Before embarking on his keto journey, Paul Rollason was addicted to beer and diagnosed with high blood pressure. He had made countless failed attempts to quit drinking and lose weight, but no diet or plan seemed to be fully effective.
At a routine check-up, Rollason refused his doctor’s prescription for blood pressure medication, expressing his desire to do some of his own research before resorting to drugs. As a sort of compromise, an appointment was set for a few weeks later, when he would be fitted for a blood pressure monitor. In the meantime, Rollason was on a mission.
“A quick Google basically told me to reduce my alcohol consumption, lose some weight and do a little exercise,” Rollason said. “I decided to give up alcohol for a month, look again at the paleo diet, as I had had success with this in the past, and start cycling again, a passion [of mine].”
As scheduled, he reported to the doctor’s office to get his blood pressure monitor—only to return the very next day to have it removed. Why? His blood pressure was normal. “I was astounded, the doctor was astounded,” Rollason said. “I was on to something.”
In his paleo research, Rollason discovered low-carb diets and eventually Dr. Berg’s videos; he really enjoyed Dr. Berg’s presentation. “Every other person with a YouTube channel covering this subject were either very intense in-your-face body builders or very serious, but Dr. Berg's videos were different,” he said. “He was calm, and funny, and it felt like he was just having a conversation with you and only you.”
From Dr. Berg, Rollason learned two major lessons. The first was how much sugar was in beer. Even though he gave up drinking for that first month, it proved to be incredibly difficult for him to kick the habit long-term. That is, until he realized it was the sugar, not the alcohol, that would ultimately kill him. “This one piece of information was enough for me to break a habit of a lifetime right there and then,” he said.
The other piece of information? It was intermittent fasting, which has been the key to Rollason’s success with keto; he went straight to one meal a day at the beginning. He feels it helps when gauging his fat intake. “If I was getting hungry, then I needed to add more fat to my next meal,” he explained. “If, on the other hand, I was getting to my meal and not really feeling hungry, I knew I could dial back on the fat a little.”
He recalls that the most difficult part of his journey was dealing with the negativity of others. He found Dr. Berg’s Facebook group to be one of his best sources of support. Even Rollason’s wife was initially unsure, but after seeing how much weight he’s dropped, she has taken an interest.
Rollason didn’t enjoy the benefits of mental clarity and massive amounts of energy, as many others on keto report, until much later in the process. But he has met his initial goal, losing 55 pounds (25 kg) in about seven months. And for him the process has been smooth and easy to follow. “I have energy and I don't have the guilt of daily drinking or the feeling of being a useless fat blob,” he said.
Loving the food that he’s able to eat on keto, he’s building a library of tasty, easy-to-cook meals which keeps him motivated from week to week. “I also set an arbitrary target weight which gives you a goal to work towards.”
“Surrender to the process,” advises Rollason. “Don't keep trying to make your new life look like your old life. And set achievable goals.”
Favorite Way to Exercise: “Cycling will always be my main sport,” he says. “But swimming is becoming a passion as well.”
Favorite Keto Recipe: Belly pork with a creamy sauce and eight varieties of veggies, followed by strawberries and cream.