Perfect Health Weight Loss Retreats

Already, Perfect Health Retreats have established an exceptionally good record for weight loss. I’ve blogged about results from the first beta participants:

  • Charles Kevin Rackley, an overweight diabetic, lost eight pounds while gaining muscle, reduced his waist circumference by four inches, and normalized his blood glucose levels.
  • Eva Jo Scott lost six pounds and two inches from her waist. She also increased her energy and greatly reduced her need for pain medication.
  • Ruth Slattery, a lupus patient with a normal physique, lost four pounds and an inch around her waist, and experienced reductions in joint pain and fatigue and increased mobility.

Jorjan Cullender Hendrix’s story was first told here. Planning knee and hip surgery, walking with a cane, and reliant on pain medications last winter, she totally recovered on PHD.  What we didn’t mention was that Jorjan has had remarkable improvements in body composition. She was 132 pounds when she adopted PHD on April 1, was 122 pounds when she wrote her first testimonial, and now weighs is 118 pounds. She has lost cellulite and gained strength – she says her muscle definition is better than when she was in high school. Jorjan sent me these pictures:


Here are stories from other recent Perfect Health Retreat participants.

Laura’s Story

Laura came on the Perfect Health Retreat with the support of her generous boss, who paid her retreat fee and allowed her to telecommute from Austin during the retreat. Laura’s goal was weight loss:

I wanted to keep my active, adventurous lifestyle but due to my weight it was just getting harder and harder to get out there fishing and camping with my loved ones.

At Albert Oaks I set out with the goal to lose 30 lbs. Although I only ended up only losing 16 lbs, the change in my body was absolutely noticeable.

I know the professional yoga program at Albert Oaks has been very beneficial. I haven’t been able to sit cross-legged in more than a decade but now I can! I’ve never done yoga in my entire life but I bought a two Yoga DVDs and a mat and will continue to when I get home!

As far as the overall health benefits are concerned; I slept better and just seemed to move differently than I did before.

I’m very satisfied in learning how to implement fitness as part of the Perfect Health Diet. The Perfect Health Retreat helped me find MY WAY to weight loss and perfect health while teaching me how to carry over what I had learned into everyday life.


Sixteen pounds is quite an impressive weight loss for a 30 day stay. I’m sure Laura will reach her weight loss goals in time.

Jim’s story

Jim was a friend of our commenter lana and came to the Perfect Health Retreat with the goal of losing weight.

He succeeded, losing 24 pounds in 30 days. He also increased his energy levels, lowered his cholesterol, and normalized his fasting blood glucose levels.

Before coming on the retreat, Jim had been planning to get gastric bypass surgery. He was pleased to find he could lose weight effectively through natural means, and will not need surgery.

Darlene’s Story

Darlene is very slender and did not come to the Retreat for weight loss; she actually gained muscle and a few pounds at the Retreat, and looked terrific when I saw her. But let me share her story.

Darlene had already been eating PHD for over a year as part of her effort to defeat chronic infections. She has had success using the combination antibiotic protocol described at, and found that the antibiotics and PHD made a very powerful combination. Her most prominent symptoms have been receding for the last year and some disappeared during her time at the retreat. Thanks to her improvement, when I spoke to her as the retreat concluded she was planning to stop some of her antibiotics.

Here is how she described her experience:

I came to Albert Oaks because I wanted to really learn the Perfect Health Diet from a scientific standpoint. The access I got to Paul Jaminet was a great asset in gaining this expertise and achieving my goals. Daily discussions were perfect for reviewing previous material and getting to ask Paul questions directly. One problem I had before coming to the Perfect Health Retreat was trouble sleeping. I would wake up at 4AM but then go back to sleep at 7AM. I wanted to explore and learn more about circadian rhythms and that’s a big part of the environment that the Perfect Health Retreat strives to create. Things like bright daytime lighting, red-yellow lighting and anti-blue light glasses at night, temperature control, and meal timing helped me reset my sleep and also taught me how to set up my home environment to maintain improved rhythms. I also liked the onsite Primal 7 workout equipment. It was useful in targeting muscle groups that I have had trouble working out before. The food was exceptional and tasty but possibly the best part of staying at the Perfect Health Retreat at Albert Oaks is the wonderful people here. It really is a community of like-minded individuals who want to see you reach your goals and accomplish all you can.


