I Call It the Hannibal Lecter Diet
And no, I'm not proposing cannibalism as the latest diet fad.
I'm referring to a weight loss device that uses magnets to lock the jaw shut, restricting users to a liquid only diet. Researchers say it's an "attractive alternative" to surgical procedures.
Hasn't anyone heard of willpower any more?
This thing was developed by a group of researchers from New Zealand and the UK. They've called it the Dentalslim Diet Control. It prevents users from eating solid food by using magnets to restrict the jaw from opening by more than 2 millimeters, while still allowing users to breath normally. It's designed to make sure patients stick to a liquid diet, according to lead researcher Paul Brunton of the University of Otago.
But get this:
It includes an emergency release mechanism in case of choking or a panic attack.
So in the real world, the user, who's already demonstrated an absence of will power, is just going to release it when they get hungry.
So What Were the Test Results?
"The main barrier for people for successful weight loss is compliance and this helps them establish new habits," Brunton said in a press release.
The device was tested on seven healthy volunteers with obesity who followed a liquid diet of 1,200 calories a day. They lost an average of 6kg in the two week study, published June 25 in the British Dental Journal.
The participants reported they were satisfied with the results and motivated to continue.
They also had trouble speaking, felt uncomfortable, tense, and embarrassed, and generally felt their quality of life was worse, the researchers wrote.
(I thought it was worth emphasizing that).
The announcement of the device generated immediate backlash on Twitter, with critics comparing it to a torture instrument from the "Saw" horror movie franchise.
Commentators said the concept pathologizes and punishes people in larger bodies.
Previously, doctors have tried to treat obesity by using orthodontic wires to hold the jaw partially closed. Research suggests patients did lose weight, but regained it when the wires were removed. The procedure also had a risk of causing choking and gum disease.
A Better Alternative (and Free)
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