Researchers are facing a backlash over a “world’s first weight loss device” that forces people to stick to liquid diets by locking their jaws.
Some Twitter users questioned the ethics and practicality of the device, while others went so far as to compare it to a “medieval torture device”.
The DentalSlim Diet Control, developed by researchers at the University of Otago in New Zealand, is a magnetic contraption fitted to patients’ upper and lower back teeth that uses locking bolts to prevent them from properly opening their mouths.
“It allows the wearer to open their mouths only about 2mm, restricting them to a liquid diet, but it allows free speech and doesn’t restrict breathing,” the University of Otago said in a media release on Monday. “Participants in a Dunedin-based trial lost an average of 6.36kg [about 14 pounds] in two weeks and were motivated to continue with their weight loss journey.”
Brilliant, I'd like to submit my idea for a device to help short people be taller. pic.twitter.com/5WYp26VbJ3— Ika Makimaki (fish monkey) (@pezmico) June 28, 2021
“Have you considered wiring the professors fingers together so they can do less of this?” one Twitter user joked.
“And this, kids, is why ethics needs to be taught in science. Good God, I thought medicine was past these kinds of torture devices,” said another.