Mervyn Thompson has gone from taking insulin four times a day for Type 2 diabetes to no longer needing it at all after a transformation with Slimming World.
Weighing 19st 10lb, the vicar from All Saints Church on Boldon Lane, struggled with back ache from walking and had to inject insulin at every meal.
But a visit to his doctor at South Tyneside District Hospital in September last year encouraged Mervyn to turn his life around and join the Slimming World group at Whiteleas Community Centre.
Since then, he has managed to lose 3st 11lb and now weighs 15st 13lb.
He said: Joining Slimming World has been immensely valuable. I had joined for health reasons as I was taking a lot of insulin four times a day.
My doctor at South Tyneside Hospitals diabetic unit had said to me that I needed to watch my portion control and join something like Slimming World.
Losing the weight has now reversed my diabetes and around Christmas time last year I was able to come off the insulin.
It's been great to have the encouragement of everyone at Slimming World, we all try to support each other.
I now feel the best I have ever felt.
Exercise has also helped to shed the weight, with Mervyn, 61, now walking around 40 miles a week.
Before his weight loss Mervyn, had a 46-inch waist, but now measures at a 36-inch waist.
His t-shirts have gone from a XXXL to a large and even his collar sizes have reduced by more than two inches.
His efforts have earned him praise from his congregation and even seen him crowned Slimming World Man of the Year at his group meeting.
He added: It has been the best step I have taken and hope to encourage others to grab the opportunity.
No-one is left behind, there is such great support and encouragement to change everyone's life.
Snacks: Crisps and peanuts
Breakfast: Porridge with a banana
Lunch: Chicken casserole with spring greens
Dinner: Omelette and salad
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