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Doctor Pronounces Slimmed-Down Christie 'Fit to Serve'

Image: Doctor Pronounces Slimmed-Down Christie 'Fit to Serve' New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie throws out the ceremonial first pitch before the start of the Little League World Series Championship game on Aug. 25 in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

By Andrea Billups   |   Sunday, 27 Oct 2013 07:38 AM

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's critics may attack him politically, but he is earning kudos from his cardiologist for his weight-loss progress, who noted in a report on his health this week that the politician was "fit to serve."

Christie, 51, revealed in February that he had undergone lap band surgery to assist him in losing weight after many questioned his fitness for future office, including his current re-election bid as governor and what seems to some supporters as a likely White House run in 2016.

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"I'm basically the healthiest fat guy you know," the outspoken Republican contended of his girth, which didn't seem to slow him down on the job. But he also said he knew his good luck with health, in spite of his size, would catch up with him, thus the drastic step of surgery.

So far, that remedy is working out for the Newark, N.J.-born father of four and former U.S. attorney.

On Friday, his physician, Dr. Rachana Kulkarni, praised his success in releasing an update on his medical history, noting he has been "losing weight steadily" since his operation, CBS News reported. His blood work was normal along with cardiovascular tests, the doctor's report concluded.

"He has no medical limitation and is fit to serve as the governor of the state of New Jersey," the glowing medical report said, offering support for him taking a "proactive role in his health" by maintaining a healthy diet and a four-times-weekly exercise plan, which includes an hour daily of both aerobic and resistant training, Politico.com reported.

No word on Christie's current weight, although photos suggest his progress is significant. He said in an appearance on "CBS Sunday Morning" in September that he was more than halfway to his goal.

Christie, who is seeking reelection to the governor's office in November and is widely rumored to be eyeing a presidential run in 2016, has publicly acknowledged his long struggle with obesity.

In February, he underwent a procedure known as lap-band surgery, which is designed to limit a patient's caloric intake by placing a rubber band around the stomach. It is considered a less dramatic alternative to gastric bypass surgery – a more invasive procedure that can permanently reduce the size of the stomach.

Through it all, the famously outspoken Christie has maintained a sense of humor about his struggle. In February, during an appearance on CBS' "The Late Show," the governor and host David Letterman traded fat jokes, with Christie memorably indulging in a jelly donut at one point during the interview.

"I'm basically the healthiest fat guy you've ever seen in your life," he said.

The next day, Christie was asked during a press conference about his girth and its potential to impact his job.

"I'm making the best effort I can, and sometimes I'm successful, and other times I'm not," he said. "I know people have concerns, but as I said to David last night on the show, so far, up to 50 years old, I've been remarkably healthy. And my doctor continues to warn me that my luck is going to run out relatively soon, so believe me it's something that I've very conscious of."

"I'm not going to be overly self-consumed about this," he added. "And nor should the people of the state be all that concerned about whether I can do my job."

Special: These 5 Things Flush 40 lbs. of Fat Out of Your Body.

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