Mum-of-three reveals 5st weight loss – and still ate same diet of pizzas, burgers & kebabs – The Sun

BUSY mum Rachel Falcus feared her children would be overweight and bullied at school, just like she had been.

She had tried every fad diet going but always regained any weight she lost.

But after discovering Slimming World she dropped an incredible six dress sizes – with the added bonus that her kids learned about healthy eating too.

Rachel, 39, from Newcastle upon Tyne, says: “I was really overweight, ordering in takeaways every night, and I just thought, ‘I can’t do this once the children grow up.’

“I worried my children would be overweight at school, like I was, and didn’t want them to be picked on because of their size.”

She lost 3st 7lb in a year and a half – and the proud mum of three, says: “The best part for me has been having my children on this journey with me. They’ve loved learning to cook meals from scratch with me.

"Now it’s a way for me and my family to maintain a healthy lifestyle."

Rachel had struggled with her weight ever since childhood.

She said: "I was overweight from the age of nine. I didn’t play any sports and my mum worked nights so food was always convenience over health.

"We had a lot of takeaways and ready meals, as mum rarely cooked from scratch.

"I don’t know what my weight was back then but I was always the biggest in my class at school and, by my teenage years, I was a size 12."

I was always the biggest in my class at school

After college, Rachel began work as a civil servant and started trying fad diets in a desperate attempt to lose weight.

And she continued to balloon after meeting her husband Craig, who she has children James, 15, Liam, 12, and five-year-old Emily with.

"I did at least two a year and, although I’d lose around a stone, it never stayed off because the diets were unsustainable, so I’d yo-yo up and down," she said.

"After I met Craig, we married when I was 23 and I walked down the aisle in a size 12 dress after two months of crash-dieting.

"I fell pregnant with James less than a year later, and gained three stone in nine months.

"The minute I became a mum, I knew I wanted more children, so I just put the weight to the back of my mind.

"I had my second child three years later and gained another three stone with that pregnancy, taking me to over 15st and a size 22."

It was only then that something switched in Rachel's attitude towards her weight and she decided to make a change so she could be a good role model for her children.

Rachel was at a parent-toddler group when one mum told her she was a Slimming World member.

"She said it was amazing, because she could cook the same healthy meals for herself and her family," Rachel said.

"It was what I was looking for, so I went home, researched my local group and signed up."

It was May 2007 when Rachel first walked through the Slimming World doors – which she found daunting at first.

I was eating the same foods I was eating before – pizza, burgers, chips and kebabs

However, as soon as Rachel found out she could still eat her favourite foods she instantly fell in love with the weight loss group.

She added: "The minute I heard about the Food Optimising plan and the recipes, I loved it.

"I couldn’t believe I was eating the same foods I was eating before – pizza, burgers, chips and kebabs – and losing weight at the same time.

"I was in the kitchen cooking up these healthier versions of the foods I loved and the weight just dropped off.

"It felt so good to be cooking for my family, knowing it was healthy, and seeing how they enjoyed the meals."

Rachel lost 3st 7lb in 18 months and says she felt "like a new woman".

"Everyone was amazed at the difference, not just in my looks but my confidence, too," she said.

"When I fell pregnant again, at the age of 33, everything was different third time around.

"During my pregnancy I ate healthy, home-cooked meals and, instead of feeling sluggish like I had during my first two pregnancies, I had energy.

"I only gained a stone over nine months and lost it straight away after giving birth. I felt so good."

By sticking to the Slimming World Food Optimising plan, Rachel has lost another two stone – taking her down to a dress size ten and 10st 7lb.

It gave Rachel the confidence to join a gym and she now goes to spin and body-pump classes.

She added: "I’ve become a Slimming World Consultant and even my mum Lorraine, who’s 64, signed up to one of my groups and has lost two stone.

"Clothes shopping is great fun now and the compliments from friends and family give me a buzz.
"I’ve also saved hundreds of pounds by not getting takeaways – cooking healthy food at home is much better  value. If I can do it, you can too."

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