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Billy loses his 'Bunter' tag

PUBLISHED: 16:32 06 March 2008 | UPDATED: 10:34 03 July 2010

BEFORE AND AFTER: Billy Hughes today compared with how he used to look

BEFORE AND AFTER: Billy Hughes today compared with how he used to look

Laura Bagshaw

A GREAT Yarmouth man has ditched his £60-a-week snack habit and shed a massive 10 stone in just nine months.

Carl Hughes, known as Billy, began struggling with his weight at the age of 19, piling on the pounds through a diet of junk food.

BEFORE AND AFTER: Billy Hughes today compare with how he used to look.

A GREAT Yarmouth man has ditched his £60-a-week snack habit and shed a massive 10 stone in just nine months.

Carl Hughes, known as Billy, began struggling with his weight at the age of 19, piling on the pounds through a diet of junk food.

Billy, 38, would frequently binge on fast food, chocolate, cakes, sausage rolls and cans of fizzy drinks.

And he says nothing encouraged him to lose weight - not even being diagnosed in 1998 with a rare lung condition, Scarcoidosis and was put on 10 steroids a day. Doctors told him he had to lose weight but Billy continued to struggle with the scales, sticking to his poor diet and shocking snack habit.

In 2007, Billy was inspired to go on the Cambridge Diet after his business partner Paul shed six stone on the diet, which involves substituting food with four meal packs per day, a healthy shake, meal bar or soup.

Weighing 24 stone 3lbs, a nervous Billy went to see his local Cambridge counsellor, Marisa Albone, in March last year. However, just seven days later Billy's fears were set aside after he lost almost a stone in his first week.

Caterer Billy continued with the diet, sticking to it religiously, not even sneaking in the odd chip, sausage or fry-up.

By December he had lost an amazing 10 stone, losing on average six lbs a week, and bringing his weight down to a manageable 14stone 3lbs. His health improved immensely with his lung capacity increasing by 20pc and he now only takes two steroids a day.

He said: “I feel like a new person. I have a social life now and can carry on working without getting short of breath. It's amazing.”

For years Billy's weight problem had a major impact on his life and health. His nickname Billy was even derived from the television character from the 1950s, Billy Bunter.

Billy admitted the diet was tough.

One of the biggest changes for Billy is going into a high store and buying clothes off the rails, instead of having to go to specialist shops.

He is now back on a normal diet of food and is maintaining his weight - steering clear of all fatty foods and instead opting for a tuna sandwich or salad.

Motivated by the positive changes in Billy, another friend and caterer Shaun Anchor started the diet and has so far lost four stone. Shaun said: “I knew if Billy could do it, I certainly could. I was never huge but I feel so much healthier now. We now keep each other on the straight and narrow.”

Billy's Fat Box

Former weight - 24st 3lbs

Present weight - 14st 3lbs

Former waist size - 58 inches

Present waist size - 34 inches

Average weekly weight loss - 6lbs

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