My First Post - Change of Direction

(Mary) #1

I am 61 yo, 5’3”, current weight 134, thanks to Keto.

In 2014, I weighed 185 lbs., due mainly to overwhelming self-pity and grief at the loss of my only child. My son was only 27 yo.

I started with the oldest version of Weight Watchers and running every day in lieu of antidepressants. It’s amazing what physical exercise can do for your mental health. I lost 65 pounds from 2014 to 2019.

Covid hit and I gained back 30 pounds.:rage:

I went back to my plan and lost 10 pounds with exercise, both walking and weight training 4-6 days a week. I currently cannot run anymore and will get to that in a minute. My weight stalled at 140 pounds for 4 to 6 months. Very frustrating!

I suffer with GERD and have since the early 2000’s.

In last two years, I developed a hiatal hernia making any alcohol consumption a nasty game of invisible ice pick to the diaphragm.

I developed an erosion in my right foot, third metatarsal bone, making it impossible to walk most days, much less run. I was in pain for over two years. Medical professionals don’t know what it is and want to cut it open to see/clean it out. They tried to do a biopsy of the “growth.” One hour of needles inside my upper foot with complete failure to retrieve any tissue. The only thing their biopsy resulted in was extremely sore foot, bleeding and worse pain. The only shoes I am able to wear in order to be able to walk, with less pain, are Oofos. Not pretty but I can get from point A to point B and do some walking on a treadmill. I decided against letting them cut it open. If they don’t know what it is, I refuse to be their guinea pig. I’m not taking that one for the team.

I went in for my annual physical and my bloodwork showed A1c levels elevated. Pre-diabetic.

My ALT, AST and monocyte numbers were also elevated, which indicates possible nonalcoholic fatty liver disease or other liver issues. An ultrasound of my liver showed nothing.

Fatigue started settling in making it impossible to workout. I am also on Armour thyroid for hypothyroidism. I have extreme caffeine intolerance which caused major bouts of rage, mostly at my poor husband. So I stopped eating/drinking almost all forms of caffeine. I started to feel like my sixties are going to be the last decade of my life and I’m slowly falling apart and dying. What a drama queen!

End of March, 2022, I decided to try keto after failing on Atkins 20 years ago. Why not? Nothing else is working and I desperately want to lose some weight! Ha! In addition to my new “diet,” I started doing one ounce shots, on an empty stomach, of Bragg raw-unfiltered apple cider vinegar first thing in the morning. Cringe! I pulled out my Google PhD and read this might help the hernia.

For my kidneys and liver, due to the elevated liver numbers and the fact that (TMI coming) my poo was pale in color and has been for a while, I started drinking dandelion tea. My Google PhD informed me that light-colored poo is not a good thing.

A few days in I get horrendous keto flu in spite of Ultima electrolyte consumption 3-4 times daily and massive water intake. I ended up in urgent care, terrified I was killing myself. I was fatigued to the point of exhaustion just trying to walk a few steps. I almost fainted trying to get to my hotel room from the elevator. I had the classic headache and nausea. After reading all of the articles online about keto flu, I knew this had to be something much worse. I did have every symptom but they were all to the extreme.

My urgent care visit showed all vitals were normal. Whew!

A day later, my bloodwork came back and showed ALL numbers at normal range. ALT, AST, thyroid, liver enzymes. WHAAAAAT?

Foot pain is gradually starting to subside too. I lost five pounds the first week on keto, just water weight I’m sure. But this put me back at a normal weight if you’re looking at worthless BMI calculator numbers.

I’m past four weeks now and I lost another pound. This may be due to the (TMI coming) liquid poo and horrendous cramping after having a large steak for my husband’s birthday the day before. Couldn’t get out of bed all day but tried to stay hydrated with electrolytes.

The next day, I was well enough to get out of bed and choke down the vinegar which felt like I was melting my insides with pure acid. Just horrible stuff. Double cringe! I had light lower intestinal pain for most of the day but as the day progressed, my health returned to normal.

I don’t know what’s happening to the hernia but the GERD is at a minimum without pharmaceutical drugs. My Gastro doctor had me on omeprazole and said I may have to be on it indefinitely. Ha! I stopped taking it a couple of months ago. I hate pharmaceutical drugs. I am going to try to get off of my Armour thyroid too. I read Brazil nuts may get my thyroid levels back to normal. It’s worth a shot.

So, my take away, thus far, is I’m going to stick with it. Yes, I feel like my body is still detoxing after four weeks. Too tired to workout some days and horribly ill others.


