Daniela Pacitto lost over seven stone and went through a dramatic weight loss and physical transformation in just three years. She shared with Express.co.uk a portion control trick that “really helped” her lose weight.
Daniela recalled the time she decided to start her weight loss journey: “I would say that many little situations made me decide to lose weight. My weight was affecting my everyday life, making small tasks difficult.
“Something as simple as tying my shoes would have me out of breath. Walking outside in the heat was uncomfortable.
“Fitting into chairs, being over the weight limit for things that I wanted to do. I started isolating myself from social gatherings that involved physical activities that I knew I wouldn’t be able to do.
“My friends would always go on trips white water rafting and I wouldn’t go out of the fear that the life jackets wouldn’t fit or my weight would make an uneven distribution on the boat. My eyes were opened the day I saw pictures of myself from a trip.
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“I couldn’t believe the size I was,” Daniela admitted.
She explained she didn’t follow any diet plan but “slowly changed habits over time”.
Daniella said: “I always loved cooking and enjoyed all food, healthy and not. I struggled a lot with portioning. I ate a lot of healthy food but massive amounts and I also ate a lot of unhealthy food as well.
“One thing that really helped me is using smaller plates and bowls. I am someone that will always clear my plate so I would start with a smaller one and once I was finished I would give it some time to digest,” she explained.
“Most of the time I would be satisfied with just that portion but sometimes I would want more and I would listen to my body and let myself have that second portion.”
Daniella said she “never completely cut anything out”. However, she “stopped keeping trigger foods in the apartment”.
She admitted: “I would finish an entire bag a couple of times a week. Chips are still a food that I don’t have much control over, I will always finish the bag if I know it’s there so I don’t keep them in the apartment regularly.
“If I want some every here and there I will get some though. It’s just no longer a nightly snack.”
It took Daniela around three years to reach her goal but she is now happy she finally managed to slim down and feel comfortable in her own body.
“I know this is ‘long’ compared to a lot of people but for me, taking it slowly was crucial. I had lost weight many times in the past very quickly in a very restrictive way and that only led to gaining it all back and even faster,” she said.
The dieter admitted her life has completely changed: “I feel amazing honestly. Of course, I still have my moments where I feel less amazing.
“I always tell people your weight loss journey is less about the weight and more about the self work and inner growth. My life feels free. I no longer feel trapped.”
Daniela continued: “I feel so proud of myself and like I can accomplish anything. The everyday anxieties are slowly being chipped away and I feel like I’ve finally found my direction in life. I want to help people like me find their way.
“I do feel more confident now! This past summer was the first summer that I looked back at photos of myself and absolutely loved every single one.
“Even the ones where I wasn’t paying attention. I told myself for these past few years that I would always have to wear high waisted bikinis to hide my stretch marks and loose skin but I decided ‘heck no’ to that.
“I wore a regular bikini, loose skin jiggling, stretch marks sparkling in the sun, and felt like a dang mermaid,” she said.