Life saved by weight loss

LUCKY ESCAPE: Super-slimmer Joanne Jackson, 40, has been told she would not have found a cancerous lump if she had not shed five stone.

LUCKY ESCAPE: Super-slimmer Joanne Jackson, 40, has been told she would not have found a cancerous lump if she had not shed five stone.

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A SLIMMER who survived breast cancer has been told she wouldn’t have found her life-threatening lump if she hadn’t shed five stone.

Joanne Jackson, 40, began comfort eating as she suffered four miscarriages between 2004 and 2008.

She would often eat a loaf of bread a day or get through a box of chocolates with little thought, but started slimming in April 2009, when her weight reached 15st 4lb.

Last September, she was named Woman Of The Year by her Slimming World group in Heckmondwike, and got her weight down to 10st 5lb.

But in May this year, Mrs Jackson felt a lump in her breast while sitting on the sofa at home in Edge Lane, Thornhill.

Doctors told her she had three types of cancer in her left breast.

She said: “I had a choice to make – have a lumpectomy or a mastectomy. There was no debating it, I had a mastectomy.

“I thought there could be every chance it would come back and I didn’t want that.”

She had the mastectomy on June 29 at Calderdale Royal Hospital in Halifax, and took part in her second Race for Life just one week later.

She has now been given the all-clear, but if Mrs Jackson had not lost the weight, her bra size would not have dropped from 40HH to 30C and she would not have found the lump.

Her breast care nurse Debbie Weevel said: “If Joanne hadn’t lost the weight that she did, the lump wouldn’t have been spotted until much later and it could have been too late. Losing the weight saved her life.”

Mrs Jackson said: “I’m so thankful I’d lost weight.”

Although she was made redundant from Kirklees Council earlier this year, Mrs Jackson now works as a Slimming World consultant, running groups at Thornhill Trojans Rugby Club and her hometown of Halifax.

She said: “I love it and I love seeing other people lose their weight. I also love that it saved my life.”