The company you keep.

On June 9, 2010, in Uncategorized, by Andrea


Groups and peers have been a hotbed of discussion of late.  Most likely as a reaction to the Bariatric Bad Girls Club that was started on Facebook, Twitter, and then the website that was formed just recently.

It should be noted that the BBGC evolved from a group of people who were upset with the actions of a specific Matriarch in the bariatric world when she publicly attacked Melting Mama on her message board, then banned her from being able to even respond.  How fair is that?  Attacked, but unable to defend oneself?  Especially in “enemy territory”?  Lovely behavior.

This was my introduction to the Stepfords.  Prior to this, I had never heard of the group, had never ventured off my home at ObesityHelp.  And to be honest?  I’m quite grateful of that fact in retrospect, because my God?  I’d want to slit my wrist with some of the things I’ve seen over there.

The irony is that currently a discussion is being waged about how negative the BBGC is, and how little support we give.  And that’s, quite simply, bullshit.

Since creating the BBGC on facebook, I have seen the following behaviors:

  • People have begun to exercise more, including some that have decided to take up jogging to join the BBGC-Runner’s Club (and hey?  I’m thinking of a surprise for these gals).  How exactly is more exercise a negative side effect of a group membership?
  • People have realized that they must take their supplements and have gotten on the bandwagon in doing so.  In fact, since the BBGC’s inception, I have gotten several messages about getting back on track and for lists of labs that should be run for ideal health.  Again, how is this negative?
  • People have actually embraced a healthier eating perspective.  Sure, we have our moments where we have our occasional desire for chocolate.  Speaking about it, working through it, and God forbid actually having the occasional splurge is healthy eating!  If I don’t indulge myself once in awhile I know that I will go out and do something stupid.  A 6-pack of Oreos from the gas station will keep me from buying two full sized packages from the grocery store, unable to decide which I want (the double stuffs or the golden?  Or even one of the special limited edition flavors?  decisions decisions!!) and eat both within 2 days.  How is accepting our mental illness of obesity and dealing with it constructively a negative thing?
  • People are sharing ideas, thoughts, product reviews, and support — all without the need to “invisible threads,” ban members (again), or pay homage with diffuse and flowery philosophical treatises with footnotes to the site owners or the products she sells without feeling like you are going to have your knuckles slapped with a ruler.  How is this open exchange of information a negative thing?

That’s only looking at the big picture and not at the individual members of the group.  If we were to look at the support from individuals associated with the group and how supportive they are to the Bariatric Community?  There would be no way to even think about considering the BBGC a non-supportive group of people.  In fact?  It’s one of the most supportive groups that I’ve been involved in, and I think that says a whole lot.

However, we are continued to be vilified.  So let me simply give one more example of why I’d rather hang with the BBGC — a group of honest folk:

Click for full-sized screenshot (Don't mind my tabs and windows.. I am a tab and window whore)

Click for full-sized screen shot (Notice the photo, nutritional stats, and copyright info)

Compare the above to:

Click for full-sized screenshot. Notice the photo?

Click for full-sized screenshot. Notice nutritional stats.

At least the BBGC is honest – brutally so, perhaps.  But honest.

Karma’s a bitch.

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38 Responses to “The company you keep.”

  1. Paula Johnson says:

    WOW – eye opening!!

  2. Kim says:

    Isn’t there copyright infringement involved here? Wow, I BElieve karma can be a bitch! Those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones!

  3. Andrea says:

    There have been other inklings, but this is photographic proof that something is stinky.

  4. Andrea says:

    I would think so, yes.

  5. Melinda says:

    she used the Cabot stats. However, since she left out the bread, it will be even lower in calories. That does look like a pretty tasty recipe – low cal too!

  6. Kim says:

    Who’s contacting Cabot’s… I’m sure they would be interested on the copyright infringement issue. If they own the photography as well… they have issue. I’ve worked in the media for a number of years… I BElieve the cheese stands alone!

  7. Andrea says:

    @Melinda – She couldn’t even be arsed to do the math, I noticed.
    @Kim – Um. No comment?

  8. Wow, this is unBElievable! Same photo and everything!

  9. I’ll take my Doritos in Ranch, thanks.

    But yes, interesting how they want the rest of the bariatric world to be transparent (and Stepfordy), but they can’t cop to the fact they steal recipes. Go figure.

  10. Dana (cajungirl) says:

    Wow, just wow.

  11. Andrea says:

    It should be noted that this isn’t the first time. She was caught before:

    Then you should look at the comments — the 5th one in particular.

  12. Fenogli0 says:

    Fantastic expose – freaking fraud and fake, grrrr. I read the 5th comment on the 2nd link as well. – I think it’s awful—-.

  13. Andrea says:

    And the hits keep on coming: – Do a search for “Ground Veal Mushroom Herb Loaves”

    At this point? It’s just pathetic and sad.

    People who are defending her are saying I’m bitter for exposing her. I’m not. I’m thinking about the hours I’ve spent researching things and writing up articles, or the time I’ve spent crafting responses to questions. The time I’ve spent helping with labs and creating regimens. And it just pisses me off that she has NO respect for what people like me do for the community — yet she holds herself as a pillar of said community. THAT is where my anger comes from.

    I can’t stand liars, thieves, and cheats. At all.

    And she appears to be all three.

  14. AND you do yours for free… you aren’t selling products… and have nothing to gain… yet you still devote so much time to what you do. That, my friend… is PASSION.

  15. Becky says:

    It’s so sad that people are saying youu’re bitter….bitter about what excatly????

    As you say, that IS disrespectful to our community – and the original creators/ intellectual property. If something is so great, she should give us a link and send us there – or give credit where due.

