Professional body builder Ade Rai is supervising Arya Permana, 13, during his gym session.
“When I met him for the first time, [uncle] Ade asks me to play PlayStation with him,” Arya told The Jakarta Post during a checkup at Hasan Sadikin Hospital in Bandung, West Java.
Ade is among Arya’s biggest supporters. He has supervised Arya’s sports activity since his case gained media scrutiny in 2016.
Ade Rai proudly shared Arya’s progress on January 19 through his Instagram account.
Arya is a patient suffering from obesity from Pasir Piring hamlet of Cipurwasari village in Tegalwaru district, Karawang regency, West Java. After having a list of medical procedures, checkups, diet programs, work out regimes and even plastic surgery, he has lost more than 100 kg in three years.
When he first started, he weighed 193 kg. Now he weighs 86 kg.
“It was the last measurement. When I stepped on the scale, I was still wearing a jacket and shoes,” he said.
Arya still has to undergo a number of procedures at Hasan Sadikin Hospital for more plastic surgery.
Hardisiswo Soedjana, the chief of the plastic surgery team for Arya’s case, said that Arya would still undergo at least two more surgeries.
“We will do a procedure on his arms. Afterwards, we will uplift his breast skin. Next, there would be steps to remove the excess skin in his belly,” Hardisiswo said.
All of the procedures are to be paid by Health Care and Social Security Agency.
Separately, Ade said he appreciates Arya’s spirit to lose weight.
“According to Arya’s parents, initially he weighed 85 kg before his appetite increased extremely. He is now losing weight without losing his spirit. This is a rare quality, especially among adults,” he added.
Ade, who owns health businesses, said Arya’s effort went well because of the supportive environment of the medical team and his parents who keep up Arya’s spirit to do exercises.
“I only support him. He likes sports. When he was still very fat he liked soccer. The kind of support that I can give him is to share with his parents about the importance of keeping to a good diet and their motivation to support Arya,” said the 49-year-old.
“Arya is now a symbol of hope. People now say: Even Arya can lose weight, so why can’t I?” he said.
Arya, who will celebrate his 14th birthday in February, was once dubbed the fattest kid in the world.
Arya underwent bariatric surgery, a stomach reducing operation, at Omni Hospital in Jakarta in June 2017. After the procedure, he lost weight significantly down to only 87 kg, leaving excessive skin on his belly, arms and thighs.
Ade Somantri, Arya’s father, said that his son’s weight indeed increased significantly before he was diagnosed with obesity.
Ade Somantri said Arya was born with a normal weight of 3.8 kg.
“When he was 4 years old, he grew significantly larger. When he was between 8 and 10 years old, he gained over 72 kg of weight,” Ade said.
THE JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK