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Just when you think you have heard all the ridiculous and often dangerous ways some people try to lose weight, along comes another hard-to-believe story. A lady in Iowa confessed to her doctor she had consumed a tapeworm that she ordered online to help her lose weight. Even the thought makes me queasy. Her physician called the Iowa Department of Public Health and was advised to prescribe an anti-worm medication.

Using tapeworms for weight-loss isn’t a new fad. Stories abound of tapeworm eggs sold in pill form. To what extent these were used is unknown, and many of the tales may be myths.

Unintentional sources for ingesting tapeworms, which can grow to more than 30 feet, include raw fish and meat. Water in undeveloped countries can also be a source. Infected individuals may or may not experience discomfort. Common symptoms include nausea, diarrhea, and other abdominal distress. However, certain types of tapeworms may cause death.

Will ingesting a tapeworm egg help you lose weight? Not necessarily. It may, however, cause anemia and malnutrition. And if you can stomach it, this link provides more information,

http://science.howstuffworks.com/life/human-biology/tapeworm-weight-loss.htm.

Many healthy ways exist to lose weight without causing potential harm to your body. Tapeworms aren’t one of these ways. But, just thinking about it may curb your appetite.

For more wary weight-loss practices see “7 Crazy Weight-Loss Methods You Should Never Try” at http://news.health.com/2013/08/15/7-crazy-weight-loss-methods-you-should-never-try/

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