We are sisters and we spend a lot of time together, including a lot of eating. We’ve both been heavy since we were teens. Between the two of us, we’ve tried every diet out there, but other than regularly yoyoing, we’ve never had any true success at losing the weight and getting healthy. In the past, we each weighed 225 pounds and we were wearing 2X clothes, struggling with everyday activities and low self-esteem. We’ve both suffered from planter fasciitis. Karen needed surgery for hers, and we both had gestational diabetes. I currently have type 2 diabetes. Since starting the VLCD, my A1C number has shown significant improvement.
We were at book club together, eating lots of unhealthy treats. Karen mentioned to our fellow book club member Sara, that she was looking great. That’s when she shared her Enara story with us. We decided, that day, to give it a try.
Karen started her VLCD just before Thanksgiving and I started just after. Some of our friends and family thought it was a little crazy to start this program around the holidays, but for us it made sense. This program was like nothing we had ever tried before. There are so many different aspects of the program that work together to create success including:
- Journaling of meals by picture taking. I know that journaling is important in any weight loss program, but writing everything down in a journal or entering information in an app was never sustainable. It’s so much easier to just snap pictures of everything.
- Immediate accountability. Knowing that your food pictures and your daily weigh-ins (on the scale provided) are frequently viewed by your assigned dietitian.
- Working with an assigned dietitian and physician’s assistant. Karen worked with Dana, and I worked with Danielle, and we both think we have the best dietitian! They both provide a lot of feedback and have been very supportive during our journey. Danielle has helped me prepare for lots of special occasion dinners and business trips where she would either find a suitable restaurant and/or make suggestions from menus. Regular meetings with Leticia (the PA) help keep us on track and address any medical concerns.
- Working with Vince. He made us realize how important strength training was and as a result we were able to minimize our muscle loss.
- The app. It provides great information and motivation on a daily basis that helps keep us focused on the program and adds great information / education on health and wellness. We are both technically challenged, but find the app to be very user friendly. It’s also easy to see your progress and check in with anyone from the team when you have a question.
- The classes. We have gone to almost every class available and have enjoyed them all. The grains class was very informative and delicious, and the Trader Joe’s tour was fun and practical. There’s something for everyone. Mayble is great!
- Structure. It was great to have some very set rules such as; 1) Three meals a day with no snacking, 2) No alcohol, 3) No refined sugar, 4) only ½ a banana or ½ cup of berries per day for fruit
- Flexibility. Within the set structure there was also a lot of flexibility. We could eat pretty much any protein we chose, adjusting the portion size for fattier meats. The VLCD guide and the blog provided lots of delicious recipes allowing us to change things up and stay on plan
- Eating out. We eat out together a lot, and the VLCD eating out guide gave us several local options that we’ve enjoyed. Our favorite is the Tuscan Chicken on the Skinnylicious Menu at Cheesecake Factory which we split. We never thought we would split a menu item and be so satisfied. (Yummmm!)
We are so grateful to Dr. Bailony for creating this program. Karen has lost 45 pounds and I’ve lost 43. We both found it to be the easiest and most successful program by far that we’ve ever tried, and our husbands are thrilled with our success. Karen has completed her VLCD program and I’m almost done. We look forward to continuing to work with the great team at Enara as we move into the maintenance phase. We never thought we’d be able to lose this amount of weight in our 50’s. We are both retiring in June and are excited to retire at our new healthy weights, with loads of energy that we haven’t had for a long time.
Karen and Diane’s Weight Loss:
Karen and Diane’s Hemoglobin A1c:
- Hemoglobin A1c measures the percentage of your blood hemoglobin that is coated with glucose (sugar). This test reflects your average blood sugar level for the past 2-3 months.
- A level less than 5.7 is normal, and a level between 5.7 and 6.4 indicates pre-diabetes. A Hg A1c level of 6.5 percent or higher indicates Type 2 Diabetes