The Fattyhead Story
My name is Laura Manivong, and I am a food addict.
Fattyhead evolved after a lifelong obsession with food. My first
memory revolves around addictive eating when I was 3 years old,
watching tv in my felt-covered teddy bear rocking chair while eating
fistfuls of sugared cereal right from the box. My mother saw the
mess and her reaction was lasting. In first grade, I learned I was fat
when the school nurse lined up all the kids to step on the scale, and
I weighed more than anyone else. In 4th grade, my pants would not
button so I could never tuck in a shirt. I swore by 13, I'd be skinny,
but no, and a 7th grade boy wrote in my yearbook, "Fatty, Fatty, have a nice summer." Then again at 16 and 21 and so on. No diet or amount of exercise offered any kind of lasting results. So at age 48, I underwent gastric bypass surgery. I lost 80 pounds! Then I strayed from the plan. I ate foods that would easily slip through my small stomach pouch and regained 30 pounds. I was defeated...I was going to be that person who goes to the extreme and then gains all the weight back. Then I started developing episodes of reactive hypoglycemia, and I was very frightened, as my only health problem to date was being morbidly obese. I researched ways to mitigate the condition and discovered ketogenic eating. I was not perfect at it, but it worked to control my blood sugar swings. And something else magical happened...
After living with major depressive disorder and anxiety for 30 years, I started noticing more energy. Instead of sleeping the entire weekend away, I would wake by 2 pm on Saturday, then noon, and eventually I was springing out of bed with far fewer body aches, energy I hadn't felt since my teen years, and much less brain fog and anxiety. Through my very imperfect style of ketogenic eating, I got my life back. I stopped taking 3 out of 4 prescription medications for depression. And I lost the 30 pounds I had regained after surgery.
In 2018, I even walked away from my 30 year career as an Emmy-winning television producer, because I knew there was something more for me. Fattyhead is it. I made this crust for 18 months for family and friends, and in February 2019, I decided to turn it into an official business. I am thrilled you have found your way to my website. Have hope. More than anything, hope is what I want to deliver.
Addendum: December 24, 2020
It was April 2019 when I created the Fattyhead Facebook page in order to sell to the public. Three months later, William Walker, owner of Old Shawnee Pizza, ordered 90 Fattyheads to debut at his restaurants on a Monday at the end of July. He sold out halfway through dinner and ordered 500 crusts for the following week. No way could I do that alone, so I called my ex husband to help. And help he did. That December, we built our first pallet of 1152 Fattyhead crusts for grocery stores. I could not pay him what he was worth, because he is a self-taught, meticulous, talented painter and handyman. But he helped when he could. That is what he does...help people.
Troy Manivong was a child prisoner of war in Laos starting at age 5. He, his mother and siblings eventually escaped to Thailand, where Troy was a child laborer, but his father, Colonel Nhanh Manivong, was still held captive. For a total of 12 years. In 1989, they all found refuge in America and became United States citizens. Now Troy has a plan. He wants to get a van, pack his tools, and travel the country to offer low or no-cost home repairs to anyone in need, whether it's the elderly, fellow refugees, veterans, people with physical, mental, or emotional challenges, first responders...anyone.
If you'd like to read more about Troy, below is a link to the novel that Harper Collins released in 2010. It is a fictionalized account of his family's survival and others like them who faced astronomical odds. Despite chronicling the darkest side of humanity, it is a story of hope. Now as 2020 finally becomes a thing of the past, I will help Troy tell the stories of people he finds who need help. I don't yet know if he will set up a non-profit to seek donations of materials or how this will work, but I do know he will find a way.