By Ben Wheeler
MEET the man who once tipped the scales at over thirty-five stone after gorging on more than ten-thousand-calories a day which left him with no self-esteem and suffering with severe anxiety and depression.
Sam High (28), a delivery driver from Hatfield, Pennsylvania, USA, has lost more than half his body-weight, now weighing in at a slim 14st 4lbs and has traded his sixty-inch waist for a much leaner thirty-six inches, thanks to bariatric weight loss surgery.
Before surgery, Sam tried everything to shift the pounds naturally but would always end up injured when exercising due to the pressure on his joints from his bulky frame.
Images show Sam’s journey from before and after the surgery, which has unfortunately left him with a large amount of excess skin.
Sam revealed how his weight started to spiral out of control and how his size affected him.
“My weight started to increase significantly after high school when I had access to an income and a car,” he said.
“I used to eat constantly, easily in excess of 10,000 calories a day.
“I felt horrible about my body, I had no self-esteem or motivation. I also struggled with severe anxiety and depression because I felt powerless in my life and had no positive outlook for my future.
“I constantly received negative comments, my weight and size defined my whole life and I was commonly known as ‘Fat Sam’ for years.
“I tried everything to lose weight by eating right and exercising, but I would often injure myself trying to exercise as my ankles and knees couldn’t handle being active for very long.
“When I was 24 and still on my mother’s health insurance we discovered that the policy would cover bariatric surgery.
“After trying to lose weight conveniently and failing, we decided that surgery was the best way to assist me in losing weight.
“However, I still had to exercise and eat right prior to undergoing the surgery to show I was dedicated to having the procedure and changing my life.”
Having shrunk from a mind-blowing 5XL shirt size to a healthier XL, Sam is much happier with his new body, although the excess skin he has been left with remains a point of dissatisfaction for him.
“It’s a burden, it definitely affects me and is one of the biggest hindrances I still deal with,” he said.
“I would love to have it removed, but I can’t afford the surgery. Insurance won’t cover it because it’s a cosmetic procedure.
“I’ve thought about setting up a GoFundMe to see if that would help, but I’m self-conscious and a little ashamed to ask people for help or money.”
Sam has now transformed his diet as he continues to strive to lose weight, revealing the reactions he has received to his progress so far as well as giving advice to anyone who is thinking of following a similar route to him.
“My diet now includes a lot of protein and multivitamins, my body doesn’t process nutrients in a normal way anymore, so I have to be diligent about my nutrient intake,” said Sam.
“I mainly eat lots of lean protein such as chicken and I also do loads of walking both at work and in my free time to keep my exercise up.
“It all feels worth it as I get such positive reactions, people are shocked when they see what I was and what I am now, especially those who haven’t seen me since high school or before my surgery.
“For anyone thinking about having the surgery, I’d suggest doing as much research as possible, talk to people who have had the procedure and make sure it’s definitely what you want to do.”