Quote of the week: “Thank you! You have touched 4 people in a household in a small town in Massachusetts.”
One week ago, Dr. Brian Hurley and 18 of his teammates at the Gardner Animal Care Center launched a seven-week 4Leaf Challenge. My son Jason, his wife Lisa and I attended the evening dinner event at the clinic and met the entire team. After a very healthy 4Leaf dinner (by Lisa Hicks) Dr. Hurley started the program.
He started out by telling them how he began his own 4Leaf journey during Thanksgiving of 2010. He recalled how Jason had stressed vibrant health over weight-loss from the beginning, but admitted that it was really the weight-loss that he was seeking.
Saying goodbye to gout and kidney stones. But after a few months of daily reinforcement of the vibrant health goal from his 4Leaf coach, he began to understand. Last Tuesday night he told the group about how he effortlessly blew past his original target weight of 185 and continued to lose another 24 pounds to the svelte 161 pounds that he is today. But that’s not the real story; let me tell you about what he posted last week under the recent blog dealing with gout.
After a routine physical in March of 2011, his doctor told him that his uric acid was high at 8.9. As Brian recalls….
He explained the risk of gout and thought this may have been the cause of my reoccurring kidney stones (once every 2 to 3 years). He felt it was important to drive the uric acid levels down and prescribed allopurinol once daily. He also wanted me to add Vitamin B-12 to my daily regimen. I was told to go have my blood checked again in September of 2011.
So Brian started taking the drug but forgot to get his prescription re-filled. Then, just last month, after one year on 4Leaf, he went back to doctor for blood work after being off the allopurinol for several months….here’s the rare happy ending to this common story of gout and kidney stones. Brian writes…
After visiting the doctor, he called me a few days later to inform me that my blood work looked great and the allopurinol was doing it’s job. My uric acid had decreased from 8.9 to 5.1 (Lab preference range 5.0 to 8.0). I did not have the heart to tell him I had stopped the allopurinol back in September. I asked him if I could stop the allopurinol and his response was, “Well, it is a low dose, you take it once a day, and you are tolerating it so I would continue taking it.”
NOT. Sadly, as with so many diseases, our medical community readily prescribes drugs that we are expected to take for the rest of our life. But, as with heart disease and type 2 diabetes, apparently gout and kidney stones are totally reversible. It’s not about “managing” our diseases as the ubiquitous commercials imply, it’s about getting rid of them.
The moral of this story is “Just Say No to Gout.”
Back to the 4Leaf Challenge. Since our January 3 loss, one member of the group posted a very enthusiastic comment under my blog entitled Widespread 4Leaf Transition. It’s going to take some time.
Eating 4-Leaf and loving it. Only 4.5 days in, and my body is going through the adjustments to this new diet physically. Let’s just say it is cleansing itself. Mentally I can’t believe how much food I am eating. I am eating more now than when on my previous Westerner diet, and I feel better, and though I haven’t gotten on the scale, I know I am either maintaining my current weight or have lost some.
On the Westerner diet, I was already eating oatmeal every morning, but the packaged weight control oatmeal, I’ve now switched to making it myself from scratch. And I was eating salads for lunch every day. Then I would have to skip dinner or have cereal or salad again in order to maintain my current weight. Now I am eating constantly and full all the time and starting my way toward my body finding it’s ideal weight and it is very exciting.
My children 11, and 17, are so excited with all the fruits I brought home last night from the grocery store and joined in eating the 4-Leaf oatmeal with me this morning.
Thank you for doing this program at the GACC. You have touched 4 people in a household in a small town in Massachusetts. I’m not sure the level the other 3 will follow in the long run in the 4-Leaf program, but I’m in “whole hog” or should I say “whole bean”. Going to give this a good go and I’m suspecting my habits will rub off on them. Going “whole-bean”, Gayle.
You can read Gayle’s complete post at the blog post referenced above. Stay tuned for more reports on this exciting 4Leaf Challenge. Different members of the team are bringing enough 4Leaf food for everyone each day of the work week and they’re all having lunch together.
The more challenging part of this adventure are the meals consumed at home in the evenings and on the weekend. But with enough support from their co-workers and their boss at work, we are confident that this team is going to be very successful.
Measuring results. In an effort to reinforce our emphasis on vibrant health vs. weight-loss, we are recording three sets of confidential improvement numbers:
- Before and after blood pressure numbers
- Before and after total cholesterol numbers
- Before and after BMI
From the above, we will be able to compute the percent improvement in each category for the entire group. Then we’ll average the three together for the composite health improvement percentage for the group. And it is that number that we will compare to future groups. And there will be many.
Stay Tuned for Further Updates.
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And if you like what 4-Leaf eating is doing for you and your family, you might enjoy visiting our new “4-Leaf Gear” store. From the seaside village of Stonington, Connecticut – Be well and have a great day.
—J. Morris Hicks…blogging daily at HealthyEatingHealthyWorld.com
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