Katy weight loss before and after
Katy weight loss before and after

 

I vowed to donate one of my kidneys to a stranger, inspired by reading about the op when it was legalised in 2006. But at 15st 4lbs and a size 22, I soon discovered she was too heavy for the surgery…
By Katy Bullion, 50, from Lowestoft in Suffolk

Ever since I read that it’s possible to become a living organ donor, I felt inspired. It seemed like an amazing thing to do.

You don’t really need two kidneys, and I felt such a strong urge to give one of mine to someone who needed it.

I waited until my six children had passed their late teens, then I started to make my crazy dream a reality.

Katy before weight loss
Katy before weight loss

I soon came across a major stumbling block though… my size. At 15st 4lbs I was a size 22 – but to donate a kidney I needed a healthy BMI.

For years I had ignored my bulging belly, but I couldn’t any longer. I signed up to a local Slimming World group with a new motivation – I wasn’t just dieting for me, I was doing it to save a stranger’s life!

I swapped my favourite cheesy pastries for healthy snacks and went back to basics to cook myself balanced, lean meals.

The weight soon fell off. I loved watching my waistline shrink, but the biggest buzz came from knowing I was getting closer to the operating table.

Eventually, at 12 stone, I got the go-ahead to meet the transplant co-ordinator.

Soon I was being signed up for medical tests, psychological assessments, and fitness checks.

I was declared fit to donate and, in March last year, I was matched up with a patient who desperately needed my kidney.

Katy sold her weight loss story to Chat magazine
Katy sold her weight loss story to Chat magazine

I was a staggering six stone lighter by the time I went under the knife.

I wasn’t allowed to find out anything about the recipient after my kidney was removed in a four-hour operation – other than that the surgery had been a success for them.

That was such a great feeling. I’ve lost another half a stone since the operation too, now weighing 8st 10lbs.

I love my new size 8 wardrobe but nothing beats the feeling of knowing someone out there is able to live their life because of me. I lost over six stone to save a stranger’s life.

As told to Helen O’Brien Google

Katy wanted to share her diet success story to inspire other women, and to promote altruistic kidney donation too. If you’ve got a slimming story, have a look out our guide to selling a weight loss story to a magazine. You could earn a great fee for talking to the press. Fill in the form on the right and we’ll explain how the process works.