Hayley is standing tall against the fatshaming trolls and learning to love herself

Hayley Kay keeping fit
Hayley Kay keeping fit

Columnist Hayley Kay writes about ignoring her fatshaming trolls and following the Keto diet.

I couldn’t possibly start my column this month without talking about my column last month: How it really feels to have a gastric band fitted
If you didn’t see it, I wrote about my sincere regret in having gastric band surgery six years ago and the subsequent problems, pain and, ultimately, the decision to undergo further surgery to have it removed.

What I didn’t spend too much time thinking about when I wrote it is what other people would think. One of the best things about getting older is caring a great deal less what people think about you.

What I wasn’t prepared for was the trolling and nasty comments I received. I have to admit, perhaps naively, that they took me a little by surprise. It was heartening to see friends, family as well as complete strangers leap to my defence.

I accept that ultimately my weight and shape is down to me, but the point of my column was to share my experience. I guess being judged and trolled is what comes with speaking publicly.

I truly believe that most people wouldn’t have the courage to say those hurtful things to my face, but they feel it’s absolutely fine to “fat shame” me online.

I don’t for a second regret writing what I did as I’ve been inundated with supportive emails, tweets and messages - mostly from complete strangers, some of whom are considering bariatric surgery, some who are experiencing problems like I did and some who have been left with life-changing conditions due to weight loss surgery.

I honestly didn’t expect any of it, the good and the bad. So, to the people who jumped to my defence, thank you. I truly appreciate your kind words. And to the few who said unkind things, I hope putting me down made you feel better for a moment, but I’m not interested in your opinion of me or my eating habits.

Now seems like a good time to let you know that my new way of eating isn’t new anymore. In fact, I’ve been following the ‘Keto’ diet for the last six weeks. I’ve lost over a stone, which I’m delighted about.

In a nutshell, the idea is to put your body into a state of ketosis. This is done by reducing sugar and carbohydrates, eating more ‘good’ fats. So it’s out with almost all processed foods and in with meat, fish and green vegetables.

The aim is to consume less than 20g of carbohydrate a day, moderate amounts of protein and large amounts of fats. Alongside this I’m also intermittent fasting, which I’m surprisingly enjoying!

I tend to fast from early evening until lunchtime the following day, aiming for 18 hours. Already I can feel my clothes getting looser and I feel slimmer.

So what have I learnt about losing weight after a lifetime of dieting? The battle of the bulge is won in your mind. Deciding to change, then having enough mental strength to continue, no matter what obstacles are in the way.