Love can be a great motivator. For Daniel Kablutsiak, the love for his son was the push he needed to lose a staggering 79 pounds. The stakes for his weight loss were high; if Kablutsiak could lose the extra pounds, he’d have the chance to give his son a more normal teenage life.
Slimming down meant that the father would be able to be an organ donor for 16-year-old Hunter, who was diagnosed with stage 5 kidney disease in 2020. His son had been able to manage his life since the diagnosis, but the medication required 10 daily pills. The effects “drained his energy” compared to that of a normal teen. A new kidney would be life-changing for Hunter. Daniel was a great donor candidate, but his weight was an issue. He needed to be under 200 pounds, but he weighed 274.
Determined to be a donor, Daniel took action. He began to focus on his diet and exercise. This included cutting back on sugar and walking at least three miles a day or exercising at the gym. “I was determined. I really love him, and I put my mind into it—'I'm going to do it,' and I went at it,” he declared.
It took about 13 months to lose the weight needed for organ donation, but Daniel did it. He now weighs 195 pounds, and the transplant is scheduled for June 2023. The father isn’t nervous about the procedure; rather, he’s excited for Hunter. “His spirit went up, his energy, and I can see the glow in his face like some kind of relief or something,” Daniel said.
Daniel is determined to maintain his health since losing weight. While the donation was the motivator, there have been other benefits to his slimmed-down figure. Last winter, he played hockey with Hunter. It was something he couldn’t do a year ago because of the pressure the extra weight was putting on his knee.
Daniel hopes his story can be a motivating force for others who want to change their life but feel challenged to do so.
A dad named Daniel Kablutsiak lost a staggering 79 pounds (going from 275 to 195) in order to donate a kidney to his son.