Mayberryfan

October 25, 2007

Based on completely false advertising, I chose to go on the Kimkins diet plan in June. My online food journal is evidence that I stuck to the plan as written, believing that it was a healthy and sensible form of weightloss based on the claims of the plan’s creator “Kimmer” or Heidi K. Diaz, who are in fact the same person. While I did lose weight, I also began to experience significant hair loss, nausea, bouts of dizziness and was freezing all the time. As a normally hot-natured person, I began researching the source of my coldness and discovered that such crash diets can lower thyroid function to dangerously low levels bringing about the cold feeling and hair loss. Doing more research, I discovered that Ms. Diaz has no medical backing for her diet plan, did not lose weight as she claimed and has faked many of the “success stories” that she uses on the Kimkins website to sell memberships. At the very best, this plan is a fraud and at worst, is downright dangerous to one’s health. She has no business selling a diet plan that will definitely harm a person’s health if they stick with it long enough.

from Better Business Bureau Kimkins reviews

RW

October 25, 2007

There is no denying that you’ll lose weight on Kimkins. But then again, it’s because you are depriving yourself of essential nutrients due to the severe restrictions of the diet. Kimkins dieters have complained of hair loss, nausea and in my case, chronic constipation that didn’t resolve until I stopped the diet altogether and added more fiber into my diet. Kimmer (the founder) advocates taking laxatives daily, something I and most physicians do not agree with. Now, it has recently been revealed through a private detective and KTLA that Kimmer never lost the 198 lbs she claimed to have lost and she’s even fatter than her “before” picture. Even worse, many of her success story profiles have been fakes, using pictures from different Russian mail order bride websites. If you want to lose weight, there are better low carb alternatives out there, founded by legitimate physicians and nutritionist. Kimmer is neither of these. She is nothing but a fraud!

from Better Business Bureau Customer Reviews

Sparky’s Girl

October 25, 2007

Many of you know that I am a member of Kimkins and tried the plan with great success for a few months. I’ve tried to be honest and open about my experiences with Kimkins in this blog. In the past my stance on this has been that of someone with an open mind and trusting heart. I sought knowledge. I openly proclaimed that I did not know if it was a healthy plan or not. I recommended that those considering the plan look into all the details they can find. It was working for me and I felt fine while doing it. I even added an affiliate link after giving it a trial run.

Then I read some information that was very disturbing about Kimmer’s business ethics. Funny how that seemed to be the “red flag” for me. But somehow it made me wonder if things truly were not as they seemed. I can deal with a lot of things, but being lied to is not one of them. No one likes to be deceived, and the thought that Kimmer might be misleading people was nagging at the back of my brain.

I started reading everything I could find on both sides of the issue. What I found was, quite frankly, sad. People on both sides of the battle lines were hurling insults and accusations quicker than you could blink. It made me sick. I don’t believe in handling problems by creating more problems. It’s not an effective strategy. But I was quickly finding that something was indeed wrong in the Kimkins camp.

After much thought and prayer I decided to pull my kimkins affiliate and endorsements. At the time I wasn’t sure where it would lead. I thought if things calmed down and Kimkins was validated, then I would replace the ads and all would be well. That was never to be.

I want to take this opportunity to apologize to anyone who bought a membership through my affiliate links. I know there were 4 of you. Yes. I’m admitting that I sold 4 memberships, which totaled a profit of $60 for me. I basically got my membership back, plus $30 (memberships were only $30 when I joined). I wish I could refund all of your money.. or at least the part I received. Sadly, I’m not in a position financially to do so, even though it’s “only” $60. On top of that there is this issue of honesty. I could ask those of you who joined to contact me, etc., etc., but then I’d be asking for scammers and liars out the wazoo. So sadly you’ll have to settle for my sincere apology. And I truly hope you will accept it. I pray that you got something from your membership that was worth the money to you. Again I’m sorry. I had no intention of misleading anyone. I myself was mislead. I hope you will feel you can trust me in the future. I made this statement to a good friend recently regarding this whole thing: “You can bet I’ll be looking into anything I plan on recommending with a fine tooth comb and a magnifying glass.”

As of late, more and more has been surfacing about this situation. The most interesting information is coming from people who, until recently, worked very closely with Kimmer. What I’ve read from these brave people, who have put themselves out there to stand for truth, despite the abuse and scrutiny they may receive, is just what I feared. Kimmer appears to be deceiving many. It also appears she could care less who it hurts. I hate to even type that. I’m the kind of person who loves other people and wants to believe the best of them. I tried to with Kimmer, but have found I can no longer do so.

