Chef Rocco DiSpirito Trades Celebrity for Weight Loss Crusade

He shot to fame with his carb-filled Italian-American cuisine and his countless cooking reality shows. Now 12 books later, Celebrity Chef Rocco DiSpirito is on a mission to end obesity.

“The mission of my brand is to reverse obesity in America. The problem with food in America is that delicious and healthy don’t co-exist. But now I have figured out a way to make them not virtually exclusive,” DiSpirito tells

In his new book, “The Negative Calorie Diet,” DiSpirito gives readers his top 10 "negative calorie" foods that will help you shed weight and ditch the medications.

“This book is different because it’s a diet book. I figured out a way to eat without counting calories. No points, no grams of fat. All that nonsense is gone,” he says. “Try getting fat eating broccoli. I challenge you. Put as much butter as you want on it too.”

His miracle foods include almonds, apples, berries, celery, citrus fruits, cruciferous vegetables (such as cauliflower and Brussels sprouts), cucumbers, leafy greens, mushrooms and nightshade vegetables.

And the proof, he says, is all in how he looks and feels.

“I’m going to be fifty years old in nine months and I never felt as good as I do now. I’ve also never been in better shape. I literally feel like there is nothing that I couldn’t take on and do.”

Fifteen years ago, the reality cooking star thought he would be chained to a stove, tasting wine every night and continuing his life at a “butteroholic.”

“Try getting fat eating broccoli. I challenge you. Put as much butter as you want on it too.”

- Celebrity Chef Rocco DiSpirito

“I never guessed this was going to happen to me, you know the whole getting healthy thing, but the thing about me is that I’m willing to follow the path life takes me on,” he adds.

DiSpirito says the biggest problem today in the food industry is that no one is interested in producing healthy foods that are affordable.

“It’s like switching from fossil fuels to a renewable energy source, they don’t want to do it because it costs money and it’s going to reduce profits. None of the companies want to do that,” he says. “Eventually someone is going to say we have to switch and that is what is happening with food.”

The biggest hurdle for him is that people think it’s “expensive” to eat healthy. “It really bugs me. A head of lettuce is less expensive than a package of hot pockets.”

And his advice for someone who is looking to make a change is simple:

“Step one is to make the conscious decision. You are valuable enough. You have worth.”

His worth, he says, was to learn how to cook to help change lives.

“I know how to cook, so I can cook healthy and teach other people how to cook healthy. I believe that is why I learned how to cook; not so I could run a fancy restaurant and have three stars and walk around the dining room,” he adds. “Now I get to do the same thing but extend their [people's] lives.”