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That’s a wrap for 2022!

It’s safe to say that this year has been an emotional roller coaster. From adjusting to the ‘new normal’ after the covid pandemic, the sad passing of Her Royal Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the turbulent political landscape both at home and abroad – 2022 has been a challenging period for us all. However, amongst the gloom, there have been many positive stories that lifted our spirits: the platinum jubilee united the nation in celebration, Birmingham hosted the Commonwealth games (with 96 new Commonwealth records & 4 world records broken), and the home nations competing in the world cup. 

Equally, we’ve been inspired by the determination and resolve of our fabulous patients, who have used this year as a crossroads, making a commitment to improving their lives, using their weight loss procedure alongside the expert aftercare from our patient support team to make a positive change. We spoke to some of our patients, and here are some of their favourite moments this year…  

Melissa's 13 Stone Loss

To start with statistics, Melissa James has lost a total of 13 stone since having her Gastric Bypass. Giving her emotional and mental freedom… 

“I wore a bikini for the first time on my honeymoon”  

Going out in swimwear is something a lot of Bariatric Patients struggle with before their surgery, due to a lack of self-confidence that is psychologically correlated with obesity and disordered eating (NCBI). Therefore, (re)discovering the confidence to finally look in the mirror and be content with the reflection in front of you.  

“I can buy clothes in shops”  

When struggling with an eating disorder, it is likely the clothes you love to browse for in the shops aren’t available in the required size, making it harder to enjoy the simple things in life. Being able to buy off the peg from your favourite shops is an example of a non-scale victory (NSV) that our patients really value.  

“I won an influencer award”  

Of course, one of Melissa’s NSV’s was winning our Healthier Weight ‘Influencer Award’. Since having her surgery, Melissa has become a prominent presence in the bariatric community, offering support and motivational content to fellow bariatric patients.  

“I could take my son to the West Midlands Safari Park” and “go on all the rides” 

Not only has her weight loss improved her own life, but she has been able to do new things with her amazing family and create many new happy memories. 

“It’s been the best year of my life”  

These are only a few snippets into Melissa’s life since her surgery, and since having her procedure she’s never looked back. We are so proud of you Melissa and can’t wait to see what you achieve in 2023.  

Not only have we had emotional and mental changes, but it’s also always amazing to see some incredible transformations to boost people’s spirits. Here are just a few more of our favourites …. 

Cheryl's New Relationship With Food

Weight loss surgery helps patients in many different ways, some benefit mentally and others benefit more physically. Cheryl Peters, who had her Gastric Band exactly a year ago, has lost a total of 5 stone 7 pounds. Alongside the profound physical change, Cheryl has also learnt new positive habits and created a healthier relationship with food. “It has been a huge learning curve” eating smaller mouthfuls of food, chewing more, and digesting her food properly, “but it’s been so worth it!”  

Cheryl’s new relationship with food, has had a positive impact on her mental health, being able to “comfortably” leave the house and take her 5-year-old to fun places without any concern. She wants to take a moment at the end of this year to say “well done to everyone else who is on this journey” as your dedication shows how amazing you all are.  

Jacqueline No Longer Defined By Obesity

For a lot of patients, being factually defined as “obese” can have a major impact on their self-esteem. For Jacqueline Geddes-Smith, no longer being classed as ‘obese’ was the true highlight of her journey this year. “I can’t tell you the happiness this progress brings me”. 

We at Healthier Weight know how difficult it is to forget your accomplishments and as Jacqueline says it’s easy to “forget these accomplishments and go back to being hard on yourself and overly self-critical”. So, if there’s a perfect time to thank yourself for everything you have accomplished now is the time! 

Jacqueline managed to fit into her “small jeans” that she had in a box in the spare room! This was truly the highlight of her year as “they fit better now than they did 9 years ago” when she first met her husband.  

Maggie's Life Changing Journey

Reaching your end goal, can be a scary concept, not knowing what to do next. But the truth is, that’s just the beginning, giving you the opportunity to explore new and exciting areas of your life. For Maggie Hyett, she felt nothing but “absolute joy” knowing she was no longer “fluctuating by more than a couple of pounds”. This allowed her to finally feel relaxed around food and explore other fulfilling areas of her life. We are so proud of everything you’ve achieved Maggie and look forward to seeing what you get up to next year! 

Sue's Leap Of Faith

A lot of this year’s highlights were based on what people have done since having their weight loss surgery, such as making happy memories and experiencing new things. But for Sue Abbott, her highlight of the year was taking the initial step to have the weight loss surgery. 

