I’ll admit: the first thing about Virta that caught my attention was how the cost was paid for by my company. I have been in the airline industry for many years, and though I am now a lead aircraft technician, I had once been a lead negotiator for employee benefits. This means I know my way around benefits and can recognize an important one when I see it. When I learned about Virta’s diabetes reversal and weight loss program, I thought it sounded intriguing, but to learn that it was fully covered as part of my health benefits sealed the deal.
My wife and I had previously tried to get healthier on our own by watching what we ate. We never found that balance between feeling satisfied with our food options and getting the results we needed. My BMI was a bit high, so I needed to lose weight, and my wife had recently been told her prediabetes had progressed to type 2 diabetes. When I told my wife how Virta could help us reach both of our goals, we decided to join together and motivate each other along the way.
We couldn’t be happier with this decision. The first surprise was that we were never hungry on Virta. By making some changes to our meals with the support of our Virta health coaches, we’ve discovered new favorite foods along with a wide variety of delicious options. At first, we felt a little bit of sugar withdrawals because the personalized plan our Virta coaches developed for us cut out a lot of the carbs we were eating. But the substitutions we made helped curb some of those cravings. In fact, food on Virta has been so satisfying that my wife was recently at a function where cupcakes were laid out for dessert. She said that she wasn’t even tempted.
Not only are Virta-friendly meals tasty and filling, but our results help keep us going too. In just 90 days, my wife’s blood sugar averages are right in the 80s (mg/dL), which means Virta has lowered it enough to move her out of the range for type 2 diabetes. I’ve lost 40 pounds without really feeling like I was trying, which helps me at my job. I can more easily go up and down the stands. Instead of taking golf carts or trucks to work on aircrafts in my area, I am able to walk all day. I actually choose to walk because I have so much more energy. My knees are thanking me as well, because they used to get so sore from going up and down the stands and walking the ramps, not to mention carrying the extra weight.
From my benefits experience in the past, I know employees can sometimes be skeptical about the benefits their company provides. There may be this lingering feeling of, “What does the company get out of this?” While Virta may be saving the company money, I tell everyone that the health benefits of Virta are for them alone. Though it was the cost (or lack thereof) of Virta that first got me interested, it’s how Virta has made me feel better and taught me how to live in the healthiest way possible that has been the true value of this program.
I have always encouraged my friends and co-workers to better manage their health. Now with Virta, we all have the tools and support to do so. The next step for me and my wife, Teresa, is to reduce the medications that we are taking and, most importantly, continue to enjoy a much healthier life.
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