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Jesse Jackson Jr. Admits to Weight Loss Surgery

After weeks of speculation over his svelte new physique, Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (search) has revealed how he managed to drop nearly 50 pounds: weight-loss surgery.

In a letter in Monday's Chicago Sun-Times, the congressman said he had the procedure in December and is now down to about 200 pounds on his 5-foot-9-inch frame.

Last week, the newspaper quoted Jackson as saying he lost weight with the help of weekly "shots in the butt" to boost his metabolism — but he would not elaborate.

In Monday's letter, the 40-year-old Democrat said he was only joking.

"The only shots in the butt that I have received in the past few months were from swift kicks from my tae kwon do (search) sparring partner," he wrote.

The surgery — called a duodenal switch procedure (search) — involves removing part of the stomach and rearranging the intestine so that less food is absorbed. It is usually reserved for the morbidly obese.

Jackson spokesman Rick Bryant said the congressman also exercised on a treadmill and dieted.

"He used to be, `Supersize me,' and now he's eating the kind of food that we all look at and say, 'Hmm, what is that?'" Bryant said.