Buon Appetito!

Customized weight-loss program improves health, vitality.

trip to the Cape Coral area isn’t complete without a visit to Miceli’s waterfront Italian restaurant, where the Pasta Ala Miceli is one of the best options on a menu the Miceli family has been honing since it opened its first eatery some 20 years ago.

Vincenzo Miceli lost 100 pounds on the Ideal Protein® weight-loss program. 

Before & After Ideal Protein

“It’s a bounty of fresh, local seafood – clams, shrimp and calamari,” says Vincenzo Miceli, who opened this particular restaurant ten years ago. “You can even get it with Fra diavolo, which is a spicy red sauce. That’s how I like it. It’s our signature pasta dish.”

A restaurant owner since he left college, 38-year-old Vincenzo says he makes a point of tasting every dish made in his kitchen each day. Some would consider that one of the perks of the job, but Vincenzo learned a few years ago that it has some drawbacks.

“I had some pictures taken professionally of me and my family at my restaurant, and I was very dissatisfied with the way I looked in them,” Vincenzo reveals. “I could see I was overweight, and that got me very concerned.”

Vincenzo had good reason to be concerned. At the time the pictures were taken, he weighed more than 320 pounds and was experiencing pain and tingling in his legs, symptoms he suspected were a result of his excess weight.

The son of a man who had a heart attack at the age of 39 and the father of two young daughters, Vincenzo also worried his excess weight was putting him at greater risk for a heart attack or stroke that would forever alter his life and/or that of his family.

It was those concerns that prompted Vincenzo to visit a doctor. His choice of physician was Keith Susko, MD, who specializes in pain management at Pain Relief & Physical Rehab in Fort Myers.

Vincenzo’s choice was fortuitous because Dr. Susko also specializes in obesity medicine. Following a nerve study of Vincenzo’s legs, Dr. Susko confirmed Vincenzo’s belief that his weight was causing his leg pain and recommended he begin a diet plan.

An Ideal Fit

The plan Dr. Susko endorses is Ideal Protein®. It is a four-phase, ketogenic, medically developed weight-loss and lifestyle protocol that helps participants lose excess body fat and effectively improve their health and wellness while increasing vitality.

“Ideal Protein is such a complete and effective nutrition program that it has actually helped some patients reduce blood pressure, cholesterol or diabetes medications they need to take,” Dr. Susko explains.

“Some of those patients have been able to get off their medications entirely by sticking to this program, which helps them maintain their fat loss because it changes their eating habits and the way they look at food.”

In addition to improving blood sugar and cholesterol levels and reducing blood pressure, Ideal Protein also helps participants foster better appetite control and develop and maintain eating habits that become second nature to them.

Those goals are achieved through customized meal plans that help to burn stored fat and preserve lean muscle by emphasizing high-quality proteins that are easily absorbed and by limiting the amount of sugars and dietary fats that are taken in.

“Another thing I like about the program is that it acts as a natural appetite suppressant by increasing the fat-burning mechanism of the body, which suppresses the craving for additional carbohydrates,” Dr. Susko adds.

“That’s why it’s so easy for participants to stay on the program, because they’re not craving food and feeling hungry the way you do when you’re on a regular, high-carbohydrate diet.”

Adapted from a fitness and nutrition program designed for Olympic athletes, Ideal Protein also helps participants preserve and sometimes increase muscle mass, which further fuels weight loss and helps to build added strength.

“Ideal Protein burns fat while preserving muscle mass, which is what you need to stay healthy and maintain a high metabolic rate, which is the rate of energy the body needs to function properly,” Dr. Susko informs.

Because the program removes most of the dairy, grains and a lot of fruits from their diet, Ideal Protein participants need to take a multivitamin as well as potassium, fish oil and calcium supplements to ensure they receive an adequate amount of minerals each day.

“I highly recommend the supplements, but the advantage you get from eliminating a lot of the dairy and grains from your diet is that you’re also eliminating some of the most inflammatory foods people tend to eat,” Dr. Susko educates.

“I run a medical practice where I treat a lot of pain, and I’ve noticed that when I get patients to use the Ideal Protein program, their pain levels drop because they’ve reduced the systemic inflammation caused by some of the foods they’ve eliminated.

“Another advantage is that Ideal Protein helps patients decrease their gastroesophageal reflux and any medications they may be taking for that. It can also help with snoring or sleep apnea problems.

“That’s partly because fat loss in general helps with those things, but we notice that happens very quickly with people on the Ideal Protein program. In fact, within a week or two of starting the program, we start seeing all of these benefits.”

Participants in the Ideal Protein Protocol are also encouraged to exercise regularly. To aid them in that endeavor, participants are given access to fitness videos showing them a variety of exercises that can be done to help them burn more calories.

“It’s always helpful to exercise when you’re in any type of diet program and that includes Ideal Protein,” Dr. Susko explains. “But I started offering the Ideal Protein program because I had so many patients who simply could not exercise because they were in too much pain.

“I was looking for a way to help them lose weight because people tend to get heavier due to a lack of exercise. The beauty of Ideal Protein is that, if you can exercise you’ll get better results; but if you can’t, it is still a medically sound way to control your weight.

Life-Changing Results

Vincenzo is proof of that. Because of his work schedule, he is one who simply doesn’t have much time to exercise. Still, he has lost more than 100 pounds since he began the program a few years ago. And he’s done that without having to change his work habits.

“Ideal Protein worked for me because it teaches you how to eat right and what to eat to keep your body burning fat,” Vincenzo says. “It gives you the tools to succeed that all the other diet plans I’d tried over the years never did.

“And believe me, I tried a lot of other diet plans. But this was by far the most beneficial because it taught me portion control, which was my biggest problem. It also taught me about the right types of food to eat and when to eat.

“And one of the best things is that I was able to stay on this diet and still be productive at my restaurant, where I need to do a lot of taste testing and am always creating new things. All I had to do was stick to the guidelines of the program, and it worked.

“That’s why I owe a debt of gratitude to Dr. Susko. He was instrumental in changing my life because when I started this program, all I saw in my daughters’ eyes was love and when I looked in the mirror, all I saw in my own eyes was pain.

“I wanted them to see love in my eyes, too. I committed to losing the weight not only for myself but also for my daughters. They’re just eight and ten now, and I need to be around for them, and this is going to help me do that.”

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