Guest Post: Joshua from SlimPalate – Drastic Weight Loss from a Real Foods Eating Teen

It’s not often I come across a blog and am immediately endeared to the person. After being a part of the community and knowing so many amazing people, even crazy awesome success stories lose a bit of their “magic” to me. That’s why it caught me off guard when, just several days ago, I stumbled upon Joshua’s relatively new blog – SlimPalate.com – through Pinterest.

I was going through each recipe and skimming the lovely photos and lists of clean ingredients when I found this post on Mom’s Chicken Soup. It blew me away, the loving photography and sentiment the recipe had… then I realized the author was young.

I was then inspired to find and read Joshua’s story. And I got immediate goose bumps. I started scouring his blog, reading every single blog post. So inspired and in awe of the talent he had, the accountability to reclaim his health, the transformation he underwent and the wonderful family dynamic of supportive parents was doing for his life – all at the age of 16 (he just turned 17 yesterday – happy birthday!).

Immediately I contacted Josh in an effort to spread the word of his wonderful blog to everyone I could. This is what you all have been asking us for since our first comments and inbox questions – how can a teenager successfully transform their eating habits to a whole-foods approach? What can you as a parent to do help and encourage? How can you ease the teasing they may experience from “funny” lunches?

Joshua is here to answer all of that for you today. He is the next “big thing” in this community. I’ve had the pleasure of spending over an hour on the phone with him and can tell you he is humble, kind, sincere, talented, and the absolute real-deal. Please, go visit his blog. Pin his recipes. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter. Do what you can to show your support for this young man making his mark in our community.

 Drastic Weight Loss from a Real Foods Eating Teen

Recently I was contacted by an incredibly nice and sincere person. That person being Stacy. I had already known about Paleo Parents before so I’m sure you can imagine I was really excited to be getting contacted by Stacy. She said some very inspirational things about me and to me that really made me feel happy and proud of myself for what I accomplished.

So that brings me to my guest post on here. And what I really wanted to share with everyone was my story and my journey on losing my weight and becoming fit and healthy.

First I will start of by explaining who I am. My name is Joshua Weissman and I’m 17 years old, well 17 years old as of yesterday actually. I was 16 yesterday, but then all of the sudden it was my birthday and boom, 17. Anyway, continuing on. I’m 17 years old and I recently overcame a huge obstacle and journey in my life.

At a young age I was at the typical body type and ate fairly healthy. But then at around age 8 my health began to decline. I was eating junk food and was eating more and more of it daily. I had no idea it was bad for me. Why would anyone put anything on the market that could be harmful? But that was obviously an incorrect assumption. So with my rapid health decline I also started having rapid weight gain and was severely overweight for several years. And it got more and more severe over time.

I used to get made fun of and pushed around at school all of the time. Literally every day kids would make fun of me, push me, laugh at me, call me names, poke me, and spread horrible rumors about me. And this occurred every single day on a regular basis for over 5 years. And as I got older the kids got meaner. [This gave me goosebumps full of rage and sorrow - Stacy]

So after all the ridicule and depression I, at the age of 15, I decided I had dealt with it enough. I was sick and tired of feeling  sick and tired, and of being pushed around. So I made a lifestyle change on that very day and stuck to it. And after a little over year and a half I lost over 100 pounds and am now fit, happy, healthy and am well respected at my school for what I did.

Joshua Weissman Before After

When someone that is underage has a problem like this, it can be very difficult for them to deal with it is because of others around them. Especially their parents. I cannot stress enough how important it is for parents to be supportive of their children with healthy eating. Parents can’t be eating junk food in front of a kid who’s trying to eat healthy. It’s simply not fair.

With a little help from parents a child can do pretty much anything they want. I know that because I have really supportive parents who help me through so much, and I would have never been able to do what I did if it wasn’t for their never ending love and support. [Such warm fuzzies from the synchronicity this family now has - Stacy]

I am currently not “fully” Paleo but I do respect the Paleo community the most. Specifically because eating Paleo is so close to how I eat and how I view health. But I still do eat grains on occasion, specifically because my body can handle them. Although, they are all sprouted so I am still careful with that.

I believe that people should eat the way they want to eat for the rest of their lives and in a way that they feel good about. And to me its important to eat things in moderation, excluding sugar. Because to be honest ever since I eliminated refined sugar I don’t miss it whatsoever. But one thing everyone should know is that I still love food.

I’ve learned to love food “properly” now. I love real food, I love whole foods. Which is what got me back into cooking. I have been cooking my whole life but when I made this change for my health that’s when I decided to really develop my interest into a skill. I watched cooking shows that used whole foods, found recipes on Foodnetwork.com and started cooking my own real food. And after tapping into my cooking interests, I decided to start a food blog, which so far I am enjoying a whole lot.

