From dieter to franchise owner

Successful dieter Helen Lomax explains why she decided to invest in the Dietcare franchise

Inspired by her steady weight loss, dieter Helen Lomax made the transition from client to Dietcare franchise owner last September and now helps motivate other people to lose weight healthily.

"I first met Norah Lane, the CEO of Dietcare three and a half years ago when I was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)," remembers Helen. "My mum spotted an article about Norah and the impressive weight loss her dieters achieved. As I was struggling to lose weight, I decided to contact Norah to make an appointment.

"Dietcare appealed because it takes a different approach to dieting than other brands on the market. Dieters do not need to take any supplements or consume any gimmicky products, instead all of the food is available at your local supermarket and every diet is tailored to fit the individual's needs with their medical conditions, favourite foods and allergies in mind. All consultations and weigh-ins are also confidential and done on a one-to-one basis. Norah's wealth of knowledge was also very impressive - with her background in nutrition you knew you were in safe hands.

Over the years, Helen tried a variety of diets, but nothing worked as well as the Dietcare plan. Helen continues: "I used to always put the weight back on when I finished the diet. However, with Dietcare I have found it easier to keep the weight off. Norah approached me about running my own Dietcare franchise as she thought I would be a good candidate. Up until that point, I had always assumed I would work in the public sector until I retired. However, the thought of being my own boss and helping other people lose weight was exciting. The start up cost was low and I loved the idea of working flexible hours around my other job as a college registrar so I decided to invest.

Helen operates the Swinton-based territory and runs her clinic Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings from a room in a beauty salon. "Dietcare fits in well with my job at the college," reveals Helen. "In February, I took on a new position at the college as a special needs teacher. My plan is to use the half term and summer holiday break to build up the business.

"Before I launched, Dietcare provided me with comprehensive initial training. Since then, I have received ongoing support from head office so I never feel completely on my own. Having two jobs is challenging - I need to be incredibly organised but I think they complement each other well because the college is now keen for me to teach healthy eating habits to the pupils. By the end of the first year, my aim is to have 24 clients on the books and I am confident I will achieve this.

"I love my role as a Dietcare advisor, and the relationships I am building within my community. It's a great feeling knowing I can help improve people's self-confidence and body image."

Interview by Jess Sturman