A SLIMMER who suffers from an underactive thyroid overcame many challenges to lose 2 stone.

Throughout her life, Clare Mason, 39 has faced various obstacles such as being diagnosed with Developmental Dyspraxia when she was born. This is a condition which can affect all areas of people’s lives, from having co-ordination difficulties right through to affecting everyday living and learning.

Ms Mason, who lives in Moreton-in-Marsh said: “Right from childhood my parents refused to give up on me wanting me to have the same opportunities as everyone else, as at first it was thought that I would not be able to attend mainstream education, or achieve in the same way as other children.

Another issue I faced, especially in my teen years, was my weight. It was unclear at that stage whether it was to do with an underactive thyroid but there had definitely been a family history.”

Ms Mason gained a lot of weight and was bullied about it, as well as about her other difficulties.

She threw herself into her work determined to achieve, and eventually through hard work and determination she went on to prove people wrong, and was able to achieve GCSE’s, a diploma and later a 2.1 degree.

Ms Mason has worked in care and education, as well as community mental health work.

Two years ago she was officially diagnosed with an Underactive Thyroid (hypothyroidism), which is where your thyroid does not provide enough hormones to enable you to lose weight. A healthy thyroid (TSH) level should be between 0.4 and 4, but I was 4.3.

Ms Mason said “I can remember at this time feeling low in confidence about my image.”

For an individual with an underactive thyroid weight loss is always slower and Ms Mason really struggled at first but once she was on the right brand and dosage of medication, she began to lose weight.

As well adjustments to her medication, other life style changes like cooking healthy meals, taking walks and indoor cycling and personal trainer sessions have helped Ms Mason lose 4 dress sizes in a year and she continues to make progress.

Ms Mason hopes to inspire other people. “To show it can be done you just have to believe in yourself and stand your ground till you get to where you want to be.”