I have learned even more about health and fitness online and through other blogs and that just goes to show how many resources we truly have to look to.

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Lastly, here’s 5 really great tips if you want to help your kids get fit, lose weight, or just eat healthier. They are great ways to help your children lose weight and keep them motivated:

  1. Comment on how well they are doing/looking.
  2. Buy more whole foods.
  3. If they like TV get them to watch cooking shows that tend to use more whole foods in their recipes.
  4. Show them great websites with recipes and other healthy food blogs and they will naturally want to eat more like that. Aesthetically pleasing pictures bring a postive mindset on food that is healthy!
  5. Pack their lunch full of healthy food.

Now obviously that last one may cause some problems, maybe people ridiculing them for having a “strange” lunch. And to be honest there is only one way to deal with it. Because really those people are just self concious about the way that they eat and it makes them mad to see other people trying to eat healthier. So there is no way to stop them. But you just have to think of it like this, they are dumb for eating unhealthy and you are the smart one.

So no matter what they say or do it doesn’t really matter because you’re going to live 25 years longer than they do anyways. Don’t dread the fact that they might say something; be happy about the fact that you are eating healthy while those poor saps aren’t.

SlimPalate.com Guest Post on PaleoParents.com

Joshua Weissman is a 17 year old food lover with a love for health. Joshua always loved food but his love for food led to an eventual weight gain. And after years of ridicule and physical harassment he decided to change his life and lost over 100 pounds through healthy eating and exercise. Even after this, he kept his strong love for food and now runs the blog Slim Palate, a food blog where he posts his recipes and other recipes that he likes to make along with fun stories and just general food talk. You can also find him on Twitter and Facebook where he shares his daily life and his love for food and health.

About Stacy

Stacy Toth has written 371 post in this blog.

Stacy is the matriarch of the Paleo Parents family. After beginning a paleo diet and founding PaleoParents.com in 2010, she lost 135 pounds and found health and happiness for the whole family. The following three years have been a progressive journey with a mission to educate people about nourishing their bodies by eating real foods. Stacy can be found on all forms of social media as @PaleoParents as well as the top-rated The Paleo View Podcast and her two cookbooks, Eat Like a Dinosaur and Beyond Bacon.

  • http://www.facebook.com/alan.izar Alan Izar

    As a graduate student who struggled with weight (on the opposite side of the spectrum: I was always too skinny, you were able to count my ribs until I was twenty) I have to agree a lot with how unfair it is that the parents don’t foster healthy habits on children. In my case, I grew up watching my mom eat very little -mind you, because she was satisfied, but she assumed I would eat the same so I learned to eat very little, and I thought it was OK! Then I hit college and because of that and the fact that I was eating unhealthy my weight kept dropping. It wasn’t until I decided to eat better (whole foods, I follow the Primal Diet) and listen to my body I actually started to feel great, by eating almost three times as much as I used to! So, yes, parents are the greatest influence and the biggest rock which a teenager can hang onto, no matter how much it seems that they don’t want to obey them.

    • http://twitter.com/SlimPalate SlimPalate

      Yes. It goes both ways Alan, eating unhealthy can lead to the opposite and lead to weight loss and even more severe problems. it’s good to know that you changed everything and you feel so much better. Be sure to keep a good balance of good carbohydrate sources, and give yourself time to recover after a workout and you will be well on your way.

  • Heather Acuff

    Good for you, Joshua!

  • Zoë MJB

    Hi!
    I’m so glad you’ve discovered one of my favourite blogs of all time (even though he started so recently he’s now at the top end of my list)!
    I can’t wait to see him grow (up?) on his journey as he illustrates it all so beautifully with gorgeous photos and heart-warming narrative. And I’m stunned at his transformation – I hadn’t seen his before pic!
    Congratulations to him and his family :D

  • Jan’s Sushi Bar

    Ah, Joshua – you are an inspiration! I have to agree – the support of your family, especially your parents when you’re young – is important in any weight-loss journey. I’m glad you know how fortunate you are; when I was your age (a looong time ago), my mother would belittle me for my weight, but she never did anything to help or encourage me to lose it.

    • http://twitter.com/SlimPalate SlimPalate

      Oh my gosh thank you so much! I love your blog by the way! You have lovely photography. And I am so sorry to hear about you being bellitled about your weight when you were a kid, that is just awful. But you know what from what I can see you are a very healthy and beautiful individual. You had it even harder than I did because it can be near impossible without support. But I’m glad you found your way around. Much love to you!

  • tatecantoo

    So lovely of you to be sharing his story. What an inspiration!!

  • Sylvie

    Joshua you’re such an inspiring kid! I’ve been paleo for 9 months, started converting my family (husband and 3 kids) about 6 months ago and my 14 year old daughter has definitely been the hardest sell since she does love the crap she finds while at her friends house or at the mall (pop tarts, sugary cereal with crap milk, etc). I think her biggest hesitation has been peer pressure. I will show her your blog. Thank you!

