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Consult A Doctor

  The Malay Mail, 21 06 2003  
  Don's advice to those who want to lose weight  
  by Pauline Almeida  
Madonna tried it. Cliff Richard loved it. Cher was excited about it and Sylvester Stallone was vain enough to have it.

No, These Hollywood stars are not lining-up at the doorsteps of Rodeo Drive's latest fashion stores. Any short-term slimming programme will cause a rebound and those who need an weight-reduction programme should consult a doctor first.

If on is able to lose weight within four to five weeks, there will be a likelihood of a rebound, said Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (HUKM) professor of medicine, Prof Datuk Dr Khalid Abdul Kadir.

"It is best that one reduces weight slowly but surely and with intake of food with nutrients and increase activities," he said at a Press conference at HUKM in Bandar Tun Razak yester.

Dr Khalid was responding to Slim 10, the slimming pill that is making news in Singapore.

It contained a banned drug called fenfluramine which caused a television artiste to suffer liver problems and undergo a transplant while a woman died early this month allegedly from the pill.

The Malaysian Health Ministry had ordered that bestrim be taken off the shelves after it was found to contain fenfluramine, which is also banned in the country.

The drug also contains nicotinamide and caffeine that are not allowed in traditional medicine preparations.

Dr Khalid who is also Academy of Medicine, Malaysia, vice master, said there herbal drugs are not registered under the Medical Act.

"Those used by hospitals are scientific ones which have been proven to be safe and effective."

On a slimming drug called Xenical that is available locally, he said it is a prescrible drug.

"It is safe to use but not allowed to be sold directly to public, but through prescription."

The Malay Mail did test purchases of Xenical at a pharmaceutical outlet yesterday and found that it required a doctor's letter.

"It must be prescribed by a doctor," said a salesgirl. The drug costs RM3.96 a tablet.

On June 16, Sunday Mail reported that the National Obesity Forum in Britain had assessed the effectiveness of some of slimming pills and on of them was Xenical.

It is said to block the enzymes the body uses to process some of its fat, meaning that one-third less fat is broken up and absorbed into the bloodstream. The excess fat passess straight through the body.

Dr Khalid said it has been lately found in Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore that younger people around the age of 25 were suffering from diabetes compared with those in the 45-year range usually.

He said this an unhealthy trend.

"If Malaysia has such a tidak apa attitude, then we are in trouble," he added



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