The thought of undergoing surgery can be very daunting and one that a lot of people put off due to the fear of the unknown. But at Healthier weight, with our team of expert surgeons, you are in safe hands. Sue took the leap and has not looked back!  

Lottie's Self Esteem Story

For Lottie Reeve, her surgery has given her back her self-esteem, which she explained has been “hidden away for years”. By losing nearly 5 stone in 7 months, she has been given a “new lease of life”, with reduced symptoms and pain that are often associated with a higher BMI.  

Not only do these transformations help patients with their confidence and appearance, but they also help them live a healthier life. But it’s not just about living longer but also improving your quality of life. Lottie Reeve is the perfect example of this… “I used to suffer with terrible knee pain if I tried to exercise and sleep apnoea, both of which have significantly improved”. Lottie can now do longer shifts without feeling exhausted due to her excess weight.  

 As a student nurse, Lottie often felt hypocritical advising patients on lifestyle changes when she was not prioritising her own, therefore by choosing to improve her physical health she feels more confident advising her own patients.   

Despite all of these improvements in her quality of life, her favourite Gastric Sleeve benefit is that she can now run around with her two wonderful children without worrying about getting out of breath. 

Having weight loss surgery not only helps you, but it also helps everyone around you, Lottie only wishes she would’ve had her sleeve years ago, as she feels like “a completely different person”.  

Some of these off-scale victories are things you don’t often believe will affect you as much as they do. But we slowly come to realise it’s the little things that make the biggest difference. Being able to share these within the bariatric community helps our patients celebrate their achievements. But nothing will compare to the Healthier Weight ‘More than Just’ where the community came together to celebrate each other’s achievements… 

Healthier Weight's ‘More than just’ Awards

The awards were held on the 24th of September when over 100 people came together to celebrate the WLC community. Healthier Weight staff, patients & surgeons, shared an unforgettable night of amazing stories, and a few laughs (including 1 dropped award!) A total of 12 awards were given out to recognise our amazing patients and acknowledge their achievements. Weight loss surgery isn’t an easy route to take, it has a lot of physical and mental barriers that you must overcome to gain successful results. Having the opportunity to get together and celebrate our patients was truly a night to remember 

Healthier Weight's Patient day 2022

In April we were finally able to have our first patient day since COVID. This consisted of inviting 9 of our amazing patients to Birmingham to spend the day with us. On the day, they shared some inspirational stories and helped us continue to build the Healthier Weight community. The patients involved had lost over 80 stone between them and achieved some incredible goals which can be found here. For example, Melissa and Anita, a mother and daughter from Lincolnshire both took the leap into weight loss surgery together, allowing them to support each other throughout their journeys. Their bond was visible from the very first moments of meeting them face-to-face, seeing how much they had helped change each other’s lives.  

But we’re not done yet! The stories from the day are being continued to be shared throughout next year. Keep your eyes peeled for the journeys to be shared and have some tissues handy! 

Andi Barker's Case Study

As a lot of you may have recognised, we have begun a live case study that you can see on our social media channels and our website, following the hashtag #Andisjourney. Andi Barker started his journey on 9th October 2022, weighing a total of 33 stone 9 lbs 

which was a genuinely life-threatening situation for Andi. Whilst following Andi on his journey, we have watched him transform into a new man and explore new life passions. Since having his surgery 2 months ago, he has lost 5 stone 9 lbs! Being a true inspiration to everyone following his journey through his regular video updates. 

Not only has he helped show potential bariatric patients a genuine and unfiltered reality to the weight loss surgery experience, but he has also been an incredible advocate for men’s mental and physical health. Andi has helped show that it is ok to be male and not be happy with your appearance, and if that is the case then it is time for you to make a change and prioritise your health. It’s easy to slip into old habits that are difficult to reverse, and sometimes it’s important to acknowledge this instead of ignoring it.  

As our first-ever live case study, following a patient’s journey from the beginning, we can positively say Andi has been incredible! His positivity and candour throughout the whole experience has been inspirational and we are proud Andi chose to have his weight loss surgery with Healthier Weight. It has been an amazing start this year and we look forward to seeing what Andi continues to achieve alongside other possible case studies we will pursue next year!  

If you are interested in a gastric procedure such as the gastric band, gastric sleeve, gastric bypass or ESG. You can contact our expert team today and book a free consult with one of our weight loss surgeons.


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