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In an effort to lose weight or become more fit, we throw around terms like body fat, but what exactly are we talking about? The more you understand about how your body works, the easier it is to get the results you want. Here, weight loss doctors explain how body fat works and the best ways to reduce it for your long-term well-being.

An individuals body fat is a collection of adipose tissue that functions as a complex, metabolically active organ, explains Wickham B. Simonds, MD, fellow of the Obesity Medicine Association and president of Dr. Simonds Metabolics and Weight Loss in Durham, North Carolina. It is so much more than cushioning or insulation. Like any organ, adipose tissue can become diseased and dysfunctional if the organ becomes too large. In fact, a 2019 study in the European Heart Journal found that excess body fat can lead to at least nine different cardiovascular problems, including aortic valve stenosis, a condition in which the valve leading out of the heart to the rest of the body is no longer able to open properly.

Most of the time when we say body fat, were referring to subcutaneous fat and visceral fat. Subcutaneous fat is located under the skin, such as in the arm, thigh, and abdomenwhat you feel when you pinch the skin, says Peter Jian, MD, diplomate of the American Board of Obesity Medicine, and assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine. Visceral fat is located inside the abdominal cavity and around organs such as the gut and liver. While both types of fat contribute to the size of your waist, Dr. Jian notes that visceral fat carries a higher risk of developing various health conditions such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease. A healthy range of body percentage for adult women should be below 32 percent, and for men below 25 percent, says Dr. Jian.

Eat healthier. Both diet and exercise play a role in the amount of body fat you have, but diet has a bigger impact. The most effective way to reduce body fat is calorie reduction paired with reduced carbohydrate intake, says Dr. Simonds. When you eat a simple carbohydrate that gets digested quickly (like white bread, rice, or pasta), it causes a spike in insulin that puts the body in a fat storage mode, he explains. However, everyones body is unique so the same exact eating plan wont work for everyone. Before risking a fad diet, talk to a physician who is certified in weight loss management so they can help you choose an eating plan thats safe and effective.

Prioritize your mental health. Dont underestimate the power of being in a solid mental state. We tend to make less healthy decisions about food when we are under stress or feel down, says Dr. Jian. Our emotional well-being also affects hormones that regulate hunger, satiety, and whether our bodies utilize or store fat. Not only that, eating high-calorie foods when were stressed results in more weight gain than eating those same comfort foods when were not overwhelmed, according to a 2019 study in the journal Cell Metabolism.

Exercise more. The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week for the average adult, or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise. While this may not be possible for everybody due to various constraints, you can always start by getting moving, says Dr. Jian. Youve heard it all before: Park your car farther away from your destination, use stairs instead of elevators, take a lunchtime walk, do sit-ups during commercial breaks. It sounds repetitive, but all of these physical activities add up, and really help your body reduce body fat percentage, says Dr. Jian.

Use a measuring tape. Measure your abdominal circumference at the belly button, suggests Dr. Simonds. When your body fat is decreasing, this measurement always decreases and it is indicative of the fact that you are decreasing the worst kind of fatdeep abdominal fat.

Step on a scale. Many scales today, especially smart ones like the Fitbit Aria 2, measure body fat using a principle called bioelectrical impedance. While the body fat measurements on these types of home scales arent super accurate, they can give you a good estimate of your body fat percentage and there are things you can do to make the measurements more precise. Weigh yourself first thing in the morning, before doing any exercise, in a well-hydrated state, without clothing or jewelry, and with your stomach, bowels, and bladder as empty as possible, says Dr. Simonds.

See a professional. Some specialized health facilities have professional grade bioimpedance devices, machines that measure whole-body plethysmography, or instruments to perform underwater weighing, says Dr. Jian. Alternatively, a Dual-Energy X-ray Absorptiometry (DEXA) scan can be done, but this has a slight amount of radiation, he adds.

If youre actively trying and sticking to a healthy plan, it shouldnt take long. In our clinical experience, we start seeing a decrease in waist size, body fat, and weight as early as the first one to two weeks, says Dr. Jian. But in some patients, the changes occur more slowly, and sometimes they are only noticeable after four weeks. Dont be discouraged if you dont see results right away, but if things dont progress in the second month, it may be a good time to seek professional help from a certified weight loss specialist, he adds.

