At 37-years old, Mariette Van Niekerk from Benoni decided to put her health first with the Slender Wonder programme.
Mariette wanted a life changing experience that would have lasting effects on her health. She knew that a quick fix was not the answer. Her turning point was when she realised that she was projecting her insecurities onto her son. Her physical state made her irritable, grumpy and constantly tired, “It made me a horrible person”, she says.
Mariette saw the effects the Slender Wonder programme had on a friend of hers and quickly committed herself to the transformation of her life.
Stress was the reason for her weight gain. She could no longer cope with feeling out of control in certain areas of her life and turned to food as a source of comfort. Mariette quickly learned that eating to fill an emotion rather than hunger can result in the idealisation of food as a “healthy” escape.
“Food became my ‘god’ I found myself constantly thinking about the next bar of chocolate, what I would buy and what excuse I could use to go to the shop. I found myself eating chocolate secretly, so no one could see how much I was eating.”
Although her Slender Wonder journey started out tough, she swiftly noticed the changes in her body and sense of well-being. Mariette struggled with foot pain as a result of her weight gain and welcomed the pain relief as her body began to change.
Soon she was filled with self-confidence and was no longer ashamed of her body. Her change in lifestyle affected her relationship with her kids for the better. Activities that used to feel impossible were now a source of joy for her and her loved ones, “I was able to spend time with my kids and playing with them outside.”
From the beginning of her weight loss journey Mariette knew how important support was to her. Her Slender Wonder doctor, Dr. Sharon Lion-Cachet, was the driving force that helped her stick to her decision to transform her life.
The strict structure of the Slender Wonder weight loss programme was a key persuader for Mariette, “I needed someone (and a programme) to be by my side, while making drastic changes in my life.”
Mariette is not only focused on her health but has expanded her thinking to the health of her entire family.
She has lost an inspiring 25kg in just five months and is on the Slender Wonder maintenance programme. She says, Slender Wonder is the only weight loss programme that has worked for her and she attributes this to the focus Slender Wonder places on maintaining a healthy weight and lifestyle.
“It is truly about a lifestyle and addressing serious issues in my life that lead to weight gain and obsessing over food.”
Mariette expresses a deep gratitude to her Slender Wonder doctor, Dr. Sharon Lion-Cachet, and the support she has received. Her doctor continues to support her during the maintenance phase and is always available via WhatsApp, “They do not just leave you to struggle on your own.”
Physically, Mariette is more confident and can keep up with her children. While psychologically she has broken free from a life centers around food. Every morning she chooses her health.
“I can choose what I put in my mouth.”
Mariette feels inspired about her health and life again and believes that everyone should invest in their health because your diet affects all other areas of life. Mariette has learnt that health encompasses mind, body and soul.
Her motto is, “You cannot expect to cross the finish line first if you run on junk food and sugar.”
Mariette’s advice to anyone starting or on the Slender Wonder programme is to know your true worth and address the issues in your life that you are able to change. She believes that making a diet change can help resolve other issues in your life.
“You are already beautiful! Do not resolve to quick fix solutions – make it a long-term solution!”
Mariette’s Slender Wonder doctor, Dr. Sharon Lion-Cachet also added: “Mariette joined Slender Wonder at Breezology in January 2019. She is a 37-year-old mother of three and has shown 100% commitment to the programme. She certainly showed us that being a mom does not mean that self-care cannot be achieved.
Mariette never missed a weigh-in, which was usually early morning with all three small children smartly dressed in tow. Her losses were amazing and consistent and she lost at every single weigh-in! She has lost 25kg and is now on maintenance.”