Patient Results


The pounds have melted away and I am loving myself

I discovered Dr. Gail Altschuler through a mutual friend after I had pretty much given up on losing weight. I was so depressed and confused about food, weight, nutrition, and all the things that related to a healthy self image and body.

I had great success with the plan Dr. Gail Altschuler gave me and watched, almost in disbelief, as the pounds melted away.

I reached my goal after much focus and dedication. During that time, I discovered something new and interesting. What awakened in me was a love of self, a love that is patient, kind and nurturing. I watched as it affected the way I approached my relationship to my body and all life situations.

After reaching my goal and maintaining it for many months, I thought I was “done”. But during the holidays, I lost my focus and gained some weight back. A few bothersome negative feelings started to creep back in. Thank goodness I made an appointment to see Dr. Gail Altschuler! She quickly got me back on track with her clarity, guidance and enthusiasm for my success. I re-embraced the personalized program she gave me, and especially the love I have for myself, both of which are so empowering.

For me, this is the place to start and an awareness to maintain; self love. It is my anchor.

I have learned to be willing to get out of my head, slow down, be kind and listen to my body, which is intelligent and wants to be healthy.

This sweet and caring relationship has many rewards, and combined with the support from Dr. Gail Altschuler, the weight that I want to lose to is coming off slowly but surely.

– Jane K.


I feel like a whole new woman

A little background on me first. I am a person who has struggled with weight my entire life. I am now in my 60s and have been on a constant yo-yo with HMR meal supplements since my early 30s. I have no problem getting weight off but keeping it off is an entirely different set of skills.

In researching the possibility of bariatric surgery to solve this problem, I came across The Altschuler Center for Weight Loss & Wellness. This was a link from the Marin General Hospital website. I setup an appointment to meet Dr. Gail Altschuler and learn about her approach and the program. When we met, I was immediately impressed how she “got it” about my type of issue. She was willing to work with me, one on one, to set a course for solving the issues I had. The biggest was that screaming voice in my head that said all day, everyday “you are hungry, eat.” I was introduced to a new way of keeping records and began in earnest. The new program was 2 protein shake meals and one food meal every day. Now in the past, I could do 1000 calories a day with all HMR supplements, so I know I can do this, not a problem. But what was different is that I began to reintroduce Phentermine into my daily meds protocol. This little blue pill, not to be confused with the male, little blue pill, made all the difference in the world for me. I had been in a Phen-Phen program back in the 1990s. I used Phentermine with the Zoloft I was taking at the time and did not use the Fenfluramine. As everyone knows, Fenfluramine caused heart problems for many and was removed from the market in 1997. Phentermine worked well for me in maintenance of weight loss back then. Phentermine was the answer all along but my primary physician would not prescribe for me. I no longer have any voice in my head, can manage 1000 calories a day or less and am never hungry or have issues with my sleep. I do take antidepressants but the mix is truly amazing.

I feel like a whole new woman.

In October 2013, I weighed 217 (my scale) and began a weight loss program on my own with just the HMR meal supplements. By May of 2014, I had lost 40 lbs. but had been cheating, eating popcorn almost every day. This was not working for me and I was always hungry. So I stopped and went back onto solid food. I kept my food records but calories were well over 2000 a day and this wasn’t working and as usual, I gained back some of the weight I had lost. So I decided to take a break and regroup. Sorry this story is so long but I need to give you the whole picture. By November 2014, I had come to the conclusion bariatric surgery (lap band or sleeve) was the only answer to solve my weight problem. I went to the Internet and started my research. Now Dr. Gail Altschuler and The Altschuler Center for Weight Loss & Wellness enter my life. I began working with her in November 2014 and in a brief 13 weeks; I had lost 10% of my body weight. I began her program at weight 196 (my scale) and am now at 173 (my scale), February 2014. I am not finished and will continue to lose to get down to 150, again my scale. This will get me to a weight that makes me feel fantastic, BMI in appropriate range and no fears of diabetes. I am forecasting this for May 2014 and will celebrate my birthday with a great accomplishment, new tools and a wonderful new friend, Dr. Gail Altschuler.

