new from Wonka DietTech:

Jelly Belly:

Italian scientists are testing a new diet pill that turns into a clear, gelatinous blob the size of a tennis ball that may help shrink waistlines by giving dieters a sense of satiety.

"The effect is like eating a nice plate of pasta," said Luigi Ambrosio, lead researcher on the project.

The unnamed pill is made from a cellulose compound of hydrogel, a material that's powdery when dry but plumps up to a cousin of Jell-O when wet. The gel can soak up to 1,000 times its weight. A gram in capsule form quickly balloons from the size of a spit wad to a ball that holds nearly a liter of liquid.

Let's recap:

Exhibit A:
A Nice Plate of Pasta.

Exhibit B:
Happy Fun Ball.

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Current Music: L7 -- Diet Pill ♬

30 Responses:

  1. jayp39 says:

    Interesting. As long as the temporary dessication of one's stomach doesn't cause problems, I can see this as a solution for someone who can't stop at just one nice plate of pasta.

    • maxmin says:

      I'm wondering how it "passes"...

      • sneakums says:

        Out the other end, I'd imagine.

      • quercus says:

        The "blob" degrades after a few hours into slime. It's only cellulose, your stomach digests it quite easily. This is its big advantage over balloons.

        AIUI, the big problem is the extreme hydrophilic nature of this stuff. If you've ever got hydrogel cat litter stuck to your tongue, you'll know just how painful this can be. What the Italians have done is to find a way of slowing down the absorbtion of this stuff to make it safely deliverable.

    • taffer says:

      I wonder if this is at all useful for people with excess stomach acid, or if you'd just end up with a large, deadly blob of horrible, horrible acid.

  2. by swallowing the pill down the wrong pipe.

  3. yummie :/ It could be a chance for some people. Sure. But in the end they will have to change their way of living and not only eat this ... thing oO

  4. 33mhz says:

    Surely nothing bad could come of using this.

  5. korgmeister says:

    As a fat bastard, I am intrigued by this development.

    Mind you, I eat for taste rather than fullness so this probably won't solve anything.

  6. pozorvlak says:

    Oh my God, that stuff actually exists! It featured on last night's Hustle as an essential component of their complicated casino heist. I'd assumed it was made up.

  7. 4zumanga says:

    I'm sure the companies would LOVE to be allowed to sell this as a diet aid. The reason many people have trouble losing weight is their stomachs get bloated so harder to fill. I few months using this and it would be impossible for people to come off it without feeling desperatly hungry all the time.

  8. sc00ter says:

    In the past they have put balloons in people's stomaches to give them a sense of being full.

    It didn't work.

    Between the balloon getting stuck in not so good places, and it really not causing the desired effect, they ended up not using that as a treatment.

    More info here

  9. 2ce says:

    Every once in a blue moon, I botch the job of swallowing a pill properly and it gets lodged in my esophagus. It kind of hurts, but you can wash it down with some tea or something without much of a problem.

    I'm just wondering what happens when you do that with this thing.

  10. curlyeric says:

    Hmmm... ruptured internal organs and dehydration.

  11. phs says:

    "'Obesity is such an enormous problem,' said Ambrosio."

  12. ms_nobizit says:

    Tapeworm is so Over.

  13. flan53 says:

    it's like in the little prince, when there's the guy selling pills which allow you to not need to drink water. Then what happens to the simple joy of a glass of water on a hot day?