A woman who was so large she couldn’t fit into her car has lost an eye-watering 27st.
Andrea Beckman, 37, was 43st at her heaviest, but has lost 380lb to reach 15.5st with the help of a gastric bypass.
The former Pizza Hut manager followed a protein rich diet and exercised daily to shed the weight after her bariatric surgery.
Unfortunately, Andrea was left with lots of sagging skin due to her weight loss, even after having one operation to remove it – an additional procedure would cost around £23,000.
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The American woman said: “Insurance only covered one panniculectomy, which removes the lower tummy hanging skin.
"I have extra skin on my inner thighs. My arms are terrible. I have extra skin on my back and my stomach."
She added: "I've considered taking out a second mortgage on my home to cover the operation, but with the pandemic and not having steady work, that's just not an option."
Andrea has struggled with her weight since she was a kid, but decided to get surgery when she became too big for her scales.
Andrea said: "I was close to 600lbs and the highest the scale went to was 550lbs (39st).
“It stopped at that point.
“I was so huge I didn't know how much I actually weighed."
That’s not the only time Andrea’s size has made her feel humiliated.
When she was 18 she was asked to get off a theme park ride because of her size.
Andrea said: “I couldn't go anywhere. I literally didn't fit – I didn't even fit in my car.
"I felt like I wasn't living. I couldn't work. I couldn't go anywhere. I couldn't walk to the end of my driveway.
"I tried diet pills, Weight Watchers, the Atkins diet.
"They all worked for a little while but then the old habits came back. “
In 2015, she had the gastric bypass and lost 7st within five months.
Over the next three and a half years, Andrea worked hard to shed more weight.
Even after bariatric surgery patients can gain weight or plateau if they do not exercise and watch what they eat.
She has since gone from a UK size 38 to an 18.
The super slimmer claims that counselling helped her to stay on track.
She said: “I ate when I was bored, when I was sad, when I was happy.
"I constantly snacked during my shifts at work. I ate pizza, french fries and then I'd get Taco Bell or McDonald's on my way home."
Now, Andrea will have coffee and a protein shake for breakfast, chicken salad or turkey salad for lunch and dinner and nuts as a snack.
Andrea said: “I'm absolutely happy and I wouldn't change it even with the extra skin. I have a life now.
"I can go places, I can run around with my nephew. I don't have as many doors slammed in my face, men will hold the door open now."
“I advise women to get into counselling and find out what's causing them to overeat otherwise the habits will come back.”