A wellbeing adviser who felt so hypocritical telling her clients how to stay healthy has lost nine stone in nine months using her own clinic's weight loss programme.

Anna Velesiotou, 39, has shrunk from 20 stone and a size 20, to 11 stone and a size 10 to 12 in less than a year.

It comes after Anna, from Wilmslow , started running a weight loss and lifestyle programme at the Courthouse Clinic and felt 'hypocritical' about telling people how to lose weight.

Anna said her weight began to balloon hen she landed a desk job around eight years ago.

She fell into bad habits and was scoffing sweets as she worked and downing double portions at dinner time.

Anna at 20 stone before the weight loss

This combined with longer work hours and commuting time, and little time for exercise, meant that 5ft 2in, Greek-born Anna began piling on the pounds – reaching 20 stone.

With a BMI of 52, she was classed as obese.

She said: “Little by little my weight crept up. I was a size 10 to 12 and went up to a size 20. I put on about 10 stone in a period of eight years.

“It was a vicious circle, because I felt depressed about my weight, then I ended up eating because I felt depressed.

“I didn’t go out very much and was never really into shopping, so I would just wear my work uniform and didn’t really realise how much I’d ballooned.

“I was not happy, but I’d always make a joke out of it, saying things like, ‘Whoever saw a happy athletic person.'”

Anna during the weight loss

Three years ago Anna started a job as an adviser at the Courthouse Clinic and as part of her role, ran a weight loss programme.

The 'MediWeight' medically-supervised weight loss and lifestyle programme puts the body into ketosis.

This makes the body break down fat stores and use them for energy.

Anna soon realised the irony of being fatter than many of the people she was trying to help.

“I thought, ‘I have got to practice what I preach'", she said.

“You work out a plan with a doctor and they supervise you throughout the process and ensure you are getting the right vitamins.

“I cut out carbohydrates, sugar and fat. I was having five small meals a day and a lot of vegetables. It was very tough, but I quickly saw results which made me keep going.

“The weight started to fall off and in the first week I lost half a stone.

Anna after losing nine stone in nine months

“Within three or four months, I was shopping for new clothes which were four sizes smaller. I did not realise how much I was changing.

“By the end of November, I was a size 12. I was completely shocked. I started it at the end of May last year and by March I had lost nine stone. I was losing a stone a month.

“People were so shocked when they saw me. My work colleagues had taken before and after pictures and showed them to me. I couldn’t believe the difference.

'They got rid of temptations in the home and we ate a healthy, Mediterranean diet, like we did when I was a child'

“I became a lot more sociable and would go out with them more, but when it came to finding clothes I realised nothing in my wardrobe fitted me anymore.”

Anna swapped her usual diet of a black coffee for breakfast, a sandwich for lunch and vegetables, rice and and meat for dinner, for porridge or an omelette for breakfast, a mid-day snack of 50g of berries, seasonal salad with fish for lunch, a handful of nuts or a small seasonal fruit for a snack and steam vegetables with 100g of meat or fish and a salad for dinner.

She has also become more active and walks to and from work every day, as well as doing aerobic exercises using YouTube videos a couple of times a week.

Anna lost nine stone after following her own clinic's weight loss programme

She said her parents didn't recognise her when she went back to Greece in the summer.

“They only realised it was me when I started to speak to them", Anna said.

"Even then they were staring at me, because they could recognise their daughter’s voice but not her body.

“They were very proud and supportive. My dad made sure we went for long walks to keep up the exercise and they got rid of temptations in the home and we ate a healthy, Mediterranean diet, like we did when I was a child.  

“While there I also tried a dress on that I used to wear when I was 19 and it fit me.  

“It was the most amazing feeling.”

Anna after the weight loss

Anna said her confidence has 'massively improved' and that she cried the first time she looked at herself in a full length mirror.

Her advice now is to monitor portion sizes - she even uses children's cutlery so she has less food on her fork.

“It really is a case of changing your habits and I now eat healthily, making sure I have three meals a day," she said. 

Anna says her parents didn't recognise her

"If I go out for meals I will look for the healthier option, but I will still treat myself and have a dessert or some sweets now and again.  

“If you don’t have them as often you feel like you really deserve them when you do.  

“I rediscovered myself. I am feeling happy and full of energy and I don’t feel shy anymore. I’ve started socialising and enjoying life again.” 

Anna’s Diet Before

Breakfast: a black coffee

Lunch: a sandwich

Dinner: vegetables with a big portion of rice and some sort of meat

Anna’s Diet After

Breakfast: 30g  of porridge or egg white’s omelette.

Mid-day snack: 50g of berries

Lunch: seasonal salad with fish

Snack: a handful of nuts or a small seasonal fruit

Dinner: steamed vegetables with 100g of meat or fish and a salad

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