Residents in Haverhill have lost more than 19 stone between them thanks to weight management programmes run by Live Well Suffolk.
Since the start of the year 34 people have completed the free Lose Weight with Live Well Suffolk’ courses in Haverhill, losing 270lbs.
Two Haverhill residents who have benefitted from the course are Keith and Diane Grant, of Dalham Place.
Keith, 57, said: “About 13 years ago I gave up smoking as I was having trouble walking the one mile distance to work.
“Shortly afterwards I was diagnosed with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and over the years used the condition as the reason I couldn’t exercise and I gradually gained weight.
“Then last year I was having some health issues – I was diagnosed with water retention which was causing my legs to swell up and also with sleep apnoea, both of which are caused by being overweight and unfit.
“At that point, I weighed over 15 stone.”
The couple joined a 12-week weight loss course at Haverhill Leisure Centre.
They have now lost five and a half stone between them – Keith three stone and Diane two and a half.
As well as helping them to make healthier food choices, Live Well Suffolk also encouraged the couple to be more physically active. Keith now runs five miles two or three times a week and has joined the Haverhill Running Club, while Diane, who previously hated the gym, now loves it and goes three to four times a week.
Diane, 53, said: “We loved the course and its practical approach to losing weight, as well as the free use of the facilities at the leisure centre throughout the duration of the course.”
Keith added: “My health has improved drastically and I have a greater interest in cooking healthier food.
“I am a lot more flexible now and can tie my shoe laces up easier and getting in and out of the bath is much easier.
“I feel invigorated and I’m enjoying life again rather than just plodding through it.”
Since completing the weight loss programme Keith and Diane have continued to embrace their healthier and more active lifestyle.
They now volunteer as Health Champions for Live Well Suffolk to promote the service within their local community and encourage others to follow in their footsteps.
The Lose Weight with Live Well Suffolk programme is completely free and aims to help participants lose five percent of their body weight, which can reduce the risk of heart disease, strokes and type 2 diabetes.
Terry Dowding is Live Well Suffolk’s Adult Weight Management Practitioner in Haverhill and delivers the Lose Weight with Live Well Suffolk programme. He said: “Diane and Keith have achieved a fantastic weight loss and are continuing to enjoy the benefits of a healthier lifestyle. Working with individuals to focus on behaviour changes, dietary changes and physical activity in order to achieve long term weight loss is the key. I’m very proud of what they – and all of my clients – have achieved.”
The next Lose Weight with Live Well Suffolk course will start on Wednesday, September 23 at Haverhill Leisure Centre on Ehringshausen Way and will run from 10.30am -midday until Wednesday, December 9.
Spaces are still available, although pre-booking is essential.
For more information or to reserve a space on the upcoming programme, contact Live Well Suffolk on 01473 229292 or phone Terry Dowding directly on 07535 232901. Further information is also available at www.livewellsuffolk.org.uk.
The service will be available to those with a BMI (body mass index) of over 30, or above 28 for those with a pre-existing health condition. Other eligibility criteria may also apply.