Healthy Living Sucks Like a Tapeworm

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When my grandmother was a young girl, she saw weight-loss pills in a store window. Take the green pill to start losing weight. Take the red pill when you reach your ideal weight and want to stop.

The green will was a tape worm.

The red pill killed the tape worm.

How did she know the green pill was a tapeworm? Some of the green pills had hatched early and were squirming around the display window!

For those of you fortunate enough to wonder exactly what a tapeworm is, I will spare you a creative commons image. That’s what Google is for. Tapeworms are parasites, usually accidently ingested in egg or larval form through contaminated food or water. They attach to your intestine and siphon off your calories and nutrients. So you can Eat! Eat! Eat! & Always stay thin!

photo by: orionpozo

And if you believe this add, with “No Ill Effects.” Aside from weight loss, vitamin deficiency, weakness, nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. They forgot to mention those side effects at the end of the commercial in a rushed and slightly-mumbled monotone, I suppose.

The most creepy part about the tapeworm diet? People still do it. Yeah, I’m about to vomit appalled too. According to trusted sources The Tyra Banks Show, the tapeworm diet is making a comeback. The US holds no statistics about how many people knowingly infect themselves with tapeworms. Probably because it’s illegal. Because it’s dangerous. And disgusting.  Tyra claims that thousands of people “want tapeworms to live in their body.” Whatever that means.

If you want to waste 25 minutes of your life have 25 minutes to spare, you can watch Tyra’s episode about the revival of the tapeworm diet. On it, a giggling idiot woman interested in ingesting a tapeworm to lose 10 pounds claims she is “willing to do anything to lose those extra pounds.”

Are you kidding me? I don’t even have a smart-ass, crossed out response for that. A person willing to infect themself with a parasite that will make them violently ill. Over ten pounds. Apparently “anything” doesn’t include moderating her calorie intake, eating fresh and unprocessed foods, and incorporating modest exercise.

The tapeworm diet, along with other quick-fix, extreme “diets,” might make you unwell on some level drop weight.  However, unless you address the lifestyle, eating, and exercise habits  that created the problem, the pounds will return. Usually with more of their poundy friends.

I will dismount my soapbox now, before I scare all you lovely readers away with preaching hurt myself. Eating healthy and working out sucks like a tapeworm does. Don’t believe those shiny fitness magazines that say otherwise. But we must always remember that health includes much more than only the number on the scale.

Sources: “Tapeworm Infection Symptoms” by Mayo Clinic

Ever heard of the tapeworm diet? Does the concept make you feel nauseous and give you night terrors? Ever have an experience with an “extreme” diet? What were your results (positive or negative)?

34 thoughts on “Healthy Living Sucks Like a Tapeworm

  1. Love it Kiya! Especially the part about the woman willing to do anything to loose the weight, except of course eating better, exercising, etc. And your smart-assisms(?) always crack me up. Thanks for cracking me up this morning, I needed it!

    • Thanks for stopping by, Denny. Glad my smart-assims (makes sense to me! But I also used the word “poundy” in this post…) brighten your day. I try to make people laugh and think at the same time. Like walking and chewing gum, it’s hard, but not impossible, haha.

  2. Introducing tape worms in the bowell seems like a no-brainer, guess it is for the no brainer. This blog points to the most difficult part of self care, the awareness of rationalizations which are making us sicker.

    • It always surprises me what extremes people will go to in order to lose weight, when many times moderation works much better. Moderation of junk food. Moderation of exercise. Moderation of sitting around doing nothing. But I’m preaching to the choir here, I know… :)

  3. Allison Gullborg

    I am old, but not that old. It was MY mother that saw the pills in the drug store window in the 1930s. Not only did she see them, but the tapeworms had hatched & were squirming around in the display — meditate on THAT visual for a while!!

  4. That is….oh my gosh…so disgusting. Maybe if people would just stop eating McDonald’s on a daily basis and get up off the damn couch once in a while…but that would be too simple and healthy!

  5. I’m going for an extreme medieval makeover: Tapeworm for weightloss, leeches to cleanse the blood, and a little trepanning to relieve stress and anxiety…

  6. Oh yeah? Well what’s everybody gonna do when tapeworms are extinct? It’s too late to help them then. All you’ll be able to say is, “Darn, I wish I would have done my part to save those poor tapeworms from extinction.”

  7. I say (to myself!) that I would do a lot of things to lose weight, but tapeworms??? That’s too far in my book! I’m trying to fight the good fight by exercising off more calories than I’m eating. ~ Cousin Liz

  8. Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the universe.
    - Albert Einstein
    You just redefined this quote for me!!! That’s absolutely bonkers.

  9. The depressing thought about this is: despite loads of progress in science and having gained so much more knowledge, we humans as a whole are still as gullible as we always were :)

  10. Great post. There’s always money to be made by those looking for the easy way out. I used to crack up at the infomercial for the belt with electric nodes on it (I think it was called “The 6-Pack Abs System”), showing a guy sitting in a chair watching TV, while his abs were contracted by an electric charge. “But wait, there’s more…!”

    FYI my two kids love to listen to those monotone voices list side effects on the pharma commercials.

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