Curious about HCG? Doing the protocol yourself? Read about my experiences here.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Surviving the Holidays...Without Gaining a Gazillion Pounds

      3 Hour Workshop Offered in Tucson, AZ

Discover ways to enjoy the holidays without gaining tons of weight.

Learn tips to eliminate emotional eating.

3 hour workshop with Meryl Hershey Beck, MA, M.Ed., LPCC, author of the upcoming book FREEDOM FROM EMOTIONAL EATING: 21 Days to a New You!

9 AM – Noon
Location: Wellness First!
3861 N 1st Ave
Tucson, AZ 85719

Interested? Let Meryl know if you can attend on Saturday December 11th and/or Saturday December 18th

Contact Meryl at MBeck333@mac.com  

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Addictive Personality

OK. I admit it. I have an addictive personality. In the “old days” (before 1980), once I started eating I could not stop…..unless someone was watching me. With other people, I was the eternal dieter—never eating anything fattening in public. Alone, however, was a different story, where I turned to food (my best friend) for comfort, especially the 3 Cs—candy, cookies, and chips.

My compulsive overeating started at a young age. As young children, we make up stories in our own heads to try to get a handle on our reality. The story I constructed was that I wasn’t enough, that I was defective, that I was broken. Feeling lots of guilt and shame, and unable to share my feelings with anyone, I early on found solace in food.

I often surprised myself with how much I could consume. As a child I was a sneak eater, and only ate huge quantities when alone.  My voracious appetite continued. As an adult, for instance, I liked to cook a combination of sautéed onions, zucchini, and tomatoes. It tasted yummy. Time after time, however, I’d add a portion to my meal, then have second, third, and fourth helpings….finally finishing whatever was left in the pan. Stuffing myself in this way brought on lots of stomachaches, and Pepto Bismal was my salvation. After gorging, I’d curl up in a fetal position, chew a few of those pink tablets, and wait for the pain to subside.  After the pain was gone, I’d uncurl my body, stand up and head straight for the kitchen -- to see what else I could eat.

I didn’t just binge on “healthy” food.  For example, there was my milk and Oreo cookie eating orgy: I poured myself a glass of milk (skim, of course) and set out four Oreo cookies – they complement each other so well, how can you have milk without Oreos or Oreos without milk? And that’s where I got into trouble. I drank the milk and ate the cookies. With milk remaining in the glass, I helped myself to another three cookies. I ate one, drank the milk. One cookie left and no milk, so I poured more milk. I washed down the remaining cookie with the milk, but now I was out of cookies with milk still in the glass. So I did the only thing I could think of – I took out another few cookies. Again, I gobbled up the cookies and slurped down the milk, and once again, a lone cookie or two sat next to an empty glass. This saga continued: milk remained, have more cookies; cookies remained, have more milk. This was repeated over and over again, ad nauseum, until either the package of cookies or the milk carton was empty.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Announcing Tucson HCG Meetup Group

Monday October 25, 2010
   7 – 8 pm

Dr. DeeAnn Saber, NMD will be speaking about the HCG protocol and how you can lose weight permanently. This is a medically supervised program that she has had personal and professional experience with.
Coaches Meryl Hershey Beck and Robin Trainor Masci will give an overview of the challenges of emotional eating and some suggestions to overcome it.

Wellness First!  3861 North First Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85719
One block south of Roger Road on the west side of 1st Avenue
Look for the RED mailbox

Suggested donation $2 (to cover cost of room rental)
Please bring your own chair 

Friday, October 8, 2010

ROUND 2…and away we go!

I decided to go back onto the HCG to shed another ten pounds or so. This time I am using the RX version, prescribed by my naturopath and purchased at the local compounding pharmacy. I was curious to see if I would notice any differences between this and the homeopathic HCG.

Pounds and Inches, which is Dr. Simeons’ manuscript and details the whole protocol, tells us to gorge for the first two days of taking the drops. That’s scary for some folks, wondering if they start eating high fat and carbs, will they be able to stop. In his manuscript, Dr. Simeons addresses that concern: "Most patients who have been struggling with diets for years and know how rapidly they gain if they let themselves go are very hard to convince of the absolute necessity of gorging for at least two days, and yet this must he insisted upon categorically if the further course of treatment is to run smoothly."

