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Troops Use Liposuction To Pass Body Fat Test

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posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 05:24 PM
A number of US military personnel have turned to liposuction in a bid to pass the Pentagon's body fat test, according to doctors. Some service members are saying that they dont have a choice because the Defence Department's method of estimating body fat is taking out bulkier physiques and not just the heavier set ones.

Dr Adam Tattelbaum, a plastic surgeon based in Rockville, Maryland, said soldiers call him in a panic. "They come in panicked about being kicked out or getting a demerit that will hurt their chances at a promotion," he said. The Defence Department uses what is called a "tape test" to make a body fat estimate by taking measurements of the waist and neck. Those who fail are ordered to spend months in a vigorous exercise and nutrition programme, which Marines call the "pork chop platoon" or "doughnut brigade". Even if they later pass, failing the test once can halt promotions for years, service members say. Failing three times can be grounds for getting kicked out, according to military officials.

A number of fitness experts are calling for the fitness standards to be revamped. They say the Pentagon's weight tables are outdated and do not reflect that Americans are bigger, though not necessarily less healthy. Fitness expert Jordan Moon said there is no reliable, economical way to measure body fat, and troops should be judged more by physical performance so they are not feeling forced to go to such lengths to save their careers. "We're sending people away who could be amazing soldiers just because of two pieces of tape," said Mr Moon, who has a doctorate in exercise physiology.

Defence officials say only a small fraction of those who exceed body fat limits perform well on physical fitness tests. "Those incidences are far and few between," said Bill Moore, director of the Navy's Physical Readiness Program. "We want everybody to succeed. This isn't an organisation that trains them and says, 'Hey, get the heck out.'"

So it isn't just self conscious ladies worried about their figures going for the liposuction these days but soldiers aswell.

The defence officials do say it is only a small fraction who go on to perform well on the fitness test after exceeding the tape measurements so how about just leaving it up to the testing doctors discretion and letting them make the call regardless of the tape results, surely they would know by examining someone if it was muscle or all fat?


posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 05:37 PM

off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 05:41 PM
reply to post by Lady_Tuatha

If they weren't fat there wouldn't be anything to liposuction out.

Yes, the tape method is not the most efficient. But if the Service members were staying within the height and weight standards and maintaining a high level of physical fitness this wouldn't even be an issue.

And waivers are granted to members who are extremely muscular.

posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 05:49 PM
Agreed. It should be left to the discretion of the tester. I knew a few people when I was in, who were naturally just stocky and thick, who passed their PT tests and performed their duties splendidly, but who failed the tape test. People are built differently, especially across ethnic lines, and the tape test really is outdated and pointless. Some people naturally have higher body fat, but it does not affect their health or performance.

posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 06:07 PM
reply to post by Lady_Tuatha

It's actually against regulations to do Liposuction to pass a body fat test. A member should also request permission from their command in order to get elective surgery, like Liposuction.

Members will starve themselves and down laxatives like candy to pass weigh-ins and body fat tests, it's pretty ridiculous. After they pass, it's celebration time and they put all that weight back on plus some, making it more difficult the next time.

Crazy stuff...

posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 06:13 PM
reply to post by Feltrick

I agree that I think liposuction is a silly idea and can make things much harder in the future, its says in the article though that it is not prohibited. So I suppose if it is not flat out banned then it will continue to be used.

Pentagon officials say the military does not condone surgically altering one's body to pass the test, though liposuction is not prohibited.

edit on 28-10-2013 by Lady_Tuatha because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 06:18 PM
If every fat cell contains a stem cell and every stem cell can be used to build most cells in the body, wouldn't it be beneficial to just get them moving a little to lose weight and get healthier.
I suppose when you have a job sitting at a desk after twenty years, it is pretty hard to stay trim. The military used to have good cooks and serve real food before also but now they got the same crap as we do.

posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 06:19 PM
reply to post by Lady_Tuatha

It's not banned in all of the services, I should have fault. The Coast Guard bans the use of Liposuction or any other surgeries that could change your body makeup to pass a BF test.

posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 06:24 PM
reply to post by Lady_Tuatha

When I was in the USN I failed the tape test every time and it's because I didn't exercise. A lot of people don't exercise and the military is no exception even though there is a PT test every 6 months. If you pass the run, sit ups, push ups but fail the tape test you are usually put on mandatory PT, which usually happens in the wee hours of the morning.

My last couple of years in the USN, back in 05-06. the Navy was downsizing personnel and the easiest way to kick people out were those that constantly failed the PT test, and failing the tape means you fail. One of my good friends got out that way, he wanted out too so it worked out and he got a fat severance check. The Army was scooping up all the sailors who were booted giving them big $$ sign on bonuses.

Now the moral of this story is that had I exercised, the gym is free and well stocked, I would have passed the tape test with flying colors. Sure, there are those out there who get the rough end of the stick thanks to genetics but I dare say the majority can pass just fine with a little exercise and a healthier diet.
edit on 28-10-2013 by Swills because: (no reason given)

posted on Oct, 28 2013 @ 10:57 PM
When I was in the army back in 1995, there was a gal in my section that had liposuction done so she could pass her tape test, she passed it, but then gained more weight afterwards lol

posted on Oct, 29 2013 @ 12:16 AM
I used to get taped out all the time. The base doc wrote me a letter saying my bf% was well in spec but it never stuck, it would be good for maybe one time and back to the tape again. I always passed the tape and maxed the pt every time, but I'm stocky and thick necked, so the height/weight never worked for me.

I think they ought to have to use a dunk tank if there's a question.

posted on Oct, 29 2013 @ 12:35 AM
Sounds like too many desk jobs and string pullers. Some American bases in Afghanistan had some morbidly obese troopers patrolling the chow lines.

How about a daily 50 minute 5 miler. Is it really that hard to dedicate time to do that? Is it really that hard to make it a standard that every single person under the age of 45 in the army must do? If you can't take responsibility for your own body, what on earth can you take responsibility for? Even if not outright strong, those guys would be decently fit in a fairly short period of time. Body fat would drop, energy would skyrocket, memory would improve, injuries would drop, confidence would improve, just better performance both mentally and physically.
edit on 29-10-2013 by Galvatron because: (no reason given)

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