Book Annette Sym

I’m often asked to share my weight loss story, so here it is.

I was a chubby child, cuddly teenager, buxom bride, and an obese adult. My nickname at high school was “Porky”. I was a jolly fatty but I was crying on the inside.

At the age of 13 I went on my first diet. And that was the start of a roller coaster ride of one diet after another, after another… I swear I tried every diet that ever appeared on the cover of a magazine.

I did lose weight occasionally but it always seemed to find me. I weighed 85 kilos on my wedding day and after each baby, I got bigger and bigger, and more insecure about my size. Looking in the mirror would reduce me to tears. I didn’t recognize the fat, round, unhappy face staring back at me.

Then, one day I received a photo in the mail that was the turning point for me. My best friend had been visiting and sent me her holiday snaps. In among them was a photo of me at Mooloolaba Beach, Australia. I was horrified; I weighed 100 kilos and was squeezed into my bulging swimming costume.  I sat down and wept. When I looked at that photo I saw an extremely overweight, unhealthy woman and I was only 37 years old.


I knew that all the quick fixes I had tried in the past, such as pills, salons, meal replacements, pre-packaged foods, hypnosis etc, were a waste of time. I needed a new approach, so I joined a weight-loss group for support. I decided to forget dieting and looked into the health aspect of food. I came to the conclusion that if I was healthy, the weight would come off by itself. I immediately cut out salt, caffeine and alcohol and started walking and drinking lots of water. Most importantly I started to eat properly, that’s how my love affair with low-fat recipes began.

My nickname in school was ‘Porky’

It took me about 20 months to lose 35 kilos and to be honest, there were a couple of times I felt like giving up. Seven weeks into the program the novelty started to fade and hunger took over, I remember saying to myself “well if people don’t like me as I am then that’s their problem”. But I wasn’t being honest with myself. This wasn’t about what other people thought, it was about me not wanting to be fat anymore.

Then, when I was ten kilos from my goal weight I started to lack motivation and desire to lose weight. What I did to overcome this was a bit strange, but it really worked for me. I found a picture in a magazine of a girl who was slim and wearing jeans (I so wanted to be able to wear jeans). Then I cut my face from a photo and stuck it over the picture of the girl wearing jeans. Instantly I had a positive visual that made me feel like I wanted to keep going and lose those last few kilos. I wrote under the picture ‘JUST DO IT, ANNETTE’ and on another piece of paper I put 10 strikes. Each time I lost a kilo I crossed one out.

I did reach my goal weight and have been there since 1993

As you know I did reach my goal weight and have been in my healthy weight range since 1993.

Believe me losing weight wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be and I now think and act like a healthy person. My new healthy lifestyle has taken me from size 24 clothes into size 12’s. Yes, it really works, which is why I decided to share my recipes with others.

We all have good and bad moments but with the right attitude you can achieve anything. Don’t give up on yourself, just remember we all have times when we feel down and want to give up but whatever you do, don’t. If I can do it so can you. What have you got to lose but those extra kilos.

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Click on the images below to see my journey