“World’s Fattest Man” Who Weighed Nearly 1,000 lb Before Extreme Weight Loss Battles Relapse

Once known as the fattest man in the world, Paul Mason has defied the predictions of his doctors, who warned him that he wouldn’t live past 40. He is now on the cusp of celebrating his 64th birthday.

Although he is bedridden and may never walk again, the Englishman calls himself lucky to be alive and vows never to go back to his days of tipping the scales to 980 lb (444.5 kg).

“A doctor once told me I would be lucky to make 40 and now here I am, nearly a pensioner. I may not walk again now but I am at one with that. I just want to use my time to help others and make sure they don’t make the same mistakes I did,” he told Mirror last week.

The 63-year-old man from Ipswich, Suffolk, is no longer the title holder of the world’s fattest man.

Paul Mason, who was warned by doctors that he wouldn’t live past 40, is now on the cusp of celebrating his 64th birthday

Image credits: This Morning

Image credits: TLC

He rose to prominence through the documentary The World’s Fattest Man, which showcased his daily intake of 20,000 calories, comprising 40 chocolate bars, fry-ups, and takeaways.

He believes his childhood trauma of being verbally and physically abused by his military policeman father, along with the sexual abuse he suffered for three years at the hands of a woman known to his family, was the reason for his compulsive eating behavior.

Weighing 980 lb at this peak, he was known as the fattest in the world, according to BBC. He had gastric band surgery in 2010, after which he dropped down to 308 lb (140 kg).

He also surgically had between 42 and 56 lb (20 to 25 kg) of skin removed in 2015.

“I just think ‘good riddance,’” he told BBC Radio Suffolk at the time about the tissue removal.

He used to weigh 980 lb (444.5 kg) and was once known as the fattest man in the world

Image credits: TLC

Image credits: This Morning

He noted that his life “definitely improved” after the skin removal, and he was able to get around a lot easier.

“Lifting my leg… (feels like) lifting a wafer-thin piece of paper rather a tree trunk,” he told the outlet back then.

The former postman found companionship and love with Rebecca Mountain, an American he connected with through Facebook. Their engagement in January 2014 marked a hopeful chapter for Paul, and together, they ventured to the US But their relationship faced challenges, leading him to eventually return to the UK on his own.

After his body transformation, the gastric bypass patient admitted he was still struggling mentally on his weight-loss journey.

“At my lightest just after my surgeries I was 19 stone (266 lbs) but my mind was not right, I weren’t that 19 stone person,” he previously said, as quoted by The Sun.

The man from Ipswich, Suffolk, had gastric band surgery in 2010 and surgically removed some of his excess skin

Image credits: Paul Mason

Even though he looked “thin,” his inner self still felt like “that person carrying that excess skin.”

“Your body, it takes time to adjust and your mind definitely — I was carrying that for so long, and struggled with all the issues around it all,” he added.

He had another significant setback in his weight-loss journey during the Covid-19 pandemic. He suffered health complications, along with depression, and he had to be carried out of his residence in a tarpaulin by firefighters.

“I became unwell. I was gaining a lot of fluid but could not get rid of it. It came out of the blue. It got so bad I could not breathe and they sent a paramedic who insisted I go to hospital,” he recalled during his recent interview published last week by Mirror.

The former postman sparked a romance with Rebecca Mountain, an American he connected with through Facebook, and the pair got engaged in January 2014

Image credits: TLC

“The problem was the lift was broken so they had to get two teams of fire service guys to carry me out down the stairs in the big slings they use,” he continued. “It was awful – there were people outside taking pictures.”

What followed was an 18-month-long stay at the hospital, which was a “real kick in the teeth” for his weight-loss progress.

“I did not realize how unwell I was at that stage. My kidneys had stopped working properly but once they got me on the proper medication they drained the fluid and I lost six stone (84 lbs) in two or three days,” he said.

Following his recovery, Paul stayed resolute in ensuring he did not go back to weighing 980 lb.

He now resides in a specially designed space in a care facility equipped with a pulley system and an extra-wide motorized wheelchair. On days he feels well enough, he stays occupied with gardening and spending time with his fellow residents in the dining hall.

Paul and Rebecca eventually separated, leading him to return from the US to the UK on his own

Image credits: CBS News

Paul believes obesity is often viewed solely as a physical health issue, but it also profoundly affects one’s mental well-being.

He expressed frustration with the UK’s healthcare system for not having accessible resources for therapy and early intervention.

“I can remember going to my doctor in 1986 and he did not even put his head up from a paper he was filling out on his desk. He said, ‘I think you need to ride your bike more and I’ll see you in six months’ and that was the end of that. I think if the NHS wants to crack [down on] obesity they need to start with the mind and therapy, but it seems they would rather pump you full of pills and injections,” he said. “Therapy is the answer but it’s so expensive.”

Effective weight loss involves a combination of healthy eating habits, regular physical activity, and sustainable lifestyle changes.

Incorporating a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains can provide essential nutrients while keeping calorie intake in check. Portion control and mindful eating are crucial, as well as staying hydrated with water.

“I may not walk again now but I am at one with that. I just want to use my time to help others and make sure they don’t make the same mistakes I did,” he told Mirror last week

Engaging in regular exercise, such as brisk walking, jogging, or strength training, not only burns calories but also improves overall fitness and metabolism.

“Weight loss is complicated and you don’t have total control over the number on the scale, but you do have control over what you eat, how much you move and other factors that impact weight, such as stress and sleep,” Registered Dietitian Ellen Albertson, Ph.D., author of Rock Your Midlife, told Forbes Health.

It’s important to set realistic goals and track progress to stay motivated. Additionally, getting enough sleep and managing stress levels contribute to successful weight management. Seeking support from friends, family, or a healthcare professional can also provide encouragement and guidance on the journey to a healthier weight.

“One of the best ways to consistently eat better and shed weight steadily is to check in every day with an accountability partner,” suggested certified health coach and author of Sugar Shock and Beyond Sugar Shock, Connie Bennett. “Your accountability partner doesn’t need to be your bestie, favorite co-worker or partner. Just find someone with similar weight loss goals. You don’t need to talk every day, either. Just text each other to share that you’re eating healthy foods and staying on track. If you’re tempted by junk foods, you can lean on your partner, too. That’s when you may want to call them.”

Despite setbacks in his journey, Paul is determined not to go back to his days of tipping the weighing scales to 980 lb

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