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Husband benefits from wife's new diet

Staff writer

Weight-loss is a common focus at the home of Steve and Angie Seifert of Lost Springs.

Steve is 57 and Angie is 55, and both have changed their diet since Angie underwent stomach reduction in May 2017.

Two years before that, Steve was diagnosed with Type II diabetes. He was able to reduce his blood-sugar levels with medicine but, at 274 pounds, wasn’t successful at losing weight.

When he started following Angie’s post-surgery diet, his weight started to drop.

“I got away from pasta and bread,” he said. “I was a big eater. I eat a lot less now.”

Angie’s story

Angie was born in Lost Springs as Angie Alvarez. She was very active as a teen-ager and into adulthood, being involved in school sports and later playing on three co-ed softball teams as a young mother.

She weighed 143 pounds on the couple’s wedding day in 1987. Her weight gain began when she became pregnant with the couple’s daughter, Selena, and was up to 273 pounds when she decided to have the surgery two years ago.

Though doctors told her she was healthy, she wasn’t happy with herself.

“I had been thinking about it for 10 years,” she said. “I was tired of not having energy. I wanted to take naps all the time, and I looked horrible in my clothes.”

Steve supported her decision to explore weight-loss surgery because he saw that she felt depressed.

She was put on a six-month doctor supervised diet and saw a nutritionist every month. She was weighed every month to check if that option would work. When it didn’t produce results, her doctor scheduled the surgery.

For two weeks before the surgery, she was on a diet of protein shakes, one for every meal, and lost 21 pounds.

In surgery at the Bariatrics Center of Kansas City, the top half of her stomach was removed, drastically reducing the amount of food she could eat. After a two-day hospital stay, two weeks of a liquid diet, and two months of a soft diet, she could eat regular food including 3 ounces of protein every meal.

“I had to give up a lot,” she said. “I drank a lot of pop. I don’t miss it now.”

Protein is 90 percent of each meal. She eats fish, chicken, and red meat prepared in the oven. She also eats a lot of salad. A typical meal is a chicken breast with lettuce.

“You feel so full right away,” she said.

Because her stomach is so small, she drinks between meals, not with meals. She has a protein shake every morning.

“I cheat a little sometimes,” she said. “If we go out and eat a hamburger, I don’t eat the bun, but I might eat a few chips. If I overeat, I feel miserable.”

She exercises every day in a workout room that includes a treadmill, elliptical, bicycle, and lightweights. She walks three to five miles a day on the treadmill.

Angie and her daughter Selena Diepenbrock, a mother of four children including a 9-month-old baby, support each other and often share low-calorie recipes.

At five feet, two inches, Angie had a goal of 150 pounds, but after she reached it, she decided she wanted to go lower. She is down to 133 pounds and would be satisfied at 120 or 125 pounds.

Steve walks for exercise and now weighs 227 pounds. He looks forward to being under 200.

“Getting to 185 would be great,” he said.

“I pray every day to keep it up,” Angie said. “I hope I can.”

Last modified Jan. 30, 2019

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