Describe your health journey before Veri
For most of my adult life, since my mid-20s I’ve struggled through every diet, and food plan, including counting everything from calories, macros, and points. Throughout childhood and college, I never really had a weight problem. The weight gain started to happen when I started working in an office environment all day. I don’t think that is uncommon. It is a big adjustment. When I was young, I had sports and was active, and all my jobs through high school and college were in customer service/retail/food industry so I was constantly moving around through all of my shifts. I never sat down. Then after college…..office life.
So, then it began, the endless diets. You name it. I’ve tried it: Weight Watchers, Atkins, Scarsdale, South Beach, medical interventions, prescriptions, keto, name any diet, I have done it all. Even the water, mixed with cayenne pepper, lemon, and honey diet, is literally all you consumed, for up to 40 days!
I was constantly counting and weighing food, and it made me obsess about food and hunger, and most diets were low-fat, high-carb, and low-calorie. My body does not jive with that. I would often lose weight in the short term, but I would always gain it back. Often more weight than when I started, I yo-yo over the years to nearly 150lbs higher before I started cycling diet trends.
And you feel like an absolute failure each time you can’t stick to it or get to your goal weight to just gain the weight back, with bonus weight on top of it. I have had 20+ years of this feeling of failure and blamed myself. It really does a number on your self-esteem. And having been slim through my formative years and the few times I got to goal weight on the endless diet parade you are 100% treated differently and sometimes miss opportunities socially or careerwise when you are obese. Most people will deny it, they don’t know they are doing it, it is so subtle yet pervasive. There are now more studies to back this up, for example, women that are obese make less money and have fewer promotions than average-weight women.
What made you seek out a solution like Veri?
I read Dr. Fung’s Obesity Code a couple of years ago and ended up on a Dr. Fung Facebook group discussing CGMs as a way to help reverse insulin resistance. I knew there was a connection between insulin resistance and weight gain for me, so I thought a CGM could help me. I was already experimenting with intermittent fasting and time-restricted eating, but I needed to learn more about what was right for my body when choosing foods. A CGM has that data.
I learned that having a blood sugar level that wildly swings up and down can cause hunger. But, I had no idea if that was happening to me without finger pricking throughout the day or using a CGM. I CGM made way more sense to me. I hoped having the feedback of a CGM would give me the data I needed to level out my blood sugar and free me from the constant prison of being hungry and dieting, and it did!
I needed a tool that could actually show me how to use food to balance my glucose and insulin levels. I didn’t want coaching or dietary advice. I wanted to start my own experiments and learn from my body.
After doing some research, I found Veri was the most affordable CGM-integrated app that met my needs - which was not only seeing my glucose but getting some meaning from the data.
I also didn’t want to be on the hook for a year-long membership if it didn’t work out. It also didn’t have extra services I wasn’t going to use. Veri was much more flexible in that way.
What was your experience getting started with Veri?
I was always told that sweet potatoes were a good alternative to white potatoes. So before Veri I thought I was making a healthy choice. I discovered that sweet potatoes spiked my blood sugar higher than a full-size snickers bar!
Persistent hunger has always been a major problem for me when “dieting”. I thought I didn’t have any willpower and I was defective, not being able to stick it out on any diet.
It turns out it was my glucose levels!
Seeing my glucose data for the first time was an amazing learning experience. Not just the food I eat but how stress can impact my levels and why my glucose rises steeply in the morning.
I learned early on that the flatter my line, the less hungry I felt. This helped me get serious with intermittent fasting and learned what food to eat when I want to go into a feast mode. Using Veri has taken away that feeling of being on a diet.
I recently noticed at dinner that my food choices now are radically different, but it sort of just happened that way, I don’t feel deprived. I factually know which foods won’t set me up for success.
What were some of the health measures you care about, and how have they improved? How do you feel?
I brought my A1C from 5.8 down to 5.1! I also went from 245 lbs to 191 lbs, and I’m still going.
I feel better in my clothes. And I was recently offered a promotion in a different organization, so this current office never knew me at nearly 300 pounds. You are treated differently when you are obese, as mentioned above. Is it possible that I may not of had this opportunity if I hadn’t lost some weight and regained some confidence? I will never know.
I finally feel in control of my hunger, which magically took away a lot of mindless or emotional eating.
What would you tell someone interested in trying Veri?
I was just talking it up to someone last night that is quite slim but found they have a shocking 6.4 A1C.
He admitted he had a sugar problem and is using finger prick tests. The CGM offers so much more information for your food choices. I tell people Veri is my secret support system when choosing foods healthy for me. Rarely does anyone know I am wearing it, but when the cupcakes and snacks come out for whatever the office is celebrating this week, or my husband comes home with bags of chips and boxes of cookies it is so much easier to walk away. I have been at this long enough now that you start to lose your cravings for that food, for me mostly because I know it will throw me into a hunger cycle. This is not only a tool to see how food affects your body but is also a support system when you don’t have one in real life. It holds you accountable with no judgment, just data. Use that to your advantage.
Get off the diet carousel, and in the process, you can get your self-esteem and confidence back.
It is amazing how one little piece of tech changed my life. And it has the potential to do that for anyone that wants try.