Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Transcript of the Mike & Juliet Show Kimkins Episode

The Mike & Juliet Kimkins episode aired in November 2007. The links to the video clips are on the sidebar of this blog. Following is a trasncript of the episode, copied from Yust Yucky's blog:

The Morning Show with Mike and JulietMonday 12 November 2007
Narrator: Live from the heart of new York City, it’s the Morning Show with Mike and Juliet. Monday….
Christin: The weight was coming off very rapidly, uhm… a lot quicker than anything I have ever seen before
Narrator: She lost one hundred pounds, and that’s not all. You won’t believe what happened next. Today – as our weight loss investigation continues, an inside look at the dangerous diet some call “Atkins meets Anorexia.” Also … (other stories) … And now, your hosts, Mike Jerrick and Juliet Huddy
M & J: (chatter, discussion about Veteran’s Day and university study “sexy equals smarter”)
M: As we continue our diet scam investigation series, we look into something called the Kimkins diet – thousands and thousands claim to have shed hundreds of pounds on this low fat, low carb, low calorie weight loss program
J: But the diet many initially considered their salvation may in fact be better described by some as starvation
M: So is it salvation or starvation? Hmmm..
Christin: I’ve always been overweight my entire life
Narrator: Last fall Christin Sherburne hit her highest weight – two hundred fifty pounds — and decided to take action
C: I did a google search, uh, for the best type of diet for me to go on to. Thats when Kimkins came up in my searches
Narrator: Kimkins is a website in which users pay a one-time fee to access a plan for a low carb, low cal, low fat diet
C: When I opened the web page, there was a beautiful woman sitting there in a lawn chair that claimed that she lost a hundred ninety-eight pounds in eleven months
Narrator: Her name is kimmer — founder of the Kimkins diet. Christin was so convinced by her story, she joined and immediately saw success
C: The weight was coming off very rapidly
Narrator: By the five month mark, she had lost one hundred pounds. After telling Kimmer of her success, Christin became the Kimkins cover girl, touting her achievement on the cover of women magazine. Kimmer also hired Christin to do the PR for the website, and membership boomed. But Christin’s rapid weight loss started to take a toll on her health. She started having frequent dizzy spells, and her hair was falling out
C: Also about that time, my menstrual cycle stopped and Kimmer assured me that as long as I had fat on my body that I was not going to starve
Narrator: However, Christin looked into the diet plan and discovered she was consuming less than five hundred calories per day, and was engaged in another risky behavior
C: The regular advice that was given by Kimmer was to take a full dose of laxatives for (unintelligible) two days
Narrator: Christin noted something else was troubling. Despite working for Kimmer for months, she had never met her face to face, and decided to email Kimmer a list of questions about the safety of the diet and Kimmer’s identity
C: About thirty minutes after I got a response back from her, that I was uh terminated
Narrator: A few days later, Christin got an even bigger shock. She was emailed a link to a video
C: I went and looked at the website, and I was saddened and shocked by what I saw
Narrator: Shooters of the video claim Kimmer’s real name is actually Heidi Diaz, and this is what she really looks like. So who is the woman in Kimmer’s online pix? Further investigations revealed Kimmer’s photos and many of the other Kimkins success story images were actually taken from websites for Russian mail order brides
Juliet: Joining us now is Christin Sherburne, as you saw in the piece, ex-Kimkins dieter Deni Huttula
Mike: We also have the PR director for Kimkins, Jeannie Baitinger is here
J: And Kimkins website moderator Delaney Deaver is joining us as well
M: We got both sides sittin’ right up here
J: All right, so, Christin let’s start with you. We just, we just saw the Russian brides uh development. That must have been a shocker
C: It was absolutely shocking. I was totally disgusted when I saw that, that this woman took pictures from a website that exploits women, to begin with, with these mail order brides, and then using them even further to promote (unintelligible) success stories, even her own picture, that I trusted you know she had lost a hundred and ninety-eight pounds pounds in eleven months, and she was using this picture of this other woman as, as her, and passing it off as her
M: Jeannie’s gonna give us an explanation why she thinks that happened,but let’s talk more about you. How, how is your health now?
