At her heaviest in 2015, Masterchef's Hoda Kobeissi weighed 110kg. But now she's dropped to a svelte size eight and feels much healthier.
"I'd given birth to my second child and I was thinking about my future and my kids growing up. I wanted to teach them from a very young age about a healthy lifestyle – I just didn't feel comfortable being the weight I was," says Hoda, who weighed 110kg before undergoing bariatric surgery in December 2015.
Hoda, 32, had struggled with her weight since she was seven or eight, something she puts down to a combination of factors – her lifestyle, genes and growing up in a food-centric Lebanese family.
"Our lives revolve around food! By nature, my parents and my aunties are feeders, so it was this constant 'eat, eat, eat' mentality," she says.
To shift the kilos, she tried every diet under the sun, like the ketogenic and "busy woman's" diets, shake replacements and eliminating carbs and fat. Failing to keep the weight off, the mother-of-two turned to surgery, but that presented other issues.
"I lost the weight very quickly – 55kg in seven months – and I lost a lot of the nutritional aspects of my body," says Hoda, who was so concerned she admitted herself to hospital.
"Luckily, a surgeon and dietitian helped me get back on track."
Now, her weight has stabilised and Hoda feels much healthier and more energetic.
"I enjoy going out now," she says.
Hoda isn't the only Masterchef who's seen success with their weight loss.
Season one winner, Julie Goodwin, lost 20kgs "accidentally" back in 2015, but since then she's taken control of her health. In fact, the mum-of-three and radio host, who is turning 48 this year, says she's healthier than she was in her thirties.
"I'm healthier and fitter now than I was when I turned 40, and I was probably healthier when I turned 40 than I was when I was 30," she says.
"I had to overcome [my negative relationship with my body] from my adolescence and all my young adulthood, believing I should be something different to what I actually am."
"I think a big part of being healthy is being happy. You need to be happy in yourself and to do that you need to realise there are just some things about us that aren't changeable."
And let's not forget our judges! Between 2009, when the first Masterchef series aired, and 2014, George lost an impressive 20kgs when he re-evaluated his snacking and binge eating habits.
In fact, the Masterchef Australia trio of judges have changed a fair bit since they first appeared on our screens.
See below for George and his wife Natalie in 2010 (left) and George and Natalie in 2014 (right)
Catch MasterChef Australia on Channel Ten from Monday-Thursday at 7.30pm.
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Australian Women's WeeklyFeb 14, 2019