  16. kathleen-ann husband says:

    How can someone talk to Vitagarten ( I think Andrea) or Melting Momma privately about THis..I am very confused, thanks.

  17. Justagranny92 says:

    OMG, I had no idea. I am speachless. I had no idea. Thank you for this. I need to talk to you or someone.

  18. Andrea says:

    For the record, our emails are pretty easy to find on our pages. Plus, we’re both very visible on facebook and on We’re pretty out there with our identities.

  19. mm says:

    Deb, Seriously? We have been posting publicly. I have been posting about these situations for more than a year.

  20. Michelle says:

    I think its awesome that there is visual proof. I appreciate you and MM and the others who put in the time and the effort to educate us with honesty and candor.

  21. peasy says:

    You know, the way I see it is this. For those who defend SM, haven’t they EVER wondered WHY people were banned, banished and silenced? Not everyone can be wrong. Remember this. People who have nothing to hide or are forthcoming with their customers etc do not behave like that. Only people with something to hide banish people and silence them. Why take what she says as gospel? Why should she have that power over anyone..

    Open your eyes, this isn’t a conspiracy, its the truth and you know what? Beth & Andrea have consistently provided factual proof of SM indiscretions. What proof does SM have to say otherwise other than people are out to get her, defame her and steal her protein shake recipe.

    Come ON..I mean really!

    At this point, if people don’t see her for what she is and what she does, it’s their own fault. And when they are so upset and about to fall apart because their beloved leader deceived them ..they are then bleeding from a self inflicted wound.

    This behavior is not new for SM. Ask around and I am pretty sure you will find out more than you ever wanted to know.

  22. mm says:

    Why the heck would anyone want to “steal her protein formula?”

    It’s a privately labeled product from another company – you can MAKE IT YOURSELF. Get a couple bucks behind you and do it.

    She’s changed her suppliers because her source ran out. OOPS! So, it will change! Flavors are going to change – textures are going to change!

  23. mm says:

    There’s zero conspiracy here. I simply discuss what I see and what has happened to me. Much, if not all of this, would have been avoided with a few simple words and common courtesy.

  24. peasy says:

    I agree with you 10000% Beth. The whole thing is ridiculous. She should come clean and be done with it. I loved the snippet in her blog where she went on about her product being imitated. This was after the whole rebranding thing came out. I think she really believes what she says sometimes. People are strange.

  25. mm says:

    This little golden nugget?

    “It’s enough to simply show our old and new surgical friends what is new, as they already know that BE products blow out anything else in the conference hall! Remember that I have a horse in this race… ME! I am fortunate to be in a position to work with the top food scientists in this country to create my own flavors and brands. Yeah, other companies eventually copy our ideas, but the truth IS that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. No one comes up with more original or better ideas than Ty and I. So keep on guessing what comes next for BE, Inc. – you won’t believe what we have up our sleeve – and these next two are big!”

  26. peasy says:

    yep. that would be it. I wonder what two new rebranded products are coming out. Have you come across any new products that she might try to hawk? lol

  27. mm says:

    I know exactly what she’s hawking. One is a new product, one is a new sales model.

  28. peasy says:

    I can’t wait to see!! should be interesting to watch it play out.

  29. socalgal says:

    Andrea, Thanks so much for all you do! I love the BBGC and your blog. Above you mention that you have provided lists of labs to always have done for good health. Could you post or send me the list (of direct me to where you have already posted it–I have looked to no avail)? I am 2.5 months out and find I need to give specific direction to my PCP on EXACTLY what labs I want done every time. I appreciate your help. You ROCK!

  30. justagranny92 says:

    Yes, I have been an ostrich in the sand. Yes, have only wounded myself. No I haven’t read MM much this last year. My DH has been sick for 3 years and I am not on theinternet much till lately because of it. I know your all honest about this. Yes, I am sorry, so sorry. I only intend to help. That is why I have stayed on board for so long, the other members. No more hawking and no more stepford,. I am done. I am D O N E!! Please forgive me for my past transgressions, lol, seriously I am done with the blinder way of living. Thank you for that. D

  31. kathleen-ann husband says:

    I personally have been on Be for 3 years ..and NO I knew nothing of this ..this is shocking and and sad so to say Be forum followers not fair. I didnt know..that Is why I’d like more of an explanation.

  32. Andrea says:

    Kathleen — I sent you an Email yesterday morning. No response.

    A full lab list is at the very top (Lab Tests). Not for EVERY draw, but it’s best for the very first draw for a baseline. From there, it can be modified for the semi-annual draws.

  33. mm says:

    Kathleen –

    You wouldn’t really be aware of any of this as a board member. This stuff has trickled down from angry customers, employees, and people like me.

  34. kathleen-ann husband says:

    Andrea..I looked no email..NOW not saying its not there..I have tons of mail..But I skimmed. COuld you try again.
    I am a computer dummy..LOL true ..How do I facebook Andrea cant figure out why it doesnt show her and to post her only.
    And yes MM I was not aware.
    And can someone give me a link to BBGC..found it once but I couldnt figure out how to become member..Now I cant find the site at all….
    TOLD ya computer dummy

  35. mm says:

    Kathleen – I un-drafted some of the posts that I had hidden, they were up for a year prior to this, and they will go back into the drafts.

  36. justagranny92 says:

    Thanks all and MM I will look for the drafts as well.:)

  37. Canticles says:

    I landed across a blog posting from several years ago regarding a stolen recipe and photo. That’s what ruined BE for me. I can’t abide by someone stealing another’s creative offering and passing it off as their own. Then I learned more and more about the lying and stepping on others to get ahead. Excuse me, I will get my (much tastier) protein products elsewhere.

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