GERD has improved.
No signs of hernia, so far.
Bloodwork is normal.
Could the metatarsal bone in my foot be healing? No pain! Zero! I almost feel like I could start running again but I’m going to give it another few weeks and maybe another x-ray first.

I can drink coffee and have a wonderful sense of well-being while doing so. I have been able to go back to weight training and walking for an hour on the treadmill. I am so much nicer, even in the morning. Hubby is happy.

Yes, the weight loss is slow but it is still a loss and I will take it. Bottom line is my health is first. Keto changed my priorities. It’s not about being skinny, although, weight loss is a wonderful side benefit of getting healthy.

I’m no longer starving to death and my sweet cravings are starting to diminish. I still have dessert after dinner but it is all keto friendly and I make it myself. Cheesecake and brownies. Someday I will be rid of those too. I can’t believe I get to eat all of this wonderful stuff, I feel amazing (most days), I’m satiated and I’m not gaining weight.

I don’t miss pasta because I didn’t eat it on Weight Watchers. I only slightly miss bread but have found some decent substitutes and I only eat that once or twice a week. I do miss potatoes but not to the point where I want to cheat. The benefits, so far, are too good to ruin it. I love zucchini spirals with lots of butter, cauliflower rice and broccoli with cheese. I do a tablespoon of MCT oil which many people cannot tolerate but it works for me. I love heavy whipping cream in my coffee and fat bombs of just almond butter and cream cheese. I am going to switch my fat bomb to sunflower seed butter and some other stuff for my morning pre-workout once I get home. Been out of town for eight weeks. There is no excuse not to do this wherever you are. I drink cashew milk in the morning to try to help with calcium deficiencies. At my age I need 1200 mg, or so I’ve read.

I apologize for the long post and my poor writing skills (everything is all over the place) but caffeine makes me chatty. Lol! Any tips and/or questions are welcome. Thank you all so much for this forum. You are all amazing and I appreciate you. Best of luck to everybody. Health first and the weight loss will follow.

(Robin) #2

Hi Mary, and welcome! So glad you are giving this a go. I also suffered from gert and acid reflux and a painful hiatal hernia for years.
Staying strict keto took away all of that and more. My arthritis perhaps still exists in theory, but not in how I feel and pain-free mobility. My inflammation in recent lab works shows as #1, with the range of 0-30. That’s a big win. And my diverticulitis hasn’t flared since I eliminated certain foods.
Be patient. Stay under 20 g of total carbs a day. Easy peasy. You should lose your cravings soon. Along the way, your body will stat telling you any specific foods that should be eliminated.
And besides the healthier weight, you will feel so much better.
Good luck.
You got this!

(Joey) #3

@Grandma Wow! What a journey you’ve been on over the years. Your perseverance and self-discipline are truly inspiring. As you’ve benefited from reading threads on this forum, you’re now paying it forward by telling us about your own experiences and results.

Thank you for sharing. :vulcan_salute:


Hi Mary! :wave:
Thanks for sharing, and I wish you every success :smiley:

(Alec) #5

THIS. A thousand times over.

If you want to be healthy over the long term eat lots of good keto foods (I prefer meat) and don’t starve yourself. Eat to satiety. I reckon many of your ailments will improve if you really cut back on plants and focus on meat and dairy. Plants are toxic to many people.

(Pete A) #6

Beautiful story.

(Bob M) #7

Very nice story.

If you do miss things like pasta, there are some substitutes. We just make “bolognese”, which is just pork sausage and ground beef, with low-carb tomato sauce (usually Rao’s, but some other sauces work too). I like sliced kalamata olives and anchovies too, but the family doesn’t, so I take some and add these. Then parmesan or pecorino romano (which I like better, and it’s an A2 cheese), and for me, I don’t need any pasta or pasta substitute.

There are some good lasagna recipes too.

Bread is the hardest thing to replace, but I never ate much bread anyway. Do like something to pick up a sandwich or burgers though.

(Mary) #8


Thank you, Robin. I really appreciate the encouragement.

(Mary) #9


Thank you, Joey. I really appreciate you all so much.

(Mary) #10

@Alecmcq - Thank you for the tip. I believe that to be true just because I am feeling so much healing taking place. Even the keto flu symptoms are feeling more like detox instead of sick, if that makes any sense. Like some really bad stuff is leaving my body and kicking and screaming on its way out.:grin:

(Mary) #11

@ctviggen - Thank you, Bob. I also really like kalamata olives and love anchovies. Great tips.

(Alec) #12

That sounds good. Make sure to give yourself time. Don’t be in a rush.