Susan Boyle’s Weight Loss: How the Scottish Singer Lost 50 Pounds

Susan Boyle's weight loss is proof that with proper diet and exercise, weight loss is achievable at any age. Let’s see how the 62-year old singer lost 50 lbs.

Written by Sanchari Bhattacharya , Health & Fitness Expert
Updated on Jun 17, 2023 | 12:58 PM IST | 664.8K
Susan Boyle’s Weight Loss
Susan Boyle’s Weight Loss
Key Highlight

Susan Boyle’s weight loss inspires people of all ages. She is undoubtedly the most well-known name to come out of the popular show - Britain's Got Talent. In 2012, the Scottish singer was confirmed to have type 2 diabetes. Upon receiving her diagnosis, Susan understood the need for immediate action. She learned that making lifestyle changes, including dietary modifications and regular physical activity, are the only ways to manage diabetes. This led to a massive 50-pound weight loss journey. Now the 62-year old singer is happy embracing her new physique. Let's find out how she accomplished this. 

Who is Susan Boyle?

Scottish singer Susan Boyle became a well-known face in 2009 after competing on the 3rd season of Britain's Got Talent. Her heart-touching performance of 'I Dreamed A Dream' at the show continues to be etched in people's memories. It went viral instantly, capturing the hearts of millions. This fame eventually led her to a massively successful music career. 

Besides Britain's Got Talent, Susan Boyle also performed on some of the other biggest TV shows like America's Got Talent, The Oprah Show, The Today Show, and The X Factor. She also performed twice in front of the Queen.

In 2015, the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland awarded her an honorary doctorate which is the most reputable music school in Scotland. Currently, with 8 studio albums, 3 Guinness World Records, and 2 Grammy nominations, she stands tall, showcasing an impressive musical career.

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Quick Profile Check 

  • Full Name - Susan Magdalane Boyle
  • Date of Birth -  April 1, 1961
  • Age in 2023 - 62
  • Place of Birth - West Lothian, Scotland
  • Occupation - Singer
  • Weight Before - 177 pounds (80.2 kg)
  • Weight After - 127 pounds (57.6 kg)
  • Reduced Weight - 50 pounds (22.6 kg)

Susan Boyle’s Weight Gain And Weight Loss Story

Editorial credit: Altopix / Shutterstock.com

The British singer Susan Boyle is now healthy and happy in her 60s. But her weight gain journey started way back in her fifties. In 2012 she was diagnosed with a neurodevelopmental condition called Asperger's syndrome. The same year, she was also diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. During that time, she had trouble coping with the demands of her growing popularity. Thus she slowly started to gain weight. Unfortunately, by 2014, she had gained even more weight as a result of her constant worry.

Susan claimed in 2016 that she lost a remarkable two stones (28 pounds) after being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. She made quite some lifestyle changes to manage her diabetes which in turn resulted in her weight loss.

Susan admitted that sweets were the bane of her life, and consuming them without thinking needed to stop. She also claimed that she needed to drop weight for health reasons. Six years after diagnosis, the singer reportedly shed 50 pounds in 2018. 

How Did Susan Boyle Lose Weight - Weight Loss Journey


Susan Boyle after weight loss

The singer’s soulful voice would often capture the internet’s attention. But recently, Susan Boyle’s weight loss transformation was making the headlines. Her polished hairstyle and stunning weight reduction managed to get many people’s attention. She was able to shed a whopping 50 pounds and now looks more trim and healthy than ever. During an interview, she credited her weight loss to two specific factors.

  1. Avoiding sugar intake
  2. Morning walks 

Let’s discover how these two factors aided in Susan Boyle’s weight loss journey. 

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No-Sugar Diet

Right from childhood, Susan Boyle has grappled with her size. She endured the harsh reality of facing bullying and judgment due to her appearance and weight. But Boyle started to lose weight only in her 50s. That too by following a ‘no-sugar diet’.

Sugar reduction can hugely assist in preventing weight gain. In 2012, Boyle was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and from then on she abstained from consuming sugar. Sugar also increases the risk of chronic diseases including obesity and heart issues in addition to diabetes (1).
 

Foods and drinks containing a lot of added sugar typically have a high-calorie content. Thus consuming them is directly associated with weight gain. Long-term intake of sugar-sweetened beverages and added sugar is associated with higher fat deposits. This can again increase the risk of other diseases (2). 

Foods to Avoid

  • Candies
  • Baked goods
  • Artificial sweeteners
  • Sugary breakfast cereals
  • Sweetened beverages
  • Condiments with sugar
  • Sweetened alcoholic beverages

What to Consume?

Natural sugars and added sugars are not the same. Fruit and milk both include naturally occurring sugars called fructose and lactose respectively. Any item containing fruit (fresh or dried), milk (such as cream and yogurt), or both have some healthy natural sugars. One benefit of natural sugar is that it contains a variety of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that help balance out some of the drawbacks of sugar (3). Thus try to incorporate the following sugars in your diet.