In the posts I will link to a bit later on, you will find copies of emails exchanged, pictures taken, and comments made that display the smoke and mirrors that is called kimkins. And before you go off on me about how the diet is still OK and who cares who Kimmer really is, let me say that the diet is not OK. I can tell you from personal experience. Here is my explanation on this:

I started the diet very skeptical. Some of you may remember my posts telling how I was going to give it a shot, but seriously doubted I could continue with the plan. It just sounded hard. I managed to stick with it long enough for ketosis to kick in. then something amazing happened. It suddenly seemed very easy. I was breezing through each day hardly giving a thought to eating at all. I broke my stall and started losing very quickly. I was so excited! But something changed. Now physically I felt fine. I wasn’t having any health issues and I thought all was well. But in my mind something was changing. I didn’t see it as clearly then as I do now. To be honest, I didn’t realize it was as serious as it was until just a couple of days ago. That’s when I decided I needed to tell my story. But my way of thinking was changing. I was starting to obsess over every bite I took. Now if you are like me, you are saying “So what? We all do that sometimes!” And that’s exactly what I kept telling myself. I was sure it was just me and my obsessive personality. I’m an all-or-nothing kind of person so I felt positive it was just issues I was having and not something related to the diet. I started having concerns about my calories being too low and decided to up them a bit to be sure I was eating healthy. But I found that It took tremendous effort to eat more. I didn’t want to. I didn’t want to stop the quick weight loss.. or even slow it down. My way of thinking had changed so drastically that I was no longer as concerned about my health as I should have been. Thankfully I realized I couldn’t continue on this way and went back to a more Atkins-like plan.

A few days ago I was reading some comments from others who were once on Kimkins. They were experiencing the same thoughts I was. They had the same feelings I did. Some were afraid to eat anything! Those similar experiences caused something to click in my mind. I realized I could have easily developed an eating disorder. I was on the verge. I was so obsessed with losing weight quickly, that only having 3 protein shakes a day, which totaled 330 calories, actually seemed acceptable. I would have laughed in the past had you EVER told me I’d feel that way.

Now can I blame this way of thinking on the diet? I don’t know. I do think it’s possible. It’s not something I have ever even considered before, even when I was losing well on Atkins. So why this mentality now? Why when I was trying Kimkins. All I can say is there COULD be a link. And it’s a big enough could that I’m making sure the rest of you know about it.

I have not experienced health issues as some have, but then I was only on Kimkins for a short time. There are many, including some popular faces of Kimkins, that have confessed to losing hair, having energy issues, etc.

Here are the aforementioned links. Read them and decide for yourself. It might interest you to know that many people who bought lifetime memberships no longer seem to have access to kimkins.com. It seems that if they asked questions or made honest suggestions for nipping all this conflict in the bud, they were quickly squelched. I guess they are considered trouble makers. I don’t want to stir up trouble, but I do want to know the truth, as do so many others. I may be the next person to lose my membership access.. we shall see.

Check out Becky’s (littlebit’s) blog, who was a very public face for the kimkins forums. There are several posts here that will enlighten you to the workings of Kimmer’s mind, at least in relation to how she felt about the concerns at hand.

Here is Deni’s blog, who was one of the success stories in the Woman’s World write up. Again, it’s interesting to see her point of view. Considering she was a kimkins celebrity, why would she suddenly turn away from it all unless she had valid reasons?

Then we have Christin, who was the Woman’s World cover girl for that story. Again, why would she leave unless there were serious issues behind the scenes?
Then we have a series of very disturbing posts by a man who claims to be the husband of Kimmer’s ex business partner. In his blog he reveals not only shady business dealings, but recent photos of Heidi Diaz, who is supposed to be Kimmer. Kimmer claims she is not Heidi and that she feels sorry for Heidi because she is being stalked by this PI. But my question is this. If Kimmer isn’t Heidi, then why did she let Women’s World magazine tell everyone she was? The famous “red dress” picture is in the magazine, along with the blue and white floral before picture. The magazine credits Heidi Diaz, otherwise known as Kimmer, as the creator of the diet and the person in the two photos. If Kimmer were an honest person, and these were not photos of her, wouldn’t she have stepped forward and said so? But now she claims that she is NOT Heidi Diaz, and seems to be bragging that no one knows WHO she really is (See Becky’s blog above). Does that sound like the comments of an honest person to you? Me thinks not.

I could add many more links here about the effects of very low calorie dieting, Kimmer’s advising people to use laxatives, etc., etc. But I think I’m done. You can find these on any of the many other blogs and web sites out there that are dedicated to bringing to light the truth. I just wanted to share my view point on this. While I’m not in the Kimmmer hating camp, because it’s not the way I believe or operate, I am very disappointed in her and her so-called healthy plan.

If you are doing the Kimkins diet, I wish you health and happiness. I’m not going to beat you up because you are. I feel I did learn some things about myself during this experience that have been helpful to me, so I can’t completely write it all off. But I don’t think the positives outweigh the negatives here. So please be careful and watch the signals your body is giving you. If you are concerned about anything at all, please go see a doctor and tell him/her of your diet plan.

So these are my feelings on the matter. I know I have opened myself up for abuse by posting this, but my hopes are that if you disagree with me, you can do so civilly. And I hope this post will give others the courage to tell their story and do an honest evaluation of their health. Weight loss is great, but the old saying is true.. “If you don’t have your health, you don’t have anything.”

God bless you all.

from “Kimkins–How I feel about it now”

WOOFY

October 25, 2007

Just posted this on Kimkins:

This will be my last post on Kimkins.

I just saw the clip on the KTLA website and I’m shocked. Even more shocking was the explanation from Kimmer regarding the woman featured on the video clip, who 100% looks dead on like Kimmer’s before picture.

