Is Randy Jackson sick? The reason behind his extreme weight loss explained

Randy Jackson

Ever since the third season of FOX’s Name That Tune: Celebrity Edition aired on January 11, 2023, bandleader Randy Jackson has made headlines for his frail frame. The musician appeared to have lost a significant amount of weight which unsettled the viewers.

Although some rightfully expressed concerns for his health, the vast loud majority were not so kind and made deriding comments about his appearance online. It is no secret that Jackson’s fluctuating weight is a result of his struggle with type 2 diabetes. Besides, his rapid weight loss in the past is well-documented during his time on American Idol.

Randy Jackson had gastric bypass surgery to treat his type 2 diabetes – He lost more than 100 pounds

Randy Jackson, who was 46 years old and weighed 350 pounds at the time, was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 2002. Since a risk factor that could further exacerbate the disease was being overweight, he decided to prioritize his health and lose some pounds.

During his weight loss journey, he tried numerous diets and medications. However, none of the methods had a long-term effect, and he eventually resorted to surgical means.

“Diets, liquid fasts, weight-loss medications, you name it, and none of them ever worked for long. But when I wound up in the hospital, I had to face up to why all those methods failed. The problem is that those diets don’t work for people who have the disease of obesity,” Jackson explained.

In the following year, Jackson underwent gastric bypass surgery, an operation that changes or shrinks the size of the stomach and rearranges the digestive system to reduce food intake and absorption. While it is commonly known as weight-loss surgery, gastric bypass is also used to treat patients with type 2 diabetes.

He lost 114 pounds after the 2003 surgery and has since maintained a steady low weight to offset potential health issues, such as heart and kidney diseases, that come with his diagnosis.

“I realized a lot of things that can happen if you don’t manage [type 2 diabetes], which is why I encourage everyone to do so,” he said.

Jackson recounted his health issues and weight transformation in his 2009 book Body with Soul. In 2019, he founded the dietary supplement company Unify Health Labs to help others in their efforts to become healthy.