Everything was running smoothly for NBC weatherman Al Roker in 2002.
A changed and thinner man on the inside and out, he was still getting used to his new body when he arrived at the White House on the invitation of then-President George W. Bush, one month after Roker underwent gastric bypass surgery.
There was just one complication—Roker’s body was rapidly changing as a result of the surgery that reconstructed his bowels. Little did he know there would be quite embarrassing consequences for straying even slightly from the new, strict eating regimen he had to follow.
“I probably went off and ate something I wasn't supposed to,” Roker told Nancy Snyderman in a Jan. 6 edition of “Dateline.” “And as I’m walking to the press room, well, I gotta pass a little gas here.”
“I’m walking by myself. Who’s gonna know?” he said. “Only a little something extra came out.”
“I pooped my pants.”
Roker said he immediately ducked into a bathroom and trashed the ruined underwear, choosing to continue to his destination and go the remainder of the day “commando.”
“It told me that I've got to be very vigilant as to what I eat,” he said.
Social media platforms kicked into overdrive after Roker revealed the incident, which is also recounted in his latest literary effort, “Never Goin’ Back: My Weight Loss Journey.”
“I put that in the book, ‘Never Goin’ Back,’ because I wanted people to realize that there are consequences to gastric bypass surgery, or any kind of gastric surgery,” he said. “Some of them [are] embarrassing, others can be life threatening or fatal.”
“Look, the good news is the book title does not refer to the White House because I have been back a number of times without incident,” Roker joked on “The Today Show.”
According to the National Library of Medicine, gastric bypass surgery can be used as a last result for people who cannot lose and keep off weight by any other means, such as revamping their lifestyles through healthier eating, dieting, or exercise.
The surgery and resulting weight loss, can also help the body fight diabetes, asthma, and high blood pressure and cholesterol. Side effects of the surgery can range from blood clots to situations like Roker experienced which, according to The Los Angeles Times, can occur if a gastric bypass patient eats foods that are too sugary or too greasy.