I have brought many people to Kimkins because it worked for me. However, I can no longer reconcile this fact with the mounting evidence that Kimmer/Heidi Diaz is a FRAUD. Her before and after picture was a fraud, her whole story was a fraud. This is clearly a business model built on deliberate, calculated dishonesty.

This whole charade of one person has turned this once loving, nurturing community into one of fear caused by a few fear-mongering admins, who are so eager to defend this lie.

As a person who values integrity and honesty with extremely high regards, I feel I can no longer be a part of this scam. I wish to apologize to those I’ve snapped at before, because they were trying to inquire the truth. Please forgive me. I acted prematurely and now I know what you know.

“Truth is mighty and will prevail!” – Mark Twain

PS…..my user name was WOOFY and Becky and Cutie, you two were so helpful to me when I started Kimkins and I just want to thank you!

from “This Just In…”

Jan

October 25, 2007

Hi Deni, I found your blog on Christin’s site. Reading some of the things you went through on kimkins, reminds me of a little over a year ago what I went through…some days my calorie intake was lower then 500 calories. My hair thinned out too…but I am older and thought that was due to age, dizzyness or light headed sometimes too. I lost fast, lost alot, and gained it back just as fast too. I am now again on the journey of losing weight…but this time more healthy. Deni, you and the others have done so much for so many, God Bless You and I know with Him all things are Possible!!!

from “The Open Bench” comments

Deni

October 25, 2007

I just got back from my first visit to the doctor since January. The nurse who checked me in, actually came and asked me if it was possible that someone recorded my weight wrong the last time I was there.
I proudly said, “No.. I really did weigh that much before”
For a moment, I was proud again of my accomplishments.. for a moment

then, she asked me, “why are you here today?”

And I had to tell her the truth… and with a downward, broken hearted glance, I had to tell her that because of that wonderful, rapid weight loss that she was just gushing over me for… I needed to have the doctor run some tests to see if I had done any damage to myself or not.

She immediately stopped gushing over my weight loss… took down some notes, and shook her head as she walked out of the room.

The doctor came in… so proud and ecstatic to see my weight loss.. knowing that he and I had discussed it many times over the past few years, and then as he listened to HOW I lost the weight (with Kimkins- low carb, low fat, and usually 600-800 calories) he said… “Well, starvation always works doesn’t it… but hopefully you only lost weight and nothing else important for your body to function properly.”
I had to tell him all of my symptoms.. and I had to admit them to myself first. I had truly felt all along that I was 100% healthier because of losing my weight. He and I both discussed the fact that I no longer have back pain, restless leg syndrome, insomnia, or low blood sugar “shakes” in the morning.

But.. then we also discussed the fact that I did experience some negative side effects from my NUTRITIONALLY DEFICIENT diet. And.. I was lucky.. I only had a few.. and they were not constant.. so I usually just brushed them to the side of my mind and ignored them as “oh, that’s normal”.
Here’s my side effects:
1. extra periods (told this was normal)
2. loss of hair … loss of about 60% of my thickness if not more. (told it was normal, and even looked it up online for myself! Saw that it said it was common in people who were dieting and skimmed over the part that said “fad diets” or nutritionally deficient diets.)
3. Lightheaded dizzy spells- never mentioned these to anyone .. they were not an everyday occurrence, and I had them sometimes prior to this diet so I easily ignored them.
4. Weird blurred vision- like my eyes would dilate at different degrees… things would get fuzzy and look far away and warped.. I would then readjust my own “focus” and a few minutes later it was back to normal. Again.. I didn’t mention it.. figured it was a fluke.. it only happened a few times.
5. heart flutters- never mentioned these to anyone either. Even when they happened, I dismissed them in my mind as quickly as I could. (these are still happening randomly)

Other strange things I noticed:
6. Peanut butter CRAVINGS… like really super cravings… and I knew I wasn’t the only one having this. I read post after post after post about people who were feeling guilty for giving into peanut butter or any kind of nuts. So, I wrote this off as “normal”
7. Milkshake CRAVINGS… again.. these cravings were much stronger than any craving I’d ever had before dieting. I heard lots of other people also talk about craving milkshakes, including my mom who also did the diet.
both of these “cravings” were something that I, along with many others, chalked up to a strange coincidence, and I either ignored it.. or caved in a little and then felt extremely guilty about it.
Now, I’m really wondering if there is something in the peanut butter(nuts) and milk shakes that our bodies were SCREAMING for!!! Like maybe more fat? Calcium?
I often typed in “listen to your body” over and over again in posts.. and it wasn’t until late August that I started to realize that even cravings were a way that our body tells us what it needs.

Anyway… I still don’t know if there’s anything wrong with me or not.. my doctor has ordered lots of tests to see where I’m “depleted” of certain things, and warned me strongly that while being extremely overweight isn’t good for your health, or for you heart… that sometimes losing it all super fast and not getting all the nutrients necessary for bodily functions.. is an even quicker route to heart disease.