Remember, theres nothing wrong with asking for professional healthwhether it be from a doctor, a certified registered dietitian, or even a therapist. It can be challenging for some to lose weight and you may need assistance, says Tiffany R. Beckman, MD, MPH, endocrinologist at University of Minnesota Health Clinics and Surgery Center. So much of this process is mental, and having a team behind you to cheer you on and hold you accountable can make all the difference.

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss

LIVING in agony, Lizzy Owen was exhausted and barely able to walk up a flight of stairs.

She'd ballooned to a size 18 and as she piled on the pounds she was becoming more and more unhappy.

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However, the mum-of-four's reality check came when a family member pointed out just how big she was getting.

Determined to do something about her size, she signed up to her local Slimming World group and has since lose an impressive four stone in just nine months.

And she even managed to shed the pounds without giving up her favourite treats including chocolate and G&T.

Lizzy, 33, from Lincoln, said: "Before joining Slimming World I was very unhappy.

"I was tired, my joints hurts and my confidence was at an all-time low.

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"I got out of breath when walking up the stairs let alone doing any form of exercise.

"My turning point came when a family member pointed out how big I had got."You can't avoid that kind of mirror.

"So with a gentle nudge in the Slimming World direction from my auntie, I took the plunge and walked through those doors.

"I owe so much to my auntie for encouraging me to take control of my life."

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Since then Lizzy hasn't looked back and has slimmed down from a size 18 to a size 10/12 - despite at first having reservations about joining the slimming group.

Speaking to Lincolnshire Live, she added: "Before I plucked up the courage to walk through the doors to my local group I was super nervous, what if people laughed at me, what if people stared at me, what if I couldnt do it?

"All these questions were firing round my mind.

"But I neednt have worried as within five minutes of walking in I was plonked down with a cup of tea and truly welcomed.

"Like a lot of other people out there I had previously tried to lose weight by following a number of diets but they were never sustainable because I always felt restricted and I ended up having a really bad relationship with food.

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"I had resigned myself to being the size and weight I was for the rest of my life."

But, after overhauling her lifestyle, Lizzy said she feels like a new person.

She said: "It was like a light bulb went on in my head. It isnt a diet.

"Food optimising is wonderful. It is so easy to follow and nothing is completely off limits.

"You can have a cheeky gin and tonic or you can have that bit of chocolate you have been craving. One of my favourite meals is a veggie sausage casserole.

"A dish made completely out of free food and speed free food. Best of all my whole family loves it too! They are food optimising without even realising it."

The Slimming World diet is run by a Derbyshire-based weight loss company created by Margaret Miles-Bramwell in 1969.

It focuses on a diet of Food Optimising, where members are given a list of Syn Free food, that can be eaten in unlimited amounts.

Syns are short for synergy as the Free Foods, Healthy Extras and Syns all add up to effective weight loss.

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WEIGH HEY Woman's staggering 18st weight loss after ditching her 30,000-calorie-a-day diet

I HATED MYSELF Bus drivers 13st weight loss after binge eating took over his life

WEIGHT OFF Greggs sausage roll addict's 7st weight loss after ditching pastry for fakeaways

WEIGH TO GO McDonald's addict's 16-stone weight loss after being told he'd lose his foot

rare gem Gemma Collins shows off weight loss in sheer corset as she arrives at LFW in limo

WEIGHT OFF Mum's incredible 4st weight loss - WITHOUT exercising & still eating chocolate

WEIGH TO GO DJ's incredible 7st weight loss leaves her looking ten years younger

WEIGH TO GO Woman's 10st weight loss on a diet of choc brownie sundaes and fried chicken

WEIGH HEY Mum's 3st weight loss after beating disorder that saw her scoff 10 cakes a DAY

The programme encourages dieters to swap high-fat foods for low-fat foods that are naturally filling.

You can get support from fellow slimmers at weekly group meetings and follow an exercise plan to become gradually more active through their Body Magic initiative.

It's designed to help you lose about 1-2 pounds a week and currently has around 900,000 members attending each week.

