Trying to implement lifestyle changes to become healthier can be a lifelong battle, and many people set (and struggle with) the same goals every New Year. For some, losing — and keeping off — 10 pounds can be an ordeal that takes years, which is why hearing stories like Dr. Kevin Gendreau’s can be so motivating.
Gendreau, a 30-year-old primary care physician in Fairhaven, Massachusetts, weighed 300 pounds in 2016 when he was diagnosed with high cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes, sleep apnea and fatty liver disease, according to People. That diagnosis, along with his sister’s diagnosis with a rare form of cancer, caused a scare that prompted Gendreau to take control of his health.
Before diving into his story, take a look at one of Gendreau’s amazing before and after shots from his Instagram profile:
“For me, being obese was a choice. How could I literally eat myself to death while my poor sister was fighting for her life?” Gendreau told People. “Once I made the black-and-white decision to stop being unhealthy, everything else just fell into place.”
Gendreau told Today that there were three major components to his weight loss. It started with motivation: Without a strong enough reason to lose the weight, he said, it would have been impossible to commit to the lifestyle changes he put in place — and it looks like it’s working for him:
With his health challenges and the realization — prompted by his sister’s serious illness — that being unhealthy was a choice he was consistently making, Gendreau certainly had the motivation. The two puzzle pieces to unlock his weight loss after that were intermittent fasting, in which people (generally) consume all of their food for the day within an eight-hour window, and a whole foods diet with zero processed carbohydrates. The changes helped him lose a total 125 pounds over the course of his journey.
His commitment to eating whole foods includes those from his flourishing vegetable garden:
Recently, Gendreau has started working out as well — and he has advice for others looking to follow healthier diets. While he recommends intermittent fasting and only eating whole foods, he told People that individuals should speak to their physicians about their diets before undergoing any huge changes.
And other than that?
“Always look forward towards to your next goal,” Gendreau told Today. “And never look back.”
Has anyone else had a wake-up call for their health? What steps did you take to lose weight?