A yo-yo dieter who shed a total of 70 stone over 45 years of slimming has finally beaten the bulge – after selling her CAR to pay for a gastric bypass.
Super slimmer Alison Batchelor tried nearly 20 different weight loss schemes – including having her teeth wired shut – but everytime she piled the pounds back on.
So the mum-of-four decided enough was enough – and sold her brand new £10,500 car to pay for irreversible surgery.
The drastic step paid off and she shed six stone – and kept it off – after her stomach was reduced to the size of a walnut.
Alison, 62, said: “I tried every diet going and I’d lose the weight but I would just pile it all back on again – and some more.
“I spent a fortune on it and one day 18 months ago I woke up and just decided enough was enough and I was going to have a gastric bypass.
“I told my husband I’m selling my car and I’m going to have the surgery.
“People say to me I was brave, but truly I have reached a point where I was mentally exhausted with dieting.
“I wanted to be fit, I wanted to stop dressing to disguise my body.”
Alison, of Wadebridge, Cornwall, first piled on the pounds during an eight-month hospital stay after she was struck down by rheumatic fever when she was just ten years old.
She embarked on her first diet aged 17, when eating grapefruit for every meal saw her shift nine pounds in three weeks.
At one point the desperate dental hygienist even asked a colleague to wire shut her mouth for three weeks, but shifted a measly three pounds after she took to liquidising chocolate bars and drinking them through a straw.
Over the years she tried every diet going, yo-yo-ing between ten stone and her top weight of 16-and-a-half stone.
She would often lose up to four stone at a time, but a holiday or special occasion would see her weight loss halt, and she would give up all together.
Between diets she would pile on the pounds by snacking on cakes and eating the same sized dinner portions as her teenage sons and husband.
And in the days leading up to the start of a new diet she would stuff her face with fish and chips in preparation of the depravation ahead.
She sold her brand new Ford Fiesta for #10,500 – the exact cost of her gastric surgery by the Bariatric Group at the Nuffield Health Hospital in Taunton, Somerset, in December 2011.
Surgeons shortened her small intestine and stapled off most of her stomach to create a smaller pouch so Alison cannot eat as much.
Now a svelte size 10 or 12, Alison weighs a healthy 9st 10lbs and is happier than ever.
“For me the surgery has been the most wonderful thing,” she said.
“I don’t have to think about joining diets, I just eat what I want and every morning I get up and pull on a size 10 or 12 jeans.
“It’s incredible. I think it has changed my life. It has given me so much more confidence.
“I don’t have to hide under these baggy clothes anymore, I can wear what I want.
“My husband Andrew says I am much happier, which is good for him.”
Just some of the diets Alison tried
Age 17: Weighed 13st 7lb, grapefruit diet, eating citrus fruit for breakfast, lunch and dinner, lasted three weeks, lost 9lb
Age 23: Weighed 13st 8lb, WeightWatchers, lost 2st
Age 25: Weighed 15st, 1,000-a-day calorie counting, lost 2st 7lb
Age 27: Weighed 13st, The Scarsdale Diet, lost 1st 9lb
Age 30: Weighed 11st, cabbage soup diet, lost 10lb
Age 33: Weighed 12st 13lb, F-Plan, a high-fibre diet, lost 2st
Age 35: Weighed 13st, teeth wired together, lost 3lb
Age 36: Weighed 14st 3lb, Cambridge diet, lost 2st 7lb
Age 37: Weighed 16st, Slimming magazine club diet, lost 3st
Age 38: Weighed 16st, Jenny Craig, lost 3st
Age 44: Weighed 13st 7lb, Atkins diet, lost 3st
Age 47: Weighed 11st 5lb, WeightWatchers, lost 3lb
Age 50: Weighed 16st 8lb, WeightWatchers, lost 4st
Age 52: Weighed 18st, Tony Ferguson, lost 1st
Age 53: Weighed 16st, WeightWatchers, lost 3st
Age 54: Weighed 12st 13lb, Rosemary Conley, lost 2st
Age 55: Weighed 16st, Lighterlife, lost 3st
Age 57: Weighed 14st 3lb, Lipotrim, lost 2st
Age 58: Weighed 13st 5lb, Overeaters Anonymous club, lost nothing
Age 58: Weighed 13st 5lbs, Slimfast, lost 10lb
Age 59: Weighed 16st 10lb, Jenny Craig, lost 1st 7lb
Age 60: Weighed 15st 4lb, Dukan diet, lost 3lb
Age 61: Weighed 15st 9lb, gastric bypass operation, lost 6st
Age 62: Weighs 9st 10lb
Normal day’s food before surgery
Breakfast – big bowl of cereal and two pieces of toast covered in butter and marmalade
Mid-morning snack – Scone or cake and a packet of crisps
Lunch – Heaps of bread and cheese, and a large yoghurt
Afternoon snack – cake
Pre-dinner nibbles – bombay mix or cheese straws
Dinner – huge portion of meat and potatoes or pasta, with crumble for pudding
After dinner – cheese and biscuits
Normal day’s food after surgery –
Breakfast – One weetabix and berries or a boiled egg and two crisp breads
Mid-morning snack – Fruit and coffee or yoghurt
Lunch – leak and potato soup with one piece of bread
Afternoon snack – Tea with two Rich Tea biscuits
Dinner – Salmon with vegetables