Eat well. Be well.

Success Stories

Dawn’s Story: Sick, Tired, Overweight


I was sick and tired for 25 years.

I couldn’t remember the last time I felt “normal”…probably before I had my kids almost 25 years ago.  Being a single parent for most of those years, I chalked it up to stress, worry, busyness, and lack of sleep.  I hadn’t slept through the night since my first child was born.

Over the years I visited different doctors complaining of daily headaches, fatigue, irritability, the answer was always the same. 

“Are you eating right?  Are you exercising?”

“Yes, of course,” I would tell them. I had no clue what eating right truly meant. I thought eating a balanced dinner was having some kind of meat, vegetable (mostly canned) and a starch, usually pasta. We ate convenience foods — a lot of processed, easy to make, microwaveable foods — because I really never learned to cook and I was always pressed for time.

Doc prescribes Ambien and Sleep Studies

A doctor prescribed Ambien for my sleep problems and recommended a sleep study be done. I spent a couple thousand dollars and was told everything was normal. The side effects of Ambien scared me so I stopped taking the medication and continued to look for answers.

Doc asks, “Are You Depressed”?

I felt my hormones were not balanced and perhaps my thyroid was not functioning well. “Maybe you are depressed,” offered my physician. “You are too young for menopause.”  All I wanted was to feel “normal” so I took their suggestion and tried some anti-depressants. Those only made me feel worse and 10 times more tired.  If I didn’t suffer from depression before, I sure did now thanks to the anti-depressants.  I took myself off the medication and never went back to see that doctor.

My South Beach and Weight Watchers Adventures

I was gaining weight and tried a couple diets including South Beach and Weight Watchers.  South Beach did seem to help and I even lost 30 pounds once. Unfortunately, like with any diet I tried, I eventually went back to eating the not-so-healthy stuff.

Weight Watchers worked for a little while too, but their point system allowed me to eat processed sweets like Weight Watchers cakes, sundaes, and Smart ones frozen dinners. I also drank 1 or 2 cans of Diet Mountain Dew daily. Sweets were a huge problem for me and all those treats undermined my efforts.

So I Was Right After All but I Was Still Sick and Overweight

As I entered into my 40s, still feeling like crud, the weight was not coming off, hot flashes had begun and I pressed my gynecologist to test my hormones. The lab results showed I was clearly well into menopause and my doctor prescribed Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) but it just made me feel worse.

The Answer Comes

Over the years, I was involved with a great group of ladies that met every Thursday for Bible Study. I think they finally became tired of me always complaining about how awful I felt.  I was never so fat and just was really feeling the effects of menopause.

One of the ladies suggested I try changing the way I eat. She and her husband had taken Erin’s nutrition class and people had been known to feel 10 times better and even been cured from disease just by changing their diet.

Positive Changes Come Quickly!

I went to Erin’s class in July of 2011 with my husband and we immediately started the recommended elimination diet on July 31st.

We jumped in with both feet and followed the recommendations including trying the Green Smoothies, which to our surprise, are really very tasty.

My husband lost 10 lbs the first week (which isn’t typical) and I lost 4 pounds.  This was enough to encourage us to continue with our new way of eating.  We followed the plan as Erin outlined in the class and cooked most of the recipes she provided in class.

Getting Through The Detox and Withdrawal Period

The first week my husband complained of headaches most likely due to caffeine withdrawal.

Erin was extremely helpful with suggestions for supplements and told my husband to try Dandy Blend which is a beverage made from dandelion root. Again, to our surprise, it was rather good and tasted very much like coffee.

She recommended that we supplement with Cod Liver Oil and which brand to buy. Keeping an open mind, we did everything she told us (well, mostly!).

In Four Months We Lost 60 Pounds as a Couple!

By November, I had lost 20 pounds and 5 inches from my waist and my husband lost 40 pounds.  My energy had increased so I added in some vigorous exercise and I was now sleeping better than I had in years, sometimes even through the entire night. I no longer get headaches every day, my fogginess is gone, and my memory and focus continue to improve with the extra help of some supplements.

Even My Lab Work Greatly Improved

Before taking Erin’s class my blood work was worrisome. My HDL (good) cholesterol was low (37) and my LDL (bad) cholesterol was high (102).  My doctor told me she was going to have to put me on medication if this didn’t improve.

My Doctor Was Dumbfounded

When I went back to see the doctor 6 months later she commented on my weight loss and asked me what I was doing. I told her about Erin’s class and how I had changed my diet.

I told her I was eating eggs for breakfast almost every morning and she had great concern that this would be bad for my cholesterol.

I told her I was eating organic butter, unrefined coconut oil by the tablespoons and cod liver oil.

My doctor was cringing.

When the results came back, to her amazement, my numbers had improved significantly. 

My HDL was a heart-protective 49 — up from 37. My LDL was 94 down from 102 and my triglycerides were and amazing 39.

Woo, hoo, no medications for me!!

I’m Amazed!

I am amazed at the difference eating whole foods has made in my life and am so grateful I decided to take Erin’s class.  I still struggle with sugar, but I am so aware of how my body reacts when I put sugar and processed garbage into it. I am not at my weight loss goal yet, but currently am taking Erin’s advanced class to stay on track.

I am not saying it’s easy, but if you put your mind to it and follow what Erin has outlined in her book, you too will be amazed.  What do you have to lose, but weight and bad health? – Dawn

No more excuses!

It is time to take some action and improve your health! 

The Real Food Revivalist!