On Nigerian Food and Weight Loss – Belly Fat Loss

Hello 9jafoodie nation, I hope 2015 has been kind to you. I am starting off the year with something I do not usually do; it’s a very personal post about my weight loss journey. Healthy eating and weight loss on an African diet is something near and dear to my heart and such a big part of what I intend to do in the future. I am currently in school learning more about Healthy eating; nutrition & weight loss and I hope to help as many people as I can with my education.

A little about my journey:

I wasn’t completely conscious about my body until I was about 16 years old, this was after high school and I was about 110lbs (50kg). I stayed back home for two years and I gained 30lbs (14kg). I am only 5ft 4 so I was a chunky teenager. I still wasn’t very serious about my health/weight at this point. I moved to Canada for university and by late 2006 I was 164 lbs (74kg). This was the heaviest point in my life and a very dark point in my teenage years. See, excess weight has a very funny way of making you look way older than you actually are.

Majority of the weight was gained in one summer, I completely remember that summer, eating egusi soup with goat meat for lunch almost all summer and being a complete couch potato

Fat Routine

This picture was taken in my college dorm, this was my diet and cooking routine twice a week

It was later in the fall of 2007 that I decided to take charge of things and I have been on that journey ever since.

Weight loss is a journey, it’s something that happens over time and requires conscious effort. My journey started with just exercises, I worked out six days a week but didn’t pay much attention to my diet. I gained muscle definition but there were absolutely no changes on the scale. It wasn’t until I completed an overhaul of my diet that I saw changes in my weight and reduction to my waistline.

Between late 2011 and 2012, I was at my lowest weight since my large weight gain at 134 -136lbs (<62kg). I wasn’t working out at that point and I was on a complete Nigerian diet (I honestly cant live without my naija food)

9jafoodie - weight - loss - how - nigerian - food - belly - fat -healthy - food

L-R 155lbs (This wasn’t my heaviest & I wasn’t 20 yet!) , 140lbs (optimal weight), 136lbs

Another major issue for most women I have spoken with is pregnancy weight gain. I have recently experienced this first hand. In 2014 I was pregnant with first child and by 40 weeks, I had gone from 138 lbs (63kg ) to 186lbs (84kg). Mind you, I didn’t have pregnancy cravings and my portions were just a little bigger than prior.

The 48 pounds gained scared me; I was concerned about being chubby again. I heard so many stories of how weight “fall off” with breast-feeding; this definitely wasn’t the case for me. The first 15 lbs came off easily (this happened in the first week). Then everything stopped, 3 weeks went by and there were no further changes. This was when I got on a personalized meal plan and lost another 25lbs over the weeks. 3 months postpartum, with conscious diet management, I have lost 40lbs (18kg)

post - pregnancy - weight - loss - belly - fat - loss - Nigerian - nigerian - food - help

L-R 40 Weeks 186lbs , 3 months postpartum 148lbs

My point being, don’t be discouraged if you gain a lot of weight while pregnant, you can have your body back with healthy modifications to your diet.

This is going to be a great year, I intend to do a lot more in the healthy eating space and I will keep all of you informed as things unfold.

My Healthy Journey Mantras

  • Never take weight loss advice from someone who has never been fat
    • I really just hate it when people who have never been fat talk about weight loss – maybe I am just hating though. Two of my closest friends are size zeros; they eat whatever they want at whatever time of day and just don’t gain weight. Some people are genetically predispositioned to be skinny and that’s okay. But please! If you haven’t been there, sussssh!!
  • Seek personalized help for weight loss from professionals; one size DOESN’T fit all when it comes to diet.
    • I cannot stress this enough. What works for someone else will not necessarily work for you. Metabolisms are different. If you are serious about your health, you need to get on a plan designed specifically for you.

I hope this post encourages everyone on a healthy eating journey in this new year, do not give up, do not fall for gimmicks, seek professional help and remember that one bad day does not ruin your journey.

We have so much to share and I hope we can all learn from one another. What are your weight loss / healthy goals for 2015?

For those looking to just lose belly fat, I have a post coming up for you. What are your thoughts on losing belly fat without losing weight?

Are you on weight (fat) loss / healthy eating journey? Please share your story.

If you will like professional diet/nutrition help, please send me an email & I will connect you with the right people. (Ronke at 9jafoodie.com)

For those starting out, read published articles below on quick ways to lose weight with Nigerian Food

Lose Weight on a Nigerian Diet with Lose It Nigerian (LIN)


Subscribe to our newsletter for exclusive content!