C: I’m getting better, I’ve been seeing my doctor and a cardiologist and uh
J: A cardiologist?
C: Yes
J: Because
C: Because I was having uhm heart palpitations, I actually went to the emergency room because I thought I was having a heart attack at one point in time. And uh, I uh, have been seeing the cardiologist and then a therapist to help me learn how to eat better, and I’m getting better
J: It sounds like you’re describing things that anorexics describe
C: Yes i believe that this program, when you get down to the, to the bare bones of it, it’s like Atkins meets anorexia. It teaches, it’s like taking overweight women and teaching them how to be anorexic without even knowing it
J: How does it teach them to be anorexic?
C: Well because when you go and you utilize this program, the way it is written, you end up consuming around five hundred calories a day. And we just, in our typical normal diet mindset would never (unintelligible) extremes try to consume five hundred calories a day
M: But you did it, you, it worked for you, so why didn’t you think that as (unintellgible) You were losing all this weight, you were shedding the pounds, going “welll…”
C: I was, and I was very excited at that point in time, when I was losing the weight, but what they were telling me, or what Kimmer told me, over the website and through emails and everything, was that the diet was perfectly safe, that being ketosis, it was a natural appetite suppressant, and
J: And ketosis is something that, that, when you’re doing the Atkins diet, which is also very popular diet, that’s something that you go into
C: Right, uh huh
J: And that’s when you start to lose weight
C: Right
M: Explain ketosis
C: Basically ketosis is when you’re consuming little to no carbs, your body goes into this fat burning stage of ketosis, and it’s a natural appetite suppressant, you’re not hungry. And so therefore it’s easy to cut your calories
M: A lot of people that use this diet plan, they use a little phrase called SNATT, or a word, SNATT, uh which stands for, what, what does that stand for?
C: Semi Nauseous All The Time
J: Semi Nauseous
M: Semi Nauseous All The Time. In other words you’re supposed to kinda feel sick so you don’t wanna eat
C: Right, now that, that goes in varying degrees. For some people it only lasts just a few days, as they transition, transition into ketosis. Some people it lasts a lot longer, but sometimes, the entire length of the diet
J: Now, have you ever met Kimmer? You’ve never met her
C: No
J: Have you ever talked to her?
C: Yes, I’ve talked to her several times over the phone and we chatted all the time
J: She, she hired you
C: Yes, she hired me
M: You loved it so much you worked for her
C: Yeah, I did, I at that point I really believed that it was a good program and that I, I lost weight on it, and so I thought that it was valid, and so it wasn’t until I started working for her, started doing research on the nutritional aspects of the program, and then I started asking questions
M: But you knew this Kimmer had no medical background
C: Right, but she
M: She was just overweight and came up with this plan on her own
C: Right, she said that she had, ten years of experience in this, that she ‘d been doing it for that long, she’d lost the weight five years ago and then kept it off, I had no reason, other than she wasn’t a nutritionist, not to believe her
J: So it was kind of like, a woman who just had some luck, and she kind of gave what she was doing to her friends, but it was some, she’s a woman with maybe, she’s losing weight, but she doesn’t have any kind of dietary
C: No
J: Expertise
C: Right
J: Okay Jeannie? You’re the PR spokesman now for Kimkins
TypoToes: Yes
J: Uh you’ve obviously been listening to Christin, what’s your response? Let’s start, let’s start at the fact that, uh, let’s let’s talk about Kimmer, first of all.
TT: Okay
J: Who’s Kimmer?
TT: Uhm…Kimmer is in fact Heidi Diaz. Uhm, none of us really knew that. You guys didn’t know it, we didn’t know it, just a few days before we came on the show, she called me up. She said, Jeannie this is Heidi. And I was kind of like, huh? And she said, how do you feel about that? The truth is
J: Because she was Kimmer to you, right?
