Experts say that not depriving yourself is the key to healthy, sustainable weight loss. Leisa managed to lose 45kg while not entirely giving up the foods she enjoyed.
Before Leisa embarked on her weight loss journey, her cravings primarily dictated what she ate.
“I would eat whatever I wanted. All the fast-food chains would feature in my diet weekly. Potato chips, chocolate, anything deep-fried,” she tells Body+Soul.
Leisa says it was difficult to know “how to stop once I was full”, but that a difficult pregnancy also contributed to her weight gain. At her heaviest, Leisa weighed 125kg.
After her son was born, an embarrassing incident snapped her into reality: “While sitting on the toilet I heard a crack. I had cracked the concrete base of the toilet. I was mortified,” she recalls.
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Leisa says Lite N Easy appealed to her: a 1200 calorie-a-day diet of breakfast, lunch, dinner and two snacks.
“I made a promise to myself that would be all I would eat – in other words, no cheating,” she says.
The first few weeks were tough, Leisa says, but keeping up with her son was great motivation to lose weight and get fit: “I knew I had to do it for him before he became a toddler running around.”
The variety of Lite N Easy has, well and truly, kept Leisa interested 18 months in, which is such an important factor in sustaining a healthy diet. Nobody likes boring food.
“Today I had plum jam on fruit muffin for breakfast and for lunch I have caramelized beef burger which is one of my favourites,” she says.
“The dinners are the best. Tonight I think I’m going to have spaghetti bolognese.”
Leisa’s son, now approaching two years old, keeps her active as he “loves to go on walks and play ball.”
She’s also realised how much more energy she has when she’s eating well and learned the importance of not beating yourself up if you have a slip.
“I think the key for me was if I did eat something bad not to write off the rest of the day with more unhealthy food, just get back on the wagon and move forward,” she says.
“I used to say to myself: ‘If I can just get through today then tomorrow will be easier’.”