Recipe Index

Lose It Nigerian

By |January 4th, 2015|60 Comments


  1. Foluke November 26, 2017 at 11:39 pm - Reply

    I see that you did this just after you gave birth. Is the weight loss plan good for breastfeeding mothers?

  2. Kelechi September 19, 2016 at 5:34 am - Reply

    So I just made up my mind to get the LIN book and my heart is pumping with excitement. I’ve made the payment and I’m about to send the payment details to the email.

    This is the first time in my life that I’m struggling with weight gain, I went from 63kg in 2014 to 82kg in 2016! From a size 8/10 to a size 14. I was so alarmed when I went shopping a few weeks ago and was asked “are you a size 14 or 16?!” I’ve been trying to lose weight for about 6 weeks now but it’s so hard! The food restrictions are crazy and I keep seeing lists of things I can’t eat.

    I’m committed to commencing this journey and seeing results. I hope this works. #fingerscrossed

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie September 24, 2016 at 7:39 pm - Reply

      yas! you can do this! join the support group and kick things off with a challenge.

  3. korie September 16, 2016 at 6:14 am - Reply

    OMG. i could just kiss you. that first mantra, that’s me too. i mean i just go crazy when someone skinny tells me you shouldn’t eat this or that when theyve never tried to loose weight before or consciously lost a pound

  4. Osemmy October 13, 2015 at 6:37 am - Reply

    your weight loss journey is really encouraging! nice 1

  5. sola kayode August 10, 2015 at 11:41 am - Reply

    Ronke please help me,am over weight,110kg especially my belly fat and arms,I hate it all and really can’t do with out swallow in.a day,please help me,am desperately in need of you please,please,please. Went thru 2cs and my tummy kept expanding,tx n God bless

  6. Balqis July 27, 2015 at 3:46 pm - Reply

    Hi Ronke,
    I’m 21 years old and I just finished University…last month. I love to eat but I have a very bad relationship with food. My appetite is very funny and I usually lose it when stressed out…school didn’t help matters. I also tend to gain weight when I’m stressed. I’m genetically fat…if you know what I mean. I’m back home now nd I’m trying to lose some weight, (I don’t want to do one of these lose 30kg in 6 weeks weight loss plan…too young for that and definitely not that desperate). I currently weigh 72kg. I also want to eat better. In school, I don’t eat breakfast, I usually take soda and fizzy drinks when I get hungry in school and if I get to eat dinner (when I’m not too tired) I usually will eat a heavy carbohydrate food(Semo, amala, rice etc). 2 weeks ago I started exercising, I can tell this has helped. But I haven’t been able to get around to eating(my appetite is funny), though I have stopped ‘drinking sugar’. I’m really excited about your posts on losing weight with Nigerian foods and I’m now equipped with your food time table. But like you said, one size doesn’t fit all when it comes to diet. I will admit it isn’t easy doing this alone, and trying to get motivation from my ‘size zero friends ‘ is not working. I don’t mind if I could get more help from you. This is my email [email protected]
    Thanks in anticipation of your reply.

  7. Ayomide Otunba July 25, 2015 at 7:23 pm - Reply

    i think i am late,i am a great fan always checking recipies of what to cook,i gained geniue interest in cooking after my mentors Spanish wife made her first visit to Africa thats Nigeria for almost all her three weeks visit she prepared some Spanish dishes for us and i was her sous chef it was a great experience.i am 17years old weighing 64kg i do exercieces but i cant get a nigerian diet plan to support weight loss,i am so happy to see one.And your story is inspiring.

  8. Tamuno. June 14, 2015 at 7:18 am - Reply

    I totally love your work Ronke. This post has given me all the motivation I need to start with and be ‘consistent’ with eating healthy.
    My weight has slowy been skyrocketing 🙁 and I’m not happy about it.
    Hopefully, I should see some changes in the weeks ahead 🙂

    Thank you again.

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie June 15, 2015 at 9:17 pm - Reply

      You can do it!!!! just commit and keep to it.. remember to celebrate the little victories.

  9. Ajoke February 17, 2015 at 10:49 am - Reply

    Hello Ronke! Congratulations on the arrival of your baby. I am due in May with my first baby and I am slightly worried because I have gained some weight on my face more than on my body. Should I be worried. I hate puffy faces but I am absolutely delighted about my baby. What can I do?

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie February 17, 2015 at 2:31 pm - Reply

      Don’t worry about that Ajoke. it’s the increase in blood volume. Your face will most likely swell even more shortly after you deliver but it will go back to normal several weeks after.

