Texas native Alton Ward weighed a staggering 355 pounds at the tender age of 17, or almost two and a half times the average weight for an American male in his age range. He was fat and unhealthy and knew that he needed to make a change.
Ward decided to try his hand in the plethora of diets out there that all but guarantee significant weight loss, to no avail.
He told Business Insider,
“I tried all the diets,” he said. “Jenny Craig, Atkins, no carbs … juice diets, the lose 10 pounds in 5 days, all the different things, and none of it worked for me.”
As Alton shipped off to college at Texas A&M at the age of 18, he saw no significant weight reduction, so he decided to exercise and committed to finding a diet that was not only satiating but also allowed him to slim down.
That’s when the unexpected hero came into play: Chick-Fil-A. Texas A&M had a Chick-Fil-A on campus and since he was a kid, Alton had always loved the quick service chicken restaurant. He was adamant on finding healthy menu options.
For breakfast, he would have two boiled eggs with oatmeal. Then if he went to Chick-fil-A for lunch, he would have a grilled chicken wrap. When it was colder, he’d get soup. He’d often get salads, but with a little bit of ranch dressing on the side. Some days, he would eat Chick-fil-A for lunch and dinner.
Alton coupled his Chick-Fil-A diet with a strength and conditioning routine and in a little under a year, he lost 140 pounds.
“I wouldn’t say all of it is Chick-fil-A, because I have to make my own decisions,” he said, but noted that Chick-Fil-A had “tasty, healthy options that worked for me and…my palate.”
Fast forward four years, and Alton is a 25-year-old sales representative who lives in Denver and has been able to maintain his weight, even as he allows himself to splurge on some Chick-Fil-A nugz every now and then.
“I think Chick-fil-A is a great brand. It’s literally help me change my life because I was on my way to a heart attack or just having a stroke or diabetes in every way. So, I was able to find food that tasted good where I could have a variety of options.”
Granted, Alton’s menu choices from Chick-Fil-A are likely different from the greasy feast you and I order, but I choose to believe that ordering a classic chicken sandwich meal, a 10 piece nugget and a Oreo shake will turn my bowling ball belly into a wash board. We all construct our own realities.
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[h/t Business Insider]