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At 300 lbs, Jasmine Parent knew something had to change after seeing herself in a picture. She took action and turned her life around.

Jasmine Parent always struggled with her weight, but it wasn’t until she saw herself in a picture alongside her closest friends at an annual Christmas gathering that she finally committed to a healthier lifestyle.

At the time, she weighed around 300 pounds.

“I had this moment where I saw myself in the photo, and I just hadn’t realized how different I looked and how much weight I had gained,” Jasmine, of Halifax, Nova Scotia told Health.com. “That photo was the end of me not coming to terms with it.”

A former college basketball player, Jasmine remembered feeling like she’d finally got a handle on her weight in her senior year, but that changed when her father passed away in 2013.

To cope with her painful loss, she turned to food for comfort.

“I began emotionally eating without even really realizing it,” she said. “For the three years after my dad passed away, I was just gaining, gaining, gaining.” 

Her diet kept on getting worse

In 2016, Jasmine and her partner, Jeremy Crawley, welcomed their first daughter and were filled with joy, but their eating habits were getting out of control.

“Everything we did, every celebration, every night was, let’s get chips and pop and takeout,” she told People.  “Everything went from a box or a bag into the microwave or the oven,” she said. “We rarely ate vegetables.”

Jasmine’s weight went up to 250 pounds, and when she got pregnant a second time, she started feeling the toll her weight was taking on health. She sometimes needed Jeremy’s help just to sit up in bed in the morning.

Being incapable of doing physical things like that really hit me. How do you go from being a university athlete to — less than 5 years later — your partner is lifting you out of bed?

After her second daughter was born in 2017, Jasmine’s weight reached 300 pounds, and Jeremy weighed 333 pounds, at his heaviest.

“I felt miserable physically, emotionally and mentally,” said Jasmine. “I wanted to have more energy for my children.”

First step of action: diet

When she caught a glimpse of herself in a group photo with her best friends at Christmas that year, she was shocked but also knew it was time to take action.

Having discovered the motivation to transform her life, Jasmine was inspired when she came across a 21-day meal plan while browsing Instagram. The program cost 20$ which she recalled was close to the amount she’d spent on McDonald’s the week before, so she signed up and teamed up with Jeremy for the challenge.

They made the New Year’s resolution to get healthier together in January 2018, and started by tracking their calorie intakes in an app. “We went into our cupboards and threw out all junk food and anything processed,” said Jasmine, adding that they switched to whole foods.

If we couldn’t grow or harvest it ourselves, we decided not to eat it.

Jasmine Parent

Within two months, they both lost over 30 pounds by not only making more conscious decisions about what they ate, but also by working out and supporting each other when motivation swayed.

Today, her life couldn’t be more different

By the time Jasmine got pregnant with their third child, she was down 120 pounds and Jeremy had lost almost 90. 

“I worked out on the elliptical the day I gave birth,” she remembered.

Today, Jasmine is a certified fitness coach and nutritionist and says that her weight loss has done wonders for her mental health, and coming off the anxiety medication she’d been on for years has been one of greatest successes.

I always say I no longer sweat the small stuff… Now, things just kind of roll right off of my back. I’m so much more relaxed. Life itself feels less stressful because my overall mood has improved.

Jasmine Parent

Jeremy and Jasmine still exercise together every morning, and even ran a 5k as a family unit.

“We used to take the girls to the playground and I would just stand there and watch,” Jasmine remembered. “But now I’m running up the steps and going down the slide and then going across the monkey bars.”