Sunday, September 16, 2007

Weight Loss Surgery: A Last Resort

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Thinking about weight loss surgery? You're not alone. Over two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese. Many are looking for ways to lower their bodyweight and enjoy a healthier, more active lifestyle. A fast surgical procedure seems like a great option. But, for the vast majority of people, weight loss surgery should be a last resort.

One of the most common types of weight loss surgery is liposuction, a procedure that removes excess fat from the waistline. Thousands of people - mostly women - undergo liposuction surgery every year. For many, it appears to be a much easier alternative to diet and exercise. Yet recent studies show that removing abdominal fat with liposuction provides almost none of the health benefits of "normal" weight loss: lowered levels of blood sugar, insulin and inflammation-related biomarkers, not to mention increased cardiovascular fitness, improved muscle tone, stronger bones, etc.

Another little-known problem with liposuction weight loss surgery: over 40% of patients regain the weight they lose from the procedure. Why? Simply because they make no healthy lifestyle changes. Some even believe that they can exercise less and eat more now that they have fewer abdominal fat cells. Obviously this isn't true and thousands of people find that out the hard way.

Other types of weight loss surgery are designed for the severely obese - generally those people with a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher. These surgeries, which include gastric bypass and various "banding" and "stapling" procedures, have helped many formerly-obese people enjoy a higher-quality of life. However, all of these operations involve a considerable amount of risk.

Some of the risks associated with weight loss surgery include:

Death - According to the Mayo Clinic, about one in 200 to 300 people who has gastric bypass surgery dies from the procedure.

Post-surgery complications - Some weight loss surgery patients experience severe complications such as internal bleeding, infections, and blood clots. Others have to undergo follow-up procedures to correct complications such as abdominal hernias.

Gallstones - More than a third of patients develop gallstones as a result of losing large amounts of bodyweight following a weight loss surgery procedure.

Nutrient deficiencies - Some weight loss surgeries disrupt the digestion process. Without careful dietary supplementation this can lead to deficiencies in many important nutrients, especially vitamins B12 and D, iron, calcium, and folate.

Anyone considering weight loss surgery needs to weigh the risks against the benefits. They also need to realize that these extreme procedures are not cosmetic. Most patients only end up losing about 30% of their bodyweight and remain overweight for life. Simply put, weight loss surgery alone will not make you thin and beautiful. Yes, if you are extremely overweight, it may provide tremendous health benefits. But if you're just looking for a way to get thin without the "hassles" of healthy diet and regular exercise you better think again.

Jamie Clark is editor of fitFAQ.com, one of the Web's top fitness information sites. Learn more about healthy weight loss option by visiting http://www.fitfaq.com/.Rogue Online Pharmacies: The Internet War Of 2005Ian Mason

Online Pharmacy owners who haven't been working within moral and governmental regulations are in for the ride of their lives. In past months, many of these so called "rogue pharmacies" have either voluntarily shut down or been closed by the powers that be. However, the major illegitimate players have been unable to cover their tracks, and some have been outright irresponsible.

Back in 2002, it was easy and comforting to start a personal affiliate site for one of the few legitimate online pharmacies around. However, from 2003 on it became clear that some business-savvy people thought it was fine to sell counterfeit prescription medications, or even go as far as charging a hefty "doctor's fee" for processing an online consultation when no doctors were involved!

Since those days began, numerous restrictions of trade have been put into effect over the whole span of online pharmacy industry. These restrictions are, so far, limited mainly to advertising. But, without quality advertising, how can one's business acquire customers? For example, search engine giant Google made a policy change which prohibited online pharmacy advertisers from using its AdWords pay-per-click ad service; that is, unless they had a SquareTrade online pharmacy license. I won't even get into the problems with that system.

In the past months, anyone who watches the health news sector has read all the stories of online pharmacy owners going to jail for 4 years on average and being required to forfeit most of their assets such as Porsche sports cars and penthouses. After all, when you get away charge large fees for services you don't provide, the cash should just roll in.

Recent news reports talk of the software company Microsoft and Pfizer teaming up to shut down a whole network or ring of illegitimate online pharmacies. Out of a total of 17 law suits, named operations include "CanadaPharmacy," "E-Pharmacy Direct," "DiscountRx," "VirtualRx", and "EzyDrugStore."

The reasoning behind this latest group of law suits stands on the platform of ridding the online pharmacy industry of sellers of counterfeit drugs. These cases involve counterfeit versions of Pfizer's flagship medication, Viagra, a safe solution to the embarrassing and stressful problem of erectile dysfunction. If this is about drugs, you ask, then why is Microsoft involved? Well, as the owner of the Hotmail free email service used by millions of people, the company seems to have vowed to do all it can to kill off the companies such as those above, who send out hundreds of millions of emails to Hotmail customers, carefully crafted to get past current spam filters.

For questions regarding this article, contact Ian Mason: ian@shoppe.md

Ian Mason, owner of Shoppe.MD Online Pharmacy.
http://www.shoppe.md/
ian@shoppe.md

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