Joe Wexler doesn’t understand why he weighs 770 pounds despite his “healthy” diet that has him eating an astonishing 10,000 calories per day.
The 31-year-old, who was featured on TLC’s My 600-lb. Life, confessed to eating “two full meals plus snacks,” and struggled to comprehend why he remained confined to his home and ineligible for weight-loss surgery.
He was shocked to learn his favorite foods — such as ranch dressing and ice cream — are high in fat, and not exactly ideal for dieting.
“Just about everything I eat is bad for me,” he revealed on the reality show. “I had no idea.”
“Joe does not understand how much he eats a day,” said top weight loss doctor Younan Nowzaradan. “He eats at least 10,000 calories a day in order to maintain his weight. Joe has a lot of work to do before he’s ready for surgery. He cannot afford to fail at this.”
The product of divorced parents, Mr Wexler says his problems, in particular his emotional eating, stem from the day his mother and father split up.
“Growing up, I could never have imagined that I’d end up like this,” he explains. “I’ve always had problems with my weight ever since I was little.
“Bad habits got picked up early. I was allowed to do whatever I wanted, including choosing what to eat.”
Most traumatic of all though was the ‘strained’ relationship that existed between Mr Wexler and his father, reports the Daily Mail.
“The relationship between me and my dad was strained,” he says. “I think buying those things [treats] was his way of dealing with me.
“I think I would have given up anything I had if he had paid me some attention and I felt like life was punishing me for some sin I didn’t commit.
“I ate to deal with my feelings and I never stopped.”
Wexler has turned to crowd funding, asking for $30K in donations to cover his medical expenses.
Hello my name is Joe. Anyone who has known me for very long knows I have been a large guy my entire life. Growing up, it brought me a lot of pain and bullying because people can be very cruel. I made very few friends, and, while I did a good job of hiding my emotional distress due to the name-calling and whatnot, I was constantly down, which resulted in my becoming rather reclusive.
Now, as an adult, the issues of being the size I am have finally come to a full bearing against me. I have been in and out of the hospital since the end of October because my knees are messed up, which is because I fell, but the major issue is that it is my weight is preventing me from healing correctly.
Also, every medical doctor I have spoken to has said it is medically necessary for me to have weight loss surgery due to the fact that diet and exercise are not helping me lose weight. I have a very slow metabolism due to my thyroid being under active and even with proper medication it is not enough to help me lose the weight.
I have been pretty much home bound for the last 10 months because I can’t walk far enough out my door to go anywhere not to say anything about driving my car, which is impossible, now. In short I am in a world of hurt and pain. I have been going around with the insurance company at work, and they won’t cover the surgery.
Therefore, I am stuck in a situation where I have to pay out of pocket in order to save my life. I just want one thing, and that is to get healthy. All I am asking for is a chance to live and a chance to do things normal people do. I want to be around to see my baby niece grow up, and I want to, maybe one day have a family of my own. I don’t think that is too much to ask of life in general.
Head over to Joe Wexler’s GoFundMe page for more information or to make a donation.
Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2009–2010 2, 3
- More than 2 in 3 adults are considered to be overweight or obese.
- More than 1 in 3 adults are considered to be obese.
- More than 1 in 20 adults are considered to have extreme obesity.
- About one-third of children and adolescents ages 6 to 19 are considered to be overweight or obese.
- More than 1 in 6 children and adolescents ages 6 to 19 are considered to be obese.