Barbara,an area resident and 125LIVE member, learned about the Complete Health Improvement Program (CHIP) through our Community of Wellness Symposium hosted in March 2018. The two-day event enlightened her on the impact of lifestyle medicine and motivated her to join our CHIP class in May 2018.

When Barb started the program, she had several health concerns, but by the end of the 12 weeks, she showed the most improvement across the board from weight to cholesterol and some unmeasurable internal wellbeing.

With permission from Barb, we are pleased to share her biometric improvement from the last four months.

From health stricken to reenergized and empowered

Barb suffered multiple health issues for years; major concerns included weight and elevated levels for blood pressure, glucose, and cholesterol. One item of note was her triglycerides, which remained high over 400 mg/dL — too high to even calculate LDL.

At the six-week mark of the CHIP journey, her weight and all biometric levels were down. Her triglycerides dropped by 225 points which allowed LDL to be calculated at 130mg/dL. Two months later, her weight and biometrics continued to drop toward her optimal goal.Barb has a regained sense of energy and even the spider veins on her right foot have lightened! Her renewed positivity for life has led to a passion for sharing with others what she’s learned from the program.

· Rochester Clinic: How has adopting the principles of the CHIP Program transformed your life?

· Barb: Prior to embarking on the program, I was a chicken and fish person. I thought cheese and ice cream were fabulous. But my true drug of choice when I got too stressed was sugar of any kind. The plant-based lifestyle has helped me immensely. It is so easy – I can’t believe it. My lab work is incredible. And how I feel today compared to before the program is unbelievable. My choice of drug now is fruits and vegetables!

· Rochester Clinic: What are some of your favorite plant-based foods?

· Barb: I like a variety of salads, soups, pasta dishes, bread and tortillas.

· Rochester Clinic: How do you stay on track?

· Barb: By being mindful of my food choices. I reference the CHIP cookbooks, informational books and DVDs given by the doctors as part of the program. Mei Liu has been so helpful and the entire staff are dedicated to helping. They are great!

· Rochester Clinic: What would you say to someone who is on the fence about lifestyle change?  

· Barb: You have nothing to lose by trying it — only better health. I’ve been on Weight Watchers, Medifast, a variety of diets, and nothing has worked the way this has. And all without drugs! The staff at Rochester Clinic are the most helpful and compassionate people I have ever met. They are great mentors who teach and encourage people to lead a happier and healthier life. No amount of money can buy health once it is lost.

The CHIP Program has truly been worth my time and money. Participants had a full plant-based meal each session featuring a different menu each time – everything from salads, hot dishes, pizza, desserts, breads, tacos, soups and more! It changes the mindset from, “Oh my gosh, I can’t eat like that,” to “This is really good… I can’t believe this is not really meatballs?” It was amazing!