South Shields airline worker flying high after shedding FOUR dress sizes thanks to hula hooping and healthy eating
South Shields mum Nikola Hunter is living a whole new life after shedding over four stone since joining Slimming World – and is not letting her health condition hold her back.
The 35-year-old, mum boys Harry, five, and Bobby, four, suffers from Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), a hormonal disorder thought to affect one in 10 women in the UK.
The condition means Nikola is insulin resistant and often feels hungry, even after eating, and craves food, making it harder to maintain a healthy weight.
The Jet2 Cabin Crew worker was a size 16/18 before joining New Crown South Shields Slimming World group in 2016 and often turned to convenience foods such as cakes, biscuits and sandwiches, as well as comfort eating.
She would also eat and drink out frequently.
She said: “When I first joined, I felt a little apprehensive and wasn’t sure what to expect. I’d tried other diets and plans before and lost weight, but never felt like it was something I could stick at or maintain the loss, long term.”
Nikola lost 4.5lbs in her first week and after only 14 weeks managed to lose 1st 9lbs.
Just one week later she found out she was pregnant with her second boy and consultant Sharon Simpson provided some additional advice and materials on how to adapt the plan to suit her new nutritional needs so she could continue her Slimming World journey to help her lose the weight she was desperate to get rid of.
During her second pregnancy Nikola felt unwell and her weight went back up to the biggest she had ever been, leaving her feeling uncomfortable in her body.
But once she felt well enough she returned to the group to continue her weight loss and control her PCOS.
As well as helping Nikola lose weight and maintain a better diet, after following the Slimming World plan she now has a better understanding of her medical condition and how to control it.
She added: “I have a very busy job and the difference losing weight has made is huge.
"Being fit and healthy is essential, but for me, it’s more than that, it’s about my boys too.
"I want to be fit and healthy for them and to be able to enjoy life to the full for them and my husband, Paul.
“I have a confidence in myself that I’ve never had before."
Nikola, who has been married to Paul for almost 10 years, started her Slimming World journey at 15.5st 9.5lbs and at her latest weigh-in was 11st 6.5.
She now enjoys hula hooping and walking in her free time.
Her diet has also become much healthier, including weetabix, homemade chicken balti, fruit and salads.
Slimming World consultant Sharon Simpson added: “I’m extremely proud of Nikola, she’s a huge inspiration in group, and inspires others to lose weight too.
"She looks amazing and is such a whizz with her cooking it’s impossible not to be inspired by her.
“All of our groups in South Tyneside have so many inspirational members in them and as consultants we are privileged to play a small part in helping hundreds of people change their lives.”