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Mums incredible 4st weight loss in just nine months on a diet of chocolate and G&Ts - The Sun

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss

Instagram is full of celebrities and influencers pushing all sorts of products, but one of the most insidious industries dominating the platform is the one pushing weight-loss products on users. Celebrities like Cardi B and most of the Kardashians have all partnered with companies trying to sell their masses of mostly young female followers everything from waist trainers to appetite suppressants to laxatives.

Instagram is already largely based on presenting an idealized version of realityadding on such a direct layer of lucrative body-shaming is as cruel as it is manipulative.

Luckily, the site has added on a new set of limitations as to who can see these sponsored weight-loss posts and what they can promise. According toCosmopolitan,if a post is found to promote the use of certain weight loss products or cosmetic procedures, and has an incentive to buy or includes a price, Instagram will restrict people they know to be under 18 from seeing that post. And honestly, who could possibly have a problem with high school or younger aged kids seeing ads for laxatives with immediately clickable links? Other than, you know, those profiting off of the endeavor themselves.

Additionally, when a post makes a miraculous claim about certain diet or weight loss products, and is linked to a commercial offer such as a discount code, it will no longer be allowed and will be removed from Instagram. Sorry, weight-loss visual clickbait.

An Instagram spokesperson told Cosmo, We want Instagram to be a positive place for everyone that uses it and this policy is part of our ongoing work to reduce the pressure that people can sometimes feel as a result of social media. So its nice to hear that theyre actually aware of these things and willing to make changes.

What did you all see out there on this somehow-still-not-Friday?

(image: Matthew Henry from Burst)

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss

The Oakland Raiders have already put a major emphasis on utilizing rookie running back Josh Jacobs. But an illness could be slowing down that progress.

According to a tweet from Vic Tafur, who covers the Raiders for The Athletic, Jacobs has lost 10 pounds due to an illness that hes been dealing with on top of a groin injury.

In fact, Tafur actually got the news from an Instagram story from Jacobs himself.

According to the Raiders official team roster, Jacobs is listed at 5-foot-10, 220 pounds, which means that he could be as low as 210 pounds right now.

Considering how Oakland wants to use him as a workhorse running back after selecting him No. 24 overall in the 2019 NFL Draft, losing that type of weight on top of the groin injury could really slow down his progress during his rookie season.

Hopefully, Jacobs is able to get better and back on the field soon.

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss

It took a medical research study for Tanvir Hussain to realize he was unhealthy. The 42-year-old general cardiologist from Los Angeles, California, had been working 30-hour shifts in an intensive care uniton his last night at that job, he performed CPR on a woman to resuscitate her six times before she passed away. It was an extremely stressful time and in hindsight my metabolism suffered for it, he says.

After leaving that job, he joined the study, only to learn that he was pre-diabetic, with mild calcifications in his heart arteries. He was shocked: His family had a history of cardiovascular disease, but he was also a doctor, and figured he should know better. About 80 percent of what we deal with in cardiology is preventable, he says.

Hussain set out to take back control of his body. I was a pleasantly chubby nerd growing up, he says, eating junk food and not exercising at all. Then came the party-eating of college, followed by the sleepless nights, long shifts, and terrible diet of med school. And when he settled into a well-paying career, he turned into a foodie, eager to try all of LAs hottest new restaurants. When he vowed to turn things around, he was 510, weighing in at 175 pounds, with 27 percent body fat.

He started working with a trainer from Ultimate Performance. First he cut out carbs for several months to push down his body fat percentage. But he still worked irregular hours, which messed up his sleep schedule. His weight loss was slow, but he eventually quit eating any processed foods, trading them for lots of vegetables. Instead of junk, his breakfast might be a cup of oatmeal, a cup of berries, and a scoop of whey protein powder.

Hussain worked out three times a week: a full-body day and two upper-body days, finishing each session with some high-intensity interval training (HIIT). At first, the workouts were daunting; hed previously been taking spin classes, and his new regimen drove home just how out of shape hed gotten. But having a routine really helped. Working with a trainer has been great for me because I don't have to think too much, he says. I just work out during my sessions and eat how I'm supposed to eat, and the body automatically changes.

In a year, he went from 175 pounds and 26.9 percent body fat down to 156 pounds and 11.2 percent body fat. Anyone who hasn't seen me in a while is pretty amazed, he says, and all of his health issuesfrom insomnia to heartburn to moodinesshave cleared up. Granted, I live a much more regimented life now, but it is absolutely worth it, he says.

