Tammy Slaton is an American reality-television star and YouTuber, who captivated the public when she, along with her sister Amy Slaton, starred in the TV series “1000-lb Sisters.” Her weight-loss journey has been documented by the TLC network show since January 2000, as she battles her way out of morbid obesity, with the help of medical experts including known bariatric surgeons, Dr. Charles Procter and Dr. Eric Smith. The TV series was created by Crazy Leg Productions, which also produced the weight-loss journey documentary, “Family By the Ton.”
Early Life and Family
Tammy Slaton was born on 27 July 1986, in Kentucky, USA, and she grew up poor with three sisters and a brother. Her mother, Darlene Slaton, would work three jobs just to support all of them. Her father wasn’t in the picture early on in her life, and in 2013, her mother married her stepfather, Frank Rednour.
Tammy has been overweight all her life, and was bullied as a young kid in school, called vile names, pushed around, and made fun of. While she has other siblings, she knew from the get-go that Amy, who is a year younger than her, would be the only one to support her, and vice-versa. Both she and Amy said that other members of the family, including their mother would often call them ugly, fat, lazy and stupid. They only felt loved by their grandmother, who was basically like a mother to them growing up. Tammy said that it was only her grandmother who treated her as though she’s no different from everyone else. After her grandmother died when Tammy was 11 years old, she drew comfort from eating; it became her source of enjoyment, but it was always fast food, and if they didn’t have any, the Church would give them food.
As YouTubers and Reality-TV Stars
Due to her size and inability to move without assistance, she stayed at home and rarely interacted with other people. It could get lonely at times, and so Tammy started vlogging with Amy on YouTube. Each opened an official channel, and started sharing videos of them doing practically anything that seemed fit to share about their life. In 2014, they gained immense attention from YouTube fans when they uploaded a video called “Chubby Bunny Challenge” – the challenge was to put as many marshmallows as they could into their mouths, and say Chubby Bunny. The video quickly became viral, and has close to 2.5 million views.
They were noticed by the TLC network, which offered them a chance to headline their own TV show, about their planned weight-loss journey. The title was “1000-lb Sisters”, representing both girls as it was their combined weight.
Tammy was a little bit over 600lbs. while Amy was 405lbs; the first episode was aired on 01 January 2000.
Her Weight Gain History and Medical Issues
Due to emotional stress, massive intake of food, and no proper exercise, by the age of 20 Tammy weighed over 500 lbs. She found comfort in eating food, as she initially believed that it wouldn’t harm her, but found out too late that it did. Her unhealthy lifestyle had led her to become morbidly obese – this means that the person is over 100 pounds above the ideal body weight, or has a body mass index (BMI) of over 40. Through the years, she knew that she was overweight, but didn’t bother to check her actual weight. She also developed serious medical issues that led her to be hospitalized four times.
Tammy was put on life support twice, as she was discovered to have a blood clot in one of her lungs along with a bad gallbladder, high blood pressure, and thyroid problems.
While she can still move around using a walker, she needs assistance in almost everything she does, including taking a bath since she couldn’t stand in the shower. Since Amy wasn’t as big as her, and can pretty much do normal things, Tammy’s relied heavily on her support, but has still mostly stayed in the house, only going out if she needed to go to the hospital.
She and her sister knew that they had a serious problem, so they tried everything to lose some weight including walking and dieting but nothing worked on them since they never really focused on it. However, in 2019, they accepted that drastic action was needed, and both resolved to try bariatric surgery.
While her sister’s main motivation for losing weight, aside from wanting to be healthier, was to eventually conceive, Tammy needed to do it simply because she might not last another year without becoming permanently bedridden.
Her knees would likely give up as they didn’t have cartilage anymore; they would pop out if she stood too long, and it became too painful if she walked more than 45 steps, even with a walker to assist her. To prepare for their plans of getting a weight reduction medical procedure, Amy then bought simple exercise gadgets for her to lose weight while sitting or lying down. Her sister said that her dream was to see Tammy go around without the walker, and so regain her independence.
The first thing that she needed to do according to Amy was to go and discuss their plans with their mother. It was some sort of a test if she and her husband could take Tammy out in the car without incident. Apparently, the only time she went out in the past was via an ambulance to go to hospital. It would be Tammy’s first time in eight years to ride in a car; even then, they needed to fold down the back seats so that she could sit on the floor of the car.
Tammy was quite tired just by walking to the car, and had a difficult time trying to sit properly inside the car, but fortunately there were no incidents during transportation, although unfortunately the meeting with her mother didn’t go well, since all they heard from her was that they wouldn’t be able to go through with the bariatric surgery, as they would chicken out. Their mom explained that she heard it multiple times from them, but they’d never got around to doing it, so she was just being skeptical. Their mother’s negative comments actually motivated them further, declaring that they would prove her wrong.
The Start of Her Weight Loss Journey
Tammy and her sister had an online consultation with their chosen surgeon, Dr. Charles Procter, a second-generation bariatric surgeon whose medical practice is based in Atlanta.