Kevin Lyons and Owen Gaines

As it happened, I got a weight loss email this morning from reader Kevin Lyons:

I’ve been strict on my diet and walking for months now.  Down to 189 from a high of 226!!

I have gotten 4 friends to buy the book. One of them, Owen Gaines, has been posting on your site. He’s dropped 26 lbs in a little over 2 months. Says its easy and a tasty experience!!

Kevin shared a picture:

Kevin Lyons photoLooking good!


To date, with the sole exception of Darlene, who was if anything underweight when she arrived, everyone who has attended a Perfect Health Retreat has lost weight and waistline inches, while improving fitness and muscular strength. Those with diabetes have seen their blood glucose levels normalize.

No one has yet complained of being hungry. The food is delicious. And results have come remarkably quickly – in thirty days Laura lost 16 pounds, Jim lost 24 pounds, Charles lost four inches from his waist.

We’re excited about PHD for weight loss because unlike other diets, which tend to generate hunger and cravings and lead to yo-yo weight regain, on PHD there is no hunger and readers have generally reported persistent, enduring weight loss. We believe PHD will support a lifetime of great health and lead in most cases to permanent weight normalization.

If you’d like to find out whether a Perfect Health Retreat can fit in your budget and schedule, please contact Paul Jaminet at and 617-576-1753 or Whitney Ross Gray at and 910-763-8530.

Leave a comment ?


  1. I am strongly considering going to the retreat to enforce the PHD principles that I already implement in my life. But I can’t take 30 days off from work.
    Is there a weekend or long weekend version? To me, you would reach a much broader market with an abbreviated option.

  2. Jorjan – You look stunning! I love your arms – they look strong 🙂 what kind of exercise are you doing?

  3. How much is the retreat fee?

  4. This is off topic of the post – I just made beef kidney for the first time as per the instructions set out in the PHD… The flavour of it was really overwhelming 🙁 After I finished forcing myself to eat the pieces on my plate, my eyes were crying by themselves a little and I felt nauseous.

    Isn’t my body supposed to be happy at receiving all these nutrients? How to explain such a strong reaction? Does everybody here eat it (and liver I suppose must be equally bad, but I haven’t tasted it yet) every week?

    • Lyna, I eat a fair amount of organ meats. Although I have never tried kidney, I think it’s fair to say that it is widely regarded as having a disgusting taste. Liver is no great shakes either, although it’s more the texture I dislike than the taste. I still eat liver pretty much every week for health benefits. I think there is a liver pate recipe on the site if you search for it. Having bacon with liver really help too. Calf liver tends to be less repulsive. Beef heart is actually not bad at all; reminds me a bit of a lower grade, tough steak. I sometimes make heart chili. And I’ve never had brains, but some people like it! Good luck.

    • Hi Lyna,try lambs kidneys,not as strong flavour.Cut then in half longways and snip out the white grisly bit.I always soak kidneys in slightly salty water,it seems to mellow the taste.

  5. Competently off topic (because i can’t go to the retreat lol). But just wondering if you have ever considered including a forum in this website. I’d really love to have a place to discuss issues, share tips, etc with other people following the PHD without having to jump from forum to forum… It’s also a good marketing strategy :p

    • Yes, I am planning a website. It’s awaiting mostly graphic design at the moment, which is awaiting the upgrade of my wordpress design to be more mobile responsive. Both are in progress.

  6. Hi Maryc,

    I think Paul has said there’s a plan for a forum, but until then, try visiting the comment section on the Q and A page (under the resources drop down menu). Lots of regulars look at it, well, regularly, and many topics and questions are addressed. I also believe there is some other weight loss or Paleo forum website that has a PHD section but I don’t know what that is. Paul mentioned it on a post. Maybe ask on the Q and A page.

