Chelsey Bishop, 35, tipped the scales at 24st 2lbs at her heaviest.
The office manager and graphic designer would regularly eat 4,000 calories and says she was immersed in the typical American diet, eating a donut for breakfast and cheeseburger, fries and a fizzy drink at lunch.
Having never thought about nutrition, that all changed for Chelsey when she was removed from a ride at a theme park in December 2017 because the harness didn’t fit around her frame.
Chelsey also felt humiliated when she couldn’t fit in booths at restaurants, had to request seat belt extenders and couldn’t walk 50 feet without losing her breath.
So in February 2018, Chelsey decided to try and lose weight through the keto diet, after seeing many friends giving it a go.
Chelsey adapted her diet to fit with her hectic schedule eating less carbs and cutting out sugary foods to achieve weight loss.
These simple changes allowed Chelsey’s weight to drop to 13st, and she’s now a UK size 16, without needing any surgery along the way.
Chelsey said: “I noticed I was becoming overweight at age seven. I was larger than all my friends and was teased regularly for it.
“My standard American diet routinely consisted of a blueberry scone or chocolate donut for breakfast with a large sugary caramel iced latte to wash it down, a cheeseburger with chips and fizzy drink for lunch, and a platter of tacos or chicken fried steak for dinner.
“Then probably a few snacks or sweets in between each meal as well. I would eat 4,000 calories per day.
“My diet combined with my sedentary lifestyle led to my weight going up.
“Growing up in a low-income household meant nutrition wasn’t something my family focused on or cared about, and those bad childhood eating habits became my bad adult eating habits.
“It was more about putting any possible food on the table for our family of five.”
Speaking about her difficulties, Chelsey added: “I was humiliated on holiday at Universal Studios when I was removed from a ride for being too fat.
“I couldn’t fit in restaurant booths, I needed seat belt extenders, snored terribly, and I couldn’t walk 50 feet without losing my breath.
“After losing my father to congestive heart failure and being diagnosed with high blood pressure and tachycardia, I decided to put myself on a relaxed keto and low carb diet in February 2018.
“My dad always talked about how sugar was ‘poison’, but I never took it to heart until I realised how much healthier my body became after eliminating sugar.”
For Chelsey, who works two jobs, sticking to a strict keto diet would have been very difficult so she prefers to make healthier choices as she refers to ‘keto-fying’ her diet.
Since shedding half her body weight, Chelsey is no longer required to take blood pressure medication.
She said: “I have two jobs and a busy schedule, so I’ve never stepped foot inside a gym, and I eat at restaurants probably 90 per cent of the time.
“I knew when I started that this routine wasn’t likely to change, so I learned how to adapt my diet to my lifestyle.
“I’ve learned the art of “keto-fying” meals anywhere I go. I order burgers without the bun and a side salad instead of chips, steak with steamed broccoli instead of potatoes, deli sandwiches without the bread or pizza toppings without the crust.
“Just by cutting carbohydrates and sugar in my diet, I’ve been able to lose nearly half my body weight in less than two years without exercise, purely diet alone.
“My doctor has taken me off blood pressure medication, I no longer snore, and my resting heart rate went from high nineties to sixties. My blood work is now the best it’s ever been in my entire life, even my cholesterol is amazing, which I love telling all the keto haters.
“I am a living example of how simply modifying your diet can completely change your health and your life.”
She added: “I am incredibly proud of myself. For over 30 years, I took my health for granted and I’m lucky that carrying around that much excess weight didn’t do more damage.
“Life is harder when you’re living it in such a large body, and I didn’t realise the impact it had on my life. I was in such denial.
“Now I feel amazing, I love seeing the shock on the faces of people who haven’t seen me in a while.
“There’s two phases of astonishment: phase one is seeing me at literally half my physical size, and phase two is from telling them it was from my keto diet, no gym or exercise.
“I always assumed I had too much weight to lose and I was at a point of hopelessness.
“I couldn’t have been more wrong. Substantial weight loss without surgery is possible regardless of your lifestyle.
“I made keto work for my lifestyle which gave me the ability to sustain it long-term. As long as it’s enjoyable and easy, committing to it will be enjoyable, and the commitment is what awards you the success.”