Is this the equivalent of assisted bulimia?
Fat shaming has become an accepted practice around the world, especially in developed nations such as America, where 160 million people are overweight.
Unfortunately, instead of teaching citizens that their best defense against gaining weight (which predisposes one to diseases of affluence, such as heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer) is a healthy diet, exercise, positive thoughts, and purpose in life, mainstream media promotes the idea that quick-fixes, such as pills and various powders, are all the solution one needs.
The issue is, clean eating and regular exercise are the only effective methods to lower one’s body weight to a healthy Body Mass Index (BMI) and protect oneself from developing illnesses later on in life. Because many people are resistant to change, however, and would prefer to maintain their unhealthy habits, devices such as the stomach pump have been developed and approved by the FDA.
CNBC News reports that earlier this week, the government organization approved a stomach pump, which is described as a “reverse feeding tube,” to help people lose weight. That’s right, the device is basically an exit pump that dumps part of the stomach contents into the toilet.
Similar to gastric bypass surgery, the pump is designed specifically for morbidly obese people. It’s touted to help individuals who eat the wrong foods and/or can’t control their appetite to lose an average of 12% of their body weight. The agency relayed in a statement:
“It is intended to assist in weight loss in patients aged 22 and older who are obese, with a body mass index of 35 to 55, and who have failed to achieve and maintain weight loss through non-surgical weight-loss therapy.”
Dr. William Maisel, deputy director for science and chief scientist at the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH), stated in a press release:
“The AspireAssist approach helps provide effective control of calorie absorption, which is a key principle of weight management therapy. Patients need to be regularly monitored by their health-care provider and should follow a lifestyle program to help them develop healthier eating habits and reduce their calorie intake.”
The device might appeal to those who are frustrated with their weight and health because it is considered to be minimally-invasive. First, a tube goes from the inside of the stomach to a port on the outside of the abdomen. Patients can then attach the pump to the outside port as needed. The AspireAssist removes about 1/3 of the stomach’s contents a time.
Keep in mind, though, food from the stomach will look considerably like vomit. Those who are squeamish probably shouldn’t invest in such a temporary solution for weight loss.
The device has been hailed as ingenious by many but outrageous by others. After all, isn’t purging the contents of one’s stomach technically bulimia? Undoubtedly, it is essential for an individual to lower their body weight into a healthy range to ward off various illnesses, but there are less-invasive, more natural methods of doing so.
To address criticism concerning how the device mimics bulimia, the agency stated:
“The AspireAssist device should not be used on patients with eating disorders, and it is not intended to be used for short durations in those who are moderately overweight.”
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