|Total Weight Loss:||100|
Finding Her Healthy Self
Eugenia, a 47 year old working mother of 3, had spent over 10 years taking care of others. Always being there for her ailing mother and grandparents and the stress that accompanied that kind of responsibility meant much of the time she was neglecting her own needs and not taking care of herself. At 5'4" tall and 275 pounds, Eugenia's health began to suffer. "My blood pressure was way too high and I was having constant headaches," she says.
One day at church, Eugenia got a bit of a wake-up call. "I saw a few people walking by who weren't much older than I was and weren't much bigger than I was, but they needed a cane just to be able to walk. Right then I thought, 'I can't do this anymore. I want to get this weight off before I'm 50. I talked it over with my husband and he was a great support - he wanted to help me succeed with this goal.'"
Soon after her revelation, Eugenia received a letter about Kaiser's Medical Weight Management program in the mail and decided, "This is something I need to do for myself." She started the weight loss program in Oakland, CA, in January 2008 and at first she wasn't quite sure about the liquid diet phase of the program. "After 3 days, my stomach was growling, but I stuck with it and lost almost 10 pounds that first week."
By the third week, Eugenia knew she could do it. Blending ice and adding flavorings to her shakes made them more refreshing and the vitamin supplements she took helped her feel healthy and energized. She also added time for exercise by making the most of her breaks at work and incorporating exercise walks every chance she got.
Eugenia's favorite part of the program was her support group. She says, "All of us did really well and we supported each other." Eugenia laughs, "We decided that we didn't want to be called a 'weight loss group' because we didn't want to find that weight again. We called ourselves a 'weight release group!'"
Adding Meals, Losing More Weight
At week 17, Eugenia and her "release group" entered the transition phase, where meals were slowly added in. Eugenia recalls, "It was scary for me, because I wanted to continue to lose weight fast." Still, she couldn't wait to eat some fresh fruits and vegetables. She remembers, "I had this apple and I was in heaven. Everything tasted so good." During this phase her weight loss continued at a steady pace - 2 to 3 pounds per week.
Now at 180 pounds, Eugenia is in the maintenance phase of the program, but she's still losing weight, with the goal of dropping another 45 pounds. She is extremely appreciative of the support she's received from her husband and the weight loss group members.
Already she's reaping the rewards of her 92-pound loss. "My blood pressure is stable at a more normal level and I no longer need to take medication to manage it. I rode on a plane recently and was pleasantly surprised by all the room I had. Another little person could have sat by me!"
Eugenia has become an advocate for the program, sharing her results and inspiring other weight loss group participants. "I brought a 'before' picture of myself to one recent meeting, and people had to ask, 'Which one is you?' With the medical supervision and group support, this is a program I think can work for almost anyone who is serious about improving their health. I hope when someone sees this story, they think, 'I can do this too!'"
Note: Individual results may vary, and this patient's results are not typical. Average weight loss in the Medical Weight Management Program is 46.6 pounds. Attend a free information session to learn more about the program.