I’d been large most of my life and always been bigger than my friends. Then when I started studying nursing at university, I lived off takeaways and felt I didn’t have time to exercise, so more weight soon piled on.

Before I joined Slimming World I had no energy. I’m a nurse – which is such a physical job – and spending 14 hours on my feet was absolutely exhausting, especially on top of studying.

The trigger point

I knew my weight was to blame for my exhaustion, but it was a comment from a friend that prompted me to do something about it. We were talking about a particular condition that affects people who are underweight and my friend joked that I wouldn’t have to worry about ever getting it because I was really fat. I didn’t know how to respond.

I felt that I needed to set a better example as a health professional, so I visited my GP for advice. As Slimming World on Referral was operating in my area, my doctor asked if I'd like to join a group to get support.

Nursing worries

I thought Slimming World was just for women, so as a young guy I was really nervous about going to group. I was worried about being the only man and about being the heaviest. When I got there, I soon realised none of that mattered – the shared desire to lose weight was the most important thing. Also, I wasn't the only man there at all!

I was surprised, too, at how easy it was to fit healthy eating into my busy routine and how affordable Food Optimising can be – especially on a student nurse’s wage.

Now I’ve lost weight, my friends say that I have much more confidence and I don’t hide away in baggy clothes any more.

I have so much more energy at work, too: moving patients is easier and I don’t feel self-conscious about raising the issue of weight with patients now, either.

I know more than anyone what it feels like to be unhappy and ashamed of your size, and I think that understanding helps me to approach the subject in a more sensitive manner – plus I can tell patients all about Slimming World, too.

*Weight loss will vary due to your individual circumstances and how much weight you have to lose.