Resident Opens Bloomingdale Weight-Loss Center -

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After losing more than 50 pounds, Brandon resident Pearl Chiarenza became such a fan of the Ideal Protein Protocol that she's opened a weight-loss center in Bloomingdale to help spread the word.

Chiarenza officially opened the doors of Body Works Health & Wellness at 150 E. Bloomingdale Ave., Brandon, in the Alafia Oaks Executive Park Sept. 7.

The Ideal Protein Protocol was developed by Dr. Tran Tien, a general practitioner and sports physician, who, early on in his career, became interested in nutrition and obesity-related issues.

Tien began researching the roles insulin and the pancreas play in weight loss. He found that the Ideal Protein Protocol not only helped people lose weight, it helped alleviate the causes of Type II diabetes, hypertension, acid reflux and other disorders.

Chiarenza said she was introduced to the Ideal Protein Protocol in 2009.

"I watched six friends do it and lose 15 to 20 pounds so I talked to my husband, Chuck, about it," said Chiarenza. "He said we couldn't afford it so I started the diet without telling him."

As the weight melted off her, Chiarenza said her husband took notice.

"He asked what I was doing so I told him. I told him that we couldn't afford for him not to do it, too," she said. "So he started the program and lost 103 pounds."

Chiarenza, herself, lost a total of 57 pounds and has kept the weight off for two years.

In October 2009, she became a coach for the Ideal Protein Protocol.

"I loved it so much, I gave up my job as a mortgage consultant to become a full-time coach," she said.

In May, Chiarenza opened a clinic at Dr. Carol Chandler's Natural Medicine Center in Lakeland where she and her coaches are counseling more than 40 dieters who have lost a total of more than 1,000 pounds.

"Then, I decided to share the Ideal Protein Protocol with my family and friends in Brandon, and opened this office Sept. 7," she said. "I had nine dieters sign up my first week open."

The diet, she said, is designed to combat the ravages of metabolic syndrome, which occurs when people become insulin-resistant.

"Our motto is: 'Got fat? Fix the pancreas.' We work to regain the body's balance by working with the pancreas," she said.

The protocol involves a specific list of allowable proteins and vegetables combined with the Ideal Protein foods.

The program offers more than 50 protein items that help reshape the body and maintain lean muscle mass, as well as help dieters to lose weight, said Chiarenza.

In addition, dieters have reported a reduction in inflammatory conditions, better cholesterol numbers and the alleviation of other health issues.

Dieters who sign up for the program visit the center on a weekly basis to be measured, weighed and receive advice on dealing with temptations and other weight-loss issues.

"Once they've lost the weight, they come in once a month for a checkup to insure they're maintaining the weight loss and to help them with any challenges," said Chiarenza. "There is a beginning and an end to the diet."

As for the cost, Chiarenza said she and fellow dieters have found they save money because they're no longer eating at fast-food restaurants.

Dieters pay an initial $100, which entitles them to weekly coaching. Chiarenza is currently offering 20 percent off that fee.

In addition, they purchase the Ideal Protein foods each week.

"One Ideal Protein meal is half the cost of a sweet tea and Cinnamelts from McDonald's," said Chiarenza.

The Ideal Protein meals include snacks, juices, puddings, jellos, soups and shakes.

"We don't do shots or drugs," said Chiarenza. "Just good food and clean vitamins."

Anyone who'd like to learn more about the Ideal Protein Protocol is invited to a free seminar Tuesday, Sept. 20 at 6:30 p.m.

For more information, contact Chiarenza at 813-449-3308 or email her at

19 Sep, 2011

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