Mikel Ruffinelli, a 420-pound mother of four from Los Angeles, has the world’s widest hips, measuring a staggering eight-foot in circumference.
At just five-foot-four, Mikel Ruffinelli, 39, is substantially wider than she is tall, but says she wouldn’t want it any other way.
“I love my shape and I see no reason to diet because I don’t have health problems,” explains Mikel Ruffinelli, who has a proportionally small 40-inch waist.
“Men don’t fancy skinny girls, they like an hourglass figure.”
While the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Kim Kardashian and Beyonce will probably all agree, they don’t have to face the kind of challenges that Mikel Ruffinelli does on a daily basis.
As well as having to walk through most doors sideways, Mikel Ruffinelli drives a truck because she can’t fit into a car. At home, the woman with the widest hips in the world has to sit in steel-supported chairs and sleeps on a 7ft-wide bed.
Her biggest fan is her husband, Reggie Brooks, a 40-year-old computer technician. They’ve been married 10 years and Mikel Ruffinelli says that he finds her unusual shape sexy and tells her every day just how beautiful she is.
Mikel Ruffinelli hasn’t always been plus-sized, as a teenager she was quite athletic and weighed 140-pounds although she did have big hips – a trait she says that runs in her family.
At 22, she had her first child, Andrew, now 19, from a previous relationship, and that is when she started gaining the weight. From 182-pounds and a size 14, she piled on the pounds until she was 238-pounds and a size 18.
Then Mikel Ruffinelli meet Reggie Brooks and over the next decade had three more children: Destynee, 13, Autumn, 9, and Justyce, 7. Her hips ballooned as she reached 420 pounds and a size 30.
“I put it down to my pregnancies. I don’t see why else the weight would go to my hips, although, I do eat lots,” she told Closer.
Mikel Ruffinelli, who is studying for a psychology degree, has a healthy appetite and typically consumes 3,000 calories a day.
“It sounds like a lot to have 3,000 calories, but for someone my size, it’s not really.
“I might have a breakfast of two eggs with sausage and bacon and a handful of potatoes. Lunch is fried fish and French fries, but dinner’s my big meal,” she said.
“I like to make barbecue chicken with rice or mash. I have a big portion – but I’m not greedy. I snack on peanuts, granola bars and crisps.”
As she has gotten older, Mikel Ruffinelli says she had grown more comfortable with her shape and size.
“In the past, I was self-conscious about my hips and tried milkshake diets, but they didn’t work. As I got older, I learned to love my body and now I’m not afraid to show it off.”
Over the past 5 years as her confidence has grown she has taken to modelling for a Big Beautiful Women website and earns up to $1000 per shoot.
Mikel Ruffinelli says: “I mostly wear lingerie. I have two seamstresses who make my outfits, although I can easily find clothes for my top half, it’s the bottoms that are a problem.”
She also makes an effort to be healthy and while running on land is problematic, she enjoys water aerobics.
Over the years Mikel Ruffinelli has grown accustomed to people staring and making sarcastic comments, but has learned to just ignore them.
“I don’t want to get bigger, but I don’t want to lose my curves. I look great. I hope I inspire women to think, <<She’s happy with her body and I can be too!>>.”