Eating DisordersNewsletterObesityWomen's Health

Britain’s fattest man & anorexia

Carl Thompson died on Sunday 21st June 2015. He had the unfortunate distinction of being known as “Britain’s fattest man”. Carl was estimated to weigh 65 stone He was just 33 years old. Without knowing Carl’s exact height, his BMI was approximately 130 – 140.

An inquest is currently taking place into the death of 17 year old Emma Carpenter. Distressingly for the family, the inquest is taking place almost nine years after Emma died because of investigations into the circumstances of her death by Nottinghamshire Healthcare Trust and the Health Ombudsman. Emma died suffering from anorexia and weighing just 4 stone with a BMI of 10.

Carl’s death, and the inquest into Emma’s death, were reported at the same time as the latest statistics for eating disorder admissions. Figures from the Health and Social Care Information Centre show that admissions for girls aged 19 and under for eating disorders have more than doubled. The numbers are still small: figures have risen from 840 admissions in 2010/2011 to 1,656 in 2013/2014. The media was quick to blame this on social media and fitness apps, which they say encourage young people to become "obsessed with their bodies”. However, the fact that admissions are rising, as Cosmopolitan notes, is likely a good thing. This means that more young people are being treated; it doesn’t necessarily mean that the incidence of eating disorders is rising. Although I suspect that it is...


The rest of this article is available to site subscribers, who get access to all articles plus a weekly newsletter.
To continue reading, please login below or sign up for a subscription. Thank you.