Issue #193 September 1, 2010

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In This Issue

* Question Regarding HRT Therapy
* Back On Track with Barbara
* Research Article: Stressed Out
* Recipe: Hurry Up Salad 
* Inspiration to Lose Weight
* Success Story: Barbara Stankich

Question Regarding HRT Therapy

Here is a request for information on a topic that hasn’t been addressed in my newsletter.  It has to do with hormone replacement therapy. Jerri would love to hear from others who have gone through what she is facing.

Hi Barbara:
I really enjoy your monthly newsletters and thank you for them.  I have a question that I haven't seen addressed and was wondering if anyone else has ever had to face what I am going to be facing soon.  In the next couple of weeks, I will be undergoing a complete hysterectomy due to some past and present health issues.  My doctor wants to put me on hormone replacement therapy (HRT) after the surgery, as I am just now going into menopause at the age of 50. Now I will be in full blown menopause basically overnight.  

I had my gastric bypass surgery done 9 years ago; have lost and kept off 260 lbs.; and know that there are some medications we cannot take for different reasons.  I know there are several choices out there between pills, patches, gels, injections, etc.  I am not sure which will work best for me because of the bypass surgery. I will be on the lowest dose for the shortest amount of time, so I want to make the best choice that I can. 

I would love to hear from other women who have had to deal with this and what they are using or have used and how it works/worked for them.  Thanks so much for taking the time to answer these questions and again for all the wonderful work you do.
Jerri Grogan

I know in general, that our intestinal bypass compromises the absorption of anything, including pills, therefore patches, gels or injections would be preferable to pill form.

Those who have had experience in this please email your response to me .  I can summarize responses and forward them to Jerri. I will also print out some results in the next newsletter.

Back on Track with Barbara

Internet Mentoring Program

Are you:

Suffering from emotional eating and can’t stop?
Grazing on carbohydrates and can’t control it?
Lacking inspiration to lose the weight you have regained?
Feel you don’t know what to do now that you have had surgery?
Dying to be in better shape?

Then you are in luck! My Back on Track Internet Mentoring Program is just what you need to get yourself back on track!

View a FREE Lesson and Listen to a FREE Telephone Seminar by
clicking here and scrolling down to the bottom of the page.

Research Article:
  Stressed Out?

I am dealing with considerable stress in my life right now. My Mother is facing her last weeks or days of her life. She is 95 and has had a very good and fulfilling life, but we are never ready to let go. Most of us have been through tough times, and we have survived and hopefully grown from the understanding of the circle of life. But the process is stressful.

This stress affects everything about us, including our weight. From the earliest times of man, we possess a flight or fight response that is triggered by stress. This “caveman” response tells your body that there is danger and you must be protected. One of the stressors that the body is most concerned about when it comes to protection is having adequate food. The body doesn’t know what the stress is from, but it might be from a lack of food.

This concern about a lack of food causes the body to produce a sometimes nasty hormone called cortisol. Cortisol, which is produced in the adrenal gland, can increase our appetite, cause our metabolism to slow and cause us to store more fat around our mid-section. Fat in the mid-section is referred to as “toxic” fat because it is associated with cardiovascular disease like heart attacks and strokes.

A quick burst of cortisol is good for us.  In the caveman era, if we were faced with a charging wooly mammoth, cortisol would give us a sudden burst of energy (which would allow us to escape the jaws of that wooly mammoth) and a higher tolerance for pain (so we feel less pain when the wooly mammoth gores us with its tusks because we haven’t run fast enough). Now we don’t have wooly mammoths charging, however, if you are walking along a trail and a bike is headed in your direction, it is a burst of cortisol that helps you to quickly get out of the way. It is the prolonged exposure to stress and the corresponding long term effects of cortisol that are bad for us. Blood pressure goes up, you can’t think straight, your immune system is compromised and we can store more fat around our mid section.

Stress catches up with all of us at some time, so it is important to know how to deal with it. There are several techniques that you can use that can make a big difference. They include, breathing exercises, yoga, listening to relaxing music, and meditation. By the way, the supplements that are advertised to lower cortisol and increase weight loss have never been proven to be effective.

It is worth considering the list of ways to deal with stress and learning the technique associated with at least one of them, so that when we do find ourselves stressed for a period of time, we know how to handle the stress so that it doesn’t get the best of us.

