Woman, 26, drops 6 dress sizes in a year after ditching late night snacking and microwave meals

A woman revealed how she dropped six dress sizes in a year by using time at home during lockdown to focus on meal prep and exercise. 

Amber Lewis, 26, from Port Talbot, tipped the scales at 15st 3lbs in January last year, after piling on the pounds in her late teens.

She admitted she turned to food for comfort when relationships didn’t work out, and would raid her cupboards for sweet midnight treats. 

Amber, who works for the Welsh Parliament, signed up to Slimming World, and when the UK went into lockdown in March last year she decided to use her extra time at home to overhaul her unhealthy lifestyle. 

Amber Lewis, 26, from Port Talbot, tipped the scales at 15st 3lbs in January last year, after piling on the pounds in her late teens

Amber Lewis, 26, from Port Talbot, tipped the scales at 15st 3lbs in January last year, after piling on the pounds in her late teens

Amber Lewis, 26, from Port Talbot, tipped the scales at 15st 3lbs in January last year, after piling on the pounds in her late teens

Amber has dropped six dress sizes in a year after ditching takeaways and her late-night snacking habit

Amber has dropped six dress sizes in a year after ditching takeaways and her late-night snacking habit

Amber has dropped six dress sizes in a year after ditching takeaways and her late-night snacking habit

Amber has dropped six dress sizes in a year after ditching takeaways and her late-night snacking habit

Amber has dropped six dress sizes in a year after ditching takeaways and her late-night snacking habit (pictured now)

Amber said her size began to have a negative impact on her self esteem - and her unhealthy habits didn't just affect her weight (pictured before)

Amber said her size began to have a negative impact on her self esteem - and her unhealthy habits didn't just affect her weight (pictured before)

Amber said her size began to have a negative impact on her self esteem – and her unhealthy habits didn’t just affect her weight (pictured before)

‘I made a choice – I could sit at home working behind my desk eating myself silly and pretending I hadn’t just demolished a pack of custard creams with my tea, or I could use the time and for once in my life do something for me,’ Amber said. 

‘It gave me more time to focus on myself and time to think. I had time to prep my food and think about what I was eating. 

‘I realised I was never going to get this time back and I was determined to come out of lockdown lighter than I went into it and I did – and I’ve lost nearly 5st.’

She now weighs 10st 5lbs  and has dropped from a size 22 to a 10 and believes her slimmer frame helped her beat Covid-19 when she contracted the virus in December.

‘While I don’t know for sure if my symptoms would have been worse if I hadn’t lost weight, I feel so much healthier now,’ she told FEMAIL.

‘I do think I might not have recovered so quickly. I feel super lucky that I was able to recover and bounce back – I know that losing weight and being healthier stood me in good stead; I’d given myself the best chance I could to fight the virus.’  

Amber now weighs 10st 5lb after dropping nearly 5st, and believes her slimmer frame helped her beat Covid-19 when she contracted the virus in December

Amber now weighs 10st 5lb after dropping nearly 5st, and believes her slimmer frame helped her beat Covid-19 when she contracted the virus in December

Amber now weighs 10st 5lb after dropping nearly 5st, and believes her slimmer frame helped her beat Covid-19 when she contracted the virus in December

Amber used to eat a lot of unhealthy food while travelling for work and would often stop at a drive-thru early morning for a coffee and breakfast

Amber used to eat a lot of unhealthy food while travelling for work and would often stop at a drive-thru early morning for a coffee and breakfast

Amber used to eat a lot of unhealthy food while travelling for work and would often stop at a drive-thru early morning for a coffee and breakfast

Amber used to eat a lot of unhealthy food while travelling for work and would often stop at a drive-thru early morning for a coffee and breakfast

Amber used to eat a lot of unhealthy food while travelling for work and would often stop at a drive-thru early morning for a coffee and breakfast (pictured before)

Amber told how she put on weight when she started university. She explained: ‘I was eating out more, eating on the go, eating late at night it – I felt like I was eating in my sleep at times! 

‘When I moved into the world of work, I noticed that I would eat a lot of unhealthy food while travelling for work and would often stop at a drive-thru early morning for a coffee and breakfast.

‘Living on my own, I would get up in the middle of the night and raid the cupboards for mini midnight feasts of bowls of cereal, cookies and lots of bread. 

‘There was only the dog to see what I was doing, and he wasn’t going to say anything! Having gone in and out of relationships I think I turned to food for comfort.’ 

Amber told how she'd joined Slimming World on and off for a few years but not managed to stick it out - however, this time 'something clicked' (pictured before)

Amber told how she'd joined Slimming World on and off for a few years but not managed to stick it out - however, this time 'something clicked' (pictured before)

Amber told how she'd joined Slimming World on and off for a few years but not managed to stick it out - however, this time 'something clicked' (pictured now)

Amber told how she'd joined Slimming World on and off for a few years but not managed to stick it out - however, this time 'something clicked' (pictured now)

Amber told how she’d joined Slimming World on and off for a few years but not managed to stick it out – however, this time ‘something clicked’ (pictured left before and right now)

Amber said her size began to have a negative impact on her self esteem – and her unhealthy habits didn’t just affect her weight. 

‘My skin was horrendous, I had terrible acne and it affected my confidence so much that I wouldn’t even go to the corner shop without heaps of make-up on or being covered in fake tan,’ she recalled.

‘My BMI was in the obese range and my weight had a big impact on my asthma, which I’ve had since birth. If I ever tried to go for a long walk, I would have to stop numerous times to get my breath back.’