Anyone thinking of a similar change should just try something, he says. Jump in and see what appeals to you. (As a doctor, he suggests getting bloodwork first to see where youre starting.) After all, throwing himself into it worked for him: I feel 10 years younger and just want to keep going, he says.

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss

LABOUR'S Deputy Leader Tom Watson looked unrecognisable at Glastonbury 2019, compared to the images that surfaced of him way back in 2017.

Back then, he weighed a hefty 22st and was living with a type 2 diabetes diagnosis.

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But in just over a year, Tom managed to shed a whopping 7st - andreversed his disease.

How? By ditching sugar and going keto.

The 52-year-old, who today slammed a plot by rabid Corbynistas to oust him, calls himself a "sugar addict" who forced himself to cut out all refined sugar.

He binned any processed foods in his cupboards that might have hidden sugar in them.

He told The Guardian that he does still eat brown rice and pasta when he's dining out and allows himself a little dark chocolate if he needs a fix.

Within just one month, his blood glucose levels were within a normal range and within a year, he was off his meds.

There's no specific "diabetes diet" and as with any kind of weight loss, what works for one person might not suit another.

But some people who have put their diabetes into remission have done so following the Mediterranean diet or by following a low-carb approach.

Losing as little as 5 per cent of your body weight, or 15kg, can have a massive impact on the condition.

So here's how to lose weight and reverse type 2 diabetes like Tom:

TheMediterranean dietis one that has existed for centuries.

It's how the Italians and Greeks eat - whole grains, oily fish, olive oil, lots of fresh fruit and veg and very little processed grub.

Although diabetes is a disease concerning blood sugar, it's not just sugar we should be concerned about.

You want to be eating to bring down blood pressure and cholesterol too - and the Mediterranean diet has been proven to be one of the most heart-healthy ways of eating out there.

Areview of 17 studiesfound that a Meditteranean-style diet was found to improve fasted glucose levels for people with type 2 diabetes far more than a low-fat diet.

A2008 studyfound that people who eat a Meditteranean diet have an 83 per cent lower chance of developing diabetes.

Two trialsconcluded that eating like the Italians reduced cardiovascular issues and risk of early death.

How to eat like an Italian

Even without counting calories, there are huge benefits to eating a more Meditteranean diet.

You want to be focusing on whole foods - avoiding anything processed or pre-packaged.

Load up on good fats and lean proteins, chow down on fresh fruit and veg and make sure that when you are having carbs, you're choosing whole grains.

Good fats:

Proteins:

Carbs:

A low-carb Med diet (where half of daily calories came from fats like avocados, hummus, olive oil, cheese), has been found to have an even greater benefit than a higher carb one.

For some people, it might be easier just to ditch the carbs completely for a while, to kick-start their weight loss.

Reversing diabetes is a long-term project - and hopefully, a lifetime result.

So, by all means, start off with something dramatic but bear in mind that you'll have to transition to something sustainable.

Theketo diethas been proven to decrease blood glucose levels.

A 24-week study looked at the effect of a low-carb diet on type 2 diabetics.

Scientists found that by the end, the patients had seen massive improvements to their glycemic control and medication reduction compared to others.

And a2017 studyfound that the keto diet outperformed a conventional, low-fat diabetes diet over 32 weeks when it came to weight loss and glucose levels.

Keto may also work for women who have developed diabetes as aresult of havingpolycystic ovarian syndrome.

PCOS survivors have a heightened risk of the condition due to the fact that up to 80 per cent of them have some kind of insulin resistance.

How to do 'lazy keto'

You don't have to track calories or macros to go keto.

Concentrate on making sure that your plate ratio looks balanced.

A general rule of thumb make sure:

Ketodoesn'tmean going without fruit and veg - that's a common misconception.

"Low carb/keto done correctly should be full of good gut boosting foods, including fibre from the vegetables," nutritionist Sarah Flowerpreviously told The Sun.

If you are going to cut out grains, then it's absolutely crucial to make sure that you're getting at least five portions of veg a day.

If you'd rather not think aboutwhatyoueat rather thanwhenyoueat, fasting might be a good option.

