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Student ‘too embarrassed to go to lectures’ blows university loan on £3k gastric sleeve

A student splurged her student loan on a new body, using the money to pay for weight loss surgery abroad.

Megan Fowler topped the scales at 24 stone after spending her cash on unhealthy takeaways.

The 22-year-old was so embarrassed about her weight that she started attending lectures online instead of in person.

After seeing an online video about weight loss surgery abroad, Megan decided to spend £3,000 on a gastric sleeve operation.

The pricey procedure was funded by her student loan, pizza delivery jobs and milk rounds and saw her go from a size 26 to a size 16.

“My nan was really cross I spent some of my loan on the surgery, but I justify it as I don’t drink, and I hadn’t spent much money as I wasn’t going out.

“A lot of students drink their loan money away, but I used it to save my life. I was actually jeopardising my education by not going into university so it helped me.

“My family didn’t want me to go to Turkey as they were worried about the stigma around it, but now, they’ve seen how much I’m losing, and how I’m getting back to my old self.

“I now weigh just over 17 stone. I haven’t weighed this since I was 18.”

Now, the international business student has found a new lease of life after shedding six stone.

“I’ve been dieting since I was 16. I tried all the fad diets which weren’t working and so I continued to put on the weight,” she said.

“I’m a rugby player and I damaged my back which stopped me from playing, but I carried on eating like a rugby player and that’s when I struggled to get rid of the weight.

“I couldn’t exercise because of my injury, and I got heavier and less mobile.

“I stopped going to university in person as I was too embarrassed, so I did it all online. I also stopped going out with my friends and just locked myself away.”

Megan recalled watching a TikTok video of a woman who had gastric sleeve surgery in Turkey and seeing other people in same situation, when she decided to start her own research.

“If someone mentioned getting surgery to me before, there’d have been no chance I’d have done it,” she said.

“But when I saw people on TikTok getting it, I thought it could work for me.”

Despite her family being concerned about the procedure, Megan praised the care she received and said she wouldn’t hesitate to go under the knife again.

She is hopeful it’ll continue to drop as she’s now making healthier choices, as well as seeing an improvement in her confidence and mental health.

She continued: “I want to lose another five stone. Before my surgery, I’d struggle going up stairs.

“I also now run around on my milk run. I deliver to up to 200 houses a night and I can now comfortably run to each house.

“Things are getting better, and I hope to be back playing rugby in a few months.”

Megan’s healthier food choices are also playing a significant role on her weight loss journey.

She explained: “I used to binge on takeaways all the time as I didn’t want to cook.

“I don’t fancy takeaways anymore. In my head I think ‘why would I want to go back to it?’

“I’m also saving so much money which is definitely helpful being a student. I’ve found enjoyment in cooking again and knowing exactly what I’m eating.”

Megan was stunned after seeing a recent photograph of herself – something she hasn’t seen for years.

When she did have photos taken prior to the surgery, she’d edit them until she was happy.

“I nearly broke down when I saw a photo of myself I actually liked, as that hadn’t been the case since I was 17.

“I keep finding old photos and I can’t believe how big I was. I’m getting there, but I do have a long way to go.

“The reason I started my TikTok was to hold myself accountable, but now I have people who check-in on me and say things like ‘thank you for motivating me’.”

Megan said she is planning on going back to the same hospital in Turkey next April for a tummy tuck and the removal of any excess skin.

She said: “I’ll go back to the same hospital so I’m currently saving for that and will probably top the money up from my student loan again if needed.

“I think this excess skin removal surgery will mark the end of my weight-loss journey and allow me to have the confidence to go on holiday and not have to live in t-shirts and hoodies.”