– Nancy


I lost 10% of my weight in 10 weeks, just as planned

Many weight loss programs use groups, but they have never worked for me. I couldn’t get to the meetings consistently and I wasn’t comfortable in a group face to face. Dr. Gail Altschuler has changed that by providing group sessions by phone. Same day and time every other week, and taped so if you miss a call you can listen to it when you have time. Each session has a theme and Dr. Gail Altschuler shares the principles of that concept. During the hour call we also have time to ask questions and share our progress and challenges. Every session has been very educational and motivating.

One of my favorite tools Dr. Gail Altschuler uses is a private website called “Find Your Place at the Table”. Participants in the bi-monthly phone sessions are in a private group on this site. We can post thoughts, goals, challenges, and progress on our personal page and the other participants can read and/or comment. Comments are inspiring and it is helpful to know you aren’t alone on this journey. I look forward to writing on my page how I did that day and my plan for the next. It keeps me focused on my goals and I can go to it anytime, I don’t have to worry about getting to a specific meeting or feeling guilty that I didn’t make it. I still have a personal appointment with Dr. Gail about once a month, but between the phone sessions and the website I feel like I’m getting support every day.

I’ve lost 10% of my weight in 10 weeks, just as planned.

I’m now setting a new goal, and will continue to use Dr. Gail’s bi-monthly calls and website to find my place at the table!

– Susan



I’ve lost 15 lbs and people are starting to notice!

Dr. Gail Altschuler and her staff are helping me tackle the 30 lbs I’ve carried around for the last decade, the result of back-to- back pregnancies and just getting older. For the last 10 years I’ve lost and gained 10 lbs a few times. This year, I finally realized that to be truly healthy, I had to lose 30, not 10, and keep it off, forever. This program works for me because I have a sweet tooth and don’t make good choices when 3 p.m. rolls around. Now, using the tools provided by Dr. Gail Altschuler’s program, I am able to sail through the day without hunger but more importantly without cravings.

My favorite thing about the program is that everything you eat is healthy and nothing is truly eliminated, except refined sugar.My sweet tooth is satisfied by the healthy, protein-rich snack options and my regular meals are real food, so this is a lifestyle I can get behind. I am willing to eat this way forever, so once I get to my goal weight, I know I will keep it off.

I’ve lost 15 lbs and people are starting to notice. I feel great!

– Michelle


In 6 months I went from a size 16 to a 6

I used to say puberty ruined my life. That massive release of hormones made me puff out just like a piece of popcorn and I’ve lugged around 25-50 pounds of extra weight ever since. I tried to take off the weight many times with many different diets- Weight Watchers, Atkins, South Beach. Each try followed the same pattern: radically change eating habits, lose weight VERY slowly, get frustrated with constant hunger, quit and regain the weight I had lost. My goal was always just trying to get to a healthier weight. I never had “thin” as a goal because I didn’t think it was possible for me. I love food; cooking for family and friends is a big part of my life. I told myself some people have slow metabolisms and naturally carry more weight; short of really starving, there’s nothing you can do about it.

Two years ago pretty severe knee and hip pain forced me to the doctor. My gazelle like doc gently pointed out the obvious solution to my medical issues: weight loss. She suggested The Altschuler Center and told me the doctor there is, “famous for getting those last 10 pounds off!” I wasn’t too thrilled with the advice. I’d been frustrated too many times. Besides, I didn’t see a lot of things to cut out of my regular diet – I rarely eat out, keep my drinks to diet only, don’t consume very much packaged food and I hit the gym 3 times a week! I work hard enough just to maintain my weight; I didn’t want a naturally lean, drill sergeant of a doc telling me I can no longer eat any of the food I enjoy and that I have to exercise even more. I didn’t go to The Altschuler Center.

A year rolled by. The joint pain and some more serious medical issues forced me back to the doctor. She consulted my chart and noted that a year ago she had recommended The Altschuler Center for Weight Loss & Wellness and yet I weighed the same. This time her recommendation to lose weight was much more of a command. I was disheartened. I thought all the same things I had thought the previous year, but knew I had to take the weight off. I made an appointment and prepared to meet Dr. Drill Sergeant.

To my delight, Dr. Gail Altschuler is most decidedly not a drill sergeant. She is kind, understanding, and immensely helpful. She immediately put me at ease as we discussed my history. It was a joy to finally talk with a doctor who truly understood my food and diet frustrations. She herself had trouble with weight loss and her research led her to become a bariatric specialist. She lost 50 pounds and has kept it off. Finally – a doctor who gets it!

