By Liana Jacob
MEET the persistent mum who has lost almost nine-and-a-half-stone after she was bullied for her size which hindered her completing the most basic of tasks and left her struggling with depression.
Nutrition student and mum-of-three, Claudia Cattani, from Alvorada, Brazil, came from humble beginnings where she would eat fast food regularly and would guzzle more than two litres of sugar-laden cola a day.
Her unhealthy habits, as well as no exercise, saw her reach 20st 7Ibs and a UK size 32. When she went outside, she was bullied by those around her, which made her feel depressed. Claudia would turn to food for comfort and her weight began to affect her everyday life and she even struggled to tie her shoe laces.
That’s when she decided to make a change, cutting out unhealthy food, timing her meals and incorporating exercises such as bodybuilding, pilates and running into her daily routine. She is now a slender 11st and UK size 12.
“I come from a family without great resources and care with food. I’ve always been fed wrong; eating lots of treats and coke. I was addicted to Coke Zero, consuming more than two litres a day,” Claudia said.
“I had depression and did not leave the house. I was cloistered because on the street I was a victim of prejudice.
“I couldn’t tie my shoes anymore, I didn’t find clothes and the main motivation for me to change was that I saw in the eyes of my family much commotion and I did not want this, I wanted them to be proud of me.
“I had to change my concept about food, re-educating myself to eat and understand that care is for life.
“With everything; I was simply reborn, I am another person externally and internally. Today I am a more confident person, with initiative and the certainty that the fulfilment of all our dreams only depends on us.
“I’m proud, very much of the person I’ve become. It was not easy to lose weight and it is not easy to maintain the weight, but I look back and see a very beautiful way of overcoming and willpower.”
By modifying her meals and setting a regular time for each one, Claudia says this was the secret to her weight loss but found cutting out sugar and fizzy drinks an extremely difficult process.
“I cried because I was craving fizzy drinks so much,” she said.
“People are shocked when I show them my old photos, some do not believe that I was the overweight girl in the photos, but the great majority congratulate me.
“I understood that there are no great victories without great battles. Patience with myself and never giving up on me again was my goal.
“I no longer wanted my children to see me as an example of failure and demotivation. I wanted to be an example for them, to see in me the reflection of hope, continuity, claw, struggle and the force of will.
“Obesity is a disease and requires the treatment and help of a multidisciplinary team. My initial idea was to do the stomach reduction, but after a year of waiting I decided to lose weight without this, I gave up on surgery and lost weight naturally.”
For more information visit: www.instagram.com/claudia.cattani