So, now I’m wondering.. where inside Kimkins does it list “possible side effects”? Where is the “warning label”, the “if these symptoms arise, get it checked out announcement” ?
With EVERY weight loss pill or plan that I’ve ever been on, there has been a warning list.. and a “common side effects” or even “in extreme cases side effects” list.. that I always read. I know myself.. and I just about always choose NOT to take medicines that have side effects that concern me. If I had been warned about these things, I don’t think I would have joined. If I had been warned about the possibility of these things, I certainly would not have convinced others to join!

The sad part really is, is that I didn’t realize that I wasn’t the only one with these symptoms until I started reading OFFSITE.I hated reading those “other forums” because they made everything sound so bad. They made me feel bad, and they exaggerated things so much. But, the symptoms they mentioned sounded vaguely familiar to me. They knotted up my stomach, and made me want to either fight or run away and pretend I never heard what they said.
I saw some try to fight them….
and I resorted to my usual, curl up and ignore it technique for awhile.

If I did mention my worries to others inside Kimkins I only got pats on the back and reassurances that of course everything would be fine, and “that’s normal, don’t worry!”

And NOW.. it’s even worse.. if you even ask about a negative effect, you’re likely to be “accused” of stirring up the pot, or if you point out your negative side effects, you’re likely to get banned. 😦

How is that safe for other members??? Shouldn’t everyone be made aware of symptoms to be on the look out for? I’m sure there are lots more negative effects that I didn’t have… and from the stories I’ve heard elsewhere.. I can only count myself lucky.

This is not a joking matter, this is not time for a “band-aid” announcement that “of course, you should always check with your doctor”. Or even comments to make those of us who “ignored symptoms” appear stupid or crazy or “extreme”. This is time to get real and time to take your health seriously.

How many of you truly talked to your doctors about your plan?
Did you show him the food list?
Did you mention that you really only eat a few items on that list?
Did you show him your fitday?
Did you write symptoms off as normal because you heard someone else had the same thing?

I said that one of the reasons why I wanted to lose weight was because I wanted to be here long enough to see my kids and future grand kids grow up.

Now, it’s possible that losing weight has lowered the chances of that actually happening.

I remember when we often joked about how Kimkins didn’t need that little small print disclaimer of “results not typical” on our success stories.

Perhaps she does need to put up a disclaimer that “results ARE typical” on the side effects listing!!!

If you’re still doing Kimkins, as written or not… please stop for awhile and really take a look at your own symptoms. Don’t glorify your “pros” list and minimize your “cons” list.

You can get those “pros” with lots of safe plans, and eliminate the cons. Just think about it. And don’t ignore the promptings of your heart right now.

from “Where was the Warning Label?”

Jimmy

October 25, 2007

With time away in Missouri to rest, relax, and reflect on everything that’s happened over the past few months, I’ve now come to realize that my blog has changed in many ways and is headed in a direction that I feel isn’t in the best interests of the larger audience of readers who come here. Because of that, I think today is a good day to share some of my sincere regrets, what I have learned from those, and where I recognize I need to be refocusing on from this day forward.

In the last few months I have made some very real mistakes which have caused many people to question my intentions and motivations here at my blog. Admittedly, I was unwilling to listen to the criticism from those who were only trying to help me and I began growing frustrated to the point that my frustrations got the better of me.

Before I continue, I first owe everyone–whether you are friend or foe–a very big apology for taking liberties with a highly critical comment of me at my sister web site LowCarbNewsline.com earlier this month. I didn’t simply ignore the comment or even delete the comment in question. I admit that I modified it to be positive and replied in kind. When called on it, I replied it was a joke and did not show the remorse I should have for something I should not have done in the first place.

Not only was this an abuse of my editorial powers at that site, but it was highly unethical and wrong. For that I am truly sorry, and promise that in the future when I find myself frustrated, I will simply leave comments as they are, step away and remember that not everyone will agree with me. If you go to that forum, then you will see I have apologized in like manner there making it clear to everyone that I was wrong and am truly sorry.

Over the last few months there has been a growing concern from those in the low-carb community about my promotion of Kimkins. I had failed to openly disclose my affiliate relationship with that diet plan and I now realize I should have. Additionally, my insistence that Kimkins was just another low-carb diet similar to Atkins, Protein Power or South Beach as well as my posts encouraging readers to join me when I started what I believed to be the K/E option was overzealous to say the least. I apologize for not being more upfront about that.

More importantly, my refusal to properly review and then hold Kimkins to the same standard as other plans and approaches I’ve praised and criticized was a glaring mistake of omission for which I regret. My intentions were good, but now I can see why there were questions arising about me and my business relationship to Kimkins.

Call me stubborn, but for the life of me I could not see what the problem was; I truly believed I was indeed following K/E and honestly had not reviewed the other plans on the site. Now I know I should have.

While I’ve been on vacation in Missouri this past week, I’ve now taken the time with some gentle nudges from those that implored me to review all the plans, review the content that is publicly available (present and archived), and then review the historical content found on the Low- Carb Friends forum.

After doing that, I can now see why this issue with Kimkins has stirred up such a fiery controversy because most of the plans are a controversial approach to losing weight by encouraging fast weight loss without mention of the very real risks involved with doing so. I regret that I allowed my excitement about my renewed commitment to losing those last few pounds I wanted to overwhelm me to the point I lost my good sense.