With Dr. Gail Altschuler’s help, I successfully changed my eating habits without being hungry. I start my mornings with a chocolate shake, have some delicious corn chowder before lunch, and drink yummy hot chocolate after dinner! There are lots of supplement options that are all delicious – so food boredom isn’t a problem. Having quick, convenient food options makes it easy for even the busiest person to stay on plan. I really enjoy my counseling sessions with Dr. Gail Altschuler. We can talk about anything and I love that my questions are being answered by a medical doctor, not just a weight loss counselor.

Eating a combination of home cooked meals and meal supplements I lost 40 pounds in 6 months and went from a size 16 to a 6. I had to buy a whole new wardrobe! My knee and hip pain are gone and now you’ll see me on the hiking trails of Marin, biking with friends, and even dancing! At 45, I’m stronger and healthier than I’ve ever been – and I look my best too!

The program is simple, affordable, and effective! It’s been 6 months and I feel great. I’ve kept the weight off because I really like the food I get at the clinic – it curbs my hunger and my cravings. I eat it every day and enjoy it.

People always ask, “How did you do it?” I always tell them – “Dr. Gail Altschuler!” Two friends have listened and are finding success as well. Both immediately called me and said, “I love Dr. Altschuler!” I was afraid going to a bariatric doc would make my life harder and be too restrictive. Instead I’ve found that a bariatric specialist makes losing weight so much EASIER! I really wish someone had recommended it to me years ago! If you’re struggling to lose even 10 pounds, make it easier and go to The Altschuler Center for Weight Loss & Wellness – it works!

– Linda


I have kept the weight off for 1 year now!

I have continued to lose weight and have kept it off for 1 year now! The tools that Dr. Gail Altschuler has given me make all the difference. Two of the main tools are eating protein every 2 hours and not thinking in terms of what I am doing without, but instead thinking of what I am doing for myself. I can always count on Dr. Gail Altschuler to be non judgmental, and to give me great new perspectives on every day challenges. Dr. Gail Altschuler always helps me to see that my goals are attainable and that I really just need to sit back and check in with myself more often.

I want to make sure that I also mention that Dr. Gail Altschuler’s staff has been wonderful to me from day 1. I always feel safe and know I can trust and rely on them.

Although I am now in the maintenance phase of my weight loss journey, it is VERY pivotal to keep in touch with Dr. Gail Altschuler and to come and see her at the very least once a month. I also place bi-weekly orders of product that are shipped to me wherever I am so I am never without the support I need to stay on track and maintain my healthy lifestyle.

– Deborah


Moderation was the key for my weight loss

I went to the Altschuler Center after the birth of my daughter. I had always been a runner and in very good shape. I never worried about what I ate, nor did I have to worry about gaining weight because of the amount of running that I did.

With both of my kids, I gained 70 pounds. With my son, I stopped running instantaneously and was still eating what I did when running 70 miles a week. It took a year to lose it, and I basically went right back to my running routine. This was not the case with my daughter. Before getting pregnant with her, I had been doing my running and was in great shape. I was incredibly sick with her for the first 20 weeks of pregnancy. I still gained 70 pounds. I could not get the weight off no matter what I did. I realized I needed to change my eating habits, but I really didn’t know how to go about it.

I went in to see Dr. Gail Altschuler and learned a lot about protein, fat, carbs and sugar. I was 38 when I went to see her, and my body chemistry had changed at this point. I was eating too much sugar and too many carbs. I carry my weight in the middle, with my lower body being more on the lean side. As soon as I started cutting out the sugar and the white flour, I immediately started dropping weight, especially in the middle. The more protein I ate, the less hungry I was. I lost 28 pounds in 7 weeks and from there just started working on changing my eating habits. It was a long process. Over the next couple of years, I would fluctuate some, and any time I would start to put on some weight, I would go in to see Dr. Gail Altschuler. for a check in. I would go in to see her for a consultation even if I was maintaining. It kept me in check. I was playing tennis and running 5 days a week, so I was still very active.

