A while back I posted about the hCG diet, and how I thought it was the most disturbing diet trend I’ve ever heard. Believe it or not, yesterday I found one that seems to top that: feeding tubes.
A friend of mine from treatment sent this article to me with the message “FUCKED UP!” and I think that she summed it up pretty well. Basically, the latest quick-fix for weight loss is to spend ten days wearing a nasogastric feeding tube, which supplies a supplement of a mere 800 calories a day minus the pesky carbs and sugar you get from consuming “real food.” You wear the feeding tube up your nose as you go about your day-to-day business and before you know it – boom! – you’re down a few sizes. Problem?
Yes; I’ve got so many problems with this. A lot of my close friends and fellow patients in treatment have had NG tubes as a life-saving measure, a means of force-feeding. They were so thin and malnourished that they required one of these tubes snaked up their nose and down their esophagus just so they’d be getting some form of nourishment. Now, it’s become a doctor-approved method of losing weight fast before big events, especially ones like weddings where women feel extra pressure to fit into that dream gown.
Dr. Di Pietro said body weight is lost quickly through ketosis, the state in which the body burns fat rather than sugar.
Something dear Dr. Di Pietro seems to have overlooked while giving his blessing: ketosis yields to ketoacidosis, high levels of acids that build up in the blood (known as ketones) caused by the body burning fat (instead of sugar and carbohydrates) to get energy. It can be a result of starvation, excessive purging, dehydration, hyperglycemia and/or alcohol abuse (it can also be a result of uncontrolled or untreated diabetes). It can lead to coma and death (source). But, hey, at least you’ll fit into your wedding dress.
Thankfully, these doctors are keeping an eye out for all the important side effects:
Patients at his office are monitored during the 10-day period for things like constipation, bad breath and dizziness.
“Any extreme low-calorie diet is associated with side effects, kidney stones, dehydration, headaches,” Dr. Aronne said, “and if you lose muscle mass and water, what’s the point of that?”
When will people realize that the best way to maintain a healthy weight is to adopt the lifestyle changes of mindful eating and exercising? Diets are no different from disordered eating once you strip off the fancy packaging. No – the only way to lose weight is to make lifestyle changes to support a healthier way of living. No diet will give you that.
I’d like to end this with a quote from a Huffington Post article to reflect upon:
“It seems to be illogical to do this for one fairy-tale day when most brides have plenty of time before their weddings to lose weight in a healthy way,” said Suzy Weems, a Baylor University professor and a former chair of a public policy committee for the American Dietetic Association. “The long-term solution to maintain a good weight is eat right and exercise.”
Ren-Fielding had a different take: “It’s a sad commentary,” she said. “It’s a reflection of how desperate so many people are to lose weight. So many people that would pay money for this, even when it seems so absurd.”
What do you think about this diet? Do you think it’s okay to do once in a while, or do you not condone it at all?