Mum loses almost half her body weight after struggling to climb stairs - 'changed my life'

Mum Sophie Ratcliffe weighed in at 23st 13lbs and found that her size was ruining her life. She was eventually able to shed an incredible 11st at Slimming World by changing her diet and exercise habits, saving her life and marriage in the process.

Sophie admitted that her weight gain was down to doing “absolutely no exercise” and having a very poor diet.

She would regularly enjoy a full English fry up for breakfast, before tucking into shop-bought deep-fried chicken and chips for lunch.

Dinner would be a family sized pizza, followed by ice cream with chocolate sauce and cream.

During the day Sophie would graze on unhealthy snacks such as crisps, chocolate and sweets, and her diet was relatively devoid of fruits and vegetables.

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As for drinks, Sophie was partial to a high-calorie, sugary fizzy beverage.

When the country went into lockdown, this made matters worse as Sophie started to spend all her time eating and baking with her children.

Her size affected her life enormously, as she struggled with day to day activities including climbing up the stairs at home.

It also had a negative impact on her son, who was bullied at school because of his mother’s size.

Sophie wasn’t sure how to go about making a change once and for all, having tried and failed dieting.


She often attempted to lose weight in secret, even hiring a personal trainer to help her achieve her goals.

However, the rigorous exercise plan and protein shake diet proved too difficult to stick to.

It was only when she joined Slimming World with group of friends that Sophie actually started to see results.

She found that Slimming World was manageable as she could still eat all the food she loved whilst also losing weight.

She also met likeminded slimmers who could support her on her journey and hold her accountable.

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Because of the support, Sophie was able to deal with a very difficult year, in which she experienced intense seizures due to epilepsy that took over her life.

With the help of Slimming World, Sophie was able to shed a whopping 11st, completely overhauling her diet.

Fried chicken and family sized pizzas were swapped for healthy chicken skewers and vegetables.

She could still enjoy pizza with Slimming World’s low-calorie versions, topped with Slimming World chips and veggies or salad.

Breakfast was a nutrient-rich, low-fat yoghurt and during the day Sophie enjoyed fruit or high-fibre bars.

Gone were the calorific fizzy drinks, replaced by six to eight glasses of water per day.

With all these major diet changes - as well as hitting the gym four or five times per week - Sophie now weighs 12st 13lbs as opposed to her former 23st 13lbs.

In addition to her physical transformation, Sophie’s mental health and even marriage made a turn around.

She said: “I believe losing weight has saved my marriage, too. My husband was so upset as he said he was watching me lose the bubbly person I used to be.

“My children are so much healthier now as well and it’s brought us together more as a family – the great thing about Slimming World’s Food Optimising eating plan is that it’s all based on healthy foods so the whole family can enjoy the same meals and I don’t have to make different dinners for everyone.

“I’ve dropped eight dress sizes, going from a size 26 to a size 12. Losing weight has changed my life – I feel like a door has been opened and I’m excited to keep exploring what’s on the other side.”

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