Health & Diet

Lisa Riley weight loss: Emmerdale star shares tips to shedding an impressive 12 stone

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Lisa Riley is a British actor best known for playing the role of Many Dingle in ITV’s Emmerdale. The star appeared in the programme from 1995 until 2001 and then again in 2019.

When Lisa rejoined the cast of Emmerdale two years ago, fans were surprised to see her transformed since the last time she was on the show.

Since 2012, the 45-year-old has reportedly lost a whopping 12 stone, going from a dress size 28 to a 12 or a 14.

She started to lose weight around the same time as meeting her now-fiancé Al.

At the time, the actor was competing in Strictly Come Dancing, which helped her become more active.

In an interview on ITV’s Loose Women in 2016, Lisa said: “Doing Strictly kick started my metabolism. I saw a difference dancing seven hours a day and then I just ate soup as I didn’t want all that food jiggling around while I danced.

“It’s hard for me to see my reflection now. I used to have a shelf from here to here and where’s that gone?

“It is insane. I looked so different before. I was happy before but now I am happy and proud. I needed to do it though. Who knows though. People can yo-yo diet.”

She explained that exercise, a healthy diet, and cutting out alcohol helped her to lose weight.

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“I have smaller portions now,” Lisa said.

“I don’t believe in fad diets, even though I have tried them before. I have no food after 6.30pm.

“I only eat a carb if I need one and absolutely no bread or booze. I’ve been going to Zumba classes which is fun. I find the gym is boring.”

Although Lisa no longer drinks alcohol, she said she isn’t afraid to treat herself to her favourite foods once in a while, adding: “I still eat chocolate if I want it and don’t feel guilty.”

As well as Strictly, another motive Lisa had to slim down was her health.

Her mum, Cath, died of cancer in 2012.

The actor told Bella magazine in 2016: “Losing my mum then seeing my dad wired up and nearly losing him and becoming an orphan was a shock to my system.

“I don’t want to be a statistic. I just want my health to carry on, to live my life to the fullest.”

In 2018, Lisa told the Mirror that she now eats salads and jacket potatoes, which help her stay trim.

Talking about what drove her to want to drop more than five dress sizes, she said: “I did it through good old-fashioned willpower, driven by me finally wanting to buy nice clothes and underwear.

“I’m still in denial when I go in a shop and pick up a size 12 – 14.

“But there was a day at the BAFTAs when I looked in the mirror I was in floods of tears because I couldn’t believe it was me.

“I get that people think it seems impossible, but when I had that much to lose, it was always going to be hard work.

“Clichés aside, I have another chance at life. Especially because of my gene pool. You can’t live your life like a ticking time bomb. But you can curve it somewhat. That’s what I had to do.”

Lisa continues to eat healthily and is still tee-total.

Last year, she celebrated five years of sobriety. Posting on Instagram, the star said: “Wow five years ago today I drank my last drop of alcohol.

“I wouldn’t change it for ANYTHING, my life is so much clearer, happier, gained more glow, laugh so much harder, having the life I always dreamt of, no fake friendships, needing that someone who never knows when to go home, not cringing when I open my eyes (have I argued with anyone) not remembering, that’s the worst, maybe, well not actually maybe, certainly.”

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