After losing 450 lbs., Sal Paradiso’s excess skin feels like an “anchor.”
The 36-year-old found himself weighing 688 lbs. after the heartbreak of his father’s sudden death, when he turned to food for comfort. He eventually realized that the best way to honor his father’s legacy was to lose weight — but now that he has, he still can’t live the life he wants.
“Ever since my dad passed away, I’ve had to step up and help my family. And right now, the skin is getting in the way of that,” Paradiso says in this exclusive clip from Wednesday’s episode of Skin Tight.
Paradiso takes care of his 7-month-old nephew, but he worries that his excess skin limits his abilities as a babysitter.
“As my nephew continues to get older, he’s going to start walking and eventually start running, and I need to be able to keep up with him, to be able to make sure that the skin is not an impediment to making sure that he’s safe,” he says.
Plus, being around his nephew drives home how much Paradiso wants to find a partner and have a family, something he feels unable to do with his excess skin.
“I think having my nephew now in my life, day to day, definitely reinforces the fact to me that I’d like to have kids someday,” he says.
“Sal has always wanted a family, but I think all the excess skin has prevented him from just being out there and making himself vulnerable to someone,” his brother, Vito, says. “I think removing the skin would help him tremendously.”
Along with holding him back socially, Paradiso says his skin causes medical problems.
“The skin in my abdominal area is an 80-lb. anchor holding me down, and it makes it very difficult to keep it dry and clean to stop infections and irritation from occurring,” he explains. “But unfortunately sometimes it requires medical intervention where I have to go get steroids. I have to stop my exercise routine to let my skin heal itself and calm itself down. So that just slows my progress.”
After working hard to lose the weight, Paradiso feels like he’s owed a chance to be fully happy.
“I’ve worked so hard to get here; I think I deserve to be fulfilled or happy in that sense, and in order for me to take the next step in my life, I need the excess skin removed,” he says.