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Clare, 48, talks about how she made weight loss work for her with the help of the KindEating programme. 

What made you sign up to Help with my Weight?

I’d had knee pain and orthopaedics wanted me to lose some weight before I saw them.

Have you had any experience with weight management services before?

I’ve tried the usual slimming clubs, where I lost weight, but it’s not sustainable with my lifestyle. I have a very busy existence, and put the weight back on again because it was very difficult to stick to and only eat certain things, when you have to work 24 hour shifts.

What did you think of KindEating face to face group?

I really enjoyed it simply because it’s all about normal everyday foods and balancing it with your life. My working hours can be very long so I can’t overcomplicate things and will sometimes need to bring four meals with me to work. Also you can eat what you want with no restrictions other than to watch the portion sizes and be mindful of the healthiness.

What did you learn?

It helped teach me how to organise meals around my life and most importantly, it’s all about making healthier choices. I can still enjoy food and a takeaway, but I’ll pick the healthier option on the menu. There is always something healthier to eat out there.

What’s changed?

I’m so much more aware as to what’s out there. There’s always something wherever you go that is a healthier option. As an example, I’ll have grilled chicken wrap if we go for fast food, so I don’t feel left out or I’m missing out on anything. It’s the healthier, lower calorie choice on the menu and it means I can still enjoy something to eat with the family.

What did you find easy?

It’s very easy to follow as there are no real restrictions or limitations. All the foods are what you eat anyway so it’s more about watching portion sizes, types of food and timing. You can just do normal food shopping and it all relates to everyday life.

What did you find challenging?

The organisation of meals for my longer shifts was a challenge, and making sure I had healthier food in work I could snack on. Also, taking a close look at yourself and the traits or habits you have was more emotionally tough. It worked though because I learned to buy a brand of biscuits I don’t like for my son so I don’t have to worry about eating them myself.

How is your life now?

I just feel so much healthier and happy when people notice I’ve lost weight. It’s made me more determined to keep on working at it and lose more. We’re all going over to Ibiza in September and I feel better about going now. I thought about covering myself up, but the weight loss has increased my confidence and I’m happier with who I am.  I also thought I’d never be a gym goer, but I am now and really enjoy it.