A mum-of-two, who was too overweight to take the contraceptive pill, has lost eight stone in just one year.
Elli Pond, 25, said she used both of her pregnancies in 2013 and 2015 as an excuse to eat “whatever she wanted”.
Dropping from a size 18 to a size eight in 12 months, she has now released photographs of her transformation.
At 5ft 4ins, Pond went from 12 stone pre-pregnancy to 18 stone post-pregnancy, thanks to a diet of sugary Pop-Tarts and endless rounds of peanut butter on toast.
The photographer, from Stamford, Lincolnshire, was so overweight at 18 stone in October 2015 that she had to have her gallbladder removed, after suffering with debilitating gallstones.
Doctors said it was weight-related, as obesity increases the amount of cholesterol in bile, which can cause stones to form.
The 30 minute operation to remove the gallstones took place at Peterborough City Hospital, Cambridgeshire, in April this year.
“I suffered gallstones following the birth of each of my two sons, which doctors said was due to my weight,” Elli, mum to Oscar, three, and Henry, one, explained. “It was agony, I’ve never known pain like it. It was even worse than labour.”
Still, her agonising ordeal did not prompt her to lose weight.
It was her doctor explaining she was too big for the combined pill in November 2015 which forced her to rethink her diet.
“I visited my local GP with the view of getting the pill for contraception and felt embarrassed when he explained it was not advisable for me to go on it,” she said.
“He said he couldn’t give it to me with my BMI, which was 45 at the time instead of between 18 and 25, which is considered the healthy limit.
“I felt humiliated and belittled, but now I thank that doctor as it was the wake-up call I needed. It finally kicked me into action and I decided to lose weight.”
According to the NHS, the oestrogen in the pill may can cause blood clots which could lead to a stroke or heart attack.
Although the risk of getting a blood clot is very small, doctors will check for a combination of certain risk factors which could make the patient more vulnerable - one of which is being overweight.
In just over 12 months, from October 2015 to November this year, Elli dropped from 18 stone to nine stone 10lbs – shrinking from a size 18 to a size eight.
She now loves shopping for clothes and when she has the contraceptive implant out in December 2017 she plans to go on the pill.
Elli feels her life has been transformed and says that, while carpenter husband, Aaron Pond, 26, supported her whatever her weight, he now “constantly pays her compliments”.
“He says I look really good, healthy and attractive,” she told.
Now Elli can’t believe what she ate during her pregnancies. “I had the completely wrong attitude” she said. “I’d eat a hell of a lot. Every time I got off the sofa I’d have something to eat. It makes me feel guilty now thinking about it.
“I don’t know how many calories I’d have, but it must have been double what I should have had.”
She said she thought food made her happy but it didn’t. In fact, she felt incredibly self-conscious and wouldn’t enjoy clothes shopping.
“I will never go back to my old ways,” she said. “This is me now.
“I have thrown the Pop-Tarts out and have fruit and fat free yoghurt for breakfast.”
Now, lunch consists of eggs and dinner a healthy pasta meal.
She added: “I feel so proud of myself and I get compliments all the time. It has changed my life.
“I know my health needs to be my priority, for me and my boys.
“I would like to have more children in the future, but I’d definitely stay healthy throughout the pregnancy next time.”