Amber told how she’d joined Slimming World on and off for a few years but not managed to stick it out – however, this time ‘something clicked’.

‘I needed to do something, and if I’m honest it was because I’d fallen out of love with myself,’ she admitted.

‘I knew I couldn’t love anyone else until I loved me. I was also keen to go travelling and wanted to lose weight ahead of a trip to Australia booked for later this year.

‘When I decided to join Slimming World, I walked in and out of the doors to the group at least four times, I was so nervous. 

‘I sat quietly in the corner, yet once I’d listened to my consultant explain all about the plan, I realised I wasn’t on my own. I remember thinking, “all these people here are in the same boat”, and I left feeling so inspired.’

When lockdown hit, her branch moved to virtual group meetings and Amber kept attending every week.  

Amber admitted she was surprised by the variety of food she's able to eat on her Food Optimising plan, and gets recipe tips from the rest of her group

Amber admitted she was surprised by the variety of food she's able to eat on her Food Optimising plan, and gets recipe tips from the rest of her group

v, and gets recipe tips from the rest of her group

v, and gets recipe tips from the rest of her group

Amber admitted she was surprised by the variety of food she’s able to eat on her Food Optimising plan, and gets recipe tips from the rest of her group (pictured now)

Having always been interested in fitness, Amber started gradually with walks around her local park. She has since progressed to running and now trains six days a week

Having always been interested in fitness, Amber started gradually with walks around her local park. She has since progressed to running and now trains six days a week

Having always been interested in fitness, Amber started gradually with walks around her local park. She has since progressed to running and now trains six days a week

Amber set up an Instagram account to track her progress, and her experience inspired others to sign up (pictured before)

Amber set up an Instagram account to track her progress, and her experience inspired others to sign up (pictured before)

Amber set up an Instagram account to track her progress, and her experience inspired others to sign up (pictured now)

Amber set up an Instagram account to track her progress, and her experience inspired others to sign up (pictured now)

Amber set up an Instagram account to track her progress, and her experience inspired others to sign up (pictured left before and right now)

Amber admitted she was surprised by the variety of food she’s able to eat on her Food Optimising plan, and gets recipe tips from the rest of her group. She said she finds she actually eats more now than she did when she was lighter. 

‘I know that when I follow the plan, I lose weight,’ Amber explained. ‘I prep and cook meals every day now, instead of ordering a Domino’s pizza or takeaway three times a week or eating microwave meals. 

‘Food tastes so much better now too. Sweet potato curry with rice and a side of broccoli is my favourite recipe.

‘I enjoy the “cooking from scratch” aspect – I was such an awful cook before and had a love-hate relationship with food, but now I have so many dishes and kitchen gadgets.’ 

Amber set up an Instagram account to track her progress, and her experience inspired others to sign up, including her mother who’s managed to lose 2st. 

AMBER’S DIET NOW 

Breakfast: Two bacon medallions (grilled), mushrooms, baked beans and scrambled eggs 

Early Lunch: Salmon, rice and salad with a homemade yogurt and mint dip

Afternoon snack: Tangerines and a Curly Wurly

Dinner: Jacket potato with veggie chilli, meringue with blueberries or raspberries and yogurt for dessert.

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AMBER’S DIET BEFORE 

Breakfast: Nothing at all, or a cereal bar, or a drive-thru meal

Lunch: A sandwich meal deal from a supermarket or a microwavable meal

Dinner: Takeaway or sausage and mash (full of butter)

Side of bread/butter with a dessert.

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'Losing weight has had a positive impact on all my relationships and I'm now able to feel comfortable in my own skin,' says Amber (pictured left before and right now)

'Losing weight has had a positive impact on all my relationships and I'm now able to feel comfortable in my own skin,' says Amber (pictured left before and right now)

‘Losing weight has had a positive impact on all my relationships and I’m now able to feel comfortable in my own skin,’ says Amber (pictured left before and right now)

Having always been interested in fitness, Amber started gradually with walks around her local park. She has since progressed to running and now trains six days a week. 

‘I couldn’t walk that far before I lost weight and yet this month, I’ve set myself a fitness challenge to run 155 miles in 50 days to raise money for Heart Wales,’ she said.

‘Everyone focuses on how you look when you lose weight, but for me the biggest difference is how I feel. I’m not self-conscious anymore and I’m more likely to say yes to things rather than no. 

‘Losing weight has had a positive impact on all my relationships and I’m now able to feel comfortable in my own skin. 

Amber says she finally feels happy in her skin and knows she's truly ready for love when it's ready for for (pictured left before and right now)

Amber says she finally feels happy in her skin and knows she's truly ready for love when it's ready for for (pictured left before and right now)

Amber says she finally feels happy in her skin and knows she’s truly ready for love when it’s ready for for (pictured left before and right now)

‘I’ve dropped six dress sizes from a size 22 to a size 10 and love that I can buy clothes online now and they fit. I always wore black before so it’s lovely to try out some more colourful options. 

‘My skin is completely clear now, I haven’t worn any make-up for three months and that’s not just down to lockdown.

‘My hair is growing much faster than it would usually too, I feel like I’ve had a makeover. My BMI is back in the “green zone” and I am classed as “healthy” for my height and weight. 

‘Thanks to Slimming World, I am able to embrace who I am and I finally feel happy in my skin. Now I love myself I know I’m truly ready for love when it’s ready for me.’

Link hienalouca.com

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