TT: Right, right. It didn’t really surprise me. I mean, I don’t think it’s gonna be a big shock for anyone to know that. Asking why she would have hidden, you know, who her real identity was, you see the video, you see the pictures of the woman
M: You can see why she would hide it, she can’t even lose weight on her own diet plan
TT: I think maybe she fell off the wagon and gained her weight back. Listen, it’s tough
M: Well, come forward and say that
TT: It’s tough
M: Uh, uh I think it’s a good plan but I can’t stay with it
TT: Well, she has a full explanation on her web page and I really can’t explain for her at this point any better than she can explain for herself. But anybody that goes to the website at Kimkins.com, the first page is public, anybody can read it, her site is already up, she, her explanation is already on it
M: But you said a week ago when we talked to you that there was no proof, there’s no video proof that (unintelligible) is actually Kim Diaz (unintelligible)
TT: I really didn’t know that
M: Why did you change your mind
TT: Because she called me and told me that that’s who she was
M: That’s, she’s who
TT: Yes
M: Well my god then back that up, what, she’s using fake photos, before and after pictures are fake, man, the PR, you’re drowning in bad PR
TT: I came in at a very bad time, there’s definitely not a doubt about that. But I’m gonna tell you, I came in because I believe a hundred and ten percent in this diet, it changes people’s lives. Did she use some poor marketing tactics? Well yes, absolutely
J: But that that would make me nervous, doing a diet, something, you’re, you’re messing with your health
TT: Well I’m under a doctor’s supervision, and we encourage all members to be, and I believe that you were under a doctor’s supervision as well?
Christin: No I wasn’t, I was not under a doctor’s supervision, not until the very end of the diet, and actually I’d been off of the program for about four months before I finally went to my doctor and I got the blood work done and everything and yes my blood work did come back okay, but when I finally confessed to him and told him exactly what I had been eating, and the calorie consumption that I had had, he was not happy with me
TT: Christin
M: How can you explain that eight hundred calories a day, you’ve upped it from five hundred to eight hundred calories a day
TT: That’s, that’s the minimal amount
M: Minimum, okay
TT: Minimum
M: Okay
TT: Maximum could be as high as fifteen hundred
M: Do you recommend laxatives?
TT: No
M: No?
TT: Only if somebody tells us you know they’re having potty problems , we recommend psyllium husks, a hundred per cent. Some people
Deni: That’s not what they recommended when I was doing the diet
TT: We’re always willing to make positive changes
M: And Jeannie, you know what, we checked your site one minute before we went on our show. There’s no indication about this video or an admission by Heidi Diaz that she’s Kimmer
TT: It’s on the front web page now, we checked before we left
M: Let’s, let’s look it up right now
TT: Okay
M: Folks in the control room, try to, and
J: Look it up and they say it’s not on there, that’s what our producers (unintelligible)
M: You say it was on the home page?
TT: It was on the home page this morning
M: On the, give us the name of the site
TT: It’s Kimkins.com
M: Kimkins.com
TT: Yes
M: Okay we’ll continue to look at this page, we don’t see it right now, the people in the control room
TT: Okay
J: All right, so, but you say, despite the fact that, that Heidi slash Kimmer slash the ya know Russian mail order bride picture person, despite all that, you believe in this diet
M: Still believe in it
TT: I believe in the diet
J: It’s safe
TT: I believe it can be used safely. Do I believe that anyone should stay on five hundred calories a day to lose a hundred pounds in five months? No. In fact, ladies, I went behind you and I read your posts and as moderators I felt you set a poor example for other people. I really do
J: But they’re not trained
TT: But the fact that Christin didn’t tell her doctor what was going on tells me that Christin knew it was bad
M: Well at one point Christin, you kinda of thought it was good, didn’t ya? I mean
C: Yes
M: There are pictures of you holding up your blood work, look at me
C: Right
M: I’ve lost so much weight, and my blood work is good
C: Right, I did
M: And I’m thrilled with this diet
D: (unintelligible) effects come later
C: Right, and you know, I agree with you, and I admit, I was a hundred percent for the program, and I told people to do it the way that I did it, but what I am doing now is I am coming forward and I am
M: Look how happy you were
C: Telling people
M: Look at that
C: I know, but I am coming forward now, and I am telling people they’re still using my success story, as uh advertisement for this program, and I don’t like that
M: You want that taken off that website
C: I do
M: Why is that still on the website Jeannie?
