| Last updated
Forget fad diets - sometimes all you need to do to get fit and healthy is to cut back on the bad stuff.
That's exactly what 31-year-old Melissa Middlemiss from County Durham did. By swapping her her old favourites such as chips, pizza and Chinese takeaway for healthier options, she's managed to go from a size 26 to a petite 6, losing a whopping ten and half stones in the process.
Not only does she feel better than ever, but she's managed to cut down her weekly food bill from £170 to just £40. Cashback!
"I feel great now, I'm only 5ft 4 inches and was in a 26 dress size at my biggest. But I have lost 10 and a half stones and I'm in a size six dress now," said Melissa, who is now a Slimming World consultant.
"It's all about healthy eating and I'm passing that on to others."
Her husband Phil has been a rock for Melissa during the process, and has even shed two and a half stones himself. Now they're using their newfound health to try to conceive, something that didn't prove easy before.
"We decided that we wanted to try for a family but because of our weight we were finding it difficult to conceive," added Melissa. "Now we have a much better chance."
Apparently, the whole process started when Melissa's bowel packed up and stopped working. She struggled to stand and cook and was in and out of hospital and so opted for takeaways and fast food and would comfort eat when she felt ill.
"I got into the habit of having takeaways. Phil and I were eating everything from fish and chips, to Chinese, Indian, pizza, kebabs and any other takeaway there is," explained Melissa.
"But I was getting bigger and bigger and I wasn't active at all. I went up to 20 stones, it was horrendous. The thought of having a photo taken would make me cringe.
"In 2016 I had an operation on my bowel and tummy. I couldn't eat as normal and felt quite unwell, but I still was in the habit of getting takeaways."
Although Melissa lost weight, she decided she wanted to take her health into her own hands and that's when she joined Slimming World and started preparing fresh, home cooked meals for herself and Phil.
Now the couple are able to cook the food they like but with healthier ingredients and processes.
"I still have body image issues but I am pleased with what I've achieved and I'm delighted that I'm helping others reach their goals," added Melissa.
"I'm now down to 9-and-a-half-stones and I'm in a size six. I never thought I would do that."
Chosen for YouChosen for You
Most Read StoriesMost Read