Source: Barcroft Media
Yo-yo dieter Michael Hebranko has been warned by doctors that just one more pizza could kill him.
After 24 years of gaining and losing an incredible combined weight of 286 stone, the morbidly obese father is suffering from heart, kidney and liver failure.
He still weighs 42 stone and has been told he has 'one last chance'.
Confined to his bed at home in Staten Island, New York, Michael, 58, has twice topped the scales at 80 stone - at times chomping down 36 pork chops in one sitting.
Scroll down for a slideshow revealing Michael's astonishing weight loss and gain
Recognised by the Guinness Book of Records for being the world's biggest weight loser for dropping 66 stone in 1990, Michael's life is now at a crossroads.
"I know eating is killing me," said Michael. "I am a food addict, just like an alcoholic or a heroin addict,"
"I've been told all my life if I kept eating I wouldn't make it to the age of 60. Now that birthday is just two years away and doctors don't think I'll make it.
"They told me in September I had congestive heart failure, liver failure, and kidney failure. My wife, Madeleine, and I have been told to put our affairs in order."
Michael looking dangerously thin on his birthday with friends at home in 1991, Brooklyn, New York
Spending 205 days out of the last year in hospital, overweight Michael has returned home to be with his loving wife Madeleine.
"In September I was around 48 stone," said Michael. "But when I left hospital in late October it had dropped to around 42 stone.
"They let me go home for Christmas because of the loss. But now I need constant help through a day nurse and my wife in the evening."
Struggling with his breathing, Michael has an oxygen mask to hand at his bedside and receives day care from a nurse before his wife returns in the evening.
But during his peak Michael would polish off bagfuls of pork chops, two pounds of bacon and three dozen eggs at one sitting.
His meals added up to 13, 260 calories and would feed a healthy man for a week,
"Now I have a breakfast of muffins and cream cheese, soup and a sandwich for lunch and a meatloaf or vegetables for dinner," said Michael.
"In total it comes in at around 2,500 calories.
His long suffering wife Madeleine, 58, is now the sole bread-winner, working 12 hours a day in an office despite being a cancer survivor herself.
“He’s lost the weight before so I have to believe he can do it again," said Madeleine, who weighs 16 stone. "It’s the only hope he has of surviving."
Michael in his bed at home on January 13, 2012 in Staten Island, New York
Michael's incredible quarter century of binge eating and crash dieting began when all hope seemed lost.
"I had everything," said Michael. "A gorgeous wife, a successful career at a pharmaceutical company and a lovely ten year old boy.
"But I was 80 stone, couldn't walk up stairs, could hardly breath because of the weight on my stomach and I couldn't stop eating.
"I would eat up to four meatball subs or turkey sandwiches at work for lunch.
"Then I would secretly eat six Big Mac's on the way home from work. As the chef at home I would then make an enormous meat loaf and eat that. My wife begged me to stop eating 100,000 times."
Michael's misery at his weight even made him consider suicide.
"I told a friend there was a prowler in our neighbourhood, and I needed to borrow his handgun," said Michael.
"He brought it to my office and when he left, I shut the door and the blinds. I looked at the gun, trying to develop the will to shoot myself.
"But as i held it, all I could think of was my family and how much it would hurt them. I couldn't do it.
"I put the gun in a drawer at my desk and collapsed in tears."
Things came to a head in 1988 when Michael's health finally failed.
"I suffered a heart attack due to the strain on my body and I was in an induced coma for a week," explained Michael.
Desperate to shed the flab, Michael contacted US fitness guru Richard Simmons. He put Michael on a strict diet of 1,200 calories-a-day in protein and vegetables.
Michael with his wife Madelaine on their wedding day on June 6, 1976 in Las Vegas, Nevada
Incredibly, in just eighteen months, Michael lost a staggering 66 stone, taking him down to a trim 14 stone.
“I felt incredible. For the first time I could buy a normal three-piece suit on the high street instead of a special XXXL catalogue one.”
But his record-breaking weight loss didn’t last long.
The day after he was crowned ‘Highest Recorded Weight Loss’ in the Guinness Book of Records, Michael made the fatal mistake of “taking a day off” and tucked into four hotdogs and chips smothered with cheese.
"Once I'd tasted forbidden food, I couldn't give it up again," said Michael.
Heavy-weight Michael began eating in secret and over the next six years he munched his way back to a colossal 80 stones.
"It's amazing I survived,' he said. 'I had to be lifted out of my house by forklift to be hospitalised. It was the most shameful moment of my life," he admitted.
“The photos were in all the newspapers and I was a laughing stock. I just couldn’t believe I’d let myself get into that state again.”
Luckily, Michael made another recovery after spending 18 months in an obesity rehab centre and trimmed down to 42 stone.
But as soon as Michael left hospital, in 1998 aged 45, he reached for the burgers again and within a year he was back up to 49 stone.
Michael checked himself back into rehab and after another three-year stint, battled down to 25 stone.
Since his release in 1998, his weight has fluctuated between 49 and 25 stone.
Now, at 42 stone, doctors have warned him he needs to lose at least ten stone if he has any hope of survival.
“If I lose the weight, my heart may improve slightly and my kidneys and liver could start functioning normally. If I can see my grandchildren grow up that would mean the world to me."
Wanting people to see him as a lesson and a warning about the dangers of food addiction, Michael has words of advice for anyone struggling with their weight.
“I want everyone to know that obesity is a disease. If you’ve got it, get help straight away. You don’t want to end up like me.”