    • http://twitter.com/SlimPalate SlimPalate

      Hi Sylvie, thank you for the kind words. And yes if showing her my blog as well as other blogs will actually help a lot. Show her the ones with the nicest pictures too. Because at our age we are very visually oriented so if something that is healthy looks great through a picture it may have more of an impact than you may know. And just show it to her. Don’t force it on her, just show it to her and let her browse the blogs and leave it to sit in her mind. And over time might just come up to you one day and ask for something healthy completely on her own.

      • Sylvie

        Thank you Joshua! I did show it to her and she definitely gave it a much more thorough read than she does the blogs written by adults. She also said she will show it to her BFF who has been making fun of us from the get go. Crossing fingers… thanks again!

        • http://twitter.com/SlimPalate SlimPalate

          Your welcome! I hope she changes her mind about it. Tell her to eat what she likes rather than what other people tell her to like.

  • Jennifer

    You are truly an inspiration! Loved reading this. Keep up the good work. I am in the process of losing a lot of weight and help my kids become healthy (I have four kids ranging from 2 to 13). Keep up the good posts

  • Lisa

    Whoa Joshua, incredible! I’m thankful I am able to teach my kiddos at 9 and 6 what I had to learn a bit later. You are setting a great example for your peers and setting the stage for future generations. Thank you for putting your story out here for us to share!!

  • Alicia K

    Thank you for sharing your story. I look forward to taking the time to read through your blog.

  • http://twitter.com/MonicaPaleo The Paleos

    Oh my goodness! Thank you so much for connecting your community to Joshua! What an incredible story, the pictures alone gave me goosebumps.

    My husband and I were both overweight kids who were picked on and it shaped our decision making in negative ways into the college years. In our early twenties we had to fight our demons from those negative experiences as a kid. For Joshua to have the maturity and humor to overcome those challenges is amazing! So inspiring!

  • Chelsea

    Love:) Im 17 been eating this way since 15 and it has completely changed my family. My mom dropped 80 pounds, i recovered from raw veganism, my sister became a lean athlete and my dad just feels awesome. What an amazing transformation. I wish more teens could take control of their health!

  • http://twitter.com/NazKovacs Nazanin Kovacs

    Happy to have come across Joshua’s blog and what a great post this is. Thanks for sharing your journey with us and thank you Stacy!

  • lolaplooza

    Joshua – I first heard about you a few weeks ago when Michelle from NomNomPaleo was tweeting back and forth with you. So glad that Michelle and Stacy and others are helping to get your story out, as it’s super-inspirational. I wish you all the best!

  • Claude Feland

    Good for you Josh!!! You are an inspiration to many people!!! Great story! ჱܓ (✿◕‿◕) Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ

  • Heather

    What a great story and such an inspiration to others. Bravo to Josh for taking the reins on his own health and happiness!

  • D

    Diff. Pursue a career where you can love food and share food with people. :) Great job! I respect you for being son young and doing this. You are an inspiration to a lot of kids. Keep the great work up!

  • Caro

    Forwarded this to my parents and teenage sisters. Such an inspiration!

  • http://www.solanabeachcrush.com/nav/media Solana Beach Foodie

    Wow! Josh, you are really encouraging. After reading, my takehome are the following that discipline is always the frst step to a successful change of lifestyle. And yes, positive comments are really one of things that makes you want to press on. I hope everyone who will read this post will keep that in mind. I’m glad I was able to stumble upon this post. Just curious, now that you had a change of lifestyle, what’s your favorite food or recipe? I can’t wait to hear from you and thank you, Josh, so much for writing this post and Stacy for having him as a guest blogger.

    • http://twitter.com/SlimPalate SlimPalate

      Hi, so sorry for the late response, could have sworn I got to all of the questions but I must have missed yours. Anyway, to be honest picking a favorite food would be a little too difficult. There are so many healthy choices out there that I love. If I absolutely had to pick a favorite vegetable it would be between broccoli, mushrooms or Brussels Sprouts. As for my favorite recipe I don’t think I could possibly choose one. I love way too many different recipes to pick one. I would have to have it narrowed down to a category. Thanks for the question!

  • http://www.mypaleoplan.com/ Mike Hawkins

    Great story. I’m totally impressed by Josh’s ‘take charge’ attitude regarding his diet and (ultimately) his health.

    He’s a great inspiration for other young people to make smart food choices.

    Thanks for featuring him I started following Josh on Pinterest and Twitter yesterday….and I encourage others to do the same.

  • Haley

    As a 16-year-old girl, I’d just like to voice my strong appreciation for that after photo…

  • CamCanEat

    What an amazing story!! This young man is a role model for all teens. I wish I had been smart enough to do this at 16!