Ricky Naputi: 900 lb. Man Gets New TLC Show

    May 23, 2013
    Sean Patterson
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It’s well-known that a large number of Americans are overweight, and predictions seem to indicate that the issue will only get worse as time goes on. What isn’t as well-known is that the U.S. territory of Guam may be even worse.

This week, cable TV channel TLC aired a documentary highlighting one man’s weight difficulties on the island of Guam. Titled 900 Pound Man: The Race Against Time, the documentary chronicles Ricky Naputi’s struggle with his size, the troubles he encounters in finding help, and the difficulty he has sticking to doctors’ recommendations.

Naputi is, for the most part, bedridden and has not been able to go out of the house or shower for “years.” The documentary follows him and his wife as they seek out specialists and try to arrange for a flight to the U.S. mainland, where Naputi could receive life-saving surgery.

Though Naputi’s weight is disabling, he’s nowhere near the heaviest person ever recorded. The record for world’s heaviest man currently belongs to a U.S. man named Jon Minnoch, who weighed around 1,400 lb. at his peak. He also holds the record for weight loss, after he shed 920 lb. Minnoch died in 1983 at the age of 41 weighing nearly 800 lb.

  • Cookie Sommers

    I understand his desire to get to a more manageable weight. I hope he stays away from those bariatric doctors that only can think of surgery. It really does take dicipline to get that big. And can take the same amount of determination, patience, and dicipline to get to a lower weight without surgery. It really is portion control and movement. Just getting up from a seated position is hard at 900+lbs. The fear of falling is greater at that weight. One can actually break bones at that weight. It can be done to get to that more manageable weight!

  • tomas

    Maybe he should just learn the words, “I’m full.” Just sayin….

  • SantaFeJack

    Cookie, Tomas: you are sadly ignorant about the processes involved in people with these extraordinary weight issues. Those with experience with these patients know that there are deep psychological and other problems that come into play. Your comments are comparable to someone telling a clinically depressed person to “think cheerful thoughts.”

  • Rosie

    I saw this episode yeterday. It made me cry and thats sad he passed away. May he rest in piece, its hard to get motivated to lose weight. I dont have a weight promblem but alot of my loved ones do. I feel for them. Its just hard lets keep motivated our loved ones. Gym and teach them better healthy foods.

  • Saddened viewer in US

    I don’t normally comment on articles, but the lack of compassion and willingness to assist this man by his community and his family (no family assistance was ever shown for Ricky and his wife during this show) when he was desperately calling out for help was sad and shameful. There was a woman from Texas who was trying to help him from hundreds of miles away along with 2 physicians at different times. There were 2 facilities that were reluctantly agreeing to take this man, but they wanted him to lose 100 and 150 lbs before they would allow him to be admitted. They should not have placed those pre-requisites on this man. If he were able to lose weight on his own, he would not have been in the situation he was in. Obesity is a serious disease and people should be allowed medical treatment.