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Food as a Masticatory

Melvin Schlemenson, MD
JAMA. 1972;220(6):866. doi:10.1001/jama.1972.03200060090031.
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To the Editor.—  The need for weight reduction and weight control among overweight individuals has been well established. Frequently, it is necessary to reduce the weight of these individuals prior to elective surgery.Many methods of weight reduction including the use of drugs and surgical therapy (intestinal bypass) are now used. Each of these has wellknown disadvantages. Simple caloric restriction is extremely difficult for the obese compulsive eater.I have employed a simple method which has been effective. The patient follows a low caloric diet, but in order to satisfy the need for snacks and high caloric foods, the following program is recommended.The patient takes these foods into the mouth, chews them slowly, but does not swallow. Once mastication is completed, there are only two choices; swallowing, or ejecting into a bag or the garbage disposal. The food has served as a masticatory.The patient has had the satisfactions


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