CHICAGO MAGAZINE JUNE 2014
SAVED HIS OWN LIFE
The product of a food-loving Italian-Polish family, Michael Lachowicz weighed 320 pounds when he entered culinary school at 17. Though he succeeded in losing more than 100 pounds in 2002 on the portion-controlled, no-trans-fat Seattle Sutton diet, by the time he opened his namesake restaurant in 2005, he had boomeranged all the way up to 345 pounds. A year later, he topped 400.
“People think, You’re a chef, it must be tough to be around all of this good food,” he says. “For me, it wasn’t foie gras and lobster. It was McDonald’s and Pizza Hut. A typical meal would be three loaded hot dogs, a couple cheeseburgers, two large orders of fries, and a few pizza puffs or tamales, all followed by copious amounts of sweets. It was twisted, sick, and clearly unhealthy. But I didn’t care.”