Laura, from Palm Bay, Florida, said: ‘After I lost all of the weight I felt amazing, but my excess skin was still there, physically hanging over me.
‘It looked as though I had an extra pair of boobs or a front-bottom, it was something that I really struggled to come to terms with.
‘I knew that I had to get skin removal surgery because I couldn’t live like this and it was definitely worth the money after the four years of intensive weight loss.
‘And although I’m still recovering from surgery now, it’s all worth it to finally be a slinky size 10 with no extra skin!’
‘I was sick of having to pull my skin up like pizza dough and look like I was carrying a rubbish bag full of water on my stomach,’ Laura added.
‘So after raising enough money I decided to finally go ahead with the surgery and rid myself of the skin I hated.
‘When I woke up after the surgery I couldn’t help but burst into tears – because finally it was gone and I could live my life again.
‘Now I know that I’ll never let myself get so out of control again, because I’m not prepared to go through everything I did again.’
Laura initially decided to start her weight loss journey when her father, mother and grandmother all endured life-threatening heart attacks within weeks of each other.
Tipping the scales at 178kg, Laura knew that her chances of following in her families footsteps were high, so quickly started to lose weight.
She said: ‘I spiralled into binge eating after my son’s father committed suicide in 2005, and it was my family’s medical conditions that gave me the true wakeup call.
‘I knew that I couldn’t leave my son an orphan, and with the rate that I was rapidly gaining weight, it was looking likely.
‘I just thought of my son every time that I went to put food into my mouth and it became easy and that’s when I realised I wanted a gastric bypass to help me with the weight loss.
‘I had the bypass fitted in September 2014 and from there on I just continued to lose weight, I went on liquid diets, stopped eating out and cut my portion sized down.
‘But with the weight loss came all of the excess skin and that made me more self-conscious than I ever was when I still carried the weight.
‘Now I feel complete and I’m really happy – and I can finally look in the mirror and see my whole body and I like what I see.’
BREAKFAST – Nothing.
LUNCH – Fast food burger, large fries, large fizzy drink.
DINNER – Large portion of meat and carbs.
SNACK – Crisps, chocolate, ice cream, family sized box of cereal.
BREAKFAST – Yoghurt and coffee.
LUNCH – Salad.
DINNER – Chicken and vegetables.