Emma Sattler struggled with her weight for nearly 20 years, but her father's death was the wake up call she needed to transform her unhealthy lifestyle.
Emma lost her father to cancer when he was just 62. With two young sons to look after, she didn’t want to follow the same path, leaving her children without a mother.
‘My dad succumbed to illness most likely as a result of an unhealthy lifestyle – eating fried and fatty foods, little or no exercise…just like me,’ she says. ‘I was terrified that if I carried on the way I was going, I would end up just like my dad and unable to make any memories with my two young sons Matthew, 7, and James, 4. I was worried about not being there to see my boys grow up.’
It wasn’t just thoughts of the future that inspired Emma to overhaul her lifestyle. Her weight was affecting her confidence, leaving her depressed and causing her to shy away from social events. She would often hide behind her children when having her picture taken to avoid the embarrassment, and often felt she was being judged about her weight.
‘I would avoid any exercise, even driving my sons to school, which was just a mile away, she says. ‘I got out of breath by walking a short distance, and my legs chafed together.’
Having tried Slimming World in past without much success, Emma decided to re-join a group and try out the Slimming World Food Optimising eating plan, which provides members with a range of easy to follow recipes.
Gradually, Emma lost 5 stone 1 lb and dropped four dress sizes.
‘I’ve got rid of the weight for good’, she says. ‘I loved the fact that for almost every stone I lost, I was dropping a clothes size, going from a 16/18 down to an 8/10. It’s an amazing feeling.
‘I no longer feel bloated after I’ve eaten,’ says Emma. ‘I feel confident in myself, where I lacked it before [and] have a much more positive outlook on life. I now look forward to walking my boys to school, and they love that I may suggest a bike ride with them instead of avoiding all exercise.’
Slimming World Food Optimising eating plan
Emma found Slimming World’s Food Optimising eating plan fit into her life and her family’s life without much of a struggle. A self-confessed chocaholic, she was pleased to find she could continue to enjoy her favourite daily treat, albeit in moderation!
‘It is a plan that works,’ she says. ‘You can fill up on foods such as potatoes, rice, pasta etc. as much as you like, and sometimes (if cooked according to the plan) you can feel like you’re eating foods you really shouldn’t be enjoying! There are so many delicious recipes that can be made, and they are so simple to prepare and cook.
‘I do the food shopping, and make sure I’ve got plenty of fruit and veg to snack on during the week too. I try to make different recipes often, so that we’re not eating the same meals all the time and to make it interesting.’
By making healthy swaps and monitoring her diet with a food diary, Emma was able to keep on track and reach her weight loss milestones, as well as make new friends who were on the same journey as she was.
‘There is always a great discussion during the weekly Slimming World groups, whether it be recipe sharing, ideas for snacks, ideas for meal preparation, etc.’ says Emma. ‘My consultant knows everyone and their individual journey, which I love. It makes the experience more personal, and ensures everyone feels confident during the group. I really feel it is one of the most important parts of being a Slimming World member.
‘I’m now at my target weight and proud of it. I was recently voted my group’s “Woman of the Year” competition and went through to the Regional finals for the Midlands region. It was an incredibly humbling experience, hearing so many wonderful, inspiring stories from so many people. I was incredibly proud to have been nominated, and it was a great experience to share my journey with other ladies who had also been nominated.’
Emma’s top weight loss tips
- You may have a ‘bad’ week, but don’t give up. Stick to plan and the results will speak for themselves.
- Don’t cheat, you’ll only be cheating yourself.
- Try and stay to your group Slimming World group. It’s good fun, interesting, and it will help you on your journey.
- Keep a food diary to track all the food that you eat.
- Make sure you still enjoy the foods that make you happy (within reason!) For example, if you like wine, still enjoy a glass of wine, if you like chocolate, still have the chocolate bar.
Well done Emma on your amazing achievement!