  • Glucose - Fruits, vegetables, and honey
  • Maltose - Sprouted grains
  • Lactose - Milk and dairy products
  • Fructose - Fruits 

Garcinia Cambogia

Garcinia Cambogia

It is also believed that Susan used Garcinia cambogia supplements for her weight loss. It is a small fruit that looks like a pumpkin. It contains HCA (hydroxy citric acid) which is believed to be an active ingredient in weight loss. 

Hydroxycitric acid, or HCA, is the fruit's active component. It seems to block citrate lyase, an enzyme your body utilizes to produce fat (4). Additionally, it increases serotonin levels in the brain, which may decrease your appetite (5). 

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Animal research also showed that HCA in the diet has an effect on food intake, body weight gain, as well as feed efficiency. It proved the anti-obesity effects of Garcinia cambogia in Albino rats (6).

Does it Actually Work? 

In the latter 2012, a well-known American physician, Dr.Oz also promoted Garcinia cambogia extract as a revolutionary solution for natural weight loss. Garcinia Cambogia was accessible in both powder and pill forms, as options for weight loss. However, it is important to note that the results of actual weight loss are not exceptional. Better research is required in human subjects to determine whether HCA really aids in long-term weight loss and maintenance. 

Possible Side Effects

Despite the media attention surrounding Garcinia cambogia and its purported weight loss benefits, the actual evidence supporting this claim remains uncertain (7). Furthermore, a meta-analysis conducted in 2011 revealed that gastrointestinal adverse events were twice as likely to occur with the use of Garcinia cambogia (8).

Consequently, a particular product was even withdrawn from the market because of reported side effects, such as liver toxicity and gastrointestinal issues linked to its use. Therefore, use them with caution.

Morning Walks For Weight Loss

Avoiding sugar doesn't suffice as a substitute for regular exercise, and exercise is crucial for weight loss. Susan said she didn't like going to the gym, so she decided to change the way she moved around during the day. Thus, in her 50s, Susan Boyle began walking 2 miles each day. She thought walking to be the ideal technique to start burning fat as she didn't want to injure her knees while exercising.

The main benefit of walking is that she was able to use all of her energy, preventing the storage of further fat while also putting the stored energy to good use (9). Hence, it provides benefits for both weight loss and diabetes management.

According to a study, your risk of coronary heart disease can be decreased by roughly 19% by walking for at least 30 minutes per day. Likewise, five days a week. Thus it is the best exercise to incorporate in your 50s (10).

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How Walking Helped Susan Boyle?

Studies have shown that walking for two to three hours a week can help you control your diabetes (11). While some claim that 150 minutes per week of brisk walking is typically insufficient for significant weight loss. This is probably due to the fact that obese and elderly persons typically find it challenging to exercise enough to produce a significant energy deficit. This can be easily compensated for by consuming more food, which can make up for the calories that were lost (12).  

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But, in Susan Boyle’s weight loss case, she also took care of her diet. She made sure to consume fewer calories than before. Thus walking greatly helped her to reduce weight. 

Alternatives

Despite not going to the gym, she made the choice to incorporate some physical activity into her routine. However, not everyone would enjoy walking 2 miles daily. Hence, here are some alternatives to try. 

  • Swimming
  • Water running
  • Cycling
  • Elliptical training
  • Dancing
  • Tennis
  • Kickboxing

The National Health Service (NHS) suggests that adults aged 19 to 64 should engage in at least 150 minutes (2.5 hours) per week of aerobic activity. Thus regardless of age, it is vital for us to work out regularly. 

Conclusion

Susan Boyle's weight loss journey garnered significant attention within the industry and among her global fanbase. The Scottish singer successfully shed an impressive 50 pounds following her diagnosis of type 2 diabetes back in 2012. Achieving this feat required a drastic lifestyle transformation from her side. At first, she made the decision to eliminate all processed sugar from her dietary regimen. Then, she committed herself to a regular and mild workout routine that primarily centered around walking. She also incorporated Garcinia cambogia to supplement her weight loss. Thus Boyle's weight loss is a sign of hope and inspiration for everyone who is setting out on their own weight loss journey.

FAQs

What illness does Susan Boyle have?
In 2012, she was diagnosed with AS (Asperger’s Syndrome) as well as type 2 diabetes. Even recently in 2022, she suffered a stroke.

How much weight has Susan Boyle lost?
Susan Boyle lost weight with her no-sugar diet and routine walking. She shed a massive 50 pounds (22.6 kg).

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About The Author
Sanchari Bhattacharya
Sanchari Bhattacharya
Health & Fitness Expert

Sanchari, a certified Health & Nutrition Life Coach

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Credits: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com
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