The bride who died on the 500-calorie-a-day diet

Samantha Clowe lost three stone in 11 weeks

The controversial LighterLife diet is in the spotlight after 17st bride-to-be Samantha Clowe, 34, died after losing three stone in 11 weeks on the 500 calories-a-day programme in a desperate bid to slim for her wedding.

Her fiancé Andrew Smith returned to their Leeds home to find her collapsed and paramedics failed to revive her.

Home Office pathologist Alfredo Walker said a post-mortem examination failed to establish the cause of her death but added: ‘It may be related to her low-calorie diet and weight loss.’

A woman Samantha’s age needs 2,000 calories a day. The LighterLife plan uses food packs, including soups and shakes, and weekly counselling, costing participants £66 a week.

A LighterLife spokesman said: ‘Ours is a clinically monitored programme and has helped 150,000 people lose weight effectively and safely during the past 12 years.’

Dr Susan Jebb, from the Medical Research Council’s centre for human nutrition said: ‘Very low-calorie diets are a dramatic form of dieting. However, being very overweight is also a serious health risk. But these diets are unsuitable for someone who doesn’t need to lose a lot of weight. They’re not for everybody.’

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