Actor Billy Gardell recently shed light on his weight loss journey as well as how he has been able to keep it in check. The actor is known for his roles on shows like “Yes, Dear,” “Bob Hearts Abishola,” “My Name is Earl,” and “Mike & Molly.”
During a recent interview, the actor revealed that he was diagnosed with a major health issue before making moves to get healthy. Gardell started by undergoing weight loss surgery and then changed his lifestyle in order to maintain his body after the procedure.
Read on to learn more.
Billy Gardell Was Diagnosed With Type 2 Diabetes
While talking to Entertainment Tonight‘s host Kevin Frazier in an interview, Gardell reflected on his journey to get healthy and how his significant weight loss was a by-product of his attempt. The 53-year-old revealed that during the pandemic period, he ensured that he changed his mindset and put in an effort to stay safe while taking off as many pounds as he could.
The comedian said, “I’m fighting middleweight these days; I’m down to 212! [It’s been] a long journey.” Almost ten years ago, Gardell weighed more than 370 pounds so getting to his current weight is no small feat.
He revealed that his lifestyle changed after he was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. “At first, I developed Type 2 diabetes, and then I went on a medication for that for about a year and start taking care of myself better,” Gardell said. “I lost about 30 pounds. But then COVID hit. and when they punched up all the markings that made you ‘at risk,’ I had all of them except ‘over 65.’ I had a full bingo card.”
Billy Gardell Underwent Surgery
Not all Gardell’s astonishing weight loss is due to the actor’s lifestyle change. The 53-year-old revealed that after he decided to live differently in order to reduce his chances of contracting COVID-19, he turned to surgery. The actor said he had “bariatric weight loss surgery last July.”
After the surgery, Gardell ensured that he stayed the same by “changing everything I did.” He explained that he wasn’t necessarily encouraging anyone to go under the knife and that it was his personal choice. “For me, that’s what I needed to do, but it’s just a tool. The real battle is still in [the mind] because people get this big again.”
Gardell added that after undergoing weight loss surgery, most people had a “small window” that they could use to change their lives for the better, which he has been able to do so far. He added, “I do it a day at a time, and I’m just so, so very grateful that that happened for me. No more diabetes, no more bad blood numbers.”
Billy Gardell Said He Thought Of Food As Fuel
Further on in the ET interview, Gardell shed some light on being environmentally conditioned to turn to food and how now, the mental side of weight loss was the most tasking. The actor recalled his childhood, explaining that he was raised in a home where food was used for celebration and comfort.
To help himself, Gardell revealed that he began to think of food as “fuel” and continued working on that day after day. “If you don’t have a problem with food, thank whatever god you pray to and be grateful you don’t,” the 53-year-old said. “Because it is a serious addiction, just like anything else. But I find my way. I do my thing and in the morning, and I try to stay between the lines, and I’m grateful I get to.”
Gardell revealed that he felt particularly happy when he could do minor things that he previously had difficulty doing. These include buying clothing items at a regular store and lacing up his shoes without having to “take a deep breath.” The 53-year-old said he felt better overall and wanted to “stay around and annoy my wife for another 20 years.”
‘Bob Hearts Abishola’ Has Been A Gift To Him
During the interview, Gardell also talked about his current series, “Bob Hearts Abishola,” where he plays Bob Wheeler. The CBS sitcom is currently in season four, and the actor revealed he was grateful to be a part of the cast.
Gardell described the sitcom as a “gift” and admitted that he thought his most famous show would be “Mike & Molly,” so this was a welcome surprise.
“It’s such a gift. I thought my ticket was stamped after Mike & Molly,” the 53-year-old said. “I had no idea I was gonna get another ride with another wonderful cast and a show that I think has a beautiful sentiment about it. I’m always attracted to stuff where love conquers all, no matter what the situation is.”