A woman who lost almost half her body weight in just thirteen months has revealed how she was inspired to make the ‘drastic’ change after seeing a photograph of herself at a family wedding.
Kaity Petulla, 36, from New York, said she was oblivious to how much weight she had gained over the years with her routine of eating ‘large meals’ before bed and not exercising.
The executive assistant, who weighed 374 lbs and wore a dress size 26 at her heaviest, added she had ignored comments about her weight in the past and continued eating an ‘unlimited’ amount of calories.
But Kaity was inspired to make a change in her life after photographs taken at a family wedding made her realise she wasn’t just ‘overweight, but obese’.
Kaity Petulla, 36, from New York, said she was oblivious to how much weight she had gained over the years, tipping the scales at 374 lbs at her heaviest (left). She has since shed half her body weight after realizing she was ‘obese’
Kaity (pictured after her weight loss) was inspired to make a change after photographs taken at a family wedding made her realise she wasn’t just ‘overweight, but obese’
Kaity Petulla, who weighed 374 lbs and wore a dress size 26 at her heaviest (left), has lost an impressive 180 lbs
She said: ‘People would say “you have a pretty face for a big girl” and once someone else said “you should really watch your weight”. But I ignored it, I was in a state of ignorance until I attended a family wedding.
‘I’d dressed up for it and I thought I looked really good that day, that was until I saw the wedding photos. It’s not like I hadn’t seen photos of myself before, but these absolutely shocked me.
‘I realised I was very overweight. No, not overweight, obese. I didn’t want to be like that for the rest of my life. I wanted a live a long and healthy life and I knew I needed to change’.
Now, after over a year of dieting and undergoing a laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, Kaity has lost an incredible 180 lbs, weighs just 194 lbs and wears a dress size 8.
Kaity said her support network has been incredibly important in her weight loss journey, with her husband Frank (pictured together), 39, also undergoing weight loss surgery
Although she is still losing weight and has been suffering with the effects of excess skin from extreme rapid weight loss, Kaity (right before and left after) said her life now is unrecognisable
Kaity now eats low carb, low fat, low sugar and low sodium foods and ensures all her meats are lean
Both Kaity and her husband Frank (left before and right after) have lost an impressive amount of weight in the past year
‘The main factor for my weight gain was poor eating habits; I was constantly eating out and having large meals, often as my last meal before bed. I ate whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted to,’ Kaity said.
‘It didn’t help that I had never exercised either. I took our dog for a walk sometimes but that was the only exercise I really did.
‘I tried diets such as meat free, high fat, low fat and diet pills and none of them were working out for me so in November 2018 I decided to have LSG weight loss surgery at New York Bariatric Group.
‘It certainly isn’t the easy way out as many people think it is. You have to be physically and mentally prepared for it and it takes a lot of hard work and determination after the operation.
After over a year of dieting and undergoing a laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, Kaity has lost an incredible 180 lbs, weighs just 194 lbs and wears a dress size 8
Pictured left, Kaity on her wedding day and right, Kaity with her wedding dress after her weight loss
‘It certainly isn’t the easy way out as many people think it is’, Kaity said of her weight loss surgery
‘My diet has changed drastically and I now nourish my body with low carb, low fat, low sugar and low sodium foods and all my meats are lean. Post-surgery my stomach is much smaller than it used to be so I measure out my meals and they usually weigh from 125g to 155g each. I also drink about 2.5 litres of water every day’.
Kaity said her support network has been incredibly important in her weight loss journey, with her husband Frank, 39, also having weight loss surgery and losing over 120 lbs.
Although she is still losing weight and has been suffering with the effects of excess skin from extreme rapid weight loss, Kaity said her life now is unrecognisable.
What does Kaity eat in a typical day?
In a typical day, Kaity would eat lots of high calorie, high fat foods including bacon, cheeseburgers, pizzas, fries, egg and hash browns.
She would also enjoy salads drowning in dressing and loaded with cheese, alongside numerous snacks throughout the day.
Kaity would then wash her meals down with fizzy drinks.
Kaity now eats low carb, low fat, low sugar and low sodium meals, which weigh between 125g to 155g each.
She also ensures all the meats she consumes are lean and drinks 2.5 litres of water per day.
She added that the key to success is small steps built up over time and a lot of determination.
‘I do have some excess skin in my stomach and abdomen area, as well as my thighs and arms. I have had some consultations to have these removed but I am still losing weight so that will be the next phase of my journey. I’ll continue to do my research and work hard until then,’ Kaity said.
‘My support network has been amazing. All of my friends and family have been really rooting for me. My husband Frank is my biggest supporter. He even went on to lose over 120 lbs himself after having LSG surgery in February 2019. He has been simply amazing’.
Kaity added that her friends and family are often ‘shocked’ to see her transformation, as losing 180 lbs in 12 months ‘can really change your appearance very quickly’.
‘My quality of life is off the charts now; since losing the weight I have been so much more active. I’ve had three holidays, I’ve been to twenty concerts and Broadway shows, and I’ve seen several sports games’, she added.
‘I’m really making up for those times I couldn’t go… I was always confident before but now I just feel even more so. I simply love my second lease on life.
‘Just start right now, today. Do not wait. Even if you just make the smallest change’.