Christian’s weight struggles began in childhood. Bad eating habits, easy access to snacks and a sedentary lifestyle led to him putting on weight and before he knew it, he found himself weighing in at over 123 kg.
Christian had tried other diets in the past, but he had never joined a program until he signed up to the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet in January 2021. Over twelve months, Christian lost 40 kg* using the online program, with 25 kg being lost in the first 12 weeks, and he has now maintained this incredible weight loss for 15 months!
*Individual results may vary.
A long family history of heart disease had Christian fearing he was headed toward an early grave. As he approached his 30th birthday, he started to worry that he wouldn’t be around for his daughter to grow up and he realised he needed to make a change.
“My mother’s side of the family has a long history of family members losing their lives early to heart disease, she suffered an attack in her early 40s and has been in and out of hospital since. I never met my grandfather who was taken early in his 40s, and even my health conscience uncle often suffered small heart attacks.”
“The closer I got to 30 years old, the more I worried that I would be leaving my daughter too soon. I imagined she would post to social media on the anniversary of my death and wonder what I would’ve said or felt when she got her first job, bought her first car, or made it into University.”
“I’d spent nearly 30 years waiting for life to happen, for a miracle, or for the cure to ‘me’ to arrive at the door. Every daydream I had of a happy and successful life had brought me no closer to living a fulfilled life.”
“It was time to buy a ticket to my future.”
Christian's weight loss journey started with making better food choices. His eating habits were not healthy, with toast and jam often serving as his dinner, so he tried experimenting with keto and fasting.
However, it wasn’t until he saw a Tweet from a political editor who had joined the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet that he realised this could be the solution he'd been looking for.
"I’d never heard of the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet until I saw a Tweet tagging political Editor Samantha Maiden, complementing her new look and asking how she’d lost her weight. Samantha responded explaining how good the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet is, and that a net loss of weight guarantees a refund on your joining fee of $200. I considered this a win-win situation, a government backed organisation running a program supported by decades of science and knowledge, and I’d get my money back... for losing weight!”
Since joining the online program, Christian says he has become who he was always meant to be. He makes nutritious meals, exercises regularly and walks briskly every other day. Before losing weight, he joked that the gym was for people who have no personality. However, he now knows the importance of staying active and healthy.
“I used to agree with people that I’m a completely different person to who I was before, but I realised that I’ve actually become who I was always meant to be."
"I was tucked away behind a blanket of poor choices, insecurity, and laziness. Joining the program helped me to peel those layers away and become accountable to myself. I’m a happy, confident, active, thrill seeker who chases the sun, and can’t stand a second in doors on a sunny summer’s day."
"I suddenly had the urge to climb things at the 90kgs mark. Once I made it to the 80kgs mark, I’d built the confidence to go canyoning through valleys, abseil down waterfalls, and boulder with mates. Thanks to the confidence I have in myself, I have greater presence in every moment of my personal and professional life. I feel enabled and capable because it’s supported by my health.”
When asked about his long-term weight loss success, Christian credits the online program, and in particular the app, for helping him stay engaged and focused on the program. He also attributes the valuable education he received from the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet around nutrition, as this enabled him to make informed decisions about his food choices.
But he is open that not every day was easy. One of the challenges that Christian faced during his weight loss journey was staying motivated during the COVID-19 pandemic. Like many people, he experienced stress and fatigue, which made it difficult to stay on tack. However, he found that sticking to the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet meal plans helped him stay positive and anchored him during these difficult times
“The CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet app was essential for keeping me engaged with the program by helping me to stay committed to meal plans, and celebrate all of my wins.”
“I struggled like most people to stay motivated about my health during COVID-19. Work and life stress during the lockdowns sapped my energy and I stopped doing the online CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet exercises. But I stuck to the meal plans as it was something that I didn't need to think or worry about - my meals were planned and all I had to do was follow the recipe!”
“Sticking to the plan and prioritising nutrition meant I still felt healthy and energised, even at my worst, and as things improved I again felt that drive to be active.”
Christian’s commitment and attitude to his own health has also been a large factor in his success.
“I always take care to ensure the meal I am making or about to buy is nutritional, and will keep me satisfied until my next meal. I’ve stayed committed to always making my meals at home and preparing my lunches in advance so that I'm controlling what I eat. Everything I learned on the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet is second nature to me now and makes every food-related decision easy to make, whether I'm at home, a restaurant or on holiday.”
“Accepting that I'm the captain of my own health helped to keep me motivated and remind me why I need to be accountable for what I do to stay healthy. The CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet helped by educating me about my unhealthy relationship with food, and enabled me to make better choices so that I was enjoying food in a healthy way.”
When asked about his goals and aspirations for the future, Christian shared that his focus is on staying physically active and trying new experiences.
“I’m focusing on staying disciplined at the gym, I want my motivation for the gym to remain as automatic as breathing. I have my routines, I’ve learned how each machine and workout develops my muscles, and I’ve made so many new friends. I want to ensure it stays embedded in my life forever.”
He also has advice for anyone else that is wanting to lose weight and change their life but is not sure what to do.
“Drop the Hollywood weight-loss montage running in your head every time you think it’s time to lose weight. You’re not going to be a lean and buff star within weeks. Start by removing one small food or ingredient from your diet that you know is unhealthy and bad for your health."
"Focus on eliminating that one thing from your diet, and if you’re successful (you will be because it’s just one thing), you’ll likely find your body starts to respond positively. It’s impossible not to be excited by the weight loss, so it’s easy to use that momentum and focus on the next small thing you can remove from your diet."
"Taking those small steps will eventually lead you to progress and focus more on your nutrition and eating well, starting a diet that focuses on balanced nutrition will help embed the best eating habits and enable you to make the best food choices."
"You will see the centimetres gradually come down, notice a slimmer person in the mirror, and start to get more excited about clothes shopping. Seize on those moments regardless how big or small, and celebrate with your loved ones. Accept their compliments and even compliment yourself, backing yourself in the same conversation will drive you further."