Everyone desires beauty and, as such, many people seek a perfect body shape to make them look attractive. Losing weight has become a practice in vogue due to the constant advertisements on televisions and magazines, which portray a deluge of skinny females and lithe males. Most people are tempted to lose weight in easy ways, often ignoring the side effects and compromising their health. Several pills are available today in the market, which promises to shed off excess weight without the gruesome hours of exercise. People, enticed by such allurements, are becoming victims to the glamour of losing weight without knowing the dangers of consuming magic pills. “Research suggests that increasing the amount of exercise you do is an effective way to lose weight, and the results are even better when combined with changes to your diet” (Treating Obesity, 2010). Skinny pills are not the best or most effective way to control weight as these pills have several side effects and, therefore, one must engage in physical activities to lose weight and to have a healthy lifestyle.
There are many advertisements out there to make people believe that the Skinny pill is the fastest and most effective way to shed off the extra pounds. One such advertisement is PediaLean. It claims that “a revolutionary, all-natural weight-control compound offers new hope. It’s called PediaLean™: (What is PediaLean? 2002). These all-natural weight controls are nothing natural and have many side effects. Many of the side effects include “altered heart rhythms, heart failure, bone thinning or osteoporosis, changes to periods and fertility, high blood pressure, mood changes itching, hair loss, and muscle weakness” (Weighing up the Risks of Diet Pills, 2011). Besides, evidence in some studies indicates that “obese patients, who are already at high risk of heart disease, had a 16% increased risk of cardiovascular problems such as heart attack and stroke when using sibutramine compared to patients taking dummy pills” (Weighing Up the Risks of Diet Pills, 2011). Thus, it transpires that there is no shortcut to lose weight and the best way is by exercise.
Many children are also forced to think that weight loss can be easily achieved by consuming pills. They should, instead, be encouraged to engage in physical activities. A lot of stress has been put on children to maintain a slim body. The website of PediaLean also claims that “along with a healthy, but not calorie-restricted diet and modest exercise lost an incredible 20% of their excess body weight” (What is PediaLean? 2002). It also claims that it is a “clinically proven, safe, and effective weight-control compound designed for children and adolescents” (What is PediaLean? 2002).
But, in reality, these pills are not safe and should not be consumed by children. It is a proven fact that if diet pills contain “stimulants and sympathomimetics, their effects on heart rate and systemic vascular resistance can increase myocardial oxygen consumption to the point where an imbalance occurs between the supply-and-demand ratios, resulting in myocardial ischemia (Gibbs)” (Adolescent Dieting: Psychologic and Physiologic Effects, n.d.). This demonstrates that taking diet pills is not the best means to lose weight as it has much negative impact on the human body.
The website also claims that “The active ingredient in PediaLean™ is Pediatropin,™ an all-natural, micronized fiber concentrate derived from a plant (tuber) called P. riviera” (What is PediaLean? 2002). Claims such as all-natural, micronized fiber concentrate derived from a plant (tuber) called P. riviera (What is PediaLean? 2002) are misleading and should not be used to supplement the daily exercises needed by children to lose weight. According to Canada’s Physical Activity Guide for Children and Canada’s Physical Guide for Youth, “children and youth are advised to increase their physical activity by 30 minutes per day from current levels, in periods of activity that are at least 5 to 10 minutes in duration, and decrease sedentary activities (television viewing, computer or video game use) by 30 minutes per day” (Katzmarzyk & Ardern, 2004, p. 70). Physical activities play a crucial role in the health and overall development of a person.
One of the most interesting claims made by PediaLean is that “In a well-controlled double-blind clinical trial, every child who used PediaLean™ as directed lost a significant amount of excess body weight… a success rate of 100%!” (What is PediaLean? 2002).
Adolescent Dieting: Psychologic and Physiologic Effects, (n.d.). MEDCEU. Web.
Katzmarzyk, P. T. & Ardern, C. I. (2004). Physical Activity Levels of Canadian Children and Youth: Current Issues and Recommendations. School of Physical and Health Education: Department of Community Health and Epidemiology. Queen’s University. Canada. Web.
Obesity: Treating Obesity, (2010). Directgov. NHS. Web.
United States of America before Federal Trade Commission, (n.d.). Web.
What is PediaLean? (2002). Biolifedynamics.com. Web.
Weighing Up the Risks of Diet Pills, (2011). NHS Local. Web.