I hope sharing this with you today will help us all avoid making similar missteps in the future. To be very honest, the thing that held my emotions so well was the strong sense of community I felt from those on the forums at Kimkins. It’s something that I missed terribly since I was banned from Low-Carb Friends and I didn’t recognize that until recently.

With the Kimkins forum, I felt a sense of belonging that often lacks when you’re writing day-to-day on a blog. There’s such a sense of community that I now recognize I can be part of if I join any number of online support forums by taking the initiative to do so. There are some truly GREAT people providing support out there.

In the past I did join Low-Carb Friends in part to be a part of a community and in part to promote my blog. In doing that, joining with an underlying agenda to serve my own needs, I missed the opportunity to really be part of a community and found myself quickly banished by the admins there. In my enthusiasm to promote my blog in the early days, I violated the terms of service and was rightfully banned.

Instead of doing what I should have done by apologizing to the admins and ask to be reinstated with the agreement I would not promote my blog within the forums anymore, I walked away disappointed and slowly allowed resentment to build. The January post I wrote at my blog about Low-Carb Friends earlier this year was inappropriate and uncalled for because it deeply offended many at that board. For this I am truly sorry and can only hope that, in time, those who make Low-Carb Friends their community for online support will find it in their hearts to forgive me.

I now realize that without Low-Carb Friends I would not have been able to review the historical posts that led to the creation of the controversial Kimkins web site. It is an eye-opening look at how many people were ill-advised and mistreated over months and years prior to the launch of the Kimkins web site that I started promoting last year. It is something I should have taken the time to read much sooner, something that should have been part of the necessary due diligence on my part before agreeing to support and promote what I believed was just another low-carb diet.

So first I must thank the admins and owner at Low-Carb Friends for maintaining the sticky thread “Ask Kimmer” because it has helped me begin to see many of the errors I’ve made in my assumptions about most of the Kimkins diet plans these past few months.

I also find myself once again in need of giving an apology to my readers here at “Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb.” I allowed the strong sense of community I felt with Kimkins to cloud my judgment and subsequent action to continue promoting Kimkins even in the face of numerous people pointing out problems that are clear as day even after my podcast interview with Kimmer.

Had I only stepped back and looked objectively at the criticism for what it was–again a way to help, not harm me–then the entire last year may have taken a different path. While I cannot change what I have done in the past, I can change what I do starting today and moving forward.

Today begins a refocusing back to the original purpose and mission of my blog–to educate, encourage, and inspire people about the healthy low-carb lifestyle!

I have always maintained that each person must find the diet that works for them, whether that’s low-carb, low-fat, or whatever. If it works for you and you can do it over the long-term with your health improving because of it, then go for it and rejoice as you take control of your health! I very clearly do not agree with low-fat and low-calorie options as I lost most of my weight on the Atkins diet, but that does not mean they do not work, nor serve some well even in the short-term.

Because I do not agree with those dietary approaches, I focus on carbohydrate restriction and proper fat intake since research supports that as a healthy way to lose weight and find optimal health over the long-term.

In the past I have taken many others to task over their diets and I now regret I did not critically evaluate the full context of the various dietary plans for Kimkins.

I should have because, as many have repeatedly said, the plans are very low-calorie diets despite any specific requirement to count calories (in some plans like K/E), thus by design they are low-fat and low-carb because they are very-low-calorie in nature.

One of the most objective reviews I recently read was from my friend Carol Bardelli at the “Kudos for Low-Carb” blog. She provided a wealth of information about very low-calorie diets in that post that I encourage my readers to review to gain more understanding of why it’s important to nourish our bodies as we lose weight. Also, Sherrie from the “Pinch Of…” blog made some very valuable points on this same issue as well.

As one poster on Low-Carb Friends has integrated into her signature, “It shouldn’t be a RACE to get thin. It should be a Journey to good health.” I couldn’t agree more!

Therefore, you will notice I have made some necessary changes to my blog that reflect that sentiment to remind myself that part of finding what works for me and you finding what works for you means encouraging each other to also make good decisions that optimize our long-term health in the process. Livin’ la vida low-carb is as much about improving health as it is weight loss.

You will notice that I have removed the banners promoting the Kimkins diet today as a matter of conscience. In the last week I have realized that I cannot try to “educate, encourage and inspire” my readers if I am associated with Kimkins, a web site promoting some plans which may indeed be unhealthy if followed over the long-term.

My focus has been on the best of the five plans (K/E) and I cannot say they’re all sound and healthy ways to lose weight on your own. Because of this, I cannot encourage my readers to join the site knowing they may wind up following a plan that may do more harm than good in the long-term. Be smart about any diet plan you go on.

Let me also state clearly that I believe it is extremely important for people to research any diet before they begin and even talk with your doctor about not just the short-term impact, but also the long-term effects and potential health risks you may face.

While many believed I was making great big bundles of money from my affiliate relationship with Kimkins, let me just say that no amount of money is worth losing sight of the bigger picture to educate my readers with quality information, encourage them to find a way of eating to help them regain their health while losing weight, and inspire them to be their best while going through this process.