The 16:8 fast (where you eat all your food within an eight-hour window) has been proven to be a good way of lowering blood glucose and shifting body fat

A recent study found that fasting from 2pmimproved insulin sensitivityin a group of pre-diabetic males.

And that could be down to the fact that we're better able toregulate blood glucose levels effectively in the morning,due to daily variations in metabolism.

So having hearty meals during the day and skipping dinner could be key.

Another small studylooked at three type 2 diabetic men.

Two were asked to fast for 24 hours every other day and one was told to fast for three days a week.

At the end of the 10-month trial, they had all lost weight, lowered their blood glucose and had been able to stop using insulin after a month.

In one case, the person stopped having to use medication after justfive days.

"This present case series showed that 24-hour fasting regimens can significantly reverse or eliminate the need for diabetic medication," concluded the authors.

Health benefits of fasting

Aside from weight loss, fasting is believed to have a number of health benefits.

They include:

There's no getting away from it - exercise is key in reversing type 2 diabetes.

Tom Watson puts his reversal largely down to rediscovering a love of cycling.

Last year, he also joined a gym and started weight training.

He now runs 5km twice a week, lifts weights twice a week and makes sure that he always does his 10,000 steps.

Being sedentary is known to be a risk factor for type 2 diabetes so you've got to get moving.

You don't have to be an athlete to get started.

"Eating healthily and doing regular physical activity like running can help you manage your weight and ultimately lower your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes," Douglas Twenefour, Deputy Head of Care at Diabetes UK, told The Sun.

"Nobody is expecting you to become a marathon runner overnight but running regularly benefits the body in a number of ways which will ultimately help prevent or manage the condition.

Why not follow our 12 easy tips to start running?They include power walking and treating yourself, so there's no excuse not to lace up and get out of your door!

Diabetes - the facts

Diabetes UK estimates that more than half of all cases of type 2 diabetes could have been prevented or delayed, with obesity being responsible for up to 85 per cent of someone's risk of developing the condition.

So an obvious solution is to change the way you eat and move.

The experts at Diabetes UK don't call it "reversal" because there's no guarantee that once your blood sugars have stabilised, they'll stay like that forever.

But they say that it's certainly possible to put your diabetes into remission - meaning that your blood sugar levels are below the diabetes range and you no longer need to take your medications.

4.7 million Brits currently live with diabetes - 90 per cent of which have the type 2 version of the disease.

More people than ever are at risk of developing type 2 and if nothing changes, over 5 million of us will have it by 2025.

That's terrifying, given that every week, more than 500 people die prematurely as a result of their condition.

Every single week in the UK, diabetes causes:

Symptoms of type 2 diabetes can include:

Douglas explains why running is so good:

Using insulin more effectivelyWhen youre living with type 2 diabetes, the insulin your body produces can be less effective at processing the glucose in your blood, which can lead to glucose building up in your bloodstream.

Running can help your body use the insulin it produces more efficiently, meaning your body becomes more effective at processing the glucose in your blood.

This helps keep blood glucose levels in the short-term healthy range (4-7 millimoles per litre).

Lowering short-term glucose level

Exercise like running can increase the amount of glucose your bodys muscles use for energy, which in turn can help to lower blood glucose levels in the short-term.

This is important because a short-term rise in blood glucose levels can lead to symptoms such as the need to urinate more; thirstiness; and tiredness.

Maintaining a short-term blood glucose level of 4-7 millimoles per litre lowers the risk of developing such symptoms.

However, different people could be given different blood glucose targets depending on how their diabetes is treated and their personal circumstance.

Lowering long-term glucose levels

Running not only helps keep glucose levels low in the short-term.

More effective processing of the glucose in your blood helps it stay within the healthy long-term range too.

Having high long-term blood glucose levels (HbA1c) of more than 48 millimoles per moles over time has been associated with life-changing complications of diabetes such as sight loss, kidney disease and amputations.

Running regularly will keep your long-term glucose levels in check, which in turn can prevent damage to the blood vessels supplying blood to your eyes, kidneys and nerves.

If you hate running, find another exercise that you do enjoy.

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss

WEIGHING in at a staggering 30 stone, Norma Dibrell had become completely obsessed with food.

She was gorging on an extreme 30,000 calories a day and couldn't stop herself from feasting on McDonalds and whole bags of Doritos every single day.

