MAPANG-HUSGA ang mga Pinoy,” actress Bing Loyzaga states the obvious, as she looks back on the times even complete strangers would make unkind comments about her weight. To her face.
Today the 45-year-old preens in a sleek blue dress that’s nicely showing off her curves following a 37-lb weight loss—the product of six months of consistent, committed treatments at Marie France.
“Our target is 140 lbs, or as low as I can. I’m at 148 now,” says the 5’5½” looker, best known for her contravida roles.
Five years ago, she took her parents into her marital home with singer-host Janno Gibbs and vowed to care for them. Her dad, basketball legend Caloy Loyzaga, had suffered a stroke and was also diagnosed with dementia.
Bing, 45, the youngest of the Loyzaga children, had started to gain weight, but she was too preoccupied with the care of her dad that she didn’t get herself checked until she had already ballooned—up to 185 lbs. at her heaviest. On top of hypertension, she was also diagnosed with hypothyroidism, a condition that slows down metabolism, thus the weight gain.
Soon enough, she started getting turned down for projects, even in one that she was already cast in. And even as industry insiders tried to phrase the rejection kindly, she knew it was because of her weight.
“At the supermarket, people would come up and say, ‘I used to watch you, but what happened to you?’ People I know would say, “Uy, Bing, kumusta? Taba natin ah.’ It’s our culture,” she adds wryly.
“It hurt the ego, but I saw what they saw,” she says. “Deep inside, I wanted to say, ‘You don’t know what I’m going through.’ But would I go and explain to everybody?”
Instead, she stayed away from social gatherings and avoided friends altogether.
He dad, who couldn’t talk because of the stroke, would make gestures to tease her about her size. (He passed away in January.)
“Parang Amazona, si Chubby Bing or Chub-Bing,” she recalls with a laugh. “I’d laugh, but deep inside I knew he was telling me the truth. When I looked at the mirror, the truth hurt. Kapabayaan ko.”
In November, she saw an ad for Marie France offering 50-percent-off on treatments and asked her manager if he could hook her up with the company. She only wanted a discount.
In her mid- to late-30s, she had undergone liposuction on her arms to get rid of her “batwings,” which she inherited from her mother’s side, and later on, her thighs, where she suspected the fat from her arms had transferred.
“It was instant, and it felt good. But underneath were the bruises, and I felt bad for myself. I felt bad that my daughters”—Alyssa, 25; and Gabby, 18—“had to see that, so I promised them I would never do it again. At 45, and with hypertension and hypothyroidism, I wanted to try something noninvasive. I didn’t want to take pills or anything dangerous.”
Loyzaga was so surprised that Marie France offered to sign her up for an endorsement deal she still tears up when she remembers that day. Her primary motivation, she says, was to get her healthy self back, and perhaps inspire others like her who have gained weight, or are suffering from an illness.
“The sickness isn’t an excuse,” she says. “You are not less because you’re fat, but who wants to live a shorter life? I still want to see my children’s children. I don’t deserve to be bullied. I’m doing it for me.”
When Marie France put up her billboard on Edsa, her husband posted a photo on his Instagram, expressing his pride for “My @bingloyzaga.” It thrills his wife no end “despite whatever has happened” in their marriage in the past.
“That means a lot to me,” she says, but giggles in mock shyness when asked what he tells her in private to compliment her new svelte figure.
“Na-girl ako bigla! He tells me a lot of things,” she says, giggling. “’Di na kami spring chicken for baby no. 3! And my girls are 25 and 18. Pag nangyari ’yun, papatayin na ako ng mga anak ko!”
To his credit, Gibbs never complained or criticized her for her weight gain, says Loyzaga. “He knew I was sick, so he’d say, maybe I should exercise or not stress myself so much.”
She has always instilled a positive body image on her girls, encouraging them to take up sports, “not because they needed to lose weight, but because they enjoyed them.”
Loyzaga, like her athletic family, was into sports like badminton and volleyball, but now has to content herself with brisk walking and swimming for cardio workout, as strenuous exercise isn’t allowed in her weight-loss program.
However, she says she hasn’t starved a day since she signed up with Marie France.
“They just didn’t help me machine-wise, but they taught me how to live life healthily,” she says of the diet program the nutritionists put her on. “Before I thought I was eating properly. I realized I was eating too few calories, which wasn’t good for my sickness.”
Her slimming program includes the FMS (Fat Mobilization System) Elite, the state-of-the-art version of the cold wet wraps of yore, minus the shivering. “Just imagine, nakahiga ka lang, payat ka na?” Loyzaga says with a laugh.
There’s also the Thermo Magnetic Pulse, which uses radio frequency to reduce fat, contour, tighten skin and smoothen cellulite.
Physique Inch-Loss, a 15-minute session of which is equivalent to the effect of 225 sit-ups, is also in the program to tone and strengthen the muscles in the abs, back and flanks.
The actress is also on VelaContour to reduce cellulite and redefine curves; Endermologie+ to remove stubborn fat and firm up sagging skin; and Vara Pulse Fat Reducer, which targets fat deep below the skin.
She goes to the Marie France clinic for her treatments three times a week, without fail. “If you’re determined, you get the results that you want,” she says.
“I’ll see after this launch if there are violent reactions [from bashers]! I don’t want to say anything to them. Eto na lang,” she says, raising her brows with a grin, her best mock contravida face.
Call Marie France at 8942639 or text/viber 0917-5262573 for a free consultation.