Andrew Thompstone, 48, began a diet after hitting a heavyweight 26 stones.
And after shedding that record two stone in week one he went on to lose five stones in two months and, after seven months, has now lost 12 stones – the weight of an average man and almost half his own body weight.
His waist has now shrunk from a huge 52in to a 34in.
Andrew decided to diet after his weight began to cause a potentially life-threatening illness.
He was taking massive doses of insulin to try to control his Type 2 diabetes and had developed such severe sleep apnoea – where the sleeper stops breathing – that he was having to wear a special mask all night to pump air into his airways.
He said: “I was stopping breathing 72 times an hour.
“I was depressed, I had reached the point where I was thinking I don’t even want to be alive if this is what it is.
“Everything in life was difficult because of my weight and I was in a decline.
“I knew that my diabetes was out of control and that it could lead to terrible complications, such as limb amputation.
“I had always been large-framed but after a disastrous second marriage and divorce it really went out of control.
“ I used food and drink to cheer myself up, I lived every night as if it was Friday night, feasting on anything I fancied.
“But the result was my weight soared.
“I was ill, I couldn’t do the normal things that people take for granted, like sitting in a bath or using a ladder, and it was affecting what I could do after a day at work.
“I had never even tried to diet before but I started to be honest with myself.”
Andrew, a hire and service manager for Portakabin, chose Alevere Therapy, a medically-supervised system of meal replacements devised by a GP which is combined with treatments to tighten the skin and target stubborn areas of fat.
He said: “I was thinking about a gastric band but I knew there could be complications.
“In the end I chose Alevere, which is an alternative for people who want to lose weight fast, but without surgery.
“It also gave me a realistic chance of normal living and eating after the diet.
“For the first few days I found it horrific, I went to hell and back, but then the weight began to fall off and a kind of euphoria set in.
“People were saying they could see the difference in the first week, that my face looked different, but I couldn’t believe it when I saw how much I had lost.”
Dr Fatema Jamil, who supervised Andrew at the Alevere Northampton clinic, said: “He lost more weight in that first week than anyone I have ever treated before and it was very unexpected, but it was perfectly safe because he was being so closely monitored.
“In his case the more weight he lost quickly the better because it was causing him so many health issues.”
Andrew’s insulin dose has now been reduced by his diabetic consultant from 300 units to 10 units a day.
Andrew, who has a 16-year-old daughter, Evie, said: “Weight is a sensitive subject and I know my family were concerned about me but they didn’t talk about it.
“Medical professionals told me that my health would significantly improve if I lost weight but I just thought ‘tell me something I don’t know’.
“Food has just become less important to me now and I don’t smoke or drink any more.
“The diet cost me about £5,000. I could have bought a hot tub for that, but then I would still have been a fat man in a hot tub.
“Now, I have started running, and weight training. I do daily exercise.
“After a long time, I am starting to realise that I can do so much more with my life.”
Andrew’s typical day
Lunch: Two or three shop-bought sandwiches with all the dressings available
Evening: Large curry with several naan breads and a bottle of wine
Breakfast: Unsweetened porridge with skimmed milk
Mid-morning: Two tangerines
Lunch: Ham with salad
Mid-afternoon: Protein shake
Evening: Chicken or steak with vegetables
Starting weight: 26st 2lbs
Weight now: 14st 4lbs