While I still believe it is possible to tweak things within some plans promoted by Kimkins, I also realize that this is strongly discouraged on the plan. If something is not working, then it’s easy to say you’re not working the plan. But, then again, as many of us know it’s in the little bit of tweaking that we find our strength and confidence to make the diet our own over the long-term. That’s what I did after Atkins, although I am sure the late great Dr. Robert C. Atkins would not object.

With that understanding now, I’m left questioning what I am really doing here and why I felt compelled to start making changes in my diet in the first place. I now realize I find myself exactly where many other low-carbers land when they lose weight with a low-carb diet–a place where I am comfortable making modifications that make low-carb work for me over the long-term!

I could label it and say it’s Atkins, or Kimkins, or South Beach, or any number of plans as recommended for maintenance, but that wouldn’t be honest! The truth is, I’m doing what works for Jimmy Moore right now and it is simply a low-carb diet where I’ve started to also look at my fat intake to control calories naturally. That’s all! I don’t need to place a label on it to make it mine and I certainly don’t need to convince my readers what they already know–finding the plan that’s right for you and then DOING IT!

By opening up my mind to better understand what I am doing, what I can tell my readers is that I now truly understand that I have not been following K/E as recommended, nor could I. What I have done is merely modify and play with what I’m eating to find what will work for me now and that’s simply been lowering carbohydrate, reducing fat slightly and paying more attention to carefully choose the treats I still do include to make the plan work for me.

For me, life without a small indulgences like bread and chocolate here and there is not what I want. So, I’m still playing around with what will work for me and wish others well with what works for them. If that includes low-carb products, then great; but if not, that’s cool, too.

Over the last few months, my promotion of and subsequent insistence that I am following the Kimkins K/E plan has caused a polarization within the various low-carb forums. I am deeply sorry for bringing much of this on myself, by both words and actions, by fueling the debate and ignoring many of the red flags and warnings people had for me.

We low-carbers are an ever-growing by leaps and bounds community online with brand new people looking for hope for their obesity and I am becoming more and more aware of that fact. With Kimkins, I saw an easy quick-fix and ran with it, unwittingly undermining my mission here to educate, encourage, and inspire others.

This too is something I hope my readers will forgive me for doing. As I go, I grow. I learn sometimes slowly along the way and can only hope that those who have spent time and effort to educate me, encourage me to take the time to really scrutinize what I’m doing, and inspire me to hold myself accountable, will understand that I am now listening, I am hearing you, and I am trying to make right what many have pointed out were errors on my part. I too am human, imperfect, and do make mistakes.

Where I’ve erred, I hope you can forgive me for that, too.

Along with the criticisms sent my way about Kimkins also came criticism for not clearly disclosing sponsor and affiliate relationships that allow me to maintain this blog freely to all who wish to read it. I strongly believe that those of us who write about low-carb need to be free to publish information that is lacking in the mainstream media, or even worse, manipulated or twisted in ways that cause confusion.

I’ve said it before, my purpose is to educate, encourage, and inspire.

I hope my readers understand that to write every single day like I do takes many hours of my time to do–time to research, review, read, gather information and then write my articles.

Over the last two years, the time invested in writing for my blog has grown from a few hours when I first began in April 2005 to now as much as 12 hours a day. It really has become more of a full-time job now and is something I cannot continue to do without a means to pay my bills and support my family.

I so passionately feel it’s important to continue on with my blog that I sought out a way to support my family so I can continue to write. But I failed to disclose those changes along the way with my readers. I had a responsibility to do so, and am now making changes to insure you understand how I choose sponsors and how they’re included here.

I do take seriously my real responsibility to choose wisely those whom are offering me opportunities to make my blog possible. Plus, I am keenly aware that not only are my readers a quality audience to many companies, but that my readers expect I will choose products and services from companies that are of the highest quality.

You’ll now notice in my sidebar, I have placed a conflict-of-interest disclosure that fully informs my readers that this blog is, in part, sponsored by companies who recognize the value of low-carbohydrate diets and respect my readers dietary choice. They want to do business with us and it is my policy that I will only accept sponsors and affiliates whom I believe offer quality products or services, along with good customer service and responsiveness to needs of my readers. While we won’t always agree about whom I’ve included, it should now be clear that banners on my sidebar are from sponsors and affiliates I have chosen to include after I’ve researched their offerings and am comfortable to offer something of value to many of my readers.

I’ve also clearly stated that when I am including a post that does mention a sponsors product or service, that is my opinion about the product or service and I have not been compelled by contractual obligation to promote the product or service to my readers within the text content of my blog. I want to assure my readers that none of the sponsors or affiliates they see on my sidebar have contracted with me to specifically mention or promote their products within the text content of my blog, nor will I enter into such contracts in the future. So, yes, when I am enthusiastic about a product or service, it is because I really am, not because I have to be because I’m being paid to say something I do not believe.

