The Cookie Monster is suffering from life-threatening diabetes after years of bingeing on biscuits, it has been confirmed.
He was paid handsomely to stuff his face with cookies by television show Sesame Street – and is now paying the ultimate price.
Pals say the Cookie Monster, once a vivacious and fun-loving character whose catchphrases included “Me want cookie!”, “Me eat cookie!” and “Om nom nom nom”, is now a sad, overweight recluse who has to inject himself with insulin.
At the height of his fame, he lived in a palatial Hollywood mansion, but now he has moved to England to live out his last years in a bungalow in Felixstowe, Suffolk.
One friend said: “He was exploited in the name of chasing television ratings. It is shameful that it has come to this – he cannot earn a living anymore.
“His so-called showbiz friends have deserted him, and he is a burden on the National Health Service.
“Once he was blue and full of life – now he is grey and old before his time.”
The Cookie Monster, 43, was a fitness fanatic when he first joined the Sesame Street cast.
He was asked to eat cookies greedily for the cameras, but the gorging became an addiction and he started eating them in his dressing room and at home.
The Cookie Monster soon developed early signs of diabetes, but he could not give up the cookies, and once even slipped into a diabetic coma.
A spokesman for Ipswich Hospital, which has been treating the blue muppet for over a year, said: “This is a lesson for young people everywhere – eat in moderation.”