Doctors have finally found out the secret behind paralympic cyclist Tom Staniford's lack of fat in the body with researchers identifying a genetic mutation that makes it impossible for him to store fat under his skin.
Researchers at University of Exeter conducted a complete genetic mapping and analysis of Staniford's DNA in order to identify the precise genetic mutation responsible for his condition. The researchers found that Staniford was one of just eight persons in the world to suffer from a rare condition known as MDP syndrome that prevents him from storing fat under his skin.
Despite his inability to store fat, Staniford's body thinks him as obese with the 23-year old suffering from type II diabetes while he has also lost his ability to hear properly and has been wearing a hearing aid since he was 10 years old. Staniford revealed that the diagnosis has a little impact on his life as he continues to go through a routine in order to keep his diabetes under control.
"I have just 40% of the muscles of an average male. I struggle to metabolise sugar and carbohydrates efficiently due to the diabetes - and I struggle to recover due to lack of immediate fuel sources, low testosterone etc. My muscles have a very narrow margin of efficiency and they're also tight, stiff and inflexible because I don't have fat to perform that role. This is why I have to constantly experiment and attempt to find, through trial and error, what works", he said.