  10. ify January 24, 2015 at 11:47 pm - Reply

    yes pls I am 4 months postpartum and I still have 20 plus weight loss to get to my goal, my belly is still way up and I am getting concerned. Pls help!

  11. adesuwa January 15, 2015 at 2:47 am - Reply

    Congratulations on the arrival of your new bundle of joy.. I can imagine how ecstatic you must feel, the first ones are always the ice breakers..i ve three of my own and I totally adore them..However, I have gained quite some weight after having them and it has been such a huge challenge loosing the weight.i have done all sorts but all to no avail. Thanks for sharing your story and big congratulations on succeeding where many have failed (loosing weight) .I will certainly send u a mail so as to see the possibility of kick starting a new weight loss plan for 2015. God Bless u dear

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 15, 2015 at 8:20 am - Reply

      Amen! thank you.. I will look forward to your message

  12. Mrs Uzomah January 13, 2015 at 8:08 am - Reply

    Soo inspired. I started my weight loss journey last week oh strictly low carb (50g per day), no processed food or refined sugar. I can tell that the lbs are coming off but i fear it might only be water weight. i have my first weigh in tomorrow and i’m a little nervous, will share my progess as the lbs keep coming off.

  13. Queenlumi January 12, 2015 at 7:28 am - Reply

    9ja foodie, we are waiting for the “lose your belly fat” post o. I can’t do without my nails food either. Waiting….

  14. Ayishaa January 9, 2015 at 3:17 am - Reply

    Wow….this is amazing…. Please Where u exercising at the same time or did u loose all the weight by modifying ur diet….

  15. themanecaptain January 8, 2015 at 6:46 pm - Reply

    Congratulations on your baby and weight loss!
    I agree that you shouldn’t take advice from someone who hasn’t been there. Our body is different, so one size won’t fit all.
    You were a serious cook in college eh? That egusi and stew looks so tempting.
    One can maintain any weight eating foods from any country. I gained 10lb+ eating chinese food, whereas, an average chinese is skinny. I lost all those weight by cooking my own food and eating my Nigerian food 🙂

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 9, 2015 at 10:54 am - Reply

      Lol… I was mehn. Didn’t play with my Nigerian food from day 1. Western Chinese is probably more fattening than Nigerian food.

  16. Luv January 6, 2015 at 2:18 am - Reply

    All I can say is WOW! I applaud you for how far you’ve come on your journey. My situation is somewhat similar. After 2 pregnancies right after one another, my body needed some work. After my second child was born, I made up my mind that I didn’t want to remain overweight, so within 3 months of giving birth I was back to my
    pre-pre-pregnancy weight (hope you understand what I mean- my weight before ever being pregnant). Although my weight was where I want it, my belly was very far from it, my second child is now 13-months old and I’m still dealing wIth belly fat. I would like to lose the belly fat without losing more weight to prevent from looking too thin.
    I also struggle with what Nigerian foods to make that are healthy for the whole family without being too repetitious, please help.
    May God continue to bless you and all that concerns you.

  17. Luv January 5, 2015 at 10:42 pm - Reply

    Hello, I tried sending you an email [email protected] but it keeps getting returned. Please help!

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 6, 2015 at 10:57 am - Reply

      I have actually seen your mail…. I got it

  18. Rose January 5, 2015 at 2:28 pm - Reply

    Wow, I Love this post. I need to get back not the healthy living wagon o. I have hit my all time highest weight.

  19. EJ Ogenyi January 5, 2015 at 11:44 am - Reply

    Thanks for sharing your story. It’s interesting similar it is to mine. I found myself weighing 163 lbs at 5’4″ in college and my wake up call was seeing the number on the scale matched my male friend (now husband). I worked my way down to 129 lbs eventually and I’m now working my way back up after getting pregnant with our first. My journey also inspired me to become a Lifestyle Coach. Looking forward to reading more from you

  20. Viv January 5, 2015 at 10:55 am - Reply

    I weighed 105 kilograms in July 2012 (and I was just 18). I decided to see how far I could go with a healthy lifestyle if I started. It’s been about two years and I’ve lost about 35 kgs. I now wear a size 12(UK) and no longer a size 18. So thank you for this post… Lol I can relate to College life weight gain.

  21. sandrakoga January 5, 2015 at 9:51 am - Reply

    hello. I found this particular post very helpful. may God bless u. please I am really interested in losing belly fat, as i have found this very difficult to achieve. I am really looking forward to your post on belly fat. And if you don’t mind”oi would like to have your email address. thank you.

