Kripalu Guest Stories: Lauren MacDuffie
I came to Kripalu’s Integrative Weight Loss program (IWL) to address my own lifelong issues with food and weight, as well as to bring new ideas and energy to my work as an occupational therapist with students with significant physical, learning, and behavioral disabilities.
I learned so much from the wonderful faculty. I now have the tools to make small, but lasting changes. Here are the top 10 results from the tools they sent me home with:
- Husband lost 40 pounds!
- Then he invested in Emeril Stainless cookware for more great food!
- I am pleased with my own gradual weight loss (15 pounds so far) slow and steady.
- Labor Day whole-foods BBQ—my family polished off all the veggies.
- Family admits to liking tofu. Thanks, Tofu Scramble!
- Dog loves one-mile uphill climb every night.
- Daughter shares recipes with high school friends.
- Found a nice yoga class at the JCC, free with my membership.
- If recipes were human, the Quinoa Avocado Salad would be the poster child for Kripalu IWL. I can’t have enough copies of it.
- I feel everyone can have a yoga practice.
My biggest moment at Kripalu was when amazing nutritionist John Bagnulo said, “There is nothing healthy that is wrapped.” Except for Ezekiel bread, I would agree with him!
The program has also influenced my work life at a school for adolescents with disabilities. I had the courage to bring our most behaviorally challenging, 300-pound student to the yoga mat. He enjoyed using the singing bowl and was more cooperative than I have ever witnessed. We developed a walking program for our plus-size students and will incorporate outdoor gardening and composting projects, including a worm bin. One class prepared Avocado Quinoa Salad (of course!) and served it to the rest of the school. They loved those limes! We have identified a need to reach the parents and bring them the kinds of resources IWL provides, and are looking for funding.
I received a scholarship from Kripalu to attend the program, and I like to tell people that the generosity and support that Kripalu provided me is now benefiting not only me but my family and my students. It is a gift well used and greatly appreciated.
—Lauren MacDuffie, senior occupational therapist, Staten Island, New York