‘I chose drastic surgery and a life of tiny meals – but it’s worth it to be thin’

Alexandra Symons had always been what she described as the ‘fat friend’.

Despite being a pretty and popular girl at school with lots of friends and an active social life, the 32-year-old mum says she’d always felt desperate to fit in and was on constant yoyo diets.

The busy mum – who has thousands of followers on Instagram, all watching her weight loss journey – decided to take the drastic step of having a gastric sleeve fitted to help her slim down.

Alex, now mum to Hudson and with another baby on the way, claims she was “an obese child who looked like I’d eaten a fridge”.

She says her mum was an “amazing cook” and that she regularly ate “huge meals”.


But by the time Alex, from Queensland in Australia, was 18 she was unhappy with her weight gain and started to diet.

She said: “You see these people on Instagram with perfect bodies and you just know you are never going to look like that but that’s how all my friends looked.”

Alex lost some weight and then she met her now husband, Jake.

Being happy meant she started to comfort eat and the weight crept back on.

Over the next few years Alex was trapped in a constant cycle of yoyo dieting, losing weight and then putting it back on again.

Her life became nothing but denying herself food and starving herself or over-eating.

It was a pattern she was unable to break.

Her husband, Jake, adored her whatever shape she was an made sure he told her daily how stunning she was.

After Alex had her little boy, Hudson, her weight steadily rose until she was the heaviest she has ever been – 140kg, which is just over 22stone.

Then she broke her ankle and decided that something had to change.

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Found my comparison of preop to 3 months post op ! Even then watching the changes was so amazing I couldn’t believe how well the sleeve was working for me. A month after this my hair started falling out and I had a huge stall. Even then I didn’t care I knew my body must’ve been in shock and needed that time. I’m glad I trusted my instincts and didn’t push it past it’s limits. At some point in the second year I looked at myself and went well if this is what I get to I’m happy! Third year and I fluctuate 3-4 kgs but as soon as I do I reel myself back in. I’m not insulting this giant process my body went through and eating my way back up! But this lifestyle is so much more enjoyable can’t wait to see what the future holds 🤔💕 #lifeafterweightloss #beforeduringafter #wlsbeforeandafter #wls #vsg #vsgcommunity #vsgjourney

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Alex said: “I just couldn’t stop thinking that I couldn’t live like this.I was 30 and I knew things had to change.

“I was thinking about food all the time and it wasn’t nice because I was just worrying about how not to get any fatter.”

Jake kept telling his wife to give her weight loss time, that she would slim down eventually and reassured her that she was beautiful.

Alex explained: “He always said I was beautiful, that I was gorgeous whatever size I was.”

But she had reached the end of her tether.

Alex said: “I had a new baby and my husband was working away for eight weeks at a time.

“I felt like Shrek’s wife. I couldn’t breastfeed because my body wasn’t producing enough milk and this can help and I couldn’t exercise.”

Desperate, Alex went to see her doctor who referred her to a surgeon and he mentioned a gastric sleeve – but explained it was an extreme solution to the problem.

It would mean the busy mum would only be able to eat tiny portions for the rest of her life and was a big committment.

Alex was determined.

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