoos.

      1. Vince, Mistress Merriment and Delle – it was a tiny little joke because the people above me mentioned Vince’s tattoos. On the other hand, I do apologize, really didn’t mean to offend. Thanks for correcting me.

  14. I ain’t selling nothing but eat meat from George Payne butchers Northumberland England it will transform your ass!

  15. Great story and I agree. There’s a wealth of info out there but MDA is the best source. The greatest layout, the most supportive and just fantastic.
    I love it here.
    I too have managed to convert a few friends and strangers. Family is harder.
    Prophets never get heard in their hometown or however that saying goes.

  16. You look so happy and relaxed! How wonderful is that!! I bet people notice that confident aura and it speaks to them almost as much as your physical prowess. Great job!!

  17. Amazing story. I also feel evangelical and it can be very hard to not preach at people. I feel sad when I see people suffering everyday when there is such an easy solution. I’m planning to pursue a personal training certificate from NASM as well, after I finish massage therapy school. I hope the people you are working with see your success and are inspired by your life. My goal is to lead by example as best I can. It looks like you are doing an amazing job of that already. Congratulations! 🙂

    1. Thank you so much. Yes, that has been the case mostly. I work in a school system, I actually help lead a fitness class after school, that has been a huge boon for many faculty members to find a healthier life.

  18. This story and one from about ten weeks ago (“The Healthiest Sick Guy” You Knew) points up that you can be not even slightly overweight, much less obese and still have far from optimal health. Diet can and often does, make a big difference.

  19. WOWZERS!! Your eyes are just dancing in that last photo! You radiate health. Thanks for sharing your inspirational story. It’s so motivating to those of us still in the beginning stages of our journey. 🙂

    1. Thank you! I hope it does help… I want everyone to feel their best!

  20. As someone who has a little ink themselves, I will choose to ignore the one previous rude comment, and congratulate you on all your success Vince! And I very much agree with the comments about how much more young and alive you look now 🙂

    Stay on the true path and spread the message!

    (Only been primal myself for a few weeks and I already love the way it makes me feel).

    1. Thank you, and congrats! I know you will continue to love your journey!

  21. Good story and congratulations on all the great developments in your life. When I first went primal two or three years ago and it made such a difference in my health I preached it to everyone. I was sure people would want to know why I was so much better and why I looked so much younger than my 67 years. Wrong! I couldn’t believe how attached people were to the CW THAT WASN’T WORKING. I got so tired of arguing about it that I just stopped. If they ask I tell them as briefly as possible about paleo and point them in the right direction to do their own research.

    1. It is, sadly, the story most of us have… then again, look at all of us here (and everywhere else)… the word is spreading. Keep up the good work!

  22. Your story inspired my husband in his fight against obesity. You are indeed a hero for me and my hubby.

    1. Best. Comment. Ever.
      Haha. Thank you so much. I wrote the story specifically for this reason. You can rely on all of us here at MDA to help you both anytime you need us. Get into the forums here and best of luck!

    1. Akrasia is part of human nature. Fortunately, there is the “nature” part of that equation. And nature works all by itself. You made the first, critical step by being conscious. I look forward to your success story here soon! Good luck!!

      1. Thanks, Vince. You’ve motivated me to resolve that it’s time to get it together. As a teacher, I tend to think in school years instead of solar ones. I’m reading Primal Connection now. My School Year Resolution is to reconnect (and send in my story next summer with shout out to my primal cousin Vinny).

        1. Haha! You’d BETTER! And I feel ya, I work in a school system.

          Knowledge is power dude. Like I said, your foot is in the proverbial door. Step through and enjoy!

          Also, get in the forums here. Wonderful support.

  23. I was relating much of what you said to what happened to me yesterday. A friend had me over for dinner. It didn’t go well. I talked him down from the pasta, and then the tofu and agreed to organic long grain wild rice (I’m not sure what else). Not the worst thing I can think of. I’ve been pretty strict for some time.
    Long story short, my sinuses swelled up, my ears are ringing and I feel like road kill. Energy has bottomed out.
    From time to time it’s good to have a reminder, and to pay the price!

