Lizzie Velasquez, a 21-year-old woman from Austin, Texas, has almost zero body fat, and appears to be on death’s door. But this is not a self-inflicted condition that she finds herself in. Velasquez has a rare, and as of yet unknown, disease that keep her from gaining weight.
To hold onto her frail existence, Velasquez eats every 15 minutes, or as many as 60 small meals every day. That amounts to between 5,000 and 8,000 calories every day of her life.
“I weigh myself regularly and if I gain even one pound I get really excited,” say Velasquez.
Lizzie was born four weeks early and weighed just two pounds 10 ounces.
“I was actually so small that my baby clothes were actually doll clothes from Toys ‘R’ Us because that’s all that would fit me,” she said.
She is now 5′ 2″, falls just short of the 60-pound mark, and wears size triple zero clothing. She is also blind in one eye and has limited vision in the other.
“I eat small portions of crisps, sweets, chocolate, pizza, chicken, cake, doughnuts, ice cream, noodles and pop tarts all day long, so I get pretty upset when people accuse me of being anorexic.”
While doctors are stumped over what she is suffering from, some think Velasquez has neonatal progeroid syndrome, a rare condition that not only causes fat loss, but accelerated aging.
Given the rarity and severity of her condition, you couldn’t ask her to have a more positive outlook.
“People have asked me if I had a miracle or a chance to change the way I look, I honestly know I would never do that,” she wrote. “God made me the way I am for a reason and I would never change that. I lead a normal life as much as possible and deal with the bumps in the road as they come along with my head held high and a smile on my face!”