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Last Updated: Sunday, 17 December 2006, 01:31 GMT
Celebrity Health - Anne Diamond
Anne Diamond
Anne worried that her weight was affecting her health
In a series on celebrities and their health, the BBC News website talks to TV presenter Anne Diamond about her battle with her weight and her two operations to fit a gastric band.

Anne shot to fame as one of the original faces of TVam before going on to front the BBC's Good Morning with Anne and Nick.

She has also appeared on Celebrity Big Brother and Celebrity Fit Club, which she left after complaints that her undeclared gastric band gave her an unfair advantage.

Anne is a campaigner for a number of charities but is probably best known for her work with the 'Back to sleep campaign' following the cot death of one of her own children.

HOW DID YOU FIRST REALISE SOMETHING WAS WRONG?

I never really thought anything was wrong.

I only knew that I had had the gastric band fitted and that it wasn't working.

Despite everything I had been promised - restricted ability to eat food, feeling full on a tiny amount of food - I felt no different at all. I could still eat as much as I had eaten before the operation.

Even after having a "fill" - where the band is tightened by injecting in a small amount of saline - there was no discernible difference.

In fact, I had lost almost 10lb following the surgery, due to the post op liquids-only diet.

But I put those 10lb back on as soon as the post operative period was over.

Even then, I didn't think there was anything wrong.

I just came to the conclusion that I had bought a stupid, meaningless gadget that didn't work.

HOW DID YOU GET DIAGNOSED?

I only found out what was wrong when I was ejected from Celebrity Fit Club.

The furore in the press led to my case being discussed by UK experts.

I just came to the conclusion that I had bought a stupid, meaningless gadget that didn't work.

The band was, in fact, placed in the wrong position - and hadn't even been stitched in place.

WHAT WAS YOUR REACTION TO THE DIAGNOSIS?

I was shocked and angry - then almost relieved because at last I had an explanation for what was wrong.

WHAT WAS YOUR TREATMENT?

I had only two choices - either to ignore the whole thing, and just live with a continuing weight problem and a gastric band inside me that couldn't work - or to have another operation to have a band put in the correct place.

It wasn't a difficult choice, though. I still wanted what a gastric band could offer me.

HOW DID YOU FEEL DURING THE TREATMENT?

Funnily enough, I was just as excited as the first time.

I was confident that it would work, because now I knew several people for whom it had been successful.

And this time, I wasn't so frightened about the operation itself. I understood the procedure, was able to talk it through, ask lots of questions.

HOW DO YOU FEEL NOW?

Really brilliant! Being slim and fitter, because I have been working out, makes me feel younger, more confident and a lot more lively.

I have more energy. I love shopping again - for clothes.

I know being slim isn't everything - losing weight doesn't automatically solve all your problems - but it helps enormously to know that I am healthier.

WHAT IS YOUR MESSAGE TO OTHER PEOPLE WITH THE SAME CONDITION?

To all fatties, I'd say - if you really want to solve your obesity, then there is a way.

Weight loss surgery is certainly not the first step - and for many people it would never be an option.

But it can help many people reverse their slide into ill health and possibly very serious conditions.

But my strongest message is that fat happens to you, it doesn't mean you are lazy, slothful or stupid - it just happens to some because life is hard, and many of us find it difficult to make healthy choices all the time.

Almost before you know it, you have a weight problem and then it is very, very difficult to lose.

That's why you need constructive help and support.


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