Gastric bypass is life-changing
Loughborough woman Jaime Hubbard has undergone life-threatening surgery in a desperate attempt to lose weight and improve her health.
Jaime Hubbard before and after her surgery
After years of low self esteem, Jaime Hubbard has taken drastic action by undergoing a gastric bypass operation.
The 32-year-old Loughborough woman had reached a peak weight of 26 stones, 10 pounds.
Day to day tasks had become tiring, and her size often restricted the experiences she could share with her children.
Five months on and over seven stone lighter, Jaime says the procedure has been life-changing.
Addicted to food
Jaime puts her previously large size down to her great love of food, comfort eating, and the unbreakable cycle that this placed her in:
"It was an addiction to food I suppose, and that's what happens - you like it so much that you're always hungry and no matter what you did then, when you get to a certain weight, you'd never be able to loose it naturally.
"You might go down, but you'd always put it back on again, you'd never be able to keep it off."
She found carrying the weight made shopping trips very tiring, and she became very conscious of eating in public places in case people took note of her large size:
"Things with having children was very hard. Fair rides would be totally out of the question. You'd say you don't like them but it's because you daren't get on them because you know the bars wouldn't fit.
"Going on holiday you'd spend three weeks before your holiday panicking about whether the seatbelt would fit on the aeroplane."
The turning point
Although internally Jaime was upset by her appearance she became used to feeling that well and considered something she just had to live with.
The turning point came whilst on holiday with her partner and daughters just over three years ago.
The family had only walked about 100 yards across the beach before Jaime became out of breath and had to return to the path.
On 3 March 2009 Jaime underwent a gastric bypass. The operation took six and a half hours, and involved six incisions, a drain, stomach stapling and the removal of a portion of her small intestines:
"The night before I actually wrote goodbye letters to my daughters and my mum, in case I didn't wake up."
Jamie Hubbard after her operation
Five months on, Jaime is still adjusting to her reduced appetite and altered food habits:
"I enjoy my food, a hell of a lot more than I used to before because you taste it now.
"All the food you used to like you don't like anymore because you have to chew and chew and chew until there's nothing left of the food before you swallow it otherwise you get blockages and that is painful.
"You fancy food, because that's part of your brain mechanisms, your cravings are there, but because you're eating so slowly you're getting enough. After a couple of mouthfuls you are full and you don't want any more."
Post-operation gastric bypass patients can often suffer depression, but generally Jaime says she feel positive about the changes and physically she feels better than ever:
"You can do more, you walk more. You don't notice it, it's other people around you that are starting to get more worn out now and out of breath while you're still going.
"I wish I'd done it 10 years ago. I wish the doctors had known about it and had offered it me and it hadn't taken that point of me turning and haven't to search for it for it to be done.
"I've had it done now and I'm glad. If I had to go through it again I'd do it at the drop of a hat."
last updated: 14/08/2009 at 10:00