A WOMAN who was dumped by her boyfriend after doctors told her she was too fat to conceive is completely unrecognisable after losing 12 stone in as many months.
Alida Dreyer, 27, from Sydney was overweight from a young age, and would often skip school due to the extreme bullying she suffered.
She was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) at 13 which can cause weight gain, but Alida admits she was “addicted to food.”
As a teenager, Alida’s size caused her to suffer suffered from depression admitting that she was self-harming and had suicidal thoughts.
She explained: “I have always been the ‘big girl’ ever since I can remember.
“Being overweight lead to extreme bullying in school and it got so bad I didn’t attend for up to three months at a time.
“Whilst I could blame having ‘fat genes’ from both sides of my family or PCOS from aged 13, I was still given the tools to live a lifestyle that would prevent weight gain and chose not to use them.
“It was my addiction to food that lead to my weight. This addiction was fuelled by a difficult relationship with my mother who reminded me I was fat and shouldn’t be eating the foods I was.
“I felt like the only thing I could control in my life was the food I put in my mouth, so to have some control and spite others, I ate what I wanted and when I wanted.
“Any emotion I felt, I combatted by eating. It was a vicious cycle.”
At her largest size 26 Alida was scoffing down 3,500 calories a day starting her day with four slices of toast with butter and Vegemite with two coffees and sugar.
At lunch she would munch on two large portions of sushi with macaroni cheese and for dinner she would put away a pizza as well as snacking on share bags of crisps, chips and biscuits.
When she reached 22st 11lbs and Alida found her size having an increasing impact on both her mental and physical health.
“Imagine weighing that much and trying to squeeze into an airplane seat” she said “I had to ask for the belt extender and the arm rests dug so deeply into my thighs they left bruises.
“I couldn’t even walk 100m without my calves cramping and chafing so bad I bled.
“I was always sweating on hot Australian summer days and being intimate was impossible because your body can’t move the way it should.”
Aside from the discomfort, Alida began to tire of the cruel comments she received on the daily.
She continued: “Besides my own family calling me fat all the time, other people said things like ‘You have a pretty face for a fat girl’ and ‘You’d be pretty if you lost weight’ and people sometimes made ‘Thump, thump, thump’ noises behind me. I was horrified and ran to the bathroom crying.
“I hated myself, I was self-harming, I thought about suicide. I didn’t want to live. I learnt to act confident and happy by being the person who constantly makes jokes.
“I felt like no one could love me the way I looked so I became the ‘yes girl’ who agreed to everything. I hated my body and covered it with loose clothing. I wore low cut tops to try and distract people away from looking at my body.”
Alida began dating when she was 18 and had her first boyfriend at 20 but was too embarrassed to be with him intimately or naked.
I hated myself, I was self-harming, I thought about suicide. I didn’t want to live.
At 23 she felt ready to have a baby, but doctors said her weight would make it a struggle for her to conceive.
And a month later her relationship ended and Alida knew she needed to change her life.
She said: “I always wanted to be a mother. When I was 23, I was trying to have a baby and was told that I would not be able to conceive at the size I was.
“A month later my toxic relationship ended, and my world came crashing down. I was stripped to the absolute core and forced to take a look at myself.
“From that day on I decided I had to learn to love myself.”
Through a combination of diet and exercise, Alida managed to drop 6st 4lbs and lost another 5st 12lbs through vertical sleeve gastrectomy (VSG) surgery.
In total she lost 12st 2lbs within just one year and now fits a UK dress size 8.
Alida now relies on a vegan diet to help her maintain her new weight starting with tofu and mushrooms for breakfast on high protein bread.
For lunch she now opts for a chickpea curry with quinoa and steamed veg and for dinner a vegan spag bol satisfies her cravings.
If she feels the need to snack she will now stick to fruit or vegan chocolate.
Post weight loss Alida had to deal with excess skin which hung low and ripped and even became infected. She had to have three skin removal surgeries to address this.
Alida said: “I had so much loose skin that I was getting infections from it because it ripped and tore. My breasts went from a 22JJ to a 10E, of which was all loose skin.
“My stomach hung so low that it came out of the bottom of my undies. My thigh skin was so bad I couldn’t wear pants because the skin got caught when I walked which made it rip. It made exercise impossible.
“I have had three long and painful skin removals. One of which was 15 hours long.”
Alida says that her weight loss has had a huge impact on her life in more ways than one.
She said: “I’ve lost more friends these last few years than in my entire life. As I started to lose weight and love myself, I found my self-worth and I realised I was worth more than people gave me credit for.
“I started saying no to people, started to grow a backbone and standing up for myself and friends moved away from me.
“Most people are kind about my weight loss they tell me I’m an inspiration and they congratulate me for losing so much.
“Some people even tell me it can’t be me in the before picture. They even tell me I must be lying, and it can’t be real.
“I am strong, I am confident, and I am worthy. I believe that I’m worthy to live a life that I want to live, a life that I am proud of.
“When I look into the mirror now, I smile. I love each of my scars, they tell a different story of strength and of overcoming my demons.”
Alida is now using social media to share her story with others.
She finished: “I have chosen to openly share my non-filtered life through Instagram which isn’t always easy, but I do it in hopes to even just help one person who is in the same place I was a few years ago. I thrive through helping other young people make positive steps in their life.
“I encourage people to please message me if they need someone to help them get started or just someone to talk to.”
In other weight loss news, we revealed how Coronation Street's Katie McGlynn lost weight.
And this woman who scoffed four McDonald's a day shed 11st in months.
Plus this woman "accidentally" shed nine stone dog walking, and now weighs less than she did age 10.
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