Graham Elliot never created any doubt about his love of food, especially his own creations. The celebrity TV chef topped out at almost 400 pounds at his peak weight. But you wouldn’t know it now. He’s lost a stunning 154 pounds.
His excess weight left him with sleep apnea, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, Now he’s completing marathons.
Here’s how he did it.
The first step in his journey came in 2014, He underwent a “duodenal switch,” a surgical procedure that involves a gastric sleeve to restrict his stomach to about the size of a banana, without restricting digestion. (See video below)
The procedure involves the following, according to the Columbia University Center for Metabolic and Weight Loss and Surgery:
With this procedure, the surgeon removes approximately 60-70 percent of the stomach so that the stomach takes the shape of a tube (sleeve gastrectomy). The lower intestine is then divided much further downstream than with gastric bypass so that two thirds or more of the intestine is bypassed, leaving only a few feet of intestine where food and digestive enzymes meet.
He also began a regular exercise regimen.
Then, the 41-year-old veteran of such shows as “Iron Chef” and “Top Chef Masters” said he made some “easy changes” in his diet.
He reduced portion sizes and cut out sugary soft drinks, cookies and other sweets. But that was only half the battle. After losing the weight he wanted to make sure he kept it off.
”I now look at food as fuel and focus on my protein intake,” he told London’s Daily Mail.
“I’m in love with ‘pure’ flavors, things that are natural and delicious, minimally fussed with, that showcase the season. I combine that with portion control,” he explained.
The core of his diet now is lean protein, fruits and vegetables.
A typical dinner might include chicken, or salmon with salad or vegetables. He’s sworn off all bread, pasta, sugary soft drinks and beer.
Before his diet, Graham’s comfort food was cookies and other sweets. Now he satisfies those cravings with fruit and cottage cheese, or apple slices with peanut butter.
“Now I know my stomach is the size of a banana and I need to have food that just gives me energy,” he told People.
“So I can either have a moment of sweetness but feel really bad, or I can order something delicious and light like sashimi.”