Duke Diet & Fitness Center Success Story: Fred G.

Age: 64
Hometown: New York, NY

"Since 1986, I've been able to maintain my weight of 190 pounds." *

My weight-loss story begins at age 26, when I weighed 453 pounds. By the time I was 29, I had lost a substantial amount of that weight -- 270 pounds -- but I had trouble keeping it all off. Over the years, I'd gain back 75 or 100 pounds and then have to lose it all over again. It was my wife who first went to the Duke Diet & Fitness Center (DFC), and her success inspired me to give it a shot.

Since my first visit to the DFC in 1986, I've been able to maintain my weight of 190 pounds -- without the ups and downs I experienced in the past. I used to take quite a few medications, but since I've lost the weight, I've been able to stop taking many of them and have lowered the dosages of the ones I still take. Now I can walk and shop for hours longer than I used to be able to -- I can even keep up with my wife! I feel that I can participate more fully in every aspect of my life.

The way I look at food has definitely changed. Now I see food as something to be planned, enjoyed, and whenever possible, made into a true dining experience -- not something you wolf down. I didn't exercise before -- now I schedule about three hours a week. Plus, living in Manhattan, I walk a lot -- unless God delivers a taxi! I used a machine called the NuStep at the DFC, and I liked it so much that I bought one for my home. Without question, that's my favorite way to exercise.

I think the DFC program works because it attacks weight loss from every angle. The program isn't just about eating right and exercising -- it's also about taking care of your medical conditions and changing the way you think about eating. I got the most comprehensive medical exams I've ever had at the DFC. The entire behavioral health component is fantastic, and it just gets better as the years go on. The quality of the healthy cooking is excellent -- it's amazing how varied the menu is, and how tasty! People don't believe that, but it's true.

My wife and I return to the DFC periodically for refreshers. It's the only vacation we go on that makes us healthier and thinner! I often say that going to the DFC is like a group therapy session at mealtime -- the support that the new clients and returnees give to each other really helps.

You name the program, I've tried it -- and nothing works the way the DFC works.

Best compliment: Outside the DFC, I don't get as many compliments as I used to -- because it's been so long since I lost the weight. Now I walk into a room all smiles, thinking, "Wow, I look so good," and my friends, who are used to my weight loss, are thinking, "Wow, he looks so normal!" When I do go back to the DFC, new clients want to know which person I'm there to support -- they don't think that I'm a client at all!

Favorite snack: Fruit.

Advice to others following the Duke Diet & Fitness program: Stick with it -- it works. It's a way of life that brings health, activity, and balance. The most important strategy is writing in your food diary. It's what keeps you focused.

*Results not typical.

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