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Medford actor, a comic, loses weight to avoid ‘fat guy’ roles

Mike Dillon, 64, of Medford, is pictured in

Mike Dillon, 64, of Medford, is pictured in June 2009, when he weighed about 284 pounds, and in a more recent photo, showing off his 114 pound weight loss. Credit: Dillon Family / J. Conrad Williams Jr.

Mike Dillon

65, Medford

Occupation Comedy show producer, comic, actor

Height 5-foot-9

Before 284 June 2004

Current 167 July 2016

His story

Mike Dillon is seemingly on a one-man crusade with an important message: “Take care of your health now. Don’t think you can address health issues on your own or when life calms down. Once you damage your body, it may be irreparable.”

Dillon, a sweets lover, says the only vice he ever had was food.

“When I needed something, I went to food figuring it was the least harmful. It’s not true,” he says.

Dillon was diagnosed with diabetes about 15 years ago and was prescribed medication. He admits he was in denial for 12 years and took the medication “haphazardly.”

Attending an acting class in Manhattan in 2005 and weighing nearly 285 pounds, he was insulted when only the “fat guy” roles came his way. Not wanting to be typecast, he drastically changed his eating habits, resumed playing tennis (something he had excelled in years earlier), and started walking/running 5 miles a day on the Sunken Meadow boardwalk. He shed more than 100 pounds.

In 2014, while maintaining his weight and staying active, diabetes caught up with him when a minuscule cut on a toe started a chain reaction that led to the eventual amputation of five toes on his left foot and his right leg below the knee.

“Don’t think when you hit a certain age you can lose weight and everything will be fine. It’s not the case,” says Dillon.

He’s under the care of several doctors including an endocrinologist for his diabetes.

His diet

Dillon avoids carbohydrates and limits dairy. He has scrambled eggs and black coffee for breakfast and a protein shake for lunch. He snacks on almonds and cashews during the day. Dinner is whatever his wife cooks, usually chicken or beef with vegetables.

His exercise

None currently.

His advice

“Be gentle to your friends and family because it’s hard on them as well. ”