Now, being 44, my body chemistry has changed even more and so has my busy life. Working and raising a 10 and a 7 year old has left me with little time to exercise. I would attempt to work out throughout the week, but I could only manage one day. Plus, I was eating too many calories, so I put on weight.

I came to the conclusion that I was not going to be able to rely so much on exercise to maintain my weight and that I would really need to be much more conscious of the calories going in and calories being expended throughout the day.

I went back to see Dr. Gail Altschuler. in June with a different approach. It was not going to include exercise. I was focusing on only the food. I started the first two months of eating protein, which would be shakes, meat, cheese and any other protein. I cut out sugar, and for the first 4 weeks, I did not have any fruit. I needed to get my body re-adjusted. I needed to get the sugar out. My blood sugar level was at the highest it had ever been, and this woke me up. I was not diabetic, but my number was getting close to being pre-diabetic. I didn’t have alcohol or any white flour for the first month as well. I dropped about 12 pounds that month. From there, I started to incorporate black beans, limited amounts of fruit, usually an apple, vegetables etc. I would have a beer or two every now and then, but I was very careful about what was going in my body as far as carbohydrates and sugar were concerned.

I went to a wedding in August. I had a few brownies and some wine. I woke up the next morning feeling sluggish. I did not like this feeling and immediately decided to not have any sugar or alcohol for the next week.

It was at this point that I realized that I couldn’t go crazy on eliminating things from my diet, but rather, moderation really was the key to keeping my weight at a place that was healthy for me.

And so that’s what I have been doing ever since. I love Mexican food, so if I know I am going to go out to eat I will have a shake, a bar and when ordering, I do not get rice in my burrito. I do get guacamole, cheese and sour cream, though. My body does well with some fat. I do not gain weight from fat, but from the extra sugar and flour. I will not eat the entire burrito anymore. I will eat half of the burrito, usually not eating all of the tortilla. I do eat some of the tortilla because some carbohydrates are good! If I have the rice, then I don’t eat much of the tortilla. I am constantly swapping this carb for that carb. If I know I am going out for pizza and coronas in the evening, then it’s a strict day of shakes, water and veggies. No fruit. I can eat three pieces of cheese pizza and a couple of beers and not gain an ounce.

I will use the medicine when I am extra busy, on holidays or when I just feel like stepping it up a bit.

Figuring out how many calories I have to lose and maintain and how I could eat what I wanted took years and years of trial and error. I do not eat Ben and Jerry’s anymore, rather I eat the Dreyer’s slow churned. I don’t eat a full sandwich at lunch anymore, rather half for lunch and half for dinner. I consume a lot less calories this way, and I never feel stuffed. I never eat until I’m uncomfortably full.

I drink a lot of Diet Coke. I don’t drink coffee. Getting a lot of water in is very important to balance out the caffeine.

I always have bars or shakes in my car. I used to eat two bars a day. I only eat one now. It makes a difference. The bars are good, but they have a lot of calories in them.

Nothing happens overnight. As much as we would all like it to go that way, the reality is that changing habits can be extremely difficult. It takes a lot to tweaking and a lot of awareness.

Dr. Gail Altschuler gave me the tools to craft a lifestyle that worked for me.

– Julie


Everyone in her family is losing weight and getting healthier

Sandra was feeling very self-conscious and unstable at her current weight. She felt very unmotivated and out of balance. She found herself being afraid to tell people she was watching her weight and would just go with the flow of what was happening around her. She finally became fed up and ready to make some changes.

Sandra found working with Dr. Gail Altschuler very reassuring because she was so honest and knowledgeable. She told her exactly what she needed to know and how to achieve her goals. She learned so much about her body and how to handle real life situations from working with Dr. Gail Altschuler.

Now Sandra is no longer afraid to speak up about her lifestyle in social situations, she can just tell people that this is how she takes care of herself with confidence.

She especially likes that everyone in her family is losing weight and getting healthier.

Sandra is now 5 pounds from her goal weight and she has gained much peace of mind. Sandra recommends Dr. Gail Altschuler to everyone who notices her new found confidence! Way to go Sandra!

