Billy Gardell Weight Loss Surgery: Losing 130 Lbs.

Billy gardell weight loss surgery: Image on the left was when Billy was obese. The one on the right is after his weight loss.

The story behind the Billy Gardell weight loss surgery unveiled.

To lose weight is probably one of the first things people want, but it’s also one of the hardest things to do. It’s challenging to start a weight loss journey; much less follow through with it. Eating junk food and other unhealthy eating habits are almost irresistible, which can lead to problems with blood glucose levels and other health issues.

For actor Billy Gardell, he had to have bad blood numbers, obesity-related illnesses, and worsening diabetes before realizing that he had to do something with his weight gain and health, stat!

“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,” the Bob Hearts Abishola star said during an interview with Entertainment Tonight’s Kevin Frazier.

Fast forward to today, Billy Gardell has lost 130 lbs and is loving his impressive weight loss journey and transformation. Did that pique your interest? Read on and learn about this one-of-a-kind weight loss journey.

Who is Billy Gardell?

Billy Gardell is an American actor and standup comedian who stars as Mike Biggs in Mike and Molly, a CBS sitcom. During one of his open-mic stints, he was discovered by Dennis Miller and cast alongside Billy Bob Thornton in Bad Santa.

The celebrity also appeared in various films, including Avenging Angelo, You, Me and Dupree, and Dragon Wars: D-War.

The Billy Gardell Weight Loss Surgery Journey

Billy gardell weight loss surgery: Man and woman in one photo. The woman holding on to the man's arm

Billy Gardell said on ET Online, “If you grew up like I did, you grow up in a house where it’s like, ‘We had a bad day, let’s eat! We had a good day? Let’s eat!’ So I had to learn that food is fuel and it’s not comfort and it’s not celebration. And I work on that daily. If you don’t have a problem with food, thank whatever god you pray to and be grateful you don’t, because it is it’s 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.”

This statement by the actor gives you a picture of how he gained so much weight through the years, reaching his peak at 370 lbs. 

Then, he was diagnosed with diabetes, which prompted Billy Gardell to take his body and health more seriously. He worked with a personal fitness trainer and a team of health experts that CBS reportedly hired for him.

They did a lot of work to help Billy get into shape, eliminating unhealthy foods and unhealthy food habits from his diet. With his strict diet, Billy Gardell’s weight loss was evident as he shed around 30 pounds. However, COVID hit.

“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.”

Because he didn’t want to be at risk for COVID-19, he opted for a bariatric weight loss surgery; thus, the Billy Gardell weight loss surgery happened in July.

What is the Bariatric Weight Loss Surgery?

Billy Gardell’s reason for going under the knife is above all to lose weight fast because of how dangerous contracting COVID-19 was for him.

“I want to be clear — [getting surgery] was a very personal choice. I’m not telling anybody to do it. 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.”

But what is bariatric weight loss surgery? According to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, bariatric surgery is a weight loss surgery that helps treat obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, and sleep apnea.

The Archbold Medical Center describes it as surgically reducing the stomach size or rerouting one’s small intestines to decrease the stomach’s ability to take in food. Limiting the number of calories your body can absorb gives you a higher chance of losing weight.

There are two types of this surgery according to Archbold Medical Center – roux-en-y gastric bypass and gastric sleeve resection. Roux-en-y gastric bypass creates a small pouch in the stomach by dividing the top part as well as the small intestine 40 inches from the stomach. It connects the lower end to the pouch in the stomach to drain it. How much weight can you lose from this? The roux-en-y procedure gives about 75% excess body weight loss.

The sleeve gastric resection, on the other hand, makes the same stomach pouch using a staple line, creating also a small stomach tube. This is an irreversible procedure and achieves a 60% excess body weight loss.

Though Billy Gardell already started losing weight, Billy believed his best option for faster weight loss and staying healthy was to get a weight loss surgery. Specifically, he used the roux-en-y gastric bypass.

The Billy Gardell Post-Surgery Diet Plan

Billy gardell weight loss surgery: A table with veggies surrounding a plate of healthy food.

So, did Billy Gardell rely solely on weight loss surgery? No, he did not. Billy had to discipline himself with his diet plan and workout routine after surgery.

For many years, the actor lived in an environment where eating was a way to cope with a bad day while also being a reward for a good day. Over time, eating became a serious addiction that resulted in his obesity, wherein he weighed 370 lbs at his peak.

“If you don’t have a problem with food, thank whatever god you pray to and be grateful you don’t, because it is it’s 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,” the actor said.

  1. He gave up unhealthy eating habits.

‘Bob Hearts Abishola’ loved eating junk food and found it difficult to give up these unhealthy food habits at the start. However, he did his best to control the desire to eat the kind of food he loves.