TT: I have no idea, I do not do anything that has to do with web design
J: Can we, can, can you, since you are in PR and you probably talk to the web design people, can we them off the web site, can we just agree to do that?
TT: I believe that you signed a modeling contract
J: Oh come on, let her go
C: No
TT: It’s not up to me, it’s gonna be between you and Heidi Diaz
C: No, but I signed that modeling contract under fraudulent circumstances
TT: I understand that, but again
C: I do not want
TT: That’s something that you’re gonna have to take up with her
M: But why wouldn’t Heidi Diaz just come on the show and straighten this all out (unintelligible) legitimate
TT: She’s in litigation and actually she had a deposition today. We do have a pending lawsuit
J: You do have your hands full Jeannie
TT: I have my hands full, but i wanna tell you something about it
D: You took it on knowing what was
TT: I did take it on knowing. And the reason that I did that was because every single day somebody comes to me and says, this diet is changing my life, I was gonna have gastric bypass, I don’t have to do it now
J: But I think, I don’t think anybody is arguing with the fact that it can be life changing to lose a lot of weight. That’s great. The bad part is that you’re doing it at the expense of your health, it sounds like (unintelligible) people are saying
C: Right, yes, because like you said, you have had people coming to you every single day saying that it’s changing their life, they’re losing weight, I have people coming to me every single day saying, what on earth is going on with me, I am sick, I’ve had people who are going to the hospital with
M: Deni, is that your story as well? Tell us how much weight have you lost?
Deni: I lost about seventy pounds in about five months
J: Were you happy while you were losing the weight?
D: I was happy while i was losing the weight, I ignored my symptoms, I didn’t realize
J: What were your symptoms
D: Uh, just, I had extra periods, like every weekend I had ‘em or every two weeks. Uhm, I was told by Kimmer specifically oh that’s no big deal, it’s normal, it happens when you lose weight
M: I can see why you wanna do it, look at the before and after pictures there, now oh my gosh I’m losing weight, I’ve never looked better, but you’re dizzy
D: Right. I got dizzy spells, I got heart palpitations that I ignored, and I just kinda passed them off
M: Why did you stick with this one when you couldn’t stick with all these other diet plans, both of you
D: Again, the ketosis
C: The ketosis
D: It uh made you not hungry so it empowered you and the you know
C: And the power is a good point, because you do, you feel like you’re in total control and it’s addicting. It’s very addicting when you feel like that all of a sudden, I’ve had this problem for so many years, I had to eat and I don’t have to eat anymore
M: Finally, an answer
C: It’s an answer
J: It sounds like you’re saying that you almost developed a sort of eating disorder
C: Yeah
J: You were addicted to the fact that you were taking such low calories
C: Right
J: Into your body
C: Exactly
J: You were addicted to the fact you were losing weight
C: Exactly, yeah
J: Are you seeing that? I mean do you understand what these women are saying?
TT: The site has changed since I came in. Uh, I made a vow to the low carb community that I was gonna go in there and make every wrong right or I wouldn’t work there
D: We tried to do that
TT: We are making positive changes
C: And that’s what I tried to do and that’s why I got fired
M: Give us the name of your, the, the person in charge of your nutrition plan or a, the medical doctor that’s helping you with the site
TT: Uh, I will be glad to do that, we are
M: Is there one?
TT: There is not one, but there is one watching the show today. We have contacted a bariatric specialist that is interested in taking a look at our plan
M: Okay
TT: She doesn’t like to have to do weight loss surgery. She’s looking at our plan as maybe a way to
M: She’s looking, she hasn’t made a decision yet (unintelligible) factor
TT: She will make a decision after the show today and I feel pretty confident that she will be joining our team
M: Delaney? Let’s talk about you. At your highest weight, what were you?