There is one small exception to this that I believe is a win-win for all of us. When a company that meets the standards to be included here offers a giveaway or contest to my readers with no obligation, and I write about it, then it is the writing about it that brings it to your attention. You are never under any obligation to participate or enter, but I feel including it meets my goal to educate, encourage and inspire. In posts such as this, I will clearly state the nature of my relationship in the promotion.

Right now I can only hope my readers will forgive my past sins and understand that I didn’t fully appreciate how important such disclosures are. I’ve taken many researchers to task because they did not adequately disclose potential conflicts of interest in studies, but I failed to hold myself to that same standard. I believe I am now correcting my own error of omission and hope you will continue to point out things if I fail to live up to my words in the future.

The last thing I feel it’s necessary to address is the fact I’ve allowed my emotions to get the better of me at times when I should have “taken my medicine” like a man. Instead, I acted out and sometimes aggressively responded to criticism in ways I wish I could take back. Calling those who were critical of my words and decisions various names, including “haters and crybabies,” was not only wrong, but failing to live up to the spirit of open-and-lively discussion and debate.

I closed the door to listen to some of my readers and realize how damaging that is to all of us, no matter what your view is on the controversy around Kimkins. I hope today to reopen the door to those who have been turned off and welcome you back with open arms so we can work together to help each other on this low-carb journey.

In the future, I will be ever-mindful that we’re all in this together. Some will agree with me, others will disagree. But all views are important and should be heard whether everyone agrees or not.

I will do my best to honor this commitment I am making today to temper my immediate reaction and try to give more thought to my replies in an effort to be a better writer and fulfill my desire to make the “Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb” blog a place where facts are at the forefront and opinions, while still critically important in the big picture, are provided by me in the light of solid, reputable evidence and data that must be part of any substantive debate of ideas in the health arena.

I realize now that I focused heavily on the positive feedback, largely ignoring the negative. While it’s important to stay positive, it’s also very important to be open to hearing the negative to really understand the issues. It’s constructive either way and that’s how I will view it from now on.

Without that acknowledgment and respect for the fact we don’t all agree about everything, we cannot make progress to educate others about the benefits of low-carb diets, encourage each other to be our best each day, nor can we effectively inspire those who want to know more to seek out and find more information, even with our faults.

So I am hoping today to begin anew on a path that will enable me to serve my readers and their best interests, to be cognizant of a standard of excellence I must hold myself to each and every day as I write about livin’ la vida low-carb, and remember the all-important bigger picture–YOU, my readers, our common goals and desires, our interconnectedness that makes us an online community on the same path, finding what works for each of us along the way and our mutual agreement and understanding that for the long-term, good health is attainable with healthy low-carb living.

Each of us must be able to freely share what is working for us as well as the pitfalls and obstacles we may face along the way. When we share these things–both the good and the bad–with each other, we all grow in our understanding and help each other in the long-term.

And that, my friends, really is where my heart is–to help, both myself and my readers, learn how livin’ la vida low-carb truly can benefit health over the long haul. It is a position I feel is strongly supported not just by the latest research, but also through my own experiences.

These experiences are ones I want to continue sharing with all the thousands of people who come to read here each day. Through that, I am sure there will be plenty of education, encouragement, and inspiration along the way. Even if someone decides low-carb isn’t for them, then at least they will realize it is something that works for many who do make the choice to follow it as their permanent way of eating for life.

I ask nothing more from you than to please allow me to try to be the best that I can be by continuing to support my mission here to educate, encourage and inspire. I cannot change who I am as a person. I’m not suddenly going to be different or less outspoken than I have been, but I will be much more aware of the fact that we are all in this together, and without you my readers, I cannot fulfill my hopes and dreams to help others find their way to health like I did.

Working together, we can do that and more! So I hope you know from the bottom of my heart, I’m sorry. Please forgive me for my mistakes and help me as I continue to learn and write about a subject we all are enthusiastically passionate about–that’s Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb, baby!

from “Livin La-Vida Lowcarb”

devil5care

October 25, 2007

Tavosk,

Um, yes I DID pay for a lifetime membership. . . now you may want to “believe” for me, but you’re not allowed! Nor can you answer for me, begin to speak for me or expect me not to answer when you post questions directly to me. . . So, instead of assuming the answer for me, the REAL answer is NO, I did NOT get what I paid for as a matter of fact. I was told that the founder of this site would show me how she lost over 198 lbs. in less than a year AND KEPT IT OFF for over 6 years. Where is the maintenance program? Tell me, what established guidelines do I use to keep it off?

I keep hearing this idea of negativity thrown around, but wait, read my post and now read yours. . . who’s really being negative. . . “Personally I don’t give a damn what you think about the plan. . . “ ummm, did you hear ME cussing anynone out in my post???. . . can you suggest a ban for yourself for that ‘infraction?’ See, you think you have the right to say anything you’d like, but I, and others, are all supposed to cower in the corner like a whipped dog – don’t think so! You’re an Admin, you have acceess to all my posts, pm’s, etc. . . go read what I have to say. Negative?? Did you even take the time to go through my posts – I think if you did you would have found that 98% of them have been answering questions and supporting people. . . not telling them what they HAVE to do what they can and can not say or think.

