Al Roker Weight Loss: From Gastric Bypass Surgery to a Renewed Commitment to Wellness!!

Al Roker Weight Loss: Al Roker has faced many health challenges in his life. The 69-year-old Today Show host has dealt with weight struggles, had multiple surgeries, and been to the hospital several times.

It all started when he was a kid and saw a movie that made him worried about his weight. This led to binge eating and eventually getting weight loss surgery. He had surgeries on his knee, rotator cuff, hip, and shoulder. In 2020, he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. 

Recently, in November 2022, he was hospitalized for a problem with blood clots, and he talked about his recovery a year later. Let’s take a closer look at the timeline of Al Roker’s health.

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Al Roker, who got married to Deborah Roberts in 1995, had a tough time with his weight as he got older. At one point, he weighed 340 pounds. In 2002, after talking with his dad, he decided to have weight loss surgery.

“After my father was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2001, he was at Memorial Sloan-Kettering, and I would go in every day. We’d talk and joke, and then one day he got serious and said, ‘Look, we both know I’m not going to be here to help you with my grandkids, so you gotta promise you’re ­going to lose weight.’ Seven days later he was gone. A few weeks afterward, [Deborah and I] found out we were pregnant with our son Nicky. I said, ‘OK, I’m going to have to do something.'”

He had the surgery and lost 100 pounds in eight months. However, five years later, during a family crisis, he gained back a lot of the weight.

“My mom got really sick, and unlike my dad, who was gone before we knew it, her illness dragged on for months. I was out of my routine, commuting to see her, and feeling guilty — ­either that I wasn’t spending enough time with the kids and Deborah, or that I wasn’t being there enough with my mom. It was this perfect storm, and I consoled myself with food. I got blindsided and, I think, to a ­certain extent, I got cocky. It’s like an alcoholic who’s been sober for 10 years and has a drink and says, ‘Ah, but I can handle it. Just one or two, I’ll be OK.’ But no, you won’t.”

In 2007, when Al Roker’s mother passed away, he had gained back 40 pounds and started following old habits again.

“Despite having a loving wife, three terrific children, and a great career, there were times when I perhaps didn’t feel that I was good enough. If I was having a bad day, eating was like self-­medicating. But if you abuse food, you still have to use that substance that you abuse every day. You have to learn to use it responsibly.” 

Al Roker talked about how his weight was like a problem affecting his marriage, like a cloud hanging over it.

“Deborah is very healthy, exercises, and eats well. For all the right reasons, she wants her significant other to be in terrific shape, too, and I was ­thwarting her at every move. She was frustrated.” 

In 2008, Al Roker met a friend who had lost weight, and that inspired him to make a change in himself.

“I decided to meet with his nutritionist, and I think it was fate that she crossed my path at the exact moment that I was ready to hear what she had to say. For the first time, I realized that I had to change not only the quantity but the quality of the food that I was eating. Even more ­importantly, exercise has finally become a big part of my life.”

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al roker weight loss

On January 19, Al Roker talked to Start Today members on Facebook Live. He answered questions and talked about what helped him with exercise, recovering from surgery, and eating healthy meals.

Last year, Al Roker had to go to the hospital because of blood clots in his legs and lungs. He also had his gallbladder removed, and he mentioned this on Facebook Live. 

Al Roker shared that his regular walking routine and being generally fit helped protect him from more serious problems.

“My doctor said the physical condition I was in because of the walking — because of the cardio — that probably helped save my life. Whatever you do to start moving, to start getting up and doing stuff —it doesn’t matter how much or how little as long as you’re doing something — that makes a big difference.”

Al mentioned that during his recovery, he received some surprising health advice.

“I’ve heard something that I’ve never heard in my adult life, which was ‘Oh you’ve got to gain weight.’ Because of my blood work, my doctors said you need more protein. I went from 190 pounds to 155 pounds.”

It’s normal to lose weight after being sick for a long time, and Al mentioned that he’s gradually putting some weight back on.

“It’s been a struggle, but I’m up to 165 pounds, which I’ve never been. I don’t know if I was this in middle school, but I feel good and as I get stronger, I feel better.”

Al shared that he has to be careful about the kinds of balanced meals he eats now, especially after his gallbladder was removed.

“(My doctors) want me eating more protein. They had to remove my gallbladder. I’m somewhat limiting fat but I’m trying to do good fats. Last night for dinner, we had salmon, quinoa, roasted Brussels sprouts, and salad. And at night, I had a scoop of ice cream. As opposed to eating the entire pint, I just had a scoop.”

He mentioned that he cooks meals for himself and his wife, Deborah Roberts, but he jokes that she doesn’t always like what he makes.

“She doesn’t like food. I make food and she’s like ‘Why did you put that stuff on it?’ Oh, you mean spices.”