 I chose mostly healthy fats rather than just sugary treats – eggs with cheese fried in butter; a milkshake made with full fat coconut milk, ice cream, and macadamia nuts; fried turkey (esp. the skin); eggplant parmesan; full fat Greek yogurt; rib steak; butter pecan ice cream.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Set Point Theory

In 1982 a group of nutrition researchers introduced the SET POINT THEORY to explain why so many people who lose weight gain it back. The premise is that in adulthood the body wants to maintain a constant level of body fat and has a built in weight regulating mechanism.  The theory says that an individual’s body has a “set point” of weight at which if is most comfortable and functions best. Furthermore, according to this theory, the body’s metabolism adjusts to stay at that weight and is largely determined by genetics. 

Many disagree with this theory, saying it gives the obese person an excuse to stay fat. Some researches say that the set point is psychological. Others believe that the set point is physiological and depends on the activity of the hypothalamus (a hormone-secreting gland that controls appetite and metabolism).

The set-point theory is, at best, a theory and not agreed upon by all.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


 Now that I am on P3 (Phase 3, maintenance), I decided to return to Curves Gym after a several month hiatus, and decided to get weighed and measured. I was thrilled with the new measurements. Compared to my original measurements from 7 years ago:
Total weight loss: 42.4 lbs
            Total inches lost: 32.25  (7 inch loss from hips; 5.5 from abdomen, 4 from each thigh, etc.)
Total body fat lost: 7.8% = 28.63 lbs. WAHOO!

I was introduced to Curves (Fitness Center for Women) in 2003.  My sister, who lives in Boston, kept telling me to go visit it and I said, “OK” but never went. When my sister came to visit me here in Tucson, she dragged me to Curves to show me what it was like. She said, “It’s a little dorky, but it’s fun!” I saw that it was set up in a circle with machines alternating with square pads (recovery stations)…. and, the best part -- they were playing groovy music. After trying it out, I became a member and, for the first time in my life, not only loved working out but consistently did it three times a week (and found a Curves gym whenever I went out of town to not miss a workout). 

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Skinny on Low Fat Nonsense!

I stayed away from fats for years, believing that butter, avocados, nuts, olive oil were too fattening. What a new day this is for me doing Phase 3 maintenance (no sugar or starches), eating 1500-1800 calories and including good fats! Butter, avocados, coconut oil, macadamia nuts…..what a change for me. For many years I was duped into believing that to lose weight I needed to consume reduced fat foods. For a while, I chose very low-fat foods but doing so did not reduce the fat on my body!

Now I carefully read labels, avoiding sugar, starch, and low fat! And finding foods that are not reduced fat is much trickier than I had expected. The food industry believes they are doing us (the consumer) a service by providing us with low-fat food….and often they reduce the fat and add corn syrup (yuck!).

Today, for instance, shopping at my friendly Trader Joe’s, I wanted to get some plain organic yogurt. I picked up one container, it was low fat; then another, and it was nonfat. Isn’t it strange that we (as a nation) are consuming more and more low fat and no fat products, yet we are getting fatter and fatter? These fat free products have not eliminated the obesity epidemic; in fact, these products are probably adding rather than subtracting weight to our bodies. And people are fooled into believing they are choosing healthy foods because they are labeled reduced fat! Now they even have fat fat Oreos and Pringles! Healthy? Ha, give me a break!

Several years ago Gary Taubes wrote an eye-opening article for the New York Times -- “What if It's All Been a Big Fat Lie?” (Thank you HcgDieters@yahoogroups.com, for mentioning this!) Although the article is 8 years old, it is fascinating reading and quite pertinent and gives the history of our low-fat diet mentality. I agree with the author that it is carbohydrates that make us fat (especially the starches that most people think they must include in every meal according to our silly food pyramid!).

You can read the entire article at http://www.nytimes.com/2002/07/07/magazine/what-if-it-s-all-been-a-big-fat-lie.html

                    Here are some excerpts:

What's forgotten in the current controversy is that the low-fat dogma itself is only about 25 years old. Until the late 70's, the accepted wisdom was that fat and protein protected against overeating by making you sated, and that carbohydrates made you fat. In ''The Physiology of Taste,'' for instance, an 1825 discourse considered among the most famous books ever written about food, the French gastronome Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin says that he could easily identify the causes of obesity after 30 years of listening to one ''stout party'' after another proclaiming the joys of bread, rice and (from a ''particularly stout party'') potatoes. Brillat-Savarin described the roots of obesity as a natural predisposition conjuncted with the ''floury and feculent substances which man makes the prime ingredients of his daily nourishment.'' He added that the effects of this fecula -- i.e., ''potatoes, grain or any kind of flour'' -- were seen sooner when sugar was added to the diet....

By the 70's, you could still find articles in the journals describing high rates of obesity in Africa and the Caribbean where diets contained almost exclusively carbohydrates.