Thursday, August 10, 2017

Throwback Thursday: #HeartHealth, Yesterday and Today

Before and After: February 2016 and August 2017
Want to have more fun in bed? Improving your heart health is a great way to do it.

There I was in a hospital bed in February 2016. I had a heart attack, missed QuiltCon in Pasadena, and received a stent for a blockage in my left anterior descending (LAD) artery. My Body Mass Index was 31, and I weighed 255 pounds. At 6'4" tall, I was in fact obese according to the BMI calculator. No fun.

Today I am actually a little below my goal weight. I was shooting for 185 pounds but slipped past that mark while I was traveling last week and landed around 180. My Body Mass Index had dropped from 31 to 21.9, from obese to normal weight.

Everyone wants a guru, a magic pill or a fad diet. My advice for those people is: Stop it!! And start paying attention to what goes in your mouth!! That's all I did. It wasn't anything more complicated than that. The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute offers lots of wonderful resources, such as the BMI chart.

"...we want recipes..." and "...when is your cookbook coming out?"

Every time I post something about my health and weight loss journey, people want specifics. They want recipes, they want me to write a cookbook. They want more information. Usually I offer one bit of helpful advice for getting started:

Map out the supermarket, and you might notice all the fresh, whole foods are on the perimeter of the space. The processed foods are in the center aisles. Follow the road map to good health by staying on the perimeter and avoiding the heart of the jungle. It's only rocket science if you make it that way.

As you can probably imagine, it's much more fun to be in bed without the hospital gown, IVs and heart monitors. Although my cardiologist is a nice guy, I never want to see him again while I'm in bed. Being a normal weight -- some people might even say "slim" -- is much more fun than being obese. Having improved heart health is much more fun than dying.

And finally, the best advice I can offer is: if you are looking to improve your health by eating healthier and losing weight, don't ask me how to do it. Ask your physician!


  1. Congratulations on your weight loss and especially maintaining it!!!!

  2. Wise words and warnings - well done!