BAR­BARA WIL­LIAMS, CAN­DELO, NSW

Sunday Mail - Body and Soul - - REAL LIFE 5-MINUTE MOTIVATOR -

“De­spite be­ing large my whole life, I didn’t re­alise how over­weight I was un­til I saw a photo of my­self in my lo­cal paper. I am a dementia ad­viser, and the paper was pro­mot­ing Dementia Aware­ness Week. Be­ing obese in­creases your risk of dementia, and I started to re­alise how hyp­o­crit­i­cal it was for me to ad­vise oth­ers be­ing the size I was. I bought some scales and was shocked to see I weighed 143.3 ki­los.

“I joined Weight Watch­ers in 2007 and took up walk­ing. In 2009, I reached my goal weight of 75 ki­los. I felt like a to­tally new per­son.

“I wanted to cre­ate a new life for my­self, so I en­rolled in a so­cial work de­gree and had a full-body health check. My mam­mo­gram re­sults in­di­cated I needed to go for the next level of screen­ing.

“I had a tu­mour far back in my left breast. It was so small and well hid­den that the spe­cial­ist said if I hadn’t lost the weight it was pos­si­ble the mam­mo­gram wouldn’t have picked up on it.

“I re­cov­ered quickly from chemo­ther­apy and ra­dio­ther­apy, an­other tes­ta­ment to my new health­ier body.

“If I hadn’t lost the weight, I wouldn’t have gone for a health check. Los­ing weight has def­i­nitely pro­longed my life in many ways and I feel in­cred­i­bly lucky.”

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