I was a Marmite toast addict and ballooned to 28 stone

I was a Marmite toast addict and ballooned to 28 stone after devouring 12 slices everyday -my liver failure diagnosis changed everything, now I’ve lost 224lbs

  • Simone Robertson, 32, says family don’t recognise following her weight loss
  • Mother was a ‘borderline recluse’ when her weight spiralled out of control
  • Read More: I ballooned to 36st after years of yo-yo dieting and needed TWO scales to weigh myself – here’s how I’ve lost 280lbs and kept it off

A woman who used to devour 12 slices of Marmite on toast everyday has revealed how has lost 12 stone following a life-changing diagnosis.

Simone Robertson, 32, from Brandon, West Suffolk, used to struggled to fit into size 32 clothes before doctors discovered her advanced liver damage caused by her weight. 

The mother-of-two says she became a ‘borderline recluse’ following two difficult pregnancies – which led to her turning to savoury snacks for comfort.

At her biggest, Simone became addicted to white carbs and could easily scoff half a loaf everyday along with potatoes and cheese and onion crisps

Describing how her weight spiraled out of control, Simone was ‘barely able to go up a few steps’ and once had to ring her mum, Tammy Kent, 51, during the school run to ask for a lift as she was in ‘too much pain’ to walk further.

Simone Robertson, 32, was tipping the scales at 28 stone and struggling to squeeze into a size 32 when doctors told her she had life-threatening cirrhosis

In July 2021, Simone was diagnosed with liver failure – which doctors at West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds believed was terminal.

At the time, they recommended weight loss surgery to prolong the mother-of-two’s life – but Simone was determined to do it herself.

In just 18 months, the mother has completely overhauled her lifestyle and dropped down to a size 10 as a result of cutting out carbs and processed foods. 

But other than ditching her beloved Marmite on toast, the toughest challenge Simone faced was having to decline all of the cakes her baker husband Danny Robertson, 39, would bring home from work.  

The former factory worker, who is now a stay-at-home mum, even bought a specialist £500 exercise bike, to accommodate her large frame – which she used while watching cooking shows, Like MasterChef and Nigella on TV. 

Simone said: ‘I can’t actually believe the difference it has made to my life.

‘I thought I was going to die but the doctors are amazed as scans show my liver is pretty much back to full health. 

‘I’d tried dieting for years and had no luck, nothing seemed to work for me but reaching rock bottom I just knew I had to stick at it this time. I had to be around for my kids and my husband.’

In the past 18 months, the mother-of-two has overhauled her lifestyle and  now fits into a UK size 10

Left: Simone Robertson pictured with one of her sons before embarking on her weight loss journey. Right: The mother-of-two was a UK size 32

Having swapped processed foods and carbs for lean meats and lots of fresh vegetables, the mother now tips the scales at 11st 6lbs.

As a result of her staggering 16stone weight loss, Simone says even some of her family members struggle to recognise her.

She continued: ‘My aunt, Cheryl, 53, who I’m really close to had to do a double take on the street the other day after I hadn’t seen her for a few months. It’s amazing to think how far I’ve come.’

Although the mother says she was always a ‘bigger girl’ at school, Simone says her weight got out of control following the birth of her sons Lucas, seven, and Aiden, three.

While in recovery for her two C-sections, the mother says she lost all confidence and became increasingly anxious – which led to her developing unhealthy food habits.

Simone pictured with husband Danny Robertson, 39, who works as a baker. The mother says it was tough not to eat any of his food during her diet

Left: Simone Robertson pictured in her kitchen when she weighed 28 stone. Right: Simone pictured in the same spot following her 16 stone weight loss

When she was at her heaviest, Simone (pictured last Christmas) said: ‘I ended up barely going out and became quite miserable.’

She continued: ‘I didn’t really have a sweet tooth, but I could eat tonnes of white carbs. I just loved them – I could eat up to 12 pieces of toast a day.

‘I was mentally exhausted being at home with two young kids and on top of that I developed really bad back pain which left me in agony.

‘After a while I ended up barely going out and became quite miserable.

‘My weight was slowly creeping up as I was eating too much and barely doing any exercise.

‘I hated what I was doing to my body and would sometimes go on crash diets and starve myself for a bit and then binge, it was really unhealthy.’

Following her weight loss, the mother says she no longer feels like a ‘recluse’ in her home with her sons

Left: A selfie Simone took when she was at her heaviest. Right: The mother pictured now she is a UK size 10

What is Cirrhosis? 

Cirrhosis is scarring (fibrosis) of the liver caused by long-term liver damage. The scar tissue prevents the liver working properly.

Cirrhosis is sometimes called end-stage liver disease because it happens after other stages of damage from conditions that affect the liver, such as hepatitis.

Your liver may keep working even when you have cirrhosis. However, cirrhosis can eventually lead to liver failure, and you can get serious complications, which can be life threatening.

Treatment may be able to stop cirrhosis from getting worse.

 Early symptoms include: 

  • feel very tired and weak
  • feel sick (nausea)
  • lose your appetite
  • lose weight and muscle mass
  • get red patches on your palms and small, spider-like blood vessels on your skin (spider angiomas) above waist level

Source: NHS

In early 2021, Simone started suffering with severe back back and stomach pains – which left her unable to walk.

As doctors kept putting it down to her weight, it wasn’t until six months later that a GP noticed Simone had very high liver enzyme levels – which resulted in her being diagnosed with cirrhosis.

The condition is caused by long-term liver damage and occurs when scar tissue prevents the organ from working effectively. 

She added: ‘I could tell it wasn’t good news as the woman doing the scan, who I’d been happily chatting away to, went really quiet – the whole atmosphere changed.

‘It was really scary. I’d only ever heard of cirrhosis in alcoholics.

‘They basically said there was no way to reverse it but if I lost weight, I could stop the progression and might even need a transplant one day.

‘At first, I was in total denial about it all as I tried to process it.’

In September 2021, Simone committed to overhauling her lifestyle – cutting out all bread and crisps and using her exercise bike everyday.

Within weeks the pounds started dropping off and she’s now down to a healthy 11st 6lbs.

‘I can’t believe how far I’ve come in just 18 months,’ Simone – who is also step-mum to Jack, 13 – said.

‘I literally thought I wouldn’t see my kids grow up at one point. I could barely do the school run and now look at me.

‘I love walking and being active with my kids now. It’s transformed our lives.

‘I do miss bread and crisps but haven’t touched them for two years and don’t intend to, it’s a slippery slope.

The mother (pictured following her weight loss) says she will still treat herself to the odd meal out

Left: Simone Robertson pictured before her liver failure diagnosis. Right: The mother says she eats mostly chicken and fish to maintain her weight

‘I do sometimes treat myself to a meal out but I’m careful about what I have.

‘Usually I’ll just have healthy, home cooked meals, mainly chicken or fish with steamed veg.

‘It can get a bit samey but I’m healthy and that’s the main thing.

‘It’s looking like my liver might even have repaired itself too which is really rare and quite unheard of. I feel so lucky.’

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