“It’s Almost Like This Stuff Really Works”

I think it was Robb Wolf who dropped that quote into comments sometime back.

Yep, another Real Results post, my favorite. I have another post on a very controversial topic well into draft that was going to go up this afternoon. It can wait. It seems that whenever I begin to question why it is I put so much effort into this blog and have for years, now, something comes along to remind me of exactly and precisely why it is I do it.

And it both energizes me and reminds me of the implicit commitment to this endeavor I’ve taken up for myself. Imagine that someone, somewhere, gets wind of this great lifestyle for getting lean and healthy, only to find a site no longer updated, or dead. I can’t really bear to think about that possibility.

So enough about me. First, let’s see the comment Marc dropped last evening.


You changed my life. I found your blog in January and have since lost 60lbs, and seen numerous health improvements. I will send you a full report toward the end of the year but thought you could use hearing some appreciation about now.

You are appreciated. People may not share it enough but what you are doing is more important than surveys on a blog. You really are helping people lead better lives.

Thanks a million!

Speaks for itself. Being a 60 pound loser myself, I can attest to the life-changing nature of it. Congratulations, Marc, and feel free to add any other info you’d like in comments for the other folks out there where, right now might just be their "January."

Next up is Jeff, who just emailed me to let me know he had this to say over at Mark Sisson’s Daily Apple:

My name is Jeff Hopkins. I am 54 years old and have been seriously overweight my entire adult life. I have had many health problems due to the extra weight including diabetes, and most of the bad things that go with being obese.

The most I ever weighed (that I know of) was 324lbs. Thanks to finding Mark Sisson’s Primal Blueprint, Dr. Bernstein’s Diabetes Solutions, and the Free the Animal blog, I am now a much slimmer 225 lbs. […]

I was desperate to change and knew if I didn’t I was going to have a slow miserable death. I remember making the deal with myself that I would eat this way for one meal at a time at first. It worked. It was amazing to watch the pounds fall off my body. I am convinced that this is the only way to live and I hope my short story can be of some use to you.

You’ll want to read Jeff’s whole story over at Mark’s, but in the meantime, here’s 1,000 words.

Jeffs Before and After
Jeff’s Before and After

I’m very gratified to have played a role in these dramatic transformations. I’m also very appreciative that so many are so willing to come forward as an inspiration to others. These Real Results, here, at MDA and other places are always unsolicited, read and look real, and have no relation to the typical "testimonial" bullshit you see everywhere as part of some attempt to sell some crap product or book that will only make people worse off.

Because in this case, "it’s almost like this stuff really works." Oh, and here’s more. You may have seen the post, but have you seen all the comments from those reporting their positive experiences? Check it out, if you haven’t.

Congratulations, gents.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More


  1. Robb Wolf on November 19, 2010 at 13:25

    Thanks for the shout out!

    I was pretty krispy after the book tour…very happy with the results, really glad the book is helping so many folks, but kinda like “what now?” I had a few experiences this week that reminded me WHY I’m doing this stuff. Sounds like we have been running on convergent paths.

    Richard, you do damn good work. We have not met in person, only occasionally email each other, but I’m honored to call you friend and to be in this frackas with folks like you.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2010 at 13:43

      Me too Robb.

      And I just know we’ll cross paths soon, and hopefully before the Ancestral Health Symposium next August.

      Don’t know if I ever told you this, but my order of information progression was De Vany, then you and Sisson, but I can’t recall which I found first.

      We all started out on this somewhere.

      …And tell Loren that I’ll quit ragging on his sat-fat phobia when he stops it. 🙂

  2. Justin @paleonotes on November 19, 2010 at 13:35

    This stuff does almost work! Keep it up, guys. The world needs it.

  3. Lute Nikoley on November 19, 2010 at 13:38

    Ditto on the congratulations. I myself am now down to 160# from 208# high. Thanks to Richard, his blog and personal encouragement and advice. Of course I am his dad, so it’s a little easier to get that personal treatment. Thanks so much, Richard.

  4. Murray on November 19, 2010 at 13:46

    Yeah, this stuff does almost work!

    Definitely keep it up Richard, you’re putting the good word out there to lots of people. You too, Robb – your podcast is a great source of info, and just the right length for a good hike in the hills. 🙂

    I’ve been passing along the Free The Animal, Primal Blueprint, and Robb Wolf triple decker to quite a few people, and several (including my dad) have lost 20-40 pounds and are really buying into this whole deal.

    Great job Marc, 60 pounds lost is no small feat. You must feel great!

  5. Emily Deans, M.D. on November 19, 2010 at 14:48

    I’ve been haunting various diet forums for years. Never have I seen so much success, or so many ancillary changes (skin, energy, autoimmune disease improvement) as with a paleolithic diet. These systemic positive changes keep me enthralled and nearly obsessed as a person and a physician – thus my constant search for more information and numerous blog posts!

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2010 at 15:08

      I’m quite certain you have a far tougher row to hoe, Emily, than I, in trying to inform an educate your colleagues.

  6. VW on November 19, 2010 at 16:02

    You struck me from my very first visit here as a really nice guy who gives a shit, Richard. It shines through even when you’re not using your nice voice.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2010 at 17:22

      I’d love to not give a shit, VW. It’s just too hard to do.