    • Thanks elizabethe! i wasnt aware there was a q&a section; i’ll definitelly check it out!
      Yes,there are quite a few low carb and paleo forums which have “PHD only threads”, i don’t ussually write on them but i sure love reading those. I

  7. Oppps pressed Enter a bit too soon… anyways thanks for the recommendation, i’m on my way to the q&a

  8. What are some sample daily menus to get a better idea of what people are eating at these retreats?

  9. Hi Paul, I’ll try n be concise, I know you’re probably busy! I have moderate-severe back acne as well as some acne on my face. I follow the auto immune protocol although i dont have an AID just a leaky gut probably. I also have mild depression, as well as dandruff which has gone away some since I cut out fodmaps and added 200 starchy veggie carbs. When i got up to 400-600 depression was noticeable.
    I am currently taking now Foods peppermint gels as well as all your recommended non optional supplements, except vitamin K. Iodine is probably an old deficiency for me (supplementing 500 mcg now. I have had constipation issues for almost 7 months that was aided by starchy carbs and fodmaps, but the help from fodmaps was temporary. Should I get prescription antibiotics? I’ve heard in the long term those make things much worse? What other things would you suggest? This is having a profoundly negative impact on my life at college and I really appreciate any response! Thanks Paul, you’re the best.

    And Yes I’m eating coconut oil like crazy. Acne seems to be getting better since I found your depression diet recommendations but it may just be cutting out fodmaps.

    • Hi James,

      Well, I would be sure to eat liver, and you might supplement vitamin A and should supplement K2 as A and D are crucial for mucosal immunity and K2 supports both of them, as well as neurological function.

      I’d also take vitamin C to about one-quarter of bowel tolerance (re-test for bowel tolerance periodically). The easy way is to get a powder and flavor drinking water with it.

      Then, experiment with supplementing more zinc and pantothenic acid.

      The key is going to be reshaping the gut flora. Eat fermented foods and a diverse mix of PHD foods with some starch and fiber. I would avoid antibiotics for the time being as they can easily make things worse.

      • Thanks a ton for the advice. I was reading in the book about ketogenic diets and the differences between large/small intestinal issues. If my body dislikes things like onions (bloating) I’d assume I’m fodmaps sensitive, which you mention in the large intestine paragraph, but everyone and their brother on the internet says fodmaps are a problem with SIBO. Are these actually different? Because if peppermint gels are giving me relief, they are enterically coated which I am told causes them to release in the small intestine.
        Thanks again for your time and advice, James

        • Last question I swear 🙂 If I feel bloated after eating japanese sweet potatoes and yams should I switch to a different carb source or up my carbs? I know going low carb can induce insulin sensitivity or something like that

        • James,
          I had acne / rosacea from age 14 to 43. I had 20+ years of tetracyclean and the last 5 yrs something even worse; minocycline. I finally got off all by flushing my system with anti candida supplements. NOW brand makes a Candida Clear supplement with caprylic acid and cats claw among other things. And plenty of water each day. Of course the maintenance diet is critical which eliminates sugars and starches and Frankenstein wheat and go grains and soy from the diet. Dairy is not great either…
          . Good luck.

      • Would you still recommend Sauerkraut if a fodmaps/ starch intolerance is present? I suppose I had confirmation bias and the problems lies in the large intestine. Should I obtain 200 carbs a day from SCD type carbs and rice syrup or honey? Sorry for asking you almost an entire posts worth of questions, you are one of the few people in the paleo-sphere I trust to have a completely unbiased answer

        • Hi James,

          Just thought I’d mention a low histamine diet. I’ve been using it for a while, and it’s not the cure, it’s just that for some reason most of the high-histamine foods and “histamine-releasing” foods cause acne in some people. Chris Kresser spoke about it in one of his podcasts: he had been using a low histamine diet for people with migraines and his patients told him that it also reduced their acne.
          Anyways, it might be worth a shot. Just note, it’s not a cure: if I eat the histamine foods, I still get acne.
          I’m thinking it may be related to SIBO though, which I’m not sure how to cure except with antimicrobials.

      • going to start taking vitamin D and one of the vitamin K supps you have recommend on your site. will report back on how things go. used to struggle with SAD so I this vitamin D will be interesting

  10. Hi Paul,

    I purchased your book and I am following the advice at the moment with positive results. You’ve spoken about the powerful effects of Vitamin C and I’m ready to test them on a condition I have. I’ve decided I will purchase the liposomal form of Vitamin C and I have narrowed it down to two choices

    In your opinion, which would you consider the better one to take?