    1. No doubt, those are the things we go through… but are totally worth it. 😉

  24. Great job Vince. I too, have family and friends coming aboard after I calmed down a bit and just became an example, instead of cramming it down their throats.

  25. Hi Vince congratulations, especially on the Evangelist part of it!
    My evangelization record in almost 5 years is … ZERO
    (lots of nods, good words, but zero conversions that last more than one day)

  26. Great Results! It’s crazy how much people resist doing what makes sense even when they see other peoples successes. I do think (and hope) more people come around to Primal/Paleo eating.
    Thank you for your story.
    You are a total babe now btw 😉

    1. Haha, woohoo! Thanks! I do think people are starting to come around. It’s going to be a painfully (literally) slow process. But it is happening. At least I try to keep that hope. 😉

  27. I like reading that other people are having success with this diet, not only with their weight and wellbeing, but, with their allerigies as well.

    I used to be quite allergic to what I call nature… Pollen, pets, horses, feathers, dust… Nature. One of the first things I noticed once I chose to go Primal was my allergies weren’t as severe. After a few weeks I didnt have to take an allergy pill anymore and I felt great all day! Other words, allergies pretty much gone! I still get sneezing once in a while but I’m about 98% better than I used to be.

    Great story here!

    1. Thank you. Absolutely, same here. It went from fairly severe (daily allergies for most most of my life) to basically non-existent. That, to me, is the most incredible part of my “transformation”. Just astonishing.

  28. Thanks for sharing your story, Vince! Like you, I love to tell people about what this way of life did for my health and my quality of life. I’ve converted a few friends and family, mostly by example and gentle encouragement, but I still have a few holdouts, including my husband.

    I’d like to hear more about your career as a personal trainer/nutrition specialist. Did you do that kind of work before you discovered MDA? I would think it would be a rewarding job, but it could also be frustrating because people DON’T LISTEN! 🙂 I’m trying to find a way to more “officially” share what I’ve learned over the past few years – therefore, the question.

    Thanks again for sharing your story!!

    1. Hi Heather! Thank you so much!

      You’re right, it can certainly be frustrating. I am actually in the Technology field, and only got my CPT and FNS for my own personal gratification (which is mostly to put the proverbial money where the mouth is) after I became Primal and started CrossFit. I do teach a bootcamp in the school system I work for. And I train several people. But the craziest thing is how often I get asked about diet. It seems like almost every day now the conversation comes up and someone asks me pointed questions. I got a call first thing this morning from a coworker who was frantic and was finally ready to try “anything”. I suggested strict Paleo for 30 days to see if it made a change (and of course I will help her through it with additional info). I can’t wait to hear that it does. I guess my point is that people are catching on, regardless of the ones who are holding out. And every time I help someone it is amazingly rewarding. I’m sure you know what I mean.

      I would love to teach health and fitness as a career, so I hope that is the next BIG change in my life. Congrats to you and keep up the good work!

      1. I’m in IT too! Thanks for sharing your experience. I recently re-did the 21 Day Challenge with a couple of our developers (I gave them 3 weeks of sample meal plans to get them started). It really was a great experience to be able to support them and help them during the challenge.

        Good luck in your future ventures!

  29. I love the part about your mother’s blood pressure. What a shame that the paleo lifestyle is not the first option suggested by doctors. I guess drug companies would go out of business if they did that!

  30. Oh, and we do the low carb paleo diet as my son has type 1 diabetes. And guess what? He has normal blood glucose levels and normal everything else whilst using half the amount of insulin other diabetics use. I had to do my own research to find this out, as it is never even considered in mainstream medicine.

    1. Lisa, thank you for the comment. Yes, it is certainly sad that the medical field is in the state it’s in. But there are certainly quite a few in the medical community catching on and coming on board. I think it will continue to spread that way. But Big Pharma and our illustrious Gov’t will be a big hurdle. We only have control over ourselves. So we keep improving and hoping those around us follow suit.

      Great job with your son. I wish the best for you and your family!