Clogged arteries killed celebrity chef Carl Ruiz.
“The cause of death is atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, natural causes,” the Maryland Department of Health told USA Today.
The 44-year-old Food Network star’s death in September was announced “with heavy hearts” on the Instagram page of the La Cubana restaurant he owned in the Meatpacking District.
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On behalf of the La Cubana family, with heavy hearts, we are deeply saddened to share the passing of our beloved Executive Chef Carl Ruiz. No words can fully express our sadness at the sudden loss of our dear friend and brother. Beyond his immense culinary talent, Carl’s larger-than-life personality never failed to entertain, enlighten, and uplift every person he encountered along his #Ruizing adventures. His fierce intellect and infectious humor knew no bounds. He was a mighty force of down home Cuban cuisine, and lived life to the fullest, just as he cooked—with “dancing always” as the most important ingredient. Here at La Cubana, Carl paid proud tribute to his Cuban roots each night, and it is here that Carl’s legacy, undeniable spirit and passion for his culture will live on. We hope we make you proud, Carlito. . To honor the work you loved so much Chef, La Cubana will continue your work in establishing The Carl Ruiz Scholarship Foundation for aspiring chefs. . We love you! You are already missed. Rest easy 🙏🏽
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Ruiz, a guest on Food Network shows hosted by friend and fellow chef Guy Fieri, was responsible for the celebrated Caribbean-menu at the popular W. 15th St. restaurant he launched in June. Its offerings include fried lamb leg, smoked pork chop and Cuban fried chicken.
Fieri tweeted that Carl “The Cuban” Ruiz was a “one in a hundred million” friend who “will forever live on in my heart and in those of all who loved him.”
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The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services defines arteriosclerosis as a disease in which plaque, which is comprised of fat, cholesterol and calcium, builds up inside arteries and “limits the flow of oxygen-rich blood” to organs including the heart.
“Atherosclerosis can lead to serious problems, including heart attack, stroke or even death,” the agency warns.