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Norma's love for travel was also being crushed before her very eyes - as she could no longer fit in standard seats on the plane and one travel agent had even refused her a ticket because she was "too big".

However, after two decades of binge eating and reaching dress size 32, the educator, 26, finally decided enough was enough.

She completely overhauled her life and began exercising five times a week - and has since shed nearly 18 stone.

And Norma now feels happier than ever in her 12-stone figure and much more comfortable dress size 12.

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Speaking about her binge eating disorder, Norma, from Texas, USA, said: "For the first 25 years of my existence food was my coping mechanism.

"I was easily eating as much as 30,000 calories a day.

"Whether it was a good day or bad day Id feel better through food. If my day was just ok, Id spice it up with food.

"I just loved food and relied on it.

"If Im honest I still do love eating, but I allowed myself to splurge constantly then and because of my size, weight and priorities, I didnt see intentional physical activity as an option or necessity.

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"This is what Id eat on a bad day; at 6am a large venti caramel frappaccino, slice of iced lemon pound cake and an egg cheddar and bacon croissant.

"At 10am Id have a snickers bar and hot Cheetos. At 1pm Id have two leg quarters with a cup of rice and a large soda. At 3pm Id eat a big bag of Doritos and 10 Oreos.

"At 5pm Id eat a granola bar and drink another large soda. At 7pm Id eat 20 chicken nuggets, a BigMac, hot n spicy chicken, large fries and another large soda.

"At 10pm Id eat popcorn with pickles and chocolate covered almonds. I also had a drawer at work jam packed with snacks and I ate them mindlessly and endlessly.

"The snacks were nuts and chocolate covered nuts, crisps, candy bars and granola bars. This is just in one day and I didnt really exercise."

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And Norma was becoming increasingly low - as her weight meant she couldn't do things she loved such as going to theme parks or surfing.

She said: "I used to struggle a lot. Especially with travel.

"I needed to buy two plane seats, I couldnt use the ziplines, I couldnt climb or surf, I couldnt jump off waterfalls.

"I couldnt go on roller coasters, I couldnt wear heels or boots or the nice clothes I wanted to.

"I couldnt even leave a room without carefully considering if Id fit through the exit before trying. I was also always so tired after really short walks.

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The list just goes on. All this was because of my weight and size.

"One time I was even refused travel because the agent told me I wouldnt fit in the seats and they wouldnt let me buy a second seat. I was so embarrassed."

In December 2017, Norma had gastric bypass surgery and decided to completely overhaul her lifestyle following advice from her surgeon, dietitian and psychiatrist.

She said: "Now for breakfast I might have a protein shake.

"Lunch is typically tuna and cucumber or turkey slices and cheese.

Norma's diet before and after

BEFORE

Breakfast: Large venti caramel frappaccino, slice of iced lemon pound cake and an egg cheddar and bacon croissant

Lunch: Two leg quarters with a cup of rice, a large soda, snickers bar and hot Cheetos

Dinner: 20 chicken nuggets, a BigMac, hot n spicy chicken, large fries and another large soda

Snacks: Big bag of Doritos, ten Oreos, granola bar, popcorn with pickles, chocolate covered almonds and a large soda

AFTER:

Breakfast:Protein shake

Lunch: Tuna and cucumber or turkey slices and cheese

Dinner: Ground turkey zucchini boats, bunless lean cheeseburger or spaghetti squash with turkey meatballs

Snack: Jerky, yogurt with berries, pork rind or fruit

"For dinner a different protein and more veggies like ground turkey zucchini boats, bunless lean cheeseburger or spaghetti squash with turkey meatballs.

"For snacks Ill have one of these; jerky, yogurt with berries, pork rind or fruit.

"Now I exercise on a treadmill or go walking or jogging outdoors five times a week and cover 10,000 steps a day.

"I now eat about 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day."

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Although people are amazed at Normas transformation, she admits that it is still difficult on a daily basis.

She added: "People are generally completely stunned when they see me now. They dont even recognise me anymore.

"I think the hardest thing about this journey has been feeling I had to change myself to fit into this world.

"Boys seem to like me better now that Ive lost weight, but then people did used to say Id be prettier if I lost it.

