Christian Becker shares his story on the Regenerative Health blog:
How did you get started in this type of approach to weight loss, nutrition and health?
I met Dr. Maria Zangara of Regenerative Health, through Daniel Hayes, the Personal Trainer Director at World Gym Setauket, and a colleague of mine. I met with Maria in March of 2017, to get my health and nutrition on the right track. After years of weighing 250lbs from playing football, I realized it is not healthy for me to keep carrying around all this weight. With a wedding approaching in July 2017 I wanted to lose the weight and keep the weight off.
Why did you come? Was it preventative or reactionary?
My reasons for starting a nutrition plan with Dr. Zangara was for weight loss and proactive health reasons since I am going into a career of Law Enforcement, which can be a very stressful and strenuous career, which could lead to health complications, especially if you’re not following a proper nutrition plan.
What changes did you notice from following this program for instance increased energy, less pain decrease body fat, decrease in strength as you lost the weight?
I am blood type O, which means I benefit greatly from a modified Mediterranean diet with additional animal protein but also pushing tons of fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy fats and little to no dairy and little grains, Dr. Zangara has set me up on a low-carb Paleo based diet getting most of my energy from protein and healthy fats and lots of green vegetables and some starch vegetables and fresh fruit to round out my carbohydrates. Dr. Zangara also set up my daily caloric intake, which is a break down of how many grams of proteins, fats and carbs I should be taking in each meal.
One of the things Dr. Zangara made sure to inform on was that, this was going to be a huge change and shock to my body, in a very good way in that I would be taking in foods that my body should be consuming to burn fat, create energy and be healthy.
This process can be different for everyone, which means some people might adjust quickly and some might take a little longer, but you must stay the course as a patient and keep following your nutrition plan because the results are life changing!
For me the first 2 weeks my body went through some big changes in that I wasn’t use to eating this way, so during this time period I felt sluggish, some weakness during my workouts, and no weight loss. Dr. Zangara though made sure to inform of this before I started and what these feelings in my body were the changes being made in my body and the detoxing of it.
I made sure to stay strict to the plan and after my body detoxed, changes really started to come, such as consistent energy, better nights sleep, I started to consistently lose body fat and my strength and endurance with my workouts greatly increased.
What did you think of this approach?
For me I was very excited for this approach, I was very motivated to lose the weight so for me I couldn’t wait to start.
Was it hard to make the food changes?
At first hearing I was very bummed out that foods I loved to eat, I would now need to avoid such as cheese, bread and pizza. But what seemed as a negative Dr. Zangara made it a positive. First thing being that if you want to lose body fat, prevent health illness and ailments or if you have them already and you want to get rid of them you need to follow your nutrition plan. Dr. Zangara also gave me alternatives to some of my favorite foods. First being cheese, Dr. Zangara gave me list of foods that I can eat and ones I should avoid and there were cheese’s I can have in moderation sparingly such as fresh mozzarella, feta and goat cheese, which lucky enough for me were some of my favorites. She also gave me alternative recipes for homemade pizzas and breads using healthy grains and flours for my blood type such as Spelt and almond flour. Those recipes were delicious and amazing so much that I would prefer to eat those then get take out. Dr. Zangara also stated that it is okay every once in a while to have a cheat meal where you consume foods that you may like that are on your avoid list.
A very important thing I must state about this is when you eat foods that your body are meant to consume and avoid the ones that can harm you, you do feel a big change and difference in your body.
So much that you crave those good foods, because you feel energized because those foods are working to benefit your body and the foods you should avoid when you do eat them can make you feel sick, lethargic, and bloated.
What do you do for holidays and birthdays?
For the most part I stayed true to my nutrition plan during the holiday’s on the actual holiday itself I did indulge in foods that were on my avoid list,
Dr. Zangara did give me two herbal supplements that helped with the digestion of carbohydrates that I took during the holidays.
Dr. Zangara also advised me since I follow a very regimented fitness plan that the day after a cheat meal I do what is called intermitting fasting in which when I wake up in the morning I should consume my first meal after my workout and not when I first wake up. After the holidays and following Dr. Zangara’s guidance I actually wound up losing more body fat, and achieved my ideal weight and body fat percentage.
What did you think of the office visit?
The office visit was a great experience thanks to Dr. Zangara, she did an excellent job of breaking everything down for me, and really explained what I would need to do.
How long did it take you to see any results in your energy levels?
It took my body about 2-3 weeks to detox itself, and after that period is I really started to feel my energy levels increase.
How about in the body fat analysis?
For me I started to see some changes in my body fat percentage really start to significantly decrease between week 6 and 8. This can be a very frustrating time for some because everyone’s body reacts differently some people change fast some it might take some more time, but remember yet again follow your plan!
I started in March of 2017 weighing in at 257lbs and 27% body fat. By my wedding date I was 225lbs and was between 15%-16% body fat. Now in January 2018 after all the holidays, I hit my goal of 210lbs and have between 9%-10% body fat, I feel energized, strong, healthy and my body looks and feels great!
Did this new way of eating increase your athletic abilities? Or did you fatigue more quickly with the lower carb breakdown?
It absolutely increased my athletic abilities, I can now run long distance, jump higher do more pull ups, pushups, sprint faster, do a hand stand, all things I struggled to do because I was carrying around excess weight. Plus, any muscle or joint aches, I suffered from in the past have all gone away and have not only I have seen a huge increase in my strength and endurance but I also in my mobility and flexibility has greatly increased as well.
What would you tell young athletes trying to make it in college sports and hoping to go pro?
Being an athlete myself and training athletes for the past 8 years, I would highly recommend they speak to Dr.Zangara at Regenerative Health, many athletes lack proper nutrition and are sometimes required to either drop or in instance’s like myself gain weight. In order to due this the right way and to avoid putting on excess body weight, athletes should follow a nutrition guideline.
Would you recommend regenerative health to friends or family?
Absolutely, I have already recommended Dr. Zangara to many of my clients, athletes and friends and family.
What is one thing you would like to say to people new to this type of approach.
The one thing I would like to say, which is what I have been stating through this questionnaire, is to stay true to your nutrition plan and to be patient.
This has been such a life changing experience and is something I am very thankful for, thanks to Dr.Zangara.