Nakkia Smith, 25, Wyandanch
Occupation: Teachers assistant
Before: 360 pounds, July 2016; After: 184 pounds, August 2018
It was a diagnosis of prediabetes that got Nakkia Smith’s attention. She was heavy her whole life, she says, and from a family in which everyone suffered similarly with obesity. But when presented with news of being prediabetic at the young age of 23, Smith acted quickly.
“My doctor gave me three months to see if I could change my numbers on my own,” Smith says, who added, “I was never really miserable but I knew I couldn’t live the way I was living much longer.”
She plunged into researching effective ways to lose weight and decided to count calories. She had already stopped her four-to-five weekly visits to fast food joints and started using the smartphone app, My Fitness Pal. With the support of her mom, who also participated with her, Smith, over the course of two years, lost more than 175 pounds. Her mom has lost 120 pounds.
“I prep my meals the night before. If I cook for dinner, I also cook enough for lunch the next day, too. I’ve developed a new way of eating. I no longer eat just what’s in sight," says Smith.
Smith says she actually enjoys shopping for clothes now. And to celebrate her weight loss, she, along with her best friend and a cousin, went to Six Flags Great Adventure to celebrate her weight loss. “I could finally fit on the rides.”
Smith starts her day with an egg white omelet with spinach, red peppers, green peppers, and onions. Lunch can be grilled chicken with broccoli and edamame tossed together and a baked potato. Dinner is typically a protein such as chicken or turkey in a stir-fry with vegetables. Smith says she snacks on a protein bar or a yogurt.
Smith works out six days a week for an hour each day. She does cardio work on a treadmill, elliptical, and an arc trainer for the first half hour and then does weight training for the second half hour.
“Take it one day at it time. Make simple choices. Don’t worry about the future. Do it today and continue with the same smart choices.”