By Ben Wheeler
MEET the inspiring young girl who has lost one-hundred and twenty-eight pounds after being told she looked ten years older than her actual age.
Images show the dramatic transformation of Lizeth Barreto, 18, from Pittsburg, California from her previous weight of 268lbs to her current one, a fit and healthy 140lbs.
Lizeth, who says she comes from an obese family in which she is the only girl of three siblings, described when her weight issues really started and the effect this had on her.
“I began to gain weight during my freshman year of high school after meeting my boyfriend,” she recalled.
“The few years after that were very hard for me, I began to go through a lot with my family and lost a family member. It became really easy for me to turn to food as comfort and I just continued to put on weight.
“I was called fat by people and someone once told me I looked 27-year-old, despite the fact I was only 17 at the time.
“That comment was a wake-up call, I could’ve taken it offensively, but I chose to use it as motivation.”
Lizeth, who has gone from a 3XL dress size to an XS, went on to detail how her weight made her feel and the shocking diet that led to her size spiralling out of control.
“I didn’t feel like myself, I felt lost. I also felt very uncomfortable in myself and not my age, not only was it making me look older, but I felt a lot older,” she said.
“I was eating two to three fast food meals a day on top of a load of unhealthy snacks. Even when I tried dieting nothing seemed to work.
“I definitely saw the problem and wanted to change, it wasn’t until I started to analyse what my problem was and realised that I would always give up that I started to get somewhere.
“So, I told myself I’m tired of always starting over so this time I’m not going to quit and here I am today at 140lbs.
“I decided that I didn’t want something temporary just to lose a few pounds, I wanted a completely new lifestyle to build up my body and start seeing it as a temple, something I need to care for and fuel daily.
Finally, Lizeth discussed that new lifestyle that has seen her weight plummet and how she feels about her body now compared to before, giving advice to other people who are looking to lose weight themselves.
“I started doing cardio and doing what my body could handle,” she said.
“After five months I added weightlifting to my regime which completely transformed my body. I’ve been doing 20 minutes of cardio and an hour or so of weights most days ever since.
“Now I feel very proud of my body and what it can do, I receive a lot of comments from people amazed at how my body was able to transform.
“There’s no need to diet, just change your lifestyle. Take action and never give up!”