Latest diet drug: revolutionary, or just feeding our laziness?
It's every dieter's dream - a miracle solution that gives you all the results of a diet and exercise regime, without, you know, actually having to diet and exercise.
Well, in today's sure-to-be-controversial news, that dream is actually close to becoming a reality.
I know, I know - we've heard this before, right? Most "miracle" diet pills often come with pretty scary side effects and high risk of addiction. They work temporarily, but the weight they target is usually water weight or muscle - not exactly something we want to lose. So how is this latest drug any different? Let's turn to the study:
The team of Houston researchers, rather than artificially fattening up their monkey test subjects, used monkeys that were already displaying "couch potato" tendencies. They then injected them daily with a protein compound called adipotide, which zaps the blood supply to fat cells and kills them off. After 4 weeks, the monkeys had lost, on average, 11 percent of their body weight.
Here's where it gets interesting. The weight that they dropped was not water or muscle, but "white" body fat - the nasty stuff that's linked to heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
But don't run out to your local pharmacist just yet. Human trials haven't started yet, and there were some slight (reversible) kidney changes that the researchers plan to investigate further.
Could the Pill Be For You?
As promising as this sounds, according to researchers, this injection would never be a permanent solution. Rather, it would be used as a kick-off to a lifestyle change that would include - there's no escaping it - a healthy diet and regular exercise. (Who wants to get a shot every day, anyway?)
Predictably, public response to this new innovation has been mixed. Opinions range from heralding the drug as revolutionary in the fight against diabetes to slamming it as just another expensive, temporary fix for perpetually lazy Americans.
Taking into account that more research is needed, what are your thoughts? Would you try out this latest, greatest miracle drug? Or is it the easy way out?