Weighing 518 pounds and being six-feet, four-inches tall, is no easy walk in the park. So Milan Ross decided change that. And he did it with just a plant- based, vegan diet and constant exercise—no surgeries.
If you knew Ross three years ago, you would've met someone who was hopeless about their health. Fast forward to now, he is the definition of hope and dedication.
"I had went from a 60-inch waist to a 40," said Ross in tears.
He's now shopping at stores that carry sizes he never envisioned himself to ever fitting in.
"Now that might not seem like a big deal if you shop at Old Navy and all these others stores all the time, but coming from where I was, that was like climbing a mountain," Ross said.
In 2013, Ross decided to take his weight by the reigns after a heartfelt incident occurred with his then seven-year-old son while on a trip to Universal Studios in Florida. The only request his son asked repeatedly was that Ross ride the Harry Potter ride with him.
Ross said a person who weighs 518 pounds doesn’t look forward to riding roller coasters, but he promised his son he would.
Within seconds of getting in the line, Ross knew he wasn't going to fit in the seat.
"It was his seventh birthday and I promised I was going to ride, in that moment I decided I was going to change me," said Ross in tears. Ross became determined to lose weight in that moment.
The answer fell on his lap. Ross worked for Whole Foods Market at the time and decided to join a week long immersion program which the company offered to their employees.
The program focused on a plant-based diet and basically, helped their employees find healthier food options.
"At immersion, I promised myself that if I saw anything that worked I would stick to it,” Ross said.
After one week in the program, Ross saw change.
“I dropped 33 pounds and lost six inches off my waist," he said.
Ross stuck to his promise and continued the practices from the immersion program. Within three months, he had lost a total of 70 pounds.
"I went from the blood pressure meds, high cholesterol meds, and the pain meds for the diabetic neuropathy -- 15 and a half years of taking this stuff -- to nothing," Ross said.
His weight loss didn't stop there. Ross would walk on the treadmill for 15-30 minutes every day. Six months later, Ross was now down a total of 107 pounds. He said he could barely recognize himself after losing all that weight.
He decided to share his story with whoever he could to provide hope.
It has been four years now since Ross changed his health lifestyle and he has lost over 240 pounds and more than 30 inches off his waistline.
He now weighs 200 pounds.
"The cool part about being plant-based is you don't have to deprive yourself of anything,” Ross said. “I eat all the time. In fact, constantly, but it's what I am eating.”
Ross looks and lives a completely different life now. He has even written a book titled “The Change. “
Ross is a gifted speaker and gives talks at various health retreats. Additionally, he has recently launched a brand-new vegan food line called "Full Flavor Vegan."
Ross mentions how a lot of people don't understand what it's like to be obese -- the emotional and physical aspect of it all.
"Change is a verb, but you supply the action," Ross said about how important it is to motivate yourself.
Now, Ross lives in Phoenix and is working with the executive producer of television show “The Biggest Loser” to create a series of how people can get back on track in their lives.