Lisa Lampanelli Lisa Lampanelli

Since undergoing gastric sleeve surgery in 2012, Lisa Lampanelli has dropped more than 100 pounds and says the weight loss has given her a new lease on life.

"I turned back the clock. I'm reliving my life," the comedienne tells Yahoo! Beauty. "I just felt like I was 19 again and could do things over."

Among the other big changes she made: Taking summer classes at Yale's drama school, getting a divorce, and shifting the focus of her stand-up routines. "The only reason I was allowed to have a career for a quarter century as an insult comic is because it's all in jest and all for fun," she says. "I'm cutting out a little just because acts aren't the same they were years ago - you kind of grow as a person and a performer. I still do the same kind of comedy, but underneath, there are more true stories - more of a message of 'I'm still working on myself and you guys can, too.'"

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Eventually, Lampanelli adds, she'd like to have a career as a "humorous motivational speaker."

Though she was never overweight growing up, Lampanelli says she began putting on pounds in college and never stopped. "That's when I started emotionally eating and using food as medication, just like other people use alcohol or drugs or pot or shopping or anything else. I gained weight, and that started a 32-year struggle with weight and exercise and body image problems."

Now, Lampanelli says the biggest key to maintaining her slimmer figure is to avoid emotional eating. "Every day, I wake up and ask, 'Am I hungry?'" she tells Yahoo!. "If I'm physically hungry, I eat something that's hopefully good for me, and then do it again in a few hours. If I get a phone call I don't like, I'll say to myself, 'Is that the reason I want to eat something?' If it is, I try not to do it. It's literally a lifestyle."

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