    Thanks for everything you do Paul,


  11. Maarten van der Laan

    The emphasis on weight loss is, to me, dissapointing.. What I have seen in practice is that people reach their optimum weight when health issues ares resolved. The ideas you have shared in your book and blog should be validated further by the community and academic research, not by a weight number on a scale. I can’t help but thinking that it’s called “Perfect Health diet” and not “Perfect Weight Loss Diet”.

    • Hi Maarten,

      I totally agree, and we are addressing all aspects of health among retreat participants.

      The main point of PHD is that disorders (including obesity) have many causes, and so the path to health (or weight loss) is by addressing all causes of ill health. It is one path.

      But for marketing purposes, it’s helpful to have a focus. Ultimately, we need enough testimonials on a health condition to convince people with that condition that we can successfully address it.

      As it happens, most people who are obese or overweight have multiple other diagnosed conditions, so we will get a sampling of evidence even if what draws people in is weight loss.

      • Maarten van der Laan

        Hi Paul,

        As a professional I agree It’s good to have a clear marketing focus. However, we also say “be the first” or “be the best”. When the focus is defined as just “weight loss”, PhD is neither of those. Not the first because there is a huge amount of diets, programs and retreats already. And not the best because it´s not the fastest and certainly not the most effortless way to loose weight.

        However, when you put the specifics into the equation, you get a different picture. Namely, people with overweight and several diagnosed health conditions for whom overall health is more important then rapid weight loss.

        In this phase it seems extremely important to make it as specific as possible. One could ask: What exact weight range? Which health conditions (based on prevelance and retreat before/after)? And for which people with overweight is overall health more important then results?

        Besides that there are way more variables that should be considered. Some examples±
        – a premium price (how much do participants earn? with what do they earn?)
        – proximity from Austin (or able to fly there.)
        – how are they able to take time off for the retreat? maybe living on past ventures?
        – habits (the diet is bound to fail if they don’t develop the right habits on the retreat, and you will be blamed or at least be deemed less effective then you could be)
        — wants to change them (motivated or receiptable for awards (great food, better feeling) to do the effort!)
        — is able to change them
        – familiar and interested in the fairly alternative ancestral health movement (who are these people?)

        My advice is to take a very specific sub-group and focus your marketing efforts on them. In this way you’ll be able to generate steady income and get the results you need for further development.

        I discussed with Damon to join the retreat in July, also helping with marketing efforts, but was unable to do so because US law forbids tourists to work. A shame, but luckily those laws don’t count when you are on the other side of the globe 🙂

  12. Wow, Jorjan looks extremly good and strong. Nice results she has achieved, she should be really proud of it. Great definition!

  13. Paul would you mind clearing up vinegar and its relation to fungal infections such as candida? the internet is awash with the idea vinegar is bad for a candida case, but it also says the same thing about eating any carbs so I’m skeptical.

  14. Dear Paul,

    I have followed the PHD pretty closely for a number of months, although I have not eaten the supplemental foods as faithfully as I should, particularly the liver. I like beef liver ok but when I eat it regularly I notice every time after a few weeks feeling tired. I think it is the large amount of copper. I am hypothyroid and I think I am pretty high in copper and tend to be lower in iron and zinc. I feel better when these are supplemented and worse with more copper. I am 46 and have almost no gray hair, just a few hairs which I pull out! I tried eating chicken liver pate but always have dread about it. I actually hold my breath while eating so as not to taste it. Could I try eating maybe half the amount of beef liver and see how I feel? Would that be enough to help me? I want to lose about 40 lb so yesterday I tried doing the weight loss version with no added fat to my meals. I ate everything else including egg yolks and some gelatinous broth. I take the supplements as well. I also walked quite a bit yesterday. I felt good until evening and then when I went to bed I had the wired can’t sleep feeling I get when I haven’t eaten enough. I think no added fat given my activity level was overdoing it . I couldn’t really tell I hadn’t had enough til I tried to go to sleep. I am pretty sensitive and get a stress response from under eating. Then I went to the kitchen at midnight and ate including some fat and I could feel the stress response slowly shut down and I fell asleep an hour later. Do you have any suggestions on how to get the right amount of calories and fat to prevent this kind of problem while not overdoing it so that weight loss can still occur? Would you recommend using fit day to determine calories required? This seems like it can be kind of complicated to get things right and I am discouraged. I tend to be a sensitive person with narrow margins for things to be such that no negative side effects are experienced. I don’t do well at this point with IFing as it provokes the stress response and negatively affects my sleep.