– Sandra


My health issues have resolved

I was a late bloomer, late to marry at 40 and late to have babies (twins) at 43. I came to Dr. Gail Altschuler feeling isolated because I was afraid to socialize with dear friends. I would make up excuses and pretend I didn’t feel well so that I didn’t have to go to parties. I just didn’t want anyone to see me. I had always been thin and after having the twins I gained a lot of weight. I had no ambition to look nice. I hadn’t bought clothes in years and was looking frumpy, feeling ugly and depressed. My knees would hurt and creek going up the stairs, my cholesterol was high, my skin looked horrible, and my self-esteem was non-existent. I wasn’t able to play with my kids or be the role model I had always envisioned. So I took the plunge, went for the free consultation, and started the program.

I loved that Dr. Gail Altschuler was able to customize the plan to fit MY life. I wasn’t in a cookie cutter plan that might not work for me. There was also a lot of exploration about the psychology of WHY I had gained the weight and why it wasn’t coming off. Losing weight is a mental process as much as physical. So I worked through my issues and was starting to feel great. I lost a significant amount of weight in the first week and I was motivated to reach my goals. She taught me to be proud of my achievements even if they were not as grand as I had hoped. I was never hungry and didn’t feel deprived like I had on other diets. Weekly visits with her helped keep me on track!

I am now 10 pounds from my ultimate goal. People notice me now. They comment on how good I look and how engaged in life I am. I run and play with my 4 year old twins. I started shopping for clothes again. I even go out of my way to attend parties!

I have my confidence back and my health issues have resolved. My cholesterol is great! My knees don’t hurt anymore. I don’t wake up so bloated that I can’t put my wedding rings on. I am happy with life.

I have learned so many tools to help me keep the weight off too. I have changed my habits and have become more responsible for myself. Honestly there are very few of my “sin” foods that I am tempted by anymore. Sometimes I will have a bite because I feel I need to live life, but I am usually satisfied with a bite. I don’t ever want to go back to where I was. I have stopped using food as a reward and regard it as fuel for my body. But the best part of all is after 4 years I am finally in the pictures with my kids!

I am so thankful to Dr. Gail Altschuler and her awesome staff for making me always feel welcome (like I am going to see friends!), and for helping guide me along the path that was the correct one for my journey. We all come from a different place and need a different approach to reach our weight loss goals. I found my perfect fit!

– Tracey


My cholesterol, sodium, and sugar levels are all in check

If you’re reading this, it’s time for you to take charge of your life. There are no gimmicks involved.

Prior to Dr. Gail Altschuler, I would dread going to my physician. The scale was my enemy, looking at the numbers increase, year after year. Hearing my physicians words, “Now Rosie, you have to do something about your weight…” My health was at the point of which I needed to take pills to lower my cholesterol, borderline diabetic and of course getting older. Here’s the thing, I was trying every weight loss diet. Sometimes I actually lost a few pounds. Never did I reach my goal.

I work a 40 plus hour week, get home to do some light house cleaning, start dinner for the family, clean up, get ready for the next day and it starts all over again.

Finally my physician told me about Dr. Gail Altschuler. Am I excited she did!

Dr. Gail Altschuler made it easy to understand why her program, or should I say my new life style, was going to work. It really is about the basic fundamentals. The best part is I still enjoy my favorite foods.

I started her program in February 2013 and have surpassed my goal. I no longer hear those dreaded words from my physician. The words are now replaced with, “You look fabulous!”

In less than 8 months, my cholesterol, sodium, and sugar levels are all in check, exercising is made easier, romance has re-entered again into my marriage, and I’m having an affair with my clothes.

I thank my lucky stars for Dr Gail Altschuler and Nicole. Never did I feel judgment, only encouragement.

My advice to you… do it now. Don’t wait. You’re worth it!

– Rosemarie


I have an entire new wardrobe

For over two years my primary care physician encouraged me to consult with Dr. Gail Altschuler. For that same amount of time, I resisted because, after all, I had lost weight successfully a number of times during my lifetime. I knew what to eat (and not eat) and I knew that I needed to exercise, but I was not able to sustain any program for any significant length of time. I dreaded the restriction and felt overwhelmed with the amount of time I knew it would take to lose the 50 + extra pounds I had accumulated. Beginning in April 2012, my joints, one by one, became painful. After visits to an orthopedist and normal x-rays, I knew the extra weight had to go!

