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article imageOne weight-loss tool you may or may not be able to stomach

By Karen Graham     Feb 29, 2016 in Health
With so many different methods for losing weight on the market today, many overweight people are still looking for a "miracle" that allows them to lose weight while eating normally. "AspireAssist" may be the answer.
From diet pills to Jenny Craig's pre-packaged foods, to "fat farms" and bariatric surgery, there are innumerable methods of losing weight on the market, some of them questionable and many that are costly. But one thing is sure, obesity has become a big business.
We've heard the testimonials, individuals saying they lost 30 pounds in six weeks or 95 pounds in six months using various products and methods, and like most people who are overweight, a 28-year-old man in Sweden tried them all. Hampus Lager heard of a new method called "AspireAssist," and decided to try it, reports CTV News.
The AspireAssist is a device that is simpler and much cheaper than having bariatric surgery because it is less invasive and fully reversible. The device consists of a tube that is placed inside the stomach connected to a poker-chip-sized port on the outside of a person's abdomen.
Twenty minutes after eating, the patient attaches the AspireAssist device to the port on the abdomen and opens a lever that allows the device to suck or "aspirate" about 30 percent of the food in the stomach into the toilet. According to EMax Health, the device supposedly removes a third of the food but still allows the body to receive the calories and nutrients needed for health.
The AspireAssist is an unusual way of losing weight, and at first look, can be distasteful to many people, but for those people who are very much overweight or obese, it may be a lifesaver. But even so, there are still many unanswered questions concerning its safety.
The AspireAssist has been used in Europe for the past five years, and the company that produces the device is trying to get approval to sell it in the U.S. and in Canada. On the company website, it is pointed out that this particular therapy is supposed to be used in conjunction with lifestyle counseling.
But besides the fact that not anyone can go out and purchase the device without being in some sort of weight loss program, there are other more serious questions that remain unanswered. In the UK, critics are concerned that the device would encourage people to "binge" on food, knowing they could drain their stomachs afterward, sort of like "vomiting on demand," says the Metro.
Dr. Yoni Freedhoff, the founder of the Bariatric Medical Institute in Ottawa, has safety concerns about the device. "I need to know that having this procedure doesn't have long-term risks -- nutritional risks, infection risks and so forth. And until that data exists, I look at this as interesting and worthy of future study but not something I am going to be rushing people out the door to go get," he said, according to CTV News.
More about Weight loss, aspire assist, lifestyle counseling, Obesity, reverse feeding tube
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