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 5, 2015 at 10:44 am - Reply

      you are welcome anytime. ronke at 9jafoodie.com

  22. Tee January 5, 2015 at 9:34 am - Reply

    Hi Ronke, very inspiring.
    I was on a wgt loss journey in 2014. Btw april till dec I lost 60lbs to ne the slimmest I have been since my teens. (I am 29 now)’ unfortunately I only changed my diet then,no exercise. Plus I stopped seeing my nutritionist thinking I could control things. By last nov, I had gained back ALL the weight plus an extra 19lbs. Heaviest I have ever been in my life.
    I started again with the nutritionist and started going to the gym.
    This morning however I found out I’m pregnant. I am so scared no cos I still want to keep losing weight. Do you think you could be of help?

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 5, 2015 at 10:43 am - Reply

      wow! professionals make all the difference. Please send me a direct message. Your Dr will let you know at your first prenatal appointment if you need to/ can lose weight.

  23. Tola January 5, 2015 at 3:43 am - Reply

    Great inspirational story! Eating healthy Naija food is definitely something I struggle with so it’s great to know there are people like you who have been through the same thing and blogging about it! Looking out to reading more about this and I will be in touch at some point too! 🙂

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 5, 2015 at 10:38 am - Reply

      Sounds great Tola.. I will definitely share more often

  24. Nneka January 5, 2015 at 3:34 am - Reply

    I am equally on a weight loss journey. ..your story has inspired me to push further
    I was weighing 78kg as at October 2014 but I decided to turn things around for my life and health because I was tired of being big and started watching what I eat and counting calories too and I have lost about 8kg at the moment.
    To me it’s an amazing thing because I didn’t know I could achieve it with no external coach.
    Please I am up for whatever advice and healthy meal plan to help too. I intend to stop when I reach my 62kg goal.

  25. Bashirah January 5, 2015 at 12:01 am - Reply

    Very very helpful. Staying tuned to every progress. I intend to follow suit. U look amazing darling

  26. Creamy Chomi January 4, 2015 at 10:52 pm - Reply

    Hello, wanna reduce am so big am even ashame of myself. Don’t go out anymore cos of my big size. Pls a need help.

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 5, 2015 at 10:36 am - Reply

      Start with some of our articles on weight loss. The one linked in the post provides great insight. You can also email me for more personalized help.

  27. Florence January 4, 2015 at 5:56 pm - Reply

    🙂 I remember those pictures.. see the colourful hairstyles we use to rock. Good jobs sis. Lots of people will benefit from the personalized meal plans and even better that it is with Naija food.

  28. amaka January 4, 2015 at 3:59 pm - Reply

    Hello,really love this post about weight lost,just put to birth and am really not happy about my weight gain..will email you so u can give Me details of the right help.

  29. Chic Therapy January 4, 2015 at 3:38 pm - Reply


  30. Chic Therapy January 4, 2015 at 3:38 pm - Reply

    Thanks for sharing.

  31. Jummy January 4, 2015 at 3:04 pm - Reply

    I am so excited about this. I need to watch my weight and would love to keep eating NIgerian food. Do you have a meal plan on what you eat weekly?

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 4, 2015 at 4:08 pm - Reply

      Hello Jummy,
      yes I do, unfortunately what worked for me will not necessarily work for you. If you are looking to have a personalized plan, send me an email.

  32. GO January 4, 2015 at 1:53 pm - Reply

    WOW! this is very refreshing to read, thanks for opening up to us naija foodie. It’s a great thing you are studying in this area, I find there are so many non professionals in Nigeria that are claiming to have the key to success. I will email you, I am willing to spend money on the right help, I just haven’t found one to trust.
    Please do a post on Juicing and smoothies, Is it a fad or does it really work?

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 4, 2015 at 4:09 pm - Reply

      I will look out for your email. I will do a post on Juicing soonest.

  33. blessing January 4, 2015 at 1:40 pm - Reply

    Yes I just giv birth and I gain 20kg. I don’t know what to do

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 4, 2015 at 4:10 pm - Reply

      How long ago did you have a baby? How was your weight prior to having a child? send me an email

  34. NG January 4, 2015 at 1:38 pm - Reply

    Ur story is really encouraging! Can’t wait for more weight loss tips and food! I’ll get there too.

    • 9jafoodie
      9jafoodie January 4, 2015 at 4:11 pm - Reply

      Happy you are encouraged by my story. Do check back for weekly tips.

      • Omon January 12, 2015 at 12:37 am - Reply

        Thanks so much,your post has proved very helpful, before I got pregnant I was a size 12, after putting to bed 5months now I’m bothering on 16.Please help kindly.

Join the discussion!

Join Our Newsletter Today!

Send this to a friend