How do people usually lose weight? Cutting out on all the junk food, and with tons of exercise, right? Well, a chef in New York decided to eat pizza to lose weight, and sure enough, he did it!
Pasquale Cozzolino from Italy gained almost 100lbs after he moved from his hometown to New York to work as a chef in 2011. He had been snacking a lot to deal with the stress of familiarizing himself with the city’s restaurant.
Cozzolino, who is now an executive chef at East Village’s Ribalta pizzeria, told the New York Post how he snacked in the past: “I’d eat 10 or 12 [Oreos]. One time I even ate the whole box. It was like a drug for me.”
In addition, he also drank two or three cans of soda a day. With all of this, his weight increased from 254lbs to 270lbs.
His folks couldn’t recognize him when he went back to Italy on a visit. He was also having some health issues. “I had knee problems, back problems, three ulcers in the stomach,” he said. He used to find walking to the park with his toddler son a challenging task.
But he didn’t go on a diet until he visited his family doctor in 2015. She said to him, “You need to lose weight or you will have a heart attack.”
So, he stopped taking sweets and soda, and reduced his daily portions by half. He took on a Mediterranean diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables, and had a pizza for almost every lunch.
Compared to the New York pizza, the Neapolitan-style pizza that he ate, is made from water, flour, salt and yeast, and includes toppings like fresh tomato sauce, basil and a thin layer of mozzarella cheese.
“It lets you feel satisfied, and because it’s only 540 to 570 calories, it’s a perfect and fast solution for a lunch or dinner. It helps you to stay away from junk food. When you eat a pizza, you don’t need anything else.” he said. He also took on kickboxing classes two to three times a week.
He was very glad to have lost weight. “I’m ecstatic. I changed my face. I have much more energy. My digestion is beautiful. I don’t have any more ulcers. My back and knees don’t hurt anymore,” he said.
When his customers saw the changes in him, it motivated him even more. “They tell me, ‘You look great, you look fantastic’—that motivates you even more. I’m very happy if my experience can help someone to have a better life,” he said.
After his experience in dieting on pizza, Cozzolino wrote a book titled, “The Pizza Diet,” to share his tips on dieting.
Photo credit: Instagram | chefcozzolino.