Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

For Un-Slim, Heaven on Earth? Thinness Hormone Could Mean No More Denial

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

For Un-Slim, Heaven on Earth? Thinness Hormone Could Mean No More Denial

Article excerpt

ASK most American women what their idea of heaven is, and they'll say, "A place where I get to eat anything I want."

OK. I'm making that up. I don't actually know what most American women's idea of heaven is. But I'll bet you a plate of pasta in cream sauce that I'm at least close to being right.

Americans, especially American women, yearn for guilt-free eating. Years of diet and denial leave us relating to food like the Victorians related to sex:

We deeply desire Ben & Jerry. We deny ourselves. We feel virtuous. For a while. But the longing continues. When we can't stand it any longer, we bolt to the store for the real thing. Then we feel guilty. That makes us feel so bad, we decide to cheer ourselves up with a pizza. Double cheese.

So, yes, a world where we could drown ourselves in whipped cream without adding inches to our already bulging bods would be heaven.

Well, I wonder if heaven is about to come to us.

When I read that scientists found a hormone that made chubby mice look like Kate Moss with whiskers, I had only one question: WHERE CAN I GET SOME?

The hormone, called leptin - Greek for "thin" - was tested on obese mice. It reduced their weight by as much as 30 percent. It increased their metabolism. They were actually healthier! Scientists may test the treatment in humans as early as next year.

Think of the changes in our lives if the research is successful! Oprah, Roseanne and Liz all will be thin, giving the tabloids nothing but sex and space aliens to write about. Oh, and O.J., of course. Which will still be a story.

David Letterman will have to end his Bill Clinton fat jokes, because the prez will be thin. If he's still the prez. Well, whoever is the prez will be thin, because everyone will be thin.

The whole diet industry will be obsolete! A historical oddity! There'll be no more diet books, except in museums! No more diet pills! No more "lite" pseudo-food! No more Richard Simmons!

But eventually, we'll get bored with being thin. Just to be contrary, some kids will refuse to take their leptin. …

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