    Would you recommend that I just do full PHD for a longer time without any calorie restriction before attempting the weight loss version in order to rectify malnourishment? I have had a long history of health problems going back to childhood. I had colitis which resulted in anemia and tested as deficient in iron iodine and vitamin d just a few years ago. I never really had a weight problem until my pregnancies which were four in number and were 2 years apart or less. I no longer have colitis symptoms but I think the many many years of having it really depleted me.

    Being a peri menopausal woman with the above mentioned issues I wonder if it is even possible to lose weight even with PHD. Or at least I wonder if I may need a few years on full PHD without calorie restriction and to get through menopause before I will be able to have success with weight loss. Do you know of any stories of women with these sorts of problems in peri menopause who have been greatly helped by PHD? By these sorts of problems I mean hormonal issues like thyroid, adrenal, sex hormones, sleep and weight?

  15. Paul these weight loss testimonials and pictures are fantastic! But I dont see them yet included here I recommend adding the testimonials and pictures to the retreats testimonials page.

  16. Wow these are some great testimonials, I hope that one day I’ll have similar results if I keep working hard

  17. Hi Paul,
    I can’t thank you enough for your intelligent, thoughtful work. After 25+ years of searching for a diet that makes me healthy, not crazy, I’m very hopeful about PHD.

    My challenge now is bone broth. I’m a pescatarian; I can “stomach” eating seafood but not actually cooking broth from fish heads.

    Are any commercial seafood stocks acceptable? How do you know if they’re made from the heads & bones? Does the word stock mean they use bones?

    Some brands I’ve seen are Pacific, Bar Harbor, Kitchen Basics. Also, are seafood stocks as beneficial as chicken or meat ones?

    And finally, what about the gelatin in jarred gefilte fish? Don’t like it much, but I’ll try to eat that, if it’s a good substitute.

    many thanks

  18. I don’t have the patience to do much cooking, so making broth isn’t happening. I do use quite a bit of Kitchen Basics chicken and beef broth instead of water when possible, but not sure if it’s as effective as the real thing and I haven’t seen fish broth on any grocery shelves.

    Should I be looking for that too?

    I’d appreciate any feedback. Thank you.

    • Hi erp! You’re a “famous” commenter – are your relatives who were injured in a plane accident ok? I love bone broth because I do it SO lazy – I throw the bones in a slow cooker, set it, and that’s it. I sometimes leave it for a day or two. It’s the most non-cooking I do! Plus I buy bones so cheap – $1-$2 a pound, even at whole foods, Kroger, etc. But I use beef bones, not chicken or turkey, because it is work to save those to make it worth your while. Good luck!

      • Thank you our kids are doing very well and we’re back home after nearly a year away. I hope you are also well and happy.

        It would be so very nice if you were close by to share your broth. Alas I must rely on Kitchen Basics which is pretty good, but I’m sure not as good as home made.

    • Hi e,

      It’s really easy to make broth or stock. We just throw a few bones in a 2 quart ceramic pot, simmer for 3 hours, let it cool, and then put it in the refrigerator.

      I don’t think the commercial substitutes are as nutritious.

  19. Top quality stuff here. Beef and chicken but no fish.

  20. Isn’t it? Especially when it doesn’t take more than twenty minutes of my time and the bones are that expensive at most places.

  21. Should read: Bones Are NOT that expensive

  22. Thanks for sharing very useful.

  23. All these success stories are very inspiring, especially when you’ve just started on losing some weight. Thanks for the inspiration!

  24. Darlene is very slender and did not come to the Retreat for weight loss.She actually gained muscle and a few pounds at the Retreat.

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