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The Tapeworm Diet, And Why You Should Steer Clear

Emma Gonzalez | November 14th, 2012

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Wondering how to lose weight fast? Try a tapeworm or two – or so the marketing says. The tapeworm diet is actually a dangerous and potentially fatal “solution” to losing weight, and should never be attempted. In fact, it is not even legal in the United States. That should be enough to deter even the most desperate dieter, but if not, read on…

Note: The best program for fast weight loss is, by definition, one that is also healthy. Physician-assisted weight loss plans, such as those developed by The Center for Medical Weight Loss, incorporate a healthy diet and an active lifestyle to shed pounds and promote a strong body. Don’t fall for the hype of fad diets, which put your health in danger – choose a sustainable diet program to achieve your weight loss goals.

What is the tapeworm diet?

The tapeworm diet is exactly what it sounds like: ingesting a tapeworm as a method of weight loss. The diet isn’t even legal in the United States (or most other countries, for that matter). That’s because tapeworms are a type of parasite that can be fatal. Dieters begin the tapeworm diet by taking pills that contain live beef tapeworms, which attach to the digestive track and begin to feed on the host. The diet can allegedly shed one to two pounds per week – although those claims are questionable – but has unpleasant side effects like abdominal cramps, diarrhea, and weakness. Oh right, and death.

The dangers of the tapeworm diet

Since it is illegal in the U.S., the tapeworm diet is not subject to federal regulations, which means that you don’t really know what you’re ingesting. Additionally, it’s possible for the tapeworm to not only feed on your stomach’s contents, but on your stomach tissue itself. The organism can also enter your bloodstream and travel to other organs like the brain, which can be fatal.

In the best case scenario, tapeworm dieters will experience abdominal pain and cramping, diarrhea and/or constipation, nausea, headache and weakness. They may also notice severe belly bloat, thanks to the growing tapeworm’s space requirements. When ideal weight loss has been achieved – which can take many miserable months – dieters are given an antibiotic to kill the parasite and expel the dead creatures. This process is also unpleasant, as tapeworms are not microscopic. In fact, they can grow 20-30 feet long, and must be expelled through bowel movements. Since one tapeworm can lay eggs and turn into many, this process may be repeated several times before the body is free of the parasite.

How to lose weight fast – and in a healthy manner

There is no doubt that the tapeworm diet is dangerous and potentially life-threatening. The best program for fast weight loss must also be healthy and sustainable over the long-term. (Dieters on the tapeworm diet generally gain back all lost weight as soon as they expel the parasite.) The physician-assisted programs available through The Center for Medical Weight Loss are customized to each patient and utilize proven weight loss methods that combine physical activity and good food choices to shed extra pounds and keep them off permanently. To learn more about effective weight loss plans that won’t put your life in danger, contact the Center today. Start by inputting your information into the box at top right to find The Center for Medical Weight Loss nearest you. Introductory offers are available for first-time visitors at select locations.