I came out of the first consultation at the beginning of September 2012 with a “can do” feeling that became stronger as the pounds started to come off. Dr. Gail Altschuler is very supportive and non-judgmental. She has her own personal experience with weight loss/maintenance to share and meeting with her regularly provides helpful strategies for coping with potential pitfalls. For me, traveling (including food laden cruises!) is a challenge and Dr. Gail Altschuler is a good cheerleader with practical insight into how to enjoy a trip and not fall completely off the wagon.

I was also wary about the food supplements. However, I was pleasantly surprised with many of them and quickly determined which ones worked for me. Dr. Gail Altschuler provides samples, so I did not have to buy a whole package of product only to find out I did not like it. The bars, the water additives and (my favorite) Amaretto Hot Chocolate became my staples for day to day as well as for travel.

By May 1, 2013 I had reached my goal weight!! The time passed very quickly and I never felt like I was suffering. I was learning a new way to enjoy food.

My joints are pain free; I walk three miles a day (5-6 days/week) and chase five lively grandchildren. Shopping for clothes is FUN!!! I have an entire new wardrobe (a welcome expense!) including knee high boots (that I have previously not been able to wear) and horizontal stripes!

Now I am working at maintaining my success. One of the major changes in my thinking is I no longer “write off” a whole day if I make one mistake with a food choice. I don’t restrict myself from anything, but rather I limit the portion, eat sensibly the remainder of the day and exercise. I also have a program to fall back on if my weight starts to creep to that five-pound mark. I think I can live with this! Thank you, Dr. Gail Altschuler!

– Martha


I feel empowered

Before coming to Dr. Gail Altschuler, I had very little hope of losing weight. I felt powerless to change my relationship with food and my isolating and sedentary lifestyle; work, food, TV, sleep.

From day one of the program, I felt like I was given the tools to carve out a new life. It worked for me because I could take the emotion out of my food choices. I like framing my food selections with math. Calories in (food/drink) minus calories out (activity level). Counting calories was the first tool that worked for me. It educated me on what I was putting into my body each day and provided me with the information I needed to make educated choices.

Now my life has changed because I feel empowered.

I am so grateful I found someone, Dr. Gail Altschuler, that understood my struggle. I had taken the first step by asking for help, which sent a strong message to my psyche, “I’m important!”.

Even before I lost my first five pounds, I felt better about myself. In the past year I have landed my dream job as a Utility Solar Project Manager and I recently met an intelligent, hardworking and supportive man whom I feel comfortable being myself with. I think those two huge events are a result of my confidence and positive attitude. And my confidence and positive attitude come from investing in my health and making my personal well-being a priority.

I am enjoying the little wins as well, like not feeling embarrassed in a bathing suit, wearing shorts in public and wearing a dress for the first time in 10 years. I love having more stylish clothes options too. I still see Dr. Gail Altschuler for support and guidance and I have added tools to help with my additional weight loss goals, because I want to live my life to the fullest. I want to discover ALL that I can be.

– Alana B.


I’m about 40 pounds lighter

It’s incredibly easy to allow yourself to get SO busy that you stop paying attention to your own personal needs and care. So many of us do it – we just let work and life take over and sacrifice all else, including diet and exercise. If only there were a reminder system in place to say “hey you, you know that if your body and mind are happier and healthier you’d actually be a lot more productive at all those things you want to focus on!”

Well that was me, I stopped caring for myself and just worked worked worked; next thing I know, I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been. I very quickly gained close to 45 pounds and was not able to make the scale budge for any length of time, no matter what. The “no matter what”, when looking closely, wasn’t really the truth – I wasn’t making any permanent changes, I was only trying quick fixes, so of course the weight would return just as quickly as it came off.

I found Dr. Gail Altschuler last fall and she helped me realize the tools I already possessed and helped me with my plan of attack. She reminded me of my own accountability in my weight loss and health by meeting regularly, setting and reviewing goals, and priorities. Accountability is key to successful weight loss in my opinion – It is up to me to use what I’ve got to make smart choices, educate myself where I may need additional information, and always make sure I’m priority #1.

I’m about 40 pounds lighter now, and have kept the scale from going in the wrong direction for almost 8 months, and I’m feeling great!

Thank you Dr. Gail Altschuler!

– Amanda 


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