Manuel Uribe, Once World’s Heaviest Man, Dies at 48By: Brian Powell - May 27, 2014
In 2008, Manuel Uribe had just one wish – to be able to walk down the aisle during his wedding to Claudia Solis. At the time, Uribe weighed approximately 700 pounds, down 535 pounds from his Guinness World Record weight of 1,235 pounds.
Born in Mexico in 1965, Manuel Uribe always suffered from weight problems. As a teen, Uribe weighed nearly 250 pounds. By the time of his first marriage, Uribe weighed in at a solid 280 pounds and felt as if his diet was the same as most other Mexicans of the time: “I used to eat normal, just like all Mexicans do … beans, rice, flour tortilla, corn tortilla, french fries, hamburgers, subs and pizzas, whatever regular people eat.”
Despite the belief that his eating habits were no different than the average person, Uribe began gaining weight quickly. He blamed the sudden gains on his sedentary lifestyle: “I worked as a technician, repairing typewriters, electronic calculators and computers. So I worked on a chair. It was a sedentary life.”
Soon Uribe’s eating and depression spiraled out of control, though, following his wife’s request for a divorce.
“I was very depressed. … Everything ended on account of my obesity, because I spent a lot of money trying to see doctors, going on diets, and I just gained more weight.”
Uribe’s obesity was worsened due to a botched liposuction procedure which damaged the lymph nodes in his legs, leaving him with massive tumors weighing 220 pounds. These tumors are a large part of the reason Uribe was not able to leave his bed after 2002.
In an odd twist of events, it was Uribe’s extreme weight which may have prolonged his life as long as it did. Being the Guinness World Record holder as the world’s heaviest man, Uribe began drawing much attention from media outlets. In 2007 he became the main subject of the documentary, “The World’s Heaviest Man”.
Soon afterwards, Uribe went on national television in Mexico to plea for help to lose weight. A team of doctors from Italy, the United States, and Mexico came to his aid and helped Uribe drop from 1,235 pounds to nearly 700.
By the time of his death, Uribe weighed 867 pounds.
While the cause of death is still unknown, speculation is that Uribe died due to cardiac and liver issues. He was 48 years old.
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