SingingLass: I think I was in the three twenties. I was put on oral steroids due to some illness I had, and I gained weight really quickly
M: (unintelligible) gain
SL: Yes
M: Three twenty. So Kimkins is working for you
SL: Definitely. I have lost about a hundred and two pounds right now? And, I originally started on the Atkins, but it was really slow going for me, and I stalled out, and I was worried I was gonna have to go to surgical procedures or something, and I was worried about all the side effects, and then I found Kimkins.com and the diet plan and the supportive communities so I no longer had to do everything in silence
J: Doesn’t it concern you, though, hearing what these women are saying about the medical issues that they’re now having
SL: Personally
J: Based on a diet that doesn’t really have any any expert in charge of it?
SL: It is concerning. Personally my doctor has approved the diet plan, they’ve been really enthusiastic about my loss. We see members all the time reporting positive results with their blood work, their doctors are encouraging them, people, they’re getting off their insulin with diabetes
M: Boy, I tell ya though the people that have been on this, and they’ve been, they feel like their health has been harmed, are really after this Kimkins website
?: Right
M: And Heidi, and you Jeannie, what, has it been pretty tough for you?
TT: I feel like I’m in the middle of a terrorist attack. I really do
J: What, your life has been threatened, your house has been bombed
TT: Her life has been threatened
SL: Mine was. They found my name and my contact info and they put it on one of the main blogs for the people opposing the diet and I woke up to one morning to harassing calls and death threats, I had to get the police involved
M: Christin, you know anything about this kind of stuff?
C: Not until it came out on the blogs, that that had happened. I didn’t know anything about that
J: Have you received any kind of threats?
C: I have received phone calls but no threats
M: And people might say
J: (unintelligible) vicious .. over diets
M: Christin, uh, when Kimkins
C: We got emailed threats
D: We got emailed threats for leaving Kimkins
M: When Kimins fired you, is this how, is that what this is all about, you just got mad because you got fired from Kimkins?
C: No absolutely not, what my, my purpose here is that I need to help people that are hurting. The are people that are being hospitalized every day because of this and we have got to make it stop. This website has to come down
TT: There’s no proof of that, there’s no proof of that
J: Everybody’s saying one thing, it’s safe, it’s not safe, so is the Kimkins diet safe or is it not safe? We have a dietician, we have a doctor, they’re coming in, and they’re giving us the bottom line. They’ve looked at the diet themselves (unintelligible)
(cut to commercial break)
M: Yeah we’re back continuing our diet scam investigation series today. We are looking into the kimkins dietJ: Back with us is disillusioned kimkins dieter Christin Sherburne. We also have the PR director for Kimkins, Jeannnie BaitingerM: And for (unintelligible) now, registered dietician Kerry Glassman. Good to see you again Kerry. And from the NYU School of Medicine, author of False Alarm, Dr. Marc Siegel. Thank you so much. But first up, we have something for Jeannie here. This is an email you forwarded to one of our producers, my guess is maybe by mistake, and it reads
Visual: “There will be a nutritionalist there as well. That scares me but we will focus on the diet as TEMPORARY for weight loss…”
M: There will be a nutritionist there as well, on the show in other words, when you come to the morning show, and you, you were emailing a colleague and I think it got forwarded to one of our producers.
