December 9 2013 Latest news:
By LAUREN ROGERS
Friday, August 16, 2013
A man who has been bullied his entire life because of his weight has found a new confidence - and love of high-octane roller coasters - after losing an incredible 11st 5lbs.
Breakfast - bacon, egg, tomatoes, baked beans, all fried with a one-calorie spray cooking oil.
Mid morning snack - a Mug Shot soup.
Lunch - a cheese and ham salad with fruit for afters.
Tea - roast chicken dinner with gravy and roast potatoes, cooked in one-calorie cooking spray, followed by fresh fruit salad.
Supper - a chocolate bar and a cup of tea.
Stephen also snacks on fresh fruit whenever hunger strikes during the day. Among his favourite meals are home made cottage pie, gammon steak homemade oven chips and salad, jacket potato with cheese and baked beans, homemade cheese burger with potato wedges or chips.
For more than a decade, Stephen Button, of North Quay, Great Yarmouth, had to hide his passion for theme park rides because he was too big to fit in the seats.
A year and a half ago, he tipped the scales at 26st 2lbs. His 56ins waist trousers were tight, he was borderline diabetic and taking medication for high cholesterol and soaring blood pressure.
He “got used to” strangers shouting abuse at him in the street and gorged on crisps and bread.
Eighteen months ago, a friend recommended he join a Slimming World group in Yarmouth. Having tried to shed the pounds for years and secretly sampled every fad diet going, 6ft 3ins tall Stephen wasn’t convinced it would work but he agreed to give it a go.
Today, slimline Stephen weighs in at 14st 8bs. He has a 34ins waist and can fit his entire body inside one leg of his old super-sized trousers.
“I haven’t been this weight since I was a teenager,” said Stephen, a bar manager at Richardson’s Hemsby Beach holiday park.
“I feel fantastic. I’m not at risk of diabetes and I’ve just come off the blood pressure tablets.
“I live on a second floor and I used to get out of breath all the time.
“I’ve got a dog but I didn’t enjoy walking him. Now we go for 10-mile walks. He looks at me like he’s saying, ‘Oh, not again!’.”
As well as long walks with Staffordshire bull terrier Max, Stephen has changed his attitude to food - but he is quick to tell you he probably eats more now than he has ever done before.
“I still have a fry up for breakfast everyday,” he said.
“I have four meals a day. People are surprised when I tell them what I eat; roast dinners, pasta, potatoes.
“There’s nothing I can’t eat, but it’s all home cooked and I used light spray instead of oil.
“I used to eat all the wrong stuff and a lot of takeaways. My big thing was crisps and bread, and chocolate of course.
“Now, I can still eat all that, but I cook from scratch. If I want a burger and chips, I make it myself.”
Stephen has worked behind the bar at Hemsby Beach holiday park for four years.
His dramatic weight loss has not only impressed his colleagues, but surprised a few customers too.
“People don’t recognise me,” he said.
“One chap, who has been coming for years, didn’t believe me when I told him who I was. I can say hello to people I know in the street and they don’t know who I am.
“I’ve been bullied my whole life because of my weight. People used to shout abuse at me in the street, calling me fatty. No one stares at me anymore.”
As well as shopping at High Street stores, Stephen can admit to the world how much he loves roller coaster rides.
The self-confessed thrill seeker has been to Yarmouth’s Pleasure Beach and Alton Towers in Staffordshire numerous times since dropping down sizes.
“The thing I’d really love to do is wing walk on a plane,” he admitted.
“That has got to be the ultimate thrill ride.”
Stephen is a member of the Great Yarmouth Central Slimming World group run by Claire Rawlinson at the Priory Centre in Yarmouth.