  7. BGThree on November 19, 2010 at 16:53

    I’m sure there’s lots of readers of your site like me who never comment but are very appreciative of the effort you put in. Every day, the first thing I do when I get to work is check my RSS feed and if there is a new post from you it is always the first I click on – and I have about 50 RSS subscriptions. So anyway, please keep up the good work. Even though I didn’t take the time to vote in your poll the other day 😉

  8. Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2010 at 17:17

    I suppose it’s about time I said that I don’t give a fuck about the poll.

    It was an idea, I was seeking information. I got it and am continuing to get it.

    Thanks, all. The live webcast idea isn’t dead, just not on front burner, right now. As things generally work, I’m now focussed on something completely different, but this helped me to focus that.

    Nothing will change in terms of regular posts, of f-bombs.

  9. julianne on November 19, 2010 at 19:31

    I just get so excited by clients’ results, one recently wrote to me doing a 6 week paleo trial:

    “I’m up to my six week point on Friday. So I’ll get my girlfriend to measure me, weigh me again etc.
    I know I’ve definitely lost weight, a lot of my size 14 bottom halves are too big now. I had to even go and buy a size 12 pair of shorts the other day! Unheard of. I just feel that bit of weight that always bothered me has gone. Not that I mind losing more, but its not my main incentive for eating like this 🙂 (NZ sizes not US sizes)

    I’ve also noticed I haven’t got any hayfever. I’m guessing because I’m less reactive to pollen in the air.

    But the biggest result to date has been my blood pressure. Twice I’ve taken it at home and the first reading I got was 116/79. The second a couple of weeks later was 126/81.

    I can’t quite believe that! I know Paleo claims to help with reducing blood pressure but I almost found that too good to be true. I’m still in shock over it as if next time I take it, its going to be high again. But obviously something has changed and a new pattern is emerging. One of a healthy BP! This is a big answer to prayer for me finding the solution to my annoying BP.

    I have to be honest I have sometimes had things I’m not meant to. I have had the odd blow out. Once I ate quite a lot of popcorn. Later I felt blah and uptight so I won’t be doing that again.

    Either way I know this isn’t a six week stint for me. I’m a convert for life. I’ve just planted a whole lot of veggies so I can have fresh on hand. I know the longer I eat this way the easier it will be.”

    This just adds to all the other results I posted about before

    As well as that my mother who has just recently been eating paleo and who has small airways disease with lots of mucus and inflammation, and gets breathless walking up hills has had huge improvements doing paleo. No more mucus, no more breathlessness.

    Another client who has suffered years of pain with an auto-immune condition recently emailed me:
    “I’m just so happy to be pain free its wonderful, I’ve even started running which I don’t think I’ve done in years without pain.”

    I get so excited, I too am fairly obsessed!

  10. anand srivastava on November 19, 2010 at 20:54

    Richard your site is the best to actually energize people. There are websites that give more information, but nothing that makes it more interesting.
    It was my first window to the paleo world, and I don’t know if other websites would have interested me so much. I looked at so many pages on the very first visit because it was all very interesting and easily understandable.
    I hope it stays for a long time. I have not registered for RSS feed, but I get the articles from facebook.

  11. Tin Tin on November 19, 2010 at 21:13

    Richard, looks like you made it into’s “The 10 Most Important Blogs You Should Be Reading…if you care about your health”.

  12. Paul C on November 20, 2010 at 04:26

    I feel like I am made of different stuff now, like I have been rebuilt at the cellular level. When I pick up a pastured egg and crack it, and see that the shell acts differently than a corn-fed industrial egg, that the membrane is strong, that the white is not watery, that the yolk is a deep orange, I get another clue that yes I probably am made of different stuff now. I used to be pale, weak, and corn-fed too.

    Thanks for the push in the right direction, Richard, and thanks for everyone with a success story for the courage to share it.

  13. Patty on November 20, 2010 at 07:38

    Congrats to Marc and Jeff!!

    And Lute! So how are you guys related?

  14. kellgy on November 20, 2010 at 09:41

    100 pounds so far and the physiological changes of going paleo are well, interesting to say the least. No more antihypertensive medication, heart palpitations and tachycardia gone, hay fever gone, arthritis, aches and pains gone.

    Oh yeah, no shampoo or soap for a month now.
    I never thought I would say thanks to someone for not showering.

    Thanks Richard!

    • VW on November 20, 2010 at 11:19

      HUGE congrats, kellgy!

  15. Alex on November 21, 2010 at 05:19

    Speaking of real results, check out this now ex-vegan on the real results of her vegan diet:

  16. Austin on November 20, 2010 at 17:25

    This stuff really does work, with careful application and self-monitoring of biofeedback/changes in oneself(the whole n=1 thing). To my surprise, about 2 months after my real results post I actually had to buy new (smaller)pants and I lost a little more weight, without changing a thing in my diet and exercise routine. But my weight has been stable as a rock since. Its still amazes me how effortless its been to keep the weight off. People still accuse me of working out for hours everyday and then lying about it LOL.

  17. kellgy on November 21, 2010 at 19:07

    Thanks VW, my results are probably atypical for the time frame.

    . . . and I meant, thanks for not showering with soap and shampoo, Richard.

    I haven’t felt cleaner!

  18. […] The Paleo Solution: The Original Human Diet, mentioning it sometime back. I found the post. He's a buddy of mine, so I emailed to see if he had anything to add. In the meantime, I found a more recent post I'll […]

  19. […] “It’s Almost Like This Stuff Really Works” […]

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