ATLANTA, Ga. – In November 2002, Gwinnett nurse assistant Jimmy McPeters and a group of about 20 coworkers made a bold step to lose weight by joining a Weight Watchers @ Work program. A year later, McPeters is 60 pounds lighter and has completely changed the way he thinks about food. He went from 235 pounds to 175 in a year.
“There is a right time for making changes in our lives. I was overweight and ready to get my weight under control. Something just clicked in my head,” said McPeters. “At first, it was challenging to change my old eating habits, but the structure of the Weight Watchers program made it easier. The more weight I lost, the program became easier to stick with. It was rewarding to watch the pounds drop and for me to fit into smaller clothes.”
McPeters said he received great encouragement from everyone at Gwinnett, especially coworker Fredricka Williams who initiated the weight-loss program. “Even though Weight Watchers offers a lot of flexibility, I had to sacrifice some things I loved to achieve my goal. I loved mayonnaise and blue cheese dressing, but learned to like mustard and fat-free dressings,” McPeters, who rarely eats fried foods. In addition to eating sensibly, McPeters also incorporated aerobic exercise two to three days a week.
Success stories like Jimmy’s can happen to anyone who is committed to getting their mind set on losing weight says Ann Whitaker, a nutritionist at Kaiser Permanente. “No matter what shape or size someone is, they can improve their health developing a reasonable weight-loss strategy that includes regular physical activity and a balanced diet,” Whitaker said.
Note to news reporters or editors: If you are planning a story about successful weight loss and would like to interview Mr. McPeters or speak to a Kaiser Permanente nutritionist, please contact Earnestine Perry, Kaiser Permanente public relations manager, at (404) 364-4754.