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Ideal Weigh to B opens doors in New Richmond

Ideal Weigh to Be founder Breanna Ludeman (right) and registered nurse Mikella Thompson pose inside the newest store location in the Creamery Building on 150 W First St. on Tuesday, Sept. 17, in New Richmond. (Photo by Jordan Willi)

Losing weight is never easy, but Ideal Weigh to B founder Breanna Ludeman and her staff, including registered nurse Mikella Thompson, hope to make the weight loss process a little less stressful by giving patients as much support as they possibly can.

"The thing that sets us most apart from other weight loss methods is that, one, we are medically supervised, and, two, we educate people and help maintain their weight loss," Thompson said. "We do that so they are not using our product forever, because that is not realistic. We want to be able to give you the tools to allow you to use normal food from the store."

Ludeman, a registered nurse and a certified personal trainer, started Ideal Weigh to B after she used the Ideal Protein products during her run to the Miss America pageant as Miss Minnesota in 2010. The Florida based company approached Ludeman after her Miss America run and asked her if she would be interested in starting her own standalone clinic. Ludeman accepted and now has four stores in Minnesota and Wisconsin, with the store in the Creamery Building on 150 W 1st St. in New Richmond being the newest.

"We are a standalone clinic, which kind of separates us in a good way," said Thompson, who runs the New Richmond location. "Whether it is 10 or 100 pounds that you want to lose, we have a protocol for everybody. We help people who are diabetic, have high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Those are the people who truly need the lifestyle change and the education, but most importantly to gain their lifestyle back."

The store had its grand opening on Tuesday, Sept. 17, but the idea was put into motion back in May when Thompson decided to move to the New Richmond area after working for Ludeman at the Mankato location for a year.

"We wanted to open a new store here in New Richmond basically because of me moving here," Thompson said. "I graduated from school in Mankato and worked for [Ludeman] for a year there in Mankato. But I was moving and I just felt like this was my passion and this was exactly what I wanted to do, so we decided why wait and we decided to open a place in New Richmond."

The Ideal Weigh to B method involves a four-phase process that starts with a three-meal and one-snack plan consisting of three Ideal Protein packets per day, vegetables, unlimited lettuce and a dinner meal of the patients choice. The next three stages gradually work back in regular food as the patient's weight loss goal is achieved, with the fourth phase setting a maintenance plan based on a few simple principles.

"It isn't always about the location of the store, but it is about who you know and the testimonials of the people who come to us," Thompson said. "Making those connections are huge. And for me, I would love to start to become more of a part of this community since I'm not from here, so I really have to establish my name."

To start off, business hours will be by appointment only, but eventually Thompson hopes to have the store open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the week. For more information on Ideal Weigh to B, visit

Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Observer for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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