Selfie a day: The effort-free technique which is proven to lose weight

One woman lost 124lbs merely by taking selfies

Rachel Hosie
Friday 06 January 2017 12:06 GMT
Woman loses 124lbs merely by taking selfies

We all know the basics of losing weight - eat less (and better) and move more. But there's one proven way to supercharge your weight-loss: take selfies.

Studies have shown that by taking photos to document your progress, you're more likely to stay motivated, which is the hardest part of dieting for lots of people.

One recent study by the University of Alicante discovered that keeping a photo diary makes dieters more likely to reach their target weight: “After all, it is very gratifying to literally see yourself get slimmer over time,” said Mercedes Rizo Baeza, the thesis director at the university.

More and more people are documenting their weight-loss journeys on social media, and there are now even dedicated apps for those wanting to post slick pictures and videos.

One such app, Progress, allows users to match up their selfies as their bodies change, creating a smooth transformation video.

It's a method that's worked for numerous people including Justine McCabe, who hit the headlines last year after her incredible weight-loss of nearly nine stone.

McCabe turned to food for comfort after the deaths of her mother and husband, which saw her weight soar to 22.4 stone.

But by taking selfies, she successfully stayed motivated to lose an incredible 124 pounds taking her weight down to 13.5 stone.

The reason McCabe started taking selfies was that she didn’t like what she saw in the mirror and thought she looked broken, lost and sad: “I wanted to see myself change, see if my expression would change,” she explained to Today.

McCabe, who is 31-years-old and 5’10” tall, has been documenting her weight-loss journey on her Instagram, where 94,700 people are following her transformation.

Back in 2013, McCabe was already overweight at 20.3 stone. But when her mum died - from complications of chemotherapy exacerbated by being obese - McCabe sought comfort in food.

Tragically, McCabe’s husband of six months then killed himself in February 2015 after a long struggle with depression.

Naturally, the Californian didn’t know what to do with herself and once again turned to food as consolation. Her weight soared but she ignored pleas from family and a friend for her to exercise.

It was only after seeing a grief counsellor that McCabe realised she needed to do something - and that something was to go to the gym: “I did it out of spite. I wanted [my friend and family] to just shut up,” she says.

During a gruelling hour on the elliptical, McCabe finally processed everything that had happened to her. And afterwards, she snapped a mirror selfie to send to a friend as proof that she’d gone.

The next day, she went back to the gym and did the same thing. She kept working out and continued to take selfies.

After losing 30 pounds in a month, she decided to make a conscious effort to continue losing weight by eating more healthily and putting more thought into her workouts.

Five months later, McCabe had lost 5.3 stone.

Since getting a personal trainer in autumn 2015, McCabe has not only built up muscle but had managed to shed a further 49 pounds (3.5 stone) by July 2016.

Perhaps the greatest outcome of McCabe’s new healthy lifestyle isn’t her weight-loss though, but rather her overcoming her depression.

“I have the power to control my life,” she said. “I truly have healed my self-esteem, my self love. I finally learned how to create happiness within myself first and not be seeking that in an outside source.”

Who would have thought selfies could help create such a positive outcome?

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