“My diabetes was out of control. I was on three different medications and taking seven pills a day,” said Milton resident Connie Bendle. The 59-year-old was aware she needed to adjust her diet but wasn’t confident she’d follow through. That’s when she took a healthy leap and met with a Geisinger nutritionist. “When I first started, one thing that was very helpful was writing down everything that I ate.” Still, changing a lifetime of habits was not easy. But as discouraged as she was and as much as she wanted to give up, she lost 10 pounds in the first week. 

“This is actually working,” she thought to herself and within seven months, she was down 50 pounds. One of her secrets? She taught herself how to love nutritious, healthy foods. 

“I learned that vegetables should be the biggest part of my diet and so you find new and different ways to make your favorite foods. For example, I went a year without eating spaghetti and decided to try spaghetti squash.  I never thought my husband would go for it but he loves it and now I make it regularly.”

Today, Connie is 70 pounds lighter and takes only one pill a day for her diabetes. 

“When I started, I had no intentions of losing this much weight but I feel great. You can call it a diet but it’s actually a lifestyle.” #GeisingerStories"