  Hurry Up Salad

Thanks so much to Karen Hotovec for sharing her recipe.

Hurry Up Salad

1 bag frozen California Blend Veggies
Celery chopped fine - 2 cups
Onions chopped fine - 1 large
Peppers chopped fine - 1
1 bag of coleslaw mixed cabbage

Let frozen Veggies thaw and drain

2/3 cup Splenda
1/3 cup vinegar
2 tsp Wondra instant flour
2 tsp prepared yellow mustard

Combine in a saucepan and bring to boil. Boil for one minute, stirring. Cool and combine with salad ingredients in a large bowl and chill overnight or longer.  Keeps 1 week or more in the refrigerator. 


If you have a recipe that you would like to share in future issues of this newsletter, please send it to me at

Barbara Thompson's

Inspiration to Lose Weight

Weekly Email Messages that Will Keep
You Motivated to Lose Weight and Stay Healthy

Staying in the proper frame of mind to continue losing weight can be hard when life's challenges always lead you astray.  Weekly messages will keep you on a steady track to lose weight.

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Success Story:
Barbara Stankich

I want to offer a special thanks to Barbara Stankich for sharing her success with us. Here is her story:

Dear Barbara,
It is now 2 weeks short of the 1-year anniversary since my surgery. Two years ago, at the age of 55, I was told by my doctor that I wouldn’t see 60 if I didn’t lose weight. 

I had been trying to lose weight since I was 13 when my father took me to the drug store to get the new diet aid, a chocolate appetite suppressant.  Then at 14, I went to Weight Watchers, and went again in my 20’s. I went to a hypnotist, a quick weight loss center, and had two series of doctor-injections.  These are the major diets, but there were fad diet in there as well. Being thin was something I have wanted my whole life.

I have had rude and insulting people say anything they want to me.  I even had a tour boat manager ask me why I would even consider wearing a bathing suit at my size.  It was if she couldn’t tell that I was fat in slacks or shorts.  I was not going to not live my life a certain way because of my size. 

But when the doctor said I wouldn’t live at all if I didn’t control my weight, that registered with me. My mother died at 61 and I know she missed so much; I didn’t want that for myself.

So that led me to this journey. The first year was very hard waiting, learning, and educating myself for this wonderful tool.  On August 31, 2009 I had laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery.  I was so worried before the surgery about the pain. The pain I did experience was from the air used to expand my abdomen so that the surgery could be done laparoscopically. 

The first four months, while my stomach adjusted to its new size, were slow.  I have experienced dumping from sugar in foods and fruit. These make me sweat, which is a sign that I shouldn’t eat them again. Education of this process has taught me how important exercise is to make this all a success.  I have changed the way I think of myself. I believe I can do it and change my life so that I will not fall back into the old routine. 

I had been very happy with my husband and family life.  I was happy to be at home, not as many bad looks and comments.  So now my husband and I have date night. I bought myself my dream car, and a bike. Our date night is trying new restaurants so that we can get different, healthier fish. It is so surprising that my taste has changed so much.  I am living healthier and happier than I ever thought possible.  I realize I will have to be aware of my food and activity my whole life, but I am more active than I have been in many years.

I have at this time gone from a 50 Body Mass Index (BMI) to a 28 BMI. I have lost 128 lbs. and will continue to lose weight. A 14 lb weight loss will get me to a normal weight level. Other than having my children and marrying my husband, I am sure that will be another great day in my life. 

I have read that people are sad with the way their body looks after the surgery.  Please do not let that discourage you. My husband said the most wonderful thing when I read him these disappointed patients’ stories.  They didn’t like their sagging and wrinkled skin. He said, “Don’t look at the wrinkles as sagging.” He sees them, and I should see them, as my “Olympic Rings,” which is so true. This surgery gave me the opportunity to win my gold, which is a fuller, happier, and healthier life. 

Barbara Stankich

Congratulations Barbara

I love good news.  If you have good news, a success story to share, or inspiration, please send it to me at so that I can include it in future issues.

Barbara Thompson

The OAC is the ONLY non profit organization whose sole focus is helping those affected by obesity.  The OAC is a great place to turn if you are looking for a way to get involved and give back to the cause of obesity.

There are a variety of ways you can make a difference, but the first step is to become an OAC Member.  The great thing about OAC Membership is that you can be as involved as you would like.  Simply being a member contributes to the cause of obesity.


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