From Frustration to Accidental Health
Have you ever been so frustrated you stop eating?
It was right towards the end of winter when we visited Breckenridge for a weekend we have been anticipating for months. It was the beginning of March, and some might even consider that the very beginning of spring – but certainly no one could make that claim out here in Colorado. The winter weather presses on long into normal “spring” time. It was cold – it was snowy – it was windy. But, oh man, was it a grand old time. What were we doing out there? Glad you asked.
We were up in the mountains for the annual Low Carb Breckenridge conference. This is where many of the brightest minds in the world of health gather to talk about their research. It is truly an overwhelming feeling to be in the presence of such masters of science. They decided to break the mold and challenge the status quo. Rather than listening to anyone tell them what to think, they find it out for themselves through unbiased research. They are heroes.
We are talking people like: Steve Phinney, Andrew Mente, Nina Teicholz, Ben Bickman, Robb Wolf, Sarah Hallberg, Ivor Cummins, Dave Feldman, Andreas Eenfeldt, Jeff Gerber, and so many others. We wish you could have been there to hear their presentations. They are simply magnificent.
But the speakers were not the only amazing part about the conference. There was one audience member who really stood out to us. His story brought tears to our eyes. Wow, what a blessing low carb is.
The Beginning Frustration
The first night of the conference they had a meet and greet to kick things off. That is where we met Dr. Ramon Issa. He is a family practice doctor operating out of southern California. He attended the conference not as a doctor but as a normal Joe trying to figure out the world of human health. Dr. Issa was there with open ears to learn. That was his only motivation. How did he stumble upon this magnificent conference?
Yep, through frustration and hopelessness he eventually fell through the wardrobe. When we was in med school, he gained a lot of weight, and it would come and go with the seasons. However, it never really went “down” in the sense of it being a normal weight for his structure. No matter how hard he tried to lose the weight nothing would work.
Through the years he eventually developed insulin resistance and the metabolic syndrome. He was getting larger, yes, but more importantly he felt like he was out of control. How could he manage anything in his life if he couldn’t manage his own body? He had done some mild research on the different ways people lose weight, but nothing struck a chord with him. Ramon reverted to his common sense.
He was operating out of the old “calories in, calories out” model. He figured if he ate less than he expunged through exercise that it must make him lose weight. After all, that makes sense in the world of physics, right? If you take water out of a bucket faster than you replenish its supply, then you will have a smaller amount of water in the bucket as time goes on.
While that is true, he quickly realized the human body is a bit more complex than a bucket of water. He was not loosing weight despite eating less and exercising more. His insulin sensitivity was going down along with his motivation to get better. It seemed as if he was at the end of the road. There were so many conflicting things online that he didn’t know what to do – and apparently his own common sense couldn’t save him..
Could imagine trying so many different things yet nothing works? I am sure you can! We all have struggles like that. It’s how we deal with it that defines our success.
However, Dr. Issa took a very interesting route to say the least. He got so frustrated at the conflicting information and at himself that he literally stopped eating. He said, “Nope. I’m done eating until I can figure out exactly what the heck is going on.” Without realizing it, he was doing one of the healthiest things for his body: intermittent fasting.
He seriously decided that he was not going to eat until he got to the bottom of proper nutrition. He spent all of his time diving into deeper and deeper research – more than he had ever done at the beginning. We are not talking about quick blog searches. We are talking about true scientific research, the kind we promote here. Nothing beats true, raw, and unbiased scientific literature. He was going deep.
This lasted 4 entire days! 4 days of not eating when he was used to eating 3 meals a day with snacks in between (all carb-loaded, mind you) is a pretty tall task. But he was persistent on not eating until he knew. He kept pushing and pushing through the pain and the hunger.
But eventually he found out that his body does not need any carbs to function. Zero. In his mind, that was a giant relief because that meant he could continue starving for quite some time without dying. “I was like, phew, I don’t ever need to eat carbs? Good because I don’t want to die before I find out what to eat.” He was on his way to understanding the truth.
This was a few days into his “fast”, so you can imagine that he was getting into some ketosis. Do you remember what happens after a few days of ketosis?
He describes what happens next as a miracle from God, and I don’t think he is too far off. He woke up on the 4th day of his frustration fast with more energy than he has ever had in his entire life! It was unbelievable. Without eating anything for 4 days, he was able to gain more energy than he had when he was a teenager. Can you believe that??
His body had finally kicked into gear. He knew what ever “this” was was the way he wanted to live for the rest of his life. After doing more and more research, he found out what was happening – not from a dietary point of view, but from a starvation point of view. He was going into ketosis and using his fat for fuel.
He soon found that there is an entire diet revolved around continually being in this metabolic state. That is the moment he found the ketogenic diet. The rest is history.
He lost 94 pounds in 100 days. His insulin sensitivity increased, and his metabolic syndrome went away. He is no longer depressed about his lack of control on his body. Dr. Issa no longer is a slave to the lies of nutrition and lives freely among the saved. His story makes us tear up every time we think of it.
Dr. Ramon Issa cured himself by accident. What a story. (Oh, and they happened to get him on stage because it was such an amazing story. Check out the video below! You can really see the transformation by comparing his older stock photo to his appearance in this video. It is truly a miracle.)