Anthony Albanese cuts a trim figure with girlfriend Jodie Haydon on arrival in Spain for the Nato Leaders Summit on June 27
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Anthony Albanese may have added years to his life by overhauling his diet and slashing his alcohol intake during his incredible weight loss journey.

The Prime Minister embarked on a fitness quest after being in a frightening car crash in January 2021, losing a whopping 18kg in less than a year by cutting out carbs, upping his exercise, and giving up alcohol for three months. 

By March, the Labor leader had trimmed down to his goal of being under 80kgs, meaning he is no longer considered obese according to Body Mass Index measurements.

Mr Albanese’s amazing transformation was used as a political weapon by Scott Morrison during the May federal election, but the new PM may have got the last laugh – in more ways than one. 

Nutritionist Susie Burrell told Daily Mail Australia Mr Albanese’s weight loss would have lowered his risk for a number of serious conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, some cancers, high cholesterol, blood pressure, and glucose levels. 

Anthony Albanese cuts a trim figure with girlfriend Jodie Haydon on arrival in Spain for the Nato Leaders Summit on June 27

Anthony Albanese cuts a trim figure with girlfriend Jodie Haydon on arrival in Spain for the Nato Leaders Summit on June 27

Mr Albanese (pictured in 2017) lost 18kg in less than a year by cutting out carbs, upping his exercise, and giving up alcohol for three months

Mr Albanese (pictured in 2017) lost 18kg in less than a year by cutting out carbs, upping his exercise, and giving up alcohol for three months

‘It would have significantly reduced his risk of lifestyle diseases, that overweight men in Australia are at risk of,’ she said. 

‘We know that Australian men drink too much alcohol and the intake of processed food in Australia is high, especially after the pandemic. We also live sedentary lives. 

‘So we are eating too much of the wrong stuff and not moving. That’s why men with beer bellies is the norm in Australia.’

About 67 per cent of Australians are overweight or obese, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2018 National Health Survey, with lifestyle diseases a massive health issue for both men and women. 

Experts predict more than 18million Australians will be overweight or obese by 2030 if the trend continues.

Ms Burrell, who has two honours degrees in nutrition and dietetics and psychology, said the fact sedentary lifestyles are becoming the ‘norm’ is concerning for health professionals.

She said for people who fall into obese or overweight categories, slimming down – so long as it is done in a healthy way – offers long-term benefits. 

Anthony Albanese in 2013

Mr Albanese in March 2022

Mr Albanese is pictured in 2013 (left) and 2022 (right) after he lost 18kg in less than a year 

Anthony Albanese (pictured) embarked on a health journey last year after being involved in a car crash. He is pictured in 2013

Anthony Albanese (pictured) embarked on a health journey last year after being involved in a car crash. He is pictured in 2013 

But while higher weights present greater risks of illness, Ms Burrell cautioned against using BMI – which scores weight – as a health indicator.

‘Risk increases the greater degree of weight and obesity. There is a genetic component, but lifestyle is the factor we have control over,’ she said.

‘BMI takes into account overall mass, which can include muscle mass. However Body fat mass is a better measure of health risks. For men, it is about how much abdominal fat they have, which becomes problematic over 90cm (circumference).

‘Losing weight too quickly leads to muscle mass loss which is not great for the heart. The key is not so much about weight but waist measurements as an overall indicator of health.’

Mr Albanese revealed to Daily Mail Australia in September he had lost 15kg, before announcing six months later he had shed a further three.

Speaking about his fitness on Triple M Perth in March, Mr Albanese said he cut out alcohol after a serious car crash mid last year, when his Toyota was rammed by a Range Rover and he was rushed to hospital for X-rays but escaped serious injury.

‘In January last year, I had a near-death experience in the car,’ Mr Albanese said.

Susie Burrell, who has two honours degrees in nutrition and dietetics and psychology, said weight loss for Australians who are overweight or obese reduces the risk of lifestyle diseases, such as heart conditions and diabetes

Susie Burrell, who has two honours degrees in nutrition and dietetics and psychology, said weight loss for Australians who are overweight or obese reduces the risk of lifestyle diseases, such as heart conditions and diabetes

‘I had a head-on car crash and that really causes you to sit back and think about things. I was on pretty heavy painkillers, so I had to have no alcohol.

‘And I just thought I’ll see how long I can go for. I went five months. So now I have the occasional beer. I had a nice Little Creatures last night.’

During the federal election campaign, Mr Morrison took aim at his competitor’s weight loss, suggesting Mr Albanese was ‘pretending’ to be someone he was not.

‘You can’t present yourself to the Australian people as something that you’re not,’ the former prime minister said.

‘Leopards don’t change their spots. Even if they change their glasses and their suits, they’re still the same.’

Mr Morrison subsequently copped criticism that his comment was a low blow, including in a viral LinkedIn post by Troy Mansell, the co-founder of employee wellbeing app Benny Button.

‘This week our Prime Minister positioned Anthony Albanese’s wellbeing improvement as identity insecurity. He doesn’t know who he is. It’s as if he is trying to be someone else,’ Mr Mansell wrote in March.

Mr Albanese pictured in April with his partner Jodie Haydon, who praised his wellbeing journey online

Mr Albanese pictured in April with his partner Jodie Haydon, who praised his wellbeing journey online

‘Anthony Albanese made a conscious decision to improve his relationship with food, alcohol and exercise. He is happy and proud of his efforts. This should be celebrated by everyone. Not politicised.’

Mr Albanese’s partner Jodie Haydon shared the post, adding gushing praise of her boyfriend’s inspiring health journey. 

‘I’m so proud of Anthony’s discipline and motivation to improve his health. This was a decision made a while ago, after a near death experience, to make the most out of life and give yourself every chance to be healthy and happy.’

‘As his partner, I have seen how taxing life as a politician can be, it’s utterly exhausting both mentally and physically.’

Ms Haydon said she hopes Australians all seek to look after themselves the best they can and Mr Albanese’s lifestyle changes may motivate others to follow suit.

‘The last two years have shown us during a pandemic just how important our health is and how much we should value it,’ she said.

‘I hope his actions may inspire others to do the same.’ 

SUSIE BURRELL’S TOP FIVE TIPS FOR REDUCING THE RISK OF LIFESTYLE DISEASES

1. Cut back on alcohol – max 10 standard drinks a week! 

2. Cut the refined carbs = white bread, pastry, white rice, soft drinks. 

3. Cut the meat portions – 150g max cooked 3-4 times a week or less than 350g a week with some meat free days

4. Fast 12 hours a day – cut the late night snacks. 

5. More vegetables – vegies are disease protective and fewer than 1 in 10 Aussies get anywhere near enough. Drink vege juice and get vegies in each meal. Aim for 1-2 vego meals a week eg. chilli beans, soup, or vegetable lasagne

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