Quick and easy, or painful and risky? The truth about liposuction

Promises of a quick weight-loss fix mask the realities of liposuction. Laura Mary

Welcome to part seven of The science behind weight loss, a Conversation series in which we separate the myths about dieting from the realities of exercise and nutrition. Here, health sociologist Rhian Parker, from the Australian National University, looks cosmetic surgery as a tool for rapid weight loss:

While public health messages aim to educate the community about healthy food choices and physical activity, liposuction offers a magic bullet to remove “stubborn” fat without effort.

The number of cosmetic surgery procedures in the United States rose by 155% in the five years to 2010, with liposuction coming in as one of the top five most popular procedures. Data on cosmetic surgery uptake in Australia isn’t available but it’s likely to have a similar appeal here.

James C Mutter