Ken Leebow, 58, of Marietta, Ga. lost 34 pounds

Former weight: 200 pounds

Current weight: 166 pounds

Pounds lost: 34 pounds

Height: 5 feet 9 inches

Age: 58 years

How long he’s kept it off: “Started June 2009,” says Leebow. “Reached goal October of 2009.”

Personal life: “I’m an author,” he says. “My claim to fame is that I simplify the complex. In the past, I wrote books about the Internet. I never dreamed I would write a book about diet, health, and lifestyle. However, once I identified a simple methodology for losing weight, I decided to write a book about it, I have a wonderful family: wife, Denice, two kids: Josh and wife, Kristi … and Alissa and husband, Jonathan; my best friend Bailey, dog and an amazing grandson, Brooks, two years old.”

Turning point: “Online, I watched a one-hour video about the American food system. I found it interesting, disturbing, and it sucked me in. I wanted to learn more about the stuff we eat,” he says. “I did a tremendous amount of research about our food system, diet, health, and lifestyle issues. Unfortunately, much of the so-called food we eat is not food at all. It’s processed food-like substances. While learning about our food environment, I decided to change my lifestyle.”

Diet plan: “I didn’t use a diet plan, per se. I concentrated on upping the fiber for satiety, reducing sugar, and eliminating processed and fast-food,” he says. “Currently, a typical day consists of: Greek yogurt with frozen fruit and a handful of Uncle Sam’s cereal … lunch consists of a high-protein soup (such as) bean or lentils. I add some brown rice to the mix to up the fiber. A typical dinner might be salmon and roasted brussels sprouts.

Exercise routine: “I enjoy exercising,” he says. “I weight-train twice a week and run twice a week.”

Biggest challenge: “Since we eat out a lot, restaurant dining can be a challenge,” he says. “No doubt, the portion sizes are tremendous. I either order off the appetizer menu or split an entree with my wife.”

How life has changed: “I have a much greater appreciation for good health,” he says. “I do believe health is our greatest wealth. I’m in better shape today than when I was in my late twenties. I look forward to healthy aging and being able to play, hike, and bike with my grandchildren. My favorite saying is, good habits are as addictive as bad habits and a lot more rewarding. It takes about 30 days to change a habit. Related to food, the remarkable thing is over that time period our taste buds change … After abstaining for thirty days, I tried drinking a can of diet soda. It didn’t taste good anymore. Obviously, the soda didn’t change, but my taste buds did.”

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