Weight-watching Rangel gets into fighting shape

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) may not loom so large on Capitol Hill these days, but it has nothing to do with the ethics investigations he’s entangled in.

It's because he's been dieting at a spa and has lost weight.

Rangel told The Hill that over the holidays, he spent time at the Pritikin Longevity Center and Spa in Aventura, Fla. While there, he was put on a low-fat, primarily vegetarian diet that has been shown to reverse heart disease, control diabetes and relieve hypertension. 

When asked by The Hill whether he had lost weight, Rangel smiled broadly, and pulled the extra material in his suit jacket to show the extra room and reveal his Pritikin secret. 

After the New York Post ran an unflattering photo of him back in August that showed him sleeping in a lounge chair in shorts and a T-shirt on the beach in front of his Dominican Republic villa, Rangel said his wife, Alama, had been on his back to shed some pounds. 

So far, it’s working.