It can be a life-saver when it comes to getting us up and active in the mornings, but could caffeine also be the reason why we're holding on to those extra pounds? According to this mum's incredible story, we might need to start cutting back...
Lorraine O'Loughlin from Northern Ireland lost over seven stone after she took a look at her diet and realised it was making her feel depressed and overweight. After getting into bad dieting habits and feeling like she couldn't leave the house, she finally decided to make a change.
Instead of drinking her usual 15 cups of coffee a day, skipping meals and then binging on junk food in the middle of the night, Lorraine changed her lifestyle with the help of Slimming World (opens in new tab), and started having proper regular meals and almost no coffee at all.
Lorraine told the Mail Online, 'I was relying on coffee so badly, it was what kept me functioning all day and I basically lived on it.
'I don't miss it at all now though - I'm now eating healthily and get a good night's sleep so my body no longer needs to caffeine to function.'
Lorraine used to sweeten each cup of coffee with three sugars, sending her daily sugar (opens in new tab) intake several times over the limit. It used to be the only thing she'd have for breakfast, then more coffee and crisps for lunch, nothing for dinner, and then four more bags of crisps, biscuits, fried eggs and coffee for snacks. All of that caffeine was keeping her up at night, meaning she was missing out on sleep which in turn, made it so much more difficult for her body to lose weight naturally.
Now, she has a healthy breakfast of fruit and yogurt, chicken salad for lunch, and a Slimming World meal (opens in new tab) for dinner, snacking on fruit during the day.
Since losing so much weight, Lorraine has gone back to the coffee, but only has about four cups a day with sweetener instead of sugar. The mum of three says that she struggled with her weight when she was a teenager, but once she welcomed daughter Isabella, seven, and her five-year-old twins Molly and Emily into the world with husband Damian, her weight ballooned out of control as she became too busy being a full-time mum to think about a healthy lifestyle.
After making excuses about her weight and avoiding leaving the house because she was so shy about her size, her kids encouraged her to make the change and now they're 'at the park all the time.'
Lorraine says, 'I was running out of excuses to tell me children about why we couldn't go outside or ever do anything fun.
'They really helped me with the whole weight loss journey and they're so proud, they always ask me how my Slimming World sessions are going. They like to keep up with how much weight I've lost and always ask if I've got another certificate, they're amazing about it all.'
Lorraine says her confidence is so much better now - her family have noticed a 'massive difference' and she owes it all to them.
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