TT: That’s okay M: That scares me, you say to your colleague, we will focus on the diet as temporary for weight lossTT: Yes
M: So did you mean to send that to us or not, was that a boo
TT: That was an accident, but that’s okay, because I would have voiced this on stage anyway
M: Okay
TT: We are nervous having a nutritionalist. Without a doubt, a nutritionalist has
Kerry Glassman: How about a nutritionist
Marc Siegel: She’d have been even more nervous having an internist on the show
TT: I have no doubt
KG: And (unintelligible) by the way (unintelligible) actually registered dietician, so
TT: We know that our plan needs improvement, so we’re anxious to hear what you say
M: All right, Kerry, let’s have, let’s have it
KG: Okay, I don’t, I don’t even know where to begin. I’m so upset about this. To begin with, Kimmer has, or Heidi Diaz or whatever her name is, has about as much right going online and selling a diet plan as I do giving legal advice. I mean, it’s completely, it’s ridiculous. Who is she to go into (unintelligible) To me there are so many people walking around out there with disordered eating, and they come to medical professionals like Dr. Siegel, they go to registered dieticians like myself, to dispel all of these myths, to help them lose weight but at the same time be healthy. Anybody can go out there and not eat, and lose weight. That’s not what it’s about, it’s about being a healthy person and being the best you. And for many people, yes, they need to lose weight, but in a healthy manner so, and you, you prey on, and picking on Christin for, I mean, that is absolutely ridiculous. This poor girl was preyed on, and she was like, there are people that are desperate to try and lose weight that they will do things. Would you walk down the street if your doctor said you have high cholesterol, and take a pill from somebody saying, hey hey, your LDL’s will go down real fast. You wouldn’t do that. But, but with weight loss, yes, people are desperate, they wanna lose it fast so they see something and they try to do it and it’s completely unethical for her
J: Let’s talk to Dr. Siegel. Dr. Siegel, uh, let’s talk about the calorie count intake, first of all it’s pretty low
MS: It’s atrocious
J: Average
MS: Actually ketosis, we should tell the audience, is actually an unhealthy thing. It may suppress uh your appetite but it’s very bad for your health, because you get a stress hormone release, it puts every organ in the body under stress. If you have an underlying disease, heart disease, lung disease, diabetes, something you don’t know about, you could get into a life threatening situation from this. A study in 2007, the Journal of the American Medical Association, looked at calorie reduction, found it caused anemia, it causes lethargy, it causes difficulty concentrating, it’s a risk to the heart, it causes gastrointestinal problems, it causes menstrual irregularities, this is very very unhealthy diet
M: But other than that, it’s fine
MS: It’s also a cultural problem because people come to this website and it’s, and it snowballs, you know. They have an eggwhite challenge, they egg you on to eat only eggwhites. About an unhealthy as
M: We hear that all the time, I want the only eggwhite omelet every day (unintelligible)
MS: Well that’s fine, that’s fine, but with, you know, with other things
KG: That can be healthy in conjunction with a healthy diet, and, and eggwhites are a healthy thing, that’s not, it’s not that some of the foods on there are unhealthy for you, it’s what, that there’s no calcium, there’s no fiber, there’s no antioxidants from fruits and vegetables, I mean, it’s very, I mean, poor, poor Christin here is probably at risk for osteoporosis
J: Let’s (unintelligible) Jeannie (unintelligible) reaction to all this
TT: Plans have four servings of vegetables a day. Even the boot camp plan. Two cups of salad with lunch, two cups of salad with dinner. What’s wrong with that?
MS: It’s so reduced, it is so reduced
KG: Because there’s so many, there’s so many minimal calories though, so, yes there’s a certain amount of vegetables, they will say there’s vegetables and there’s some lean protein, but there’s no, I mean you don’t even add any sort of carbohydrate, there’s no fiber in the whole plan. There’s no calcium
M: At least one thing
MS: No self-respecting physician is going to be associated with this, no way
M: Okay. One thing we did learn, though, we at least figured out who this Kimmer is. You’ve admitted this morning that Kimmer is, uh, Diaz, I forgot her first name already
C & TT: Heidi
M: Heidi Diaz
TT: Yes
M: So at least we have that, but again, we’re, do we have the shot of the website? Let’s put the, here’s the web page as of a couple a minutes ago, there’s still no admission of that on the homepage
C: And there’s my before, there’s my (unintelligible)
M: Your picture’s still there, Christin
KG: Another thing I’d like, can I say something else about the website? There’s also no nutrition information, there’s, there’s everything about what you should do to diet, but there’s nothing about why you need carbohydrates, what are good sources of whole grains, what do vegetables do for you, what antioxidants, what’s in spinach, what’s
M: Jeannie, do you think that admission will be on there by the end of the day, on your home page?
TT: Yes
MS: If you analyze it, this, it’s a total disaster, you could end up in the hospital
J: Okay guys good information, we’ll continue to talk about this, continue to talk about this on our website. Thank you all for joining us, we do appreciate it.
(end of transcript)

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