He was trained by his father, and is considered as one of the best in his specialization. He was first seen on another TV series called “Family By the Ton”, and became a fan favorite for his amazing commitment to helping his patients. The doctor said that they both needed to have the surgery as soon as possible so that they could live a better life. One of the first things morbidly obese individuals lose is their independence – the moment they start relying on other people, they tend to depend on them in everything they do.
When they actually had a face-to-face meeting with their doctor, Tammy learned how much weight she needed to lose before she could qualify to undergo the procedure. So the Slaton sisters started their journey of losing weight, which meant eating little, and sticking to their diet. It was so hard that the two eventually fought over small things, and it almost broke their relationship as sisters.
The first season of their TV series ended in 2020, with only Amy qualifying for the bariatric surgery. Tammy was quite jealous and upset, but happy for her sister.
Quarantine, New Doctor, Covid-19 virus, and Boyfriends
Almost everybody around the world was hit with difficulties when the pandemic started, due to the Covid-19 virus. During quarantine, Tammy had a hard time sticking to her diet, and when she went back to Dr. Procter, instead of losing more weight, she had regained all that she’d lost from the previous weigh-in; her excuse was that she’d had problems accessing healthy food during the quarantine. The result was that Tammy was dropped by her doctor and advised to look for another closer to her home, who could monitor her condition more easily.
In season two of “1000-lb Sisters,” Amy couldn’t be there all the time for Tammy, since she’d become pregnant, which created more problems because of her bariatric surgery.
Surprisingly, their oldest brother Chris, volunteered to join Tammy on her weight loss journey, as he also needed to lose his excess weight. They found another surgeon, Dr. Eric Smith of the Georgetown Bariatrics and Advanced Surgical Services based in Kentucky, to help her reach her goals.
On the surface, everything seemed to be going well for Tammy, as she continuously fought hard to lose weight, and her boyfriend, Jerry Sykes, was pretty attentive to her. However, her sister and brother felt that her boyfriend was derailing her weight loss journey; her brother said that he recently found that Jerry even cooked a huge amount of meatloaf for her. Chris told Tammy that her boyfriend was an enabler, because instead of losing weight, she gained more. Eventually, her relationship ended, but not because her family didn’t like him; Jerry was the one who called it quits.
The reason was that he was married, and the wife discovered him cheating on her after watching the TV show. They parted ways amicably, because apparently Tammy was aware that he was married, but didn’t care. The wife, Kia Russell-Sykes, called her a homewrecker, but Tammy defended herself and said that the wife was quite sick. She further shared that Kia couldn’t provide Jerry the wifely duties that he needed at that time.
Tammy also disclosed to her family and the viewers that she’s pansexual, saying that love is love and it can be shared by anyone whether lesbian, gay, transgender, or of any kind of sexual orientation. The break-up with Jerry wasn’t that painful for Tammy, as she easily found a new love interest in a man who calls himself “BBW King.”
Fans were quite worried that Tammy was just being used for clout by her new man, Phillip.
Her boyfriend told concerned fans that he can bet that he has more money than all of them. They also left comments on her social media account saying that the new boyfriend might also prove to be detrimental to her goal, since Phillip prefers women who weighed more than 400lbs.
It seemed that Tammy didn’t really care that much about those things, since she just wants to love and be loved, saying that she’d found true happiness with him. Some fans were also curious if the two had taken their relationship to another level, since they posted diamond ring emojis on their social media accounts but they never made any official announcements.
Covid-19 Virus, Rumors, and Season 3 Spoilers.
After the end of season two, fans were worried about Tammy’s condition and they also wondered if there would be a third season, considering that Tammy didn’t really seem to be focused on losing the required weight.
The last time she visited her new doctor in season two, it was revealed that not only had she gained more weight, but had also contracted the Covid-19 virus, and was hospitalized. She also uses supplemental oxygen at home when she was discharged to help her breathe properly, after battling the potentially deadly virus.
During the consultation with Dr. Smith, Tammy admitted that she couldn’t stop eating, and that’s the reason why she gained more weight. The doctor said that it was great that Tammy didn’t use being infected with Covid-19 as an excuse for the weight gain, appreciated her honesty, and said that acknowledging that she’s addicted to food was a huge step in moving forward.
There were rumors that her family decided that Tammy needed to check herself into a nursing home, so that she could seriously attend to her goal of dieting and exercising.
There were sightings that the reality-TV star was indeed in a facility, as recent photos of her bed looked similar to a hospital bed, along with the headlight circulated online as well. However, in May 2021, Tammy addressed these rumors through her social media account, saying that they weren’t true. Another rumor that came out was that she allegedly attacked a nurse by slapping her face. The fans of the show weren’t surprised anymore, as Tammy was known for her short temper. Despite her denial, some people believed that Tammy did stay in a facility for a brief period, and that she was kicked out for physically attacking the nurse.
Loyal fans of the Slaton sisters need not be worried, as Tammy along with her brother Chris were spotted leaving the Georgetown Bariatrics and Advanced Surgical Services for her appointment with Dr. Eric Smith; TV insiders said that half of the third season of the show was already filmed. Chris also accidentally shared on his social media account that they are currently filming the third season. All the rumors will be cleared in the next season of the TV show.