The Return of the Thousand-Pound Sisters

About a year ago, Childhood Obesity News discussed Amy and Tammy Slaton, morbidly obese adult sisters who won an eating contest and a TV reality show contract. In contemporary society, it would be illegal to haul an obese person around in a horse-drawn wagon, for exhibition in carnivals as a sideshow freak. But if a camera and a worldwide distribution system are involved, anything goes.

Amy had bariatric surgery, and then a baby (some say too soon). Tammy developed a “fat socket” on her forehead, a phenomenon that apparently occurs when the body simply cannot find anywhere else to store the fat. She got up to 665 pounds and contracted COVID-19. Apparently, fans love to practice their armchair psychology skills on the sisters as their relationship goes through all kinds of stress, including epic battles with each other.

The update

A piece published mere hours ago as this was written, reports that the TV show is renewed for another year. At the end of the third season, Tammy was in food addiction rehab and had lost 115 pounds in her first month, so her story is currently a cliffhanger. But, whenever rehab ends, she has no home to return to. Amy and her husband are prepared to take Tammy in the short-term, but not permanently. They expect a second child this summer and will have plenty to deal with.

Now, this blends in well with the more recent topic of food addiction. There is a video of Tammy’s visit last year with Dr. Eric Smith, who said,

It’s an addiction that you have of needing that food to fulfill, maybe when you’re down or sad, or something’s missing in your life. Now, are we closer to surgery? No, we’re not, and I think you know that. But are we closer to getting to the root of the problem so we can eventually get to surgery? I think in a small way we are.

This gives an idea of what an incredibly long and demanding journey can be involved in even the attempt to become eligible for surgery. We are going to look at what more prominent people think about food addiction, when surgery is or is not a consideration. We will also look more closely at the reasons why they hold those particular ideas.

From previous forays into the field, it seems as if there is some confusion in language, with people using different definitions of words and concepts. Once that starts, the door to misunderstanding and disharmony is wide open.

Your responses and feedback are welcome!

Source: “1000-Lb. Sisters’ Tammy Slaton Is ‘Even More Depressed’ After She Hits 665 Lbs,”, 03/04/21
Source: “‘1000-lb Sisters’: Tammy Slaton Teases Season 4 Amid Weight Loss Update,”, 03/01/22
Image by Midnight Believer/Public Domain

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OVERWEIGHT: What Kids Say explores the obesity problem from the often-overlooked perspective of children struggling with being overweight.

About Dr. Robert A. Pretlow

Dr. Robert A. Pretlow is a pediatrician and childhood obesity specialist. He has been researching and spreading awareness on the childhood obesity epidemic in the US for more than a decade.
You can contact Dr. Pretlow at:


Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the American Society of Animal Science 2020 Conference
What’s Causing Obesity in Companion Animals and What Can We Do About It

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the World Obesity Federation 2019 Conference:
Food/Eating Addiction and the Displacement Mechanism

Dr. Pretlow’s Multi-Center Clinical Trial Kick-off Speech 2018:
Obesity: Tackling the Root Cause

Dr. Pretlow’s 2017 Workshop on
Treatment of Obesity Using the Addiction Model

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation for
TEC and UNC 2016

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the 2015 Obesity Summit in London, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s invited keynote at the 2014 European Childhood Obesity Group Congress in Salzburg, Austria.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2013 European Congress on Obesity in Liverpool, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2011 International Conference on Childhood Obesity in Lisbon, Portugal.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2010 Uniting Against Childhood Obesity Conference in Houston, TX.

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