Do I have problems and issues with this site. . . you betcha; I never, not once, hid my feelings about that. . . people with the ability to hit some keys and ban me do not scare me, what scares me is the people you do frighten. . . people that have been bullied into staying quiet because they’re afraid of being banned from the friends they have made and care about.

Goodness me, I got ‘yelled’ at for the ‘goose-stepping’ reference I made when I member got banned FOR NO GOOD REASON – to anyone reading this, note that I wouldn’t belittle what happened in the 40’s by comparing it to Kimmer or Kimkins or anyone or anything else for that matter, but if you have something to say, then say it. . . staying quiet when you have an issue with people being sent away, for posts being deleted, whole journals being tossed out, say SOMETHING when you have an issue with lies and deception. . . if you know these things are happening and have issue with them but choose to stay silent then you have no right to say anything when one of the admins. tells you that you crossed the line; nor do you have the right to say you didn’t know what was going on.

I keep reading that ‘I don’t care who Kimmer is, I don’t care if she lied to get my money, I’M LOSING WEIGHT, — how cheaply do you sell your integrety? As my momma always said, birds of a feather flock together. . . if you don’t care about honesty and integrety and go along with bannings and censorship and LIES because it’s only about YOU and your weight-loss, then you’re right, say nothing about what’s going on because you and Kimmer are of the same ilk (well, except for the weight loss thing that is). Was selling yourself for 60 bucks worth it? Was losing some lbs. worth trading in your values, your dignity and your self-respect??

There was a time when there were people and admins on here who had REAL values and cared for their fellow members; who tried to help and who tried to guide people not by threatening, but by advice and encouragement. . . I’m sure some still exsist, or maybe they have all left this desolate place (which is what happens when people are not ‘allowed’ to speak or think on message boards, or anywhere else for that matter). Like I said before, I’m not quitting or running away, if you want me gone then ban me. . . I will not be afraid to speak out against things that are blatently wrong, I will not be intimidated by fear.

And for all those say I used too many Nazi references in regard to what is happening here: people being sent away, mass censorship, fear of speaking out. . . I just had to leave you with this:

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out –
because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out –
because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out –
because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me – and there was no one left to speak for me.
Pastor Martin Niemöller

Joined for $59.95.
Banned for Member Complaints & TOS Violation (new TOS –can’t say ANYTHING, except WTG & Kimmer is a saint :))
Asked for refund, but no response yet. . . think I’ll ever get one???

from “Ex-Supporters of Kimkins”

Nille

October 25, 2007

I´m Nille.

I don´t know if I was banned, but I was “moderated”. Even if I posted some of my posts dissapeared. I managed to copy one:

“I am a new member – and having paid my 60 bucks, I would of course really like to know the real reason why admins are leaving the site. Like everyone else, I’ve read their blogs and based on those and the posts in here – it is very natural to wonder !

I’ve been doing my own research (which I’m fairly good at) – Ive been doing lowcarb since 1982 and as mentioned in my presentation I’m an admin of a Norwegian board. I go the source when I need/want information.

I think a lot of problems could have been avoided if the real Kimmer (whoever / wherever) would step forward with her true identity and picture – showing the world – or at least her paying members , who she is. Not beeing evasive and hiding behind supposedly false pictures/pictures of other people. It might, it might not be true, but there’s onky one person who can put a stop to the slander, and that’s Kimmer herself. It’s all about honesty and trust. We can choose to trust and we can choose not to. YES, it’s all about choice. But we’re not stupid either. One admin leaving OK, – two – OK, but three ? Including the poster girl ?

This is YOUR forum for people following YOUR plan Kimmer – following YOUR advice. All of them have paid to be able to read about your plan, get your tips and suppurt. To be able to share own and other experiences with the plan. Most of us don’t know what we’re getting until we have signed up and paid. Of course we could read up on it on other forums, but what is better than getting it from the founder herself ? The doctors, the nutritionists, the writers of diet books all over the world, – show their faces. Even in little Norway they do. It’s a sign of respect for the followers, readers, paying members !

I’m not a suspicious person -but it’s not until we join we find that the owner is behaving somewhat strange. Why the secrecy ?

Don’t blame me for wondering – I’ve been part of and a working volunteer (not beeing paid one dime – quite the opposite, I pay – I support) at forums for years and I’ve never come across this kind of behaviour.

Don’t blame me for asking the obvious question – the whole low carb word is wondering – WHO ARE YOU ….. REALLY ?”

I thought it was rather polite, all considered.

I´ve signed the petition and reported in the BBB.

After my posts dissapeared, I sent a mail to them requesting a refund – and I got it !

And of course I´m not able to log on anymore (not since September 7th).

from “Ex-Supporters of Kimkins”

Misty

October 25, 2007

I emailed her and told her that the diet wasn’t as it was represented in WW… that I was expecting a healthy way to lose weight quick NOT a starvation diet bordering on an ED. I did request a refund, so I made it clear I didn’t want any part of her site BUT she banned me without a refund. Whether I wanted to use the site or not, shouldn’t I still have access since she refused the refund? Shouldn’t it now be my choice whether I visit the site or not? Surely my $60 bought me that right!

from “Ex-Supporters of Kimkins” comments