For the last 40 years I have been a yo-yo dieter and have tried every diet under the sun. Most of the time I lost weight successfully but I was never able to keep the weight off. I tried Weightwatchers, Slimming World, Cambridge Diet, cabbage diet and diet pills and probably more that I can't even remember. I was always on a diet of some sort.
I was over 16 stone and had high blood pressure, high cholesterol and with a family history of stroke, coronary heart disease and diabetes, I was desperate to lose weight. I could not climb stairs or get socks on without a struggle. I had no social life and hated having to buy new clothes, preferring to do it online so I didn't have to go into shops. I was too embarrassed.
A gastric band was a last resort. I had researched it for over a year before taking the plunge. I chose Healthier Weight because I liked the idea of a support group and follow up clinics, I was not just going to be left to deal with it myself. The operation in Sep 2007 was carried out on my 61st birthday and it was the best thing I ever did.
I have now lost over 6 stones and have dropped from a size 28 to a size 14. Although I am now 63, I feel 20 years younger and can now walk for miles, climb stairs, play golf and life is a pleasure again. I have just returned from a holiday in Australia and for the first time in years, I was able to fit into an aeroplane seat comfortably and was able to eat a meal easily without the tray sticking into my stomach.
I have reduced my blood pressure medication and hope to stop it completely soon. My cholesterol has now dropped to a level where I don't need medication any more. I look and feel better and have much more energy. People who haven't seen me for a while don't recognise me now. I am now taking pride in my appearance and wear make-up every day. I also enjoy clothes shopping now because I don't need to shop in outsize shops.
I am healthier now in every way and I am so glad I had the gastric band. I would do it all again tomorrow.
Patricia (May 2010)