"Im still obsessed with food so I still find it difficult its still a huge part of my life but I eat differently to be healthier. I now eat foods that fuel me instead of destroy me.

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"Its unfortunate that size dictates social value and aesthetics so much, but thats the truth and people tell me I look good now, as if I looked bad before.

"Apart from feeling like I now conform to societal norms, I feel I am very strong and capable.

"I committed to this lifelong lifestyle and its completely changed my life.

"Im working on my mental health, my relationship with food and educating myself about food."

What is a binge eating disorder?

Binge eating disorder involves regularly eating large portions of food all at once until you feel uncomfortably full, and then often upset or guilty.

Binges are often planned in advance and the person may buy "special" binge foods.

Men and women of any age can get binge eating disorder, but it typically starts in the late teens or early 20s.

The main symptom of binge eating disorder is eating very large amounts of food in a short time, often in an out-of-control way. But symptoms may also include:

People who regularly eat in this way may have binge eating disorder.

The following warning signs could indicate that someone you care about has an eating disorder:

Source: NHS

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Norma has now found a new found love of running and no longer needs two seats on the plane.

She said: "Ive increased physical activity a lot and even found joy in crazy things like jogging. Imagine that?

"I now only need one plane seat with no seatbelt extensions, and I can buy clothes almost anywhere I please.

"Its a very different existence to anything I lived before."

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WEIGH TO GO Mums incredible 4st weight loss in 9 months on a diet of chocolate and G&Ts

I HATED MYSELF Bus drivers 13st weight loss after binge eating took over his life

WEIGHT OFF Greggs sausage roll addict's 7st weight loss after ditching pastry for fakeaways

WEIGH TO GO McDonald's addict's 16-stone weight loss after being told he'd lose his foot

rare gem Gemma Collins shows off weight loss in sheer corset as she arrives at LFW in limo

WEIGHT OFF Mum's incredible 4st weight loss - WITHOUT exercising & still eating chocolate

WEIGH TO GO DJ's incredible 7st weight loss leaves her looking ten years younger

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Norma is now hoping people will follow in her footsteps and gives others advice on how they can lose weight too.

"You really do need to be ready for this journey. You need to really want this for yourself and nobody else," she said.

"You need to understand that this is a lifelong commitment and lifestyle youre accepting. If youre not ready, want a quick fix or are doing it for someone else, you may put on even more weight in the end and not be fully invested."

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Womans staggering 18-STONE weight loss after ditching her 30,000-calorie-a-day diet - The Sun

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss

Erica Dixon welcomed twin girls, Embrii and Eryss, and four months later, shes back to her old self

Just months after she welcomed her welcomed twin girls, Embrii and Eryss, "Love & Hip Hop Atlanta" star Erica Dixon is back in shape.

She revealed how she regained her former figure in four months and is now looking better than ever.

Erica was busy promoting herKlass6 Hair Collection, but all the fans wanted to talk about was how she got back her amazing figure.

The 34-year-old was looking svelte, and her tummy was taut and flat - an incredible achievement for a new mom in such a short space of time.

Erica revealed that shortly after littleEmbrii and Eryss were born she started exercising, concentrating on her waist, and changed her diet radically.

Being self-conscious about my stomach I was skeptical about wearing fitted clothes again but I must say Im loving the results after waist training and the gym. Twins are four months just wait until they are six. Ill be back 100%, she said.

After the girls' birth, Erica opted for a change of lifestyle and espoused a vegan diet, which excludes all animal proteins. Alas, Erica does admit to one weakness, she has a sweet tooth that sometimes leads her astray.

I want to get back slim thick for me. Whoo Lord guide me and yall pray that I can release these Oreos as I begin to workout [sic[ to tone up, she said.

Erica admits that her pregnancy with the twins was unexpected. She fell pregnant while using an IUD, and was astounded to discover she'd conceived twins.

The babies were born prematurely, and Erica had a difficult few days, during which she couldn'ttake her baby girls home.

Today was one of the most difficult days of my life. I have been blessed with two beautiful baby girls but to have to leave them just tore me apart. Praying they can come home sooner than later. I'm missing them so much already, she said.

Fortunately, Embrii and Eryss are now healthy and home with mom and their big sister Emani, whom Erica shares with rapper Lil Scrappy.

