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Mercer judge enjoys anonymity after weight loss

Bluefield Daily Telegraph photo Mercer Circuit Judge Omar Aboulhosn
Bluefield Daily Telegraph photo
Mercer Circuit Judge Omar Aboulhosn

PRINCETON, W.Va. — Unlike some other people, Omar Aboulhosn likes it when people fail to recognize him. Friends and acquaintances are seeing the positive change in his life.

“It’s kind of like being anonymous all of a sudden,” Judge Omar Aboulhosn remarked. At one point in his life, he weighed 296 and a half pounds, but now he is 122 pounds lighter. For much of his life, he has been overweight.

“I struggled with it since middle school, I think,” Aboulhosn recalled. When his junior high school burned down, his eighth grade class went to Straley Elementary School in Princeton. That put him and other students within range of a bakery that was popular place to get lunch.

“And that was back in the days of an open campus, and you could go down to Lloyd’s Pastry in Princeton. For two dollars you could get chocolate-covered doughnuts, pepperoni rolls and a soft drink. They were fantastic, but after the chocolate-covered doughnuts, that’s a lot of calories, and you don’t get any exercise besides running down there to be the first in line. That’s where it started – bad nutrition.”

Aboulhosn and his wife, Weena, decided two years ago to address their weight problems. They started participating in a weight management program promoted by their insurance company.

“While we were doing that, we met someone who had had gastric surgery, and she told us about this doctor in Huntington, so we went to Huntington for a seminar in July of 2013,” he recalled.

What they didn’t realize was in order for their insurance company to pay for the surgery, they had to participate in a weight management program for 12 months.

“When we went to our first appointment in September 2013, we found out that we were 10 months towards our 12-month goal,” Aboulhosn said. “We thought we were going to have to wait another year. Once we completed our weight management aspect of it, my surgery was scheduled for Jan. 22, 2014. When I started the weight management program, I weighed 296 and a half pounds. Now I’ve lost 122 pounds.”

The procedure the Aboulhosns used to help lose weight is called gastric sleeve surgery.

“It’s all laparoscopically done,” he said, pointing to his abdomen. “I had six little tiny holes. It takes eight weeks after the surgery before you can start eating regular food again. Essentially, what they do is remove 85 percent of your stomach. Your stomach holds 60 cc (cubic centimeters) of food and liquid.”

This change in his stomach’s capacity has altered his eating habits. Now he simply doesn’t feel hungry.

“I kind of graze through the day now, just eat a little bit here, a little bit there…

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