As we know, America has a serious obesity problem. Obesity affects more than one-third (35.7 percent) of American adults according to the US Department of Health and Human Services. Until recently, Jessica Weber fell into those statistics. But she decided to make a change and ending up losing half her body weight.
‘I Was Treated Differently’
Growing up in central Illinois, Weber ate a diet heavy on carbs and starches. Most of her meals centered on pasta and potatoes. And this unhealthy diet wreaked havoc on her physical and mental health, she told the Daily Mail in an interview.
“I definitely feel like I was treated differently,” Weber told the Daily Mail. “I used to get made fun of growing up in school.”
Weber said she stopped riding the school bus because a girl was so mean.
“I wasn’t even at my heaviest weight then; it got better, but I still felt like people still judged me,” she said.
By the time she reached 22 years old, Jessica weighed 383 pounds. She ate two dinners a night and felt totally miserable. So she decided to make a change. In January, she underwent gastric sleeve surgery, commonly referred to as VSG, an acronym for vertical sleeve gastrectomy. Now she’s down to 198 pounds.
Weber has tracked her progress on Instagram, recently sharing these incredible before-and-after photos:
What Is VSG?
The gastric sleeve surgery reduces the size of the patient’s stomach, reshaping it into a thin tube. This forces the patient to practice portion control and count calories. The surgery helped jumpstart Jessica’s weight-loss journey, and since then she totally overhauled her diet.
She cut out “liquid calories” like soda and eliminated super-starchy foods from her diet. Combined with a diet of mostly lean proteins and vegetables, she lost over half her body weight. However, she says she still has some more to go before she gets a tummy tuck to remove some of her excess skin.
Weber recently shared a photo of her stomach on Instagram, writing:
This is my reality! This is my life! When you lose 180 pounds, the skin doesn’t just suck back up! I have been learning to deal with it, even with wanting to lose a bit more weight and have surgery! This is my life until then and I will not hate my body anymore!
While Weber refuses to hate her body, she does admit to feeling sad about how many years she lived unhappily overweight.
“‘I feel sad because I feel like I wasted years of my life,” Weber told the Daily Mail. “Now that I’m losing weight, I feel more confident and am out doing a lot more so I feel like I’m getting my life back.”
Follow her on Instagram for more updates. The comments are extremely uplifting if you need a little bit of your own encouragement.