Fans heart's melted when Erica Dixon shared the first photo of her tiny twins on Instagram.

Because they were premature, medical complications made it necessary for the babies to prolong their stay at the hospital after their birth, although one of the twins was released a few days later.

This little angel is home. Now were awaiting her sister to swiftly progress so she can join us , Erica wrote.

Both babies are now home safe and sound and in the arms of their proud mom. Erica has not revealed the identity of her daughters' father.

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Erica Dixon Shows off Her Weight Loss Months after Giving Birth to Twin Daughters - AmoMama

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss

When it comes to losing weight, dieters can select from a long list of slimming plans. Some may opt for a more structured plan like the low-carb keto diet, while others may decide to embark on a healthier lifestyle plan like MasterChefs Gregg Wallace - who dropped an impressive three stone. Alongside diet and exercise, there are other things which have been proven to speed up the weight loss process. Eating grapefruit, particularly before daily meals has been found to aid weight loss and burn belly fat.

READ MORE:Weight loss: Use this cooking oil to burn belly fat and lose fast - what is it?

How does it work?

Rich in antioxidants, nutrients and fibre, grapefruit is one of the healthiest citrus fruits that can be eaten.

It has several properties linked to weight loss, especially its fibre content, which helps promote fullness and reduce calorie intake.

Research has shown that it may also have some powerful health benefits.

Grapefruits are very low in calories, which is helpful when losing weight.

While its recommended that the average woman eats about 2,000 calories per day and men eat 2,500 to maintain, a calorie deficit is actually needed to lose weight.

This is because excess energy is stored as fat in the body, therefore slimmers need to burn more calories than they eat to shed the pounds.

According to healthline.com, women can eat 1,500 calories to lose one pound of weight a week, while men can eat 2,000.

How should they be eaten?

As grapefruits are low in calories and packed with fibre, dieters will benefit from consuming one a day.

However, some evidence has shown that eating it before meals can result in eating fewer calories later on in the day.

In a 12-week study in 91 obese individuals, eating half a fresh grapefruit before meals led to weight loss of 3.5 pounds (1.6 kg).

The group also had reduced insulin resistance and a metabolic abnormality that is implicated in various chronic diseases.

Other studies have found similar weight-reducing effects. For instance, one study found that participants experienced a reduced waist size when they consumed grapefruit daily with their meals.

Eating a half a grapefruit about half an hour before some daily meals is recommended, as its said to help people feel more satiated and eat fewer overall calories.

Leading nutritionist Lily Soutter recently spoke to Express.co.uk about the dangers of snacking.

Lily is a London nutritionist, who specialises in workplace wellness and the tools needed to make practical, sustainable and positive dietary changes regardless of a busy schedule. She has frequently appeared on ITVs This Morning with Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield.

She revealed that the common habit of snacking could be wreaking havoc with blood sugar levels and weight.

She said: It is really important to listen to our hunger and fullness cues with regards to snacking. It can be all to easy to mindlessly snack and graze at our desk, but this can wreak havoc on our waist-line and productivity.

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Best weight loss: Eat this before daily meals to burn belly fat and eat less calories - Express

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss

Digital Original

What Is the Keto Diet? Experts Weigh In... and Celebs Sound Off

SinceBriana Culbersonand her husbandRyan Culberson committed to the Keto diet about a year ago, they've lost a whopping 112 pounds combined according to the latest update from Briana's mom,Vicki Gunvalson.

The Real Housewives of Orange Countycouple has been outspoken about their deep devotion to Keto on social media but is it only Keto that made the difference for them, or a larger lifestyle overhaul including exercise as well?Ryan recently answered that question, in response to an Instagram commenter.

The follower asked, "Does Briana work out also? Or is this all from Keto? She looks amazing!"

Ryan responded, "No we haven't started incorporating working out. We just focus on the food."

Here's what celebs have said about the controversial Keto diet, good and bad:

The Feast is Bravos digital destination serving culinary inspiration and essential food news. Like us on Facebook and visit daily for diet and wellness trends, kitchen hacks and tools and the buzziest celebrity, chef, and restaurant happenings you need to know about right now.

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Briana Culberson's Weight Loss Is 100% From the Keto Diet Not Exercise - Bravo

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Sep 22nd, 2019 | Filed under Weight Loss