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Dwight Howard ate the equivalent of 24 candy bars per day for more than a decade

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Superman was legitimately addicted to candy.

Houston Rockets v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Baxter Holmes’ feature on the NBA’s obsession with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches is a gift that keeps on giving. The story revealed the entire league is addicted to PB&Js, and that players and coaches will literally go to war to ensure they’re available as a pre- or postgame snack.

But in 2013, Dwight Howard was dealing with an addiction of his own.

Holmes takes us back to Howard’s tumultuous tenure with the Los Angeles Lakers, where their nutritionist, Dr. Cate Shanahan, discovered Howard had been eating 24 chocolate bars’ worth of sugar every day — for more than a decade.

Howard’s insatiable sweet tooth was sustained by a candy-coated diet most 8-year-olds could only dream of having:

“Skittles, Starbursts, Rolos, Snickers, Mars bars, Twizzlers, Almond Joys, Kit Kats and oh, how he loved Reese's Pieces. He'd eat them before lunch, after lunch, before dinner, after dinner, and like any junkie, he had stashes all over -- in his kitchen, his bedroom, his car, a fix always within reach.”

Dwight was already struggling to recover from back surgery at the time, and at the All-Star break, he began complaining about a tingling feeling in his legs and fingers.

Shanahan also noticed he had difficulty catching passes.

“It looked like he was wearing oven mitts out there,” she told Ken Berger of CBS Sports in 2013.

A blood screening revealed Howard had an egregiously high glucose level, and Shanahan guessed he was dealing with dysesthesia — a condition that alters the nervous system, which she’d seen in patients with pre-diabetes.

Soon after, she led an intervention to improve Dwight’s diet. No more sweets. No more soda.

This couldn’t have been easy for Howard.

His “dream day of food,” as described to USA TODAY Sports in 2009, consists of at least one dessert item for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The Orlando Magic supposedly wooed Howard in a 2012 contract negotiation meeting by filling the meeting room with all his favorite candy.

With Shanahan’s help, however, Howard was able to cut sugar from his diet completely. Unsurprisingly, the tingling feeling stopped, and his blood-glucose levels eventually dipped a whopping 80 percent, according to Berger.

Post-intervention Dwight averaged 2.1 more points 1.8 more rebounds per game, and the Lakers’ record improved.

If there’s one thing to take away here, it’s that Superman is just as vulnerable to Almond Joys as he is to kryptonite.