  1. He ate right.

After eliminating these unhealthy and empty calories, Billy Gardell packed on vegetables, lean meat, and healthy carbohydrates. And yes, he had rice too! The International Rice Research Institute says that rice is a good source of niacin, thymine, phosphorus, zinc, magnesium, and potassium.

However, he made it a point to avoid rice and white bread at dinner as these caused a spike in his blood glucose levels. High consumption of rice is associated with increased diabetes risk, so eat it in moderation.

Billy Gardell also cut out soda from his diet, as well as pizza and barbecue.

These are very basic changes, but they have made such a strong impact on the actor’s weight loss. He says that the little victories excite him, such as “shopping at a normal store” and not having to take a deep breath when tying his shoes.

  1. He hired a nutritionist and a life coach.

Having a professional nutritionist on hand greatly helped Billy Gardell’s weight loss, as he received guidance from him on the right food to eat. Also, since Billy said in the ET Online interview that it was the mental aspect of losing weight he was struggling with, he hired a life coach who helped him clarify his goals and identify the obstacles to these goals. This greatly helped clear his mind.

The Billy Gardell Post-Surgery Workout Routine

Billy gardell weight loss surgery: The legs of a runner getting ready

Every diet plan or method should be complemented by a workout routine, especially after surgery. And Billy Gardell knew the importance of working out and keeping active. As mentioned, he hired a personal fitness trainer to help him do the right exercise.

The actor started by taking walks and eventually started doing workouts. To boost his metabolism, Billy incorporated weightlifting and resistance training, which also helped him build muscles.

Not only that, but he also did other exercises like cycling, pilates, yoga, interval training, weight training, and swimming. 

The Billy Gardell Supplements

Bariatric surgery patients need to take supplements to ensure they’re getting the right amount of nutrients they need. The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center names these supplements, including Vitamin D, Iron and Vitamin C, complete multivitamins, Vitamin B12, and Calcium and Vitamin D. 

It’s important for such patients to talk to their bariatric surgeon who will recommend the medications that suit their individual needs. 

The Johns Hopkins Medical Center says bariatric patients need to take these vitamins and supplements for a lifetime, starting with chewable and liquid forms during the first three to six months from the procedure. 

Has Billy Gardell Maintained His Weight?

Billy gardell weight loss surgery: Billy Gardell standing in a suit for a pictorial

Given the small victories Billy Gardell has mentioned, he has definitely maintained his weight.

“You have a small window to change the way you live, the way you eat, the way you exercise, and so far I’ve been able to do that. 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,” said Billy.

Billy Gardell Weight Loss Surgery: Before and After

Billy gardell weight loss surgery: Two different images of Bob-Gardell side by side comparing his physique

When Billy Gardell was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, he was 370 lbs. After the initial weight loss of 30 lbs, he underwent bariatric weight loss surgery and went down to 212 lbs.

“I’m fighting middleweight these days, I’m down to 212! [It’s been] a long journey,” said the actor.

Look at how he looked before and how fit he is today.

Key Takeaways:

Billy Gardell’s weight loss journey is one where you can pick a lot of lessons.

First of all, never neglect your health. When you don’t know how to control your eating habits, it will all boil down to your health. Eliminate unhealthy foods and high calorie foods and opt for nutritious ones to lessen the risk of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and certain cancers.

Second of all, it’s possible to lose weight by adopting healthy eating habits and eating healthier foods. Like Billy Gardell, he started by changing his lifestyle and giving up unhealthy habits. He even hired a personal fitness trainer and a nutritionist to assist him with his diet plan.

Third of all, it’s okay to undergo weight loss surgery if you feel comfortable, safe, and happy with it. Just make sure to consult a medical professional.

Last, of all, moderation is key to everything. If there’s something you want to eat, don’t deprive yourself. Just eat moderately, and you’ll be fine.


Want to know more about Billy Gardell’s weight loss and other details, read these frequently asked questions.

How did Billy Gardell lose so much weight so fast?

He was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and decided to take better care of himself. After losing an initial 30 lbs, the pandemic hit. So, after the restrictions were lifted, he opted to undergo weight loss surgery.

Does Billy Gardell have diabetes?

Yes, Billy Gardell was diagnosed with diabetes. He went on medication for it for a year.

What type of bariatric surgery did Billy undergo?

He had the roux-en-y gastric bypass.

Can diabetics build muscles?

Certainly. Weight-bearing exercise can build strong muscles and bones.


Billy Gardell is an example of a celebrity who has had bad health habits and experienced the results of such habits. Yet, he was determined to correct his ways and take better care of himself. He opted to have surgery because he felt it was the fastest way to lose weight and keep his risk of developing COVID-19 low.

Asked if he recommends it to everyone, he says this was a personal choice. According to him, he felt this was what he needed to do.

It’s never too late to do something for yourself. If you feel like you want to copy the Billy Gardell weight loss surgery, go ahead and weigh the pros and cons and consult a medical professional.

Learn about other interesting weight loss stories from your favorite stars with us.


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