NEW photos have emerged which show Kim Jong-un has finally shed loads of blubber amid health fears after he topped a deadly 22 stone.
The despot looks noticeably slimmer in startling images just released by North Korean state media – but is still seen puffing away on a fag.
New pictures show the North Korean leader has lost weight but is still smoking[/caption]
It’s estimated 5ft 6ins Kim Jong-un topped 22 stone late last year[/caption]
Analysts say the pics of Kim addressing a politburo meeting last week show he appears to have lost a “significant amount of weight”.
It was the first time the camera-shy dictator had been seen in more than a month after he did yet another one of his vanishing acts.
Seoul-based website NK News, published photos suggesting Kim had even tightened the strap on his favourite IWC Portofino £10,000 watch.
Ruthless Kim has struggled with his health as as result of his spiralling weight and his fridge-raiding lifestyle.
South Korea’s national intelligence unit said it believed he topped 22 stone last year and had gained an average stone a YEAR since coming to power in 2011.
Kim was a lot slimmer man when he first came to power[/caption]
Analysts say Kim appears to have tightened the strap on his luxury watch[/caption]
That would give 5ft 6ins Kim a BMI of 48.9 and a classification of morbidly obese.
Kim’s lifestyle choices even came up when his wife Ri Sol-ju candidly revealed she had once begged him to stop smoking.
Pictures show that while Kim has never been slim, he has ballooned in size since he first appeared on the world’s stage.
He is said to be a prolific binge eater with a poor diet who is theorised to suffer health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol and gout.
Kim has an allegedly legendary appetite, gorging himself on Swiss cheese, caviar and lobster while drinking up to ten bottles of wine in a night.
A study by Johns Hopkins University found severe obesity was linked to a fourfold increase in heart failure – putting Kim at risk.
Ruthless Kim has struggled with his health as as result of his weight and over-the-top lifestyle[/caption]
Kim Jong-un enjoys a cheeky cigarette break during his trip to China in April 2018[/caption]
Kim clutching a cigarette as he inspecting housing blocks on January 26, 2017[/caption]
One analyst told NK News the leader may have decided to lose weight recently to improve his standing amongst his people.
North Korea is battling food shortages amid a dramatic fall in trade with China during the coronavirus pandemic and sanctions imposed in response to Kim’s nuclear and ballistic missile programmes.
Rumours over Kim’s health were sparked last Spring when he suddenly vanished from sight for weeks.
At the time it was claimed he was either dead, gravely ill in a coma or hiding out at his private villa in Wonsan.
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One report even hinted a delay in having the heart surgery had left Kim in a “grave condition”.
Experts at North Korea watchers 38North said at the time: “The risk of [Kim’s health] becoming a problem still looms unless he makes serious changes to his physical condition and lifestyle.”