weight loss

5 minute read

Chris: overcoming health challenges with Numan’s Weight Loss Programme

By Joe Young | Medically reviewed by Ruth Pointon

It was an eye-opener for Chris (50) when his doctor told him he had a blockage in his right coronary artery. After trying various weight loss methods, he was keen to try something new.

He spoke to us about his experience with Numan’s Weight Loss Programme. 

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and why you started the programme?

I work as an insurance broker in the City of London. Last year, I was diagnosed with a 50% blockage in my right coronary artery. They considered a stent but decided against it because my heart was performing okay despite the blockage. Instead, I was prescribed medication and advised to make lifestyle changes, including weight loss. 

My weight has fluctuated for 25 years, especially since starting Prozac, which increased my cravings and led to significant weight gain. I went from 80kg at 26 to nearly 130kg. This was the main reason I started the programme.

What methods had you tried before deciding on this current approach?

I tried other weight loss plans on and off, with some success, but I got bored. I also tried fasting and other diets, but none were sustainable. The pressures of normal life often led me to turn to food for comfort, which caused me to fail eventually.

How has the Numan programme been different?

The beauty of the medication is that it significantly reduces hunger and cravings, particularly for sugar, which was my biggest issue. For the first nine months of being on it, my sugar cravings disappeared, and I started craving healthier foods instead. Whether that’s psychosomatic or due to the medication, I’m not sure, but it has helped me massively.

So, it not only killed the cravings for sugar but also made you want to eat healthier food?

Absolutely. Since I started taking it last July, my first choice when I’m hungry is something healthier like fruits, vegetables, or protein-based snacks. Quick fixes for sugar are no longer my first choice. I don't smoke or drink much, and never touch recreational drugs. Food has always been my pleasure and my passion so it’s definitely helped me think differently about food.

Did you have any hesitations about taking the medication, given all the media coverage?

A bit early on, yes. But I spoke to my cardiologist about it, and he was all for it, saying it could revolutionise healthcare treatment globally. I trusted the medical industry to assess any risks, and for me, the risks of not succeeding with my diet were greater than the risks of taking the medication.

Have you used our health coaches at all?

I've mainly used a personal trainer and nutritionist as my support as I needed more face-to-face interaction. I started with a personal trainer when I began the medication as I wanted to change my lifestyle forever, so exercise is now part of my routine, and I do four sessions a week. Calorie counting has also become a habit.

Before starting the programme, would you say your weight impacted your confidence?

Absolutely. You realise it even more when you gain that confidence back. I've also noticed improvements in my professional life. For example, when presenting or being in the spotlight, I used to get really sweaty, which would make me more anxious, creating a vicious cycle. 

Now, I just don't get sweaty like I used to, and that's made a huge difference. I can now have stressful work situations without worrying about the physical symptoms of anxiety. It's been incredibly helpful.

Have you noticed any physical benefits?

When I used to play golf, by the time I got to the 13th or 14th hole I’d be absolutely exhausted. I would then spend the last four or five holes just pushing through with whatever energy I had left. I used to come home and sleep for three hours, which I don't do anymore. My waist size has also decreased by six to eight inches.

The endorphins and mental health benefits from exercising more have been some of the biggest gains for me. This transformation started with losing the cravings.

How do you feel now compared to how you felt before the programme?

I don’t want to be too dramatic, but I felt ugly. I wasn’t proud of my body. I would always stand on the edge of social situations and when I look back at pictures now, it's clear that I was a heart attack waiting to happen. I lacked confidence and was ashamed of how I let myself get into such bad shape. Before, I didn't have the tools to make changes, but the programme allowed me to make the right decisions and build a plan.

People who gain weight often do so because of emotional, physiological, or chemical reasons, which create cravings and the need to eat larger volumes of food. Losing the interest in feeding those cravings is huge. It allows you to make healthy choices and exercise more because you're not constantly obsessing over food. It’s like taking the handbrake off, enabling you to make all the right decisions and changes.

Is there anything else you’d like to share about the programme?

I struggled with my weight for many years, but now there's a solution. Unfortunately, it's not accessible to everyone. I know lots of people who want to try it out but can’t afford it or aren't eligible. Although it seems expensive, I've saved at least half the cost by cutting down on food and takeaways. I don’t want to go as